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Discussion Starter #1
Introduced myself a litle bit ago when I started turning pens. I have learned alot with trial and error, but the one thing I cannot stay consistant is finisshing the wood. Sometimes the finer sandpaper will leave darkness in the grains giving a dirty appearance or sometimes the sanding marks can be seen on close inspection. How to get that extra glossy smooth shine with sharp grains? Thanks in advance. :blink:
 

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wrg,

I make game calls which are a little bigger than pens but basically the same. I have sanded all the way down to 600 and have had no such issues with any wood or other materials.

You may be sanding too fast or with too much pressure causing the wood to burn. Try slowing down the lathe while sanding and not applying as much pressure.

You should be able to get an extremely smooth surface with no sanding marks at all.

I use several different finishes including tung oil, laquer, shellac, etc and am able to get a glass smooth finish.

I hope this helps, and by all means please feel free to contact me if it doesn't or you still have questions.

Thanks

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply Dave. I sand to 600 to start and go from there. It is the finer paper(1200+) that I am running into the concerns. I will try less pressure and slower speeds and see what happens. What is the finest that you go to to get the desired finish that you want?
 

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Hi wrg,

I sand my miniatures with P100, P220, P320, P400, P600, P1000, P1500. Then I apply EEE Wax with a soft cloth until all the scratches have disappeared then I finish with Shellawax. This gives me a really shiny finish.

Dave is right about the pressure. I found that, because I am using a resin bonded cloth, if I use too much force then the heat would cause the resin to melt and it would leave streaks on the piece.

Hope this helps.:smile:
 

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wrg,

I would think 600 would be as far as you have to go. Many times I won't go that fine and get a glassy smooth finish.

What kind of wood are you working with? Are you using Acrylics?

Dave
 

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Long Answer

I assume it is pens that you are making..If so do you use bushings to hold your blanks in place and then turn down to the bushings. There is a strong posability that you ar actualy sanding some of the metal from the bushings into the wood therefore causing dark or gray patches( particularly at the ends.)

This can be solved by turning or finishing the blanks between centres. ( let me know if you want to know more about this)

The scratches may be down to taking too big a jump between grades of sandpaper or you are only sanding in one direction. I usualy sand horizontaly and then finish each grade of sandpaper with an short burst with the grain. I stop at whatever grade of sandpaper has given me the smoothness that I want.

As for finishes. Make the grain stand out with either sanding sealer or Boiled linseed oil. Then you can finish with your prefered finishing substance.

Just as an aside the best and most durable finish at the moment is when you use CA glue to give a thin acrylic like coat over the wood and then buff it
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Very informative answers from all. Everyone has touched on a little something that a have wondered about.

I am only using wood right now, no acrylics.

The pressure I am using may be a big factor.

Yes, more information on turning/finishing blanks between centers. The bushing may or may not be a factor. Will look closer on the next project, especially if it is a lighter color wood.

I am using CA glue for some finishing. Would that be the last step before buffing/and what do you buff with for best results.

Thanks again for all the information. I know I could probably google it, but I prefer to interact a little more. :thumbsup:
 

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Here is an answer I supplied on an earlier thread



A lot of Pen turners are moving to this method so its not one I can claim as my own. Dead easy.

60 degree dead centre in Headstock. 60 degree Live centre in Tailstock.

With the 7mm Tubes you could try making bushings from corrian. All they need is a 60 degree dimple in the base for your centres to locate. Or you could simply snug the centres up into your tubes ( not too much pressure or you risk flaring the tube). A member on another forum that I am in sells all sorts of stainless steal bushings for this method.

Basically you locate your blank between the centres and turn down to the required size. ( using calipers if you dont have bushings) then you can put whatever finish you use on the blank

I have posted a link to a tutorial which shows what I am talking about.The tutorial refers to using this method for finishing but many turners are using it to turn the blank first

If anyone objects I will remove the link. ( I dont want to be seen as poaching members)
http://content.penturners.org/articl...ead_Center.pdf
 
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