Polishing Compound

Vernon

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I decided to try this out so added it to my last order. There are four different compounds. The couple that I tried were very dry and hard. There is no way they would stick to the buffer. Any suggestions? Thanks
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Bruce Alexander

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If those are what I think they are, the compound is in a waxy binder. A buffing wheel on a buffer will easily pick up the material as it heats up. The problem I have is usually is in picking up too much of the compound/binder. I suppose you could apply some to a cloth or rag containing a solvent like mineral spirits if you want to apply the compounds manually.
 

Vernon

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Bruce,
Oh alright, that makes sense, I give that a try. I've been anxious to experiment with these as all that I have had is Semichrome. Thank you
 

shutterbug

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When I used to do gold solder repairs and polishing, I used the hard compounds, but on a very hard buffing wheel. Could be your soft wheel doesn't give it enough chance to stick. Also, hard buffers don't grab stuff out of your hands and fling it across the room :)
 

MartinM

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How fast is your buff turning? It takes a certain amount of speed (and heat) to get the compound to liquefy and transfer to the buff.
 

Vernon

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I'm using a variable speed Dremel though I haven't tried picking up the material while it was spinning. Was hoping to use a rag or popsicle stick and apply to the spinning object but that doesn't sound doable. May have to adapt
 

Bruce Alexander

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You should be able to pick up some of the compound using a popsicle stick. Just keep rubbing it over the compound stick until it adheres. Also, I'm pretty sure the carrier wax binder is at least partially soluble in solvents such as Mineral Spirits. I often use that or something similar to remove excess compound deposits on whatever I'm trying to polish. Try applying some solvent to a rag and then rub the compound stick with it. These sticks are really intended for use with a Buffer/Rag Wheel set up but I don't think there's any reason why you can't use it with a Dremel. Experiment.
 

MartinM

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Whether using a Dremel or a 15 inch spiral buff, the concept is the same for machine polishing. present the dry compound to the rotating wheel (briefly!) to pick up some polishing compound and then go to the part you're polishing. Putting too much compound on the wheel is the biggest mistake folks make when learning to polish. Apply compound lightly and often; Not heavily, or you'll just end-up with a lot of ugliness to have to deal with.

Use firm pressure going against the direction of the wheel (like using a circular saw) to 'cut' or do the heaviest removal of material from the part, be it base metal or just tarnish.
Use light pressure going with the direction of the wheel to 'color' or smooth-out any marks left from the cut process.

Never present any sharp edges to the wheel except as a trailing edge. At best, it strips the compound off the wheel and shortens the life of the wheel and at, worst may result in the aforementioned sailing across the room or impaling of the operator.
 
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Bruce Alexander

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I agree with Martin. Dremel offers their own polishing compound. It's kind of like a dry paste and not nearly as hard as the sticks you've purchased, but basically the same principle.
 
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