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polishing chat mar 06,08

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from Friday knife chat, Mar-06-09

[Cool Hand] I have a long way to go before I could be considered a bladesmith, but I sure enjoy trying! Any ideas on a good polisher?
[steve sells] everyone gotta start somewhere, cept for JIm Hrisoulas and Howard clark, they were born with hammers in their hands...
[Cool Hand] I have to start from scratch I love making rr spike knives, been giving them out as presents.
[steve sells] I know of 2 very good polishers, one in CHicago, starts at $50- per sq inch for katana.
[garey] there is one in Dallas to that is good Steve
[steve sells] What did you mean? by your question as I doubt you meant hiring a blade polisher
[Cool Hand] oops, I meant a shop polisher. I need to make one.
[steve sells] lol 10 inch buffer is good, many say 1 to 5 Hp, mine is a 1/3 Hp and only 6 inch
[garey] Harbour Freight puts their long shaft grinders on sale get one and change the rocks out for buffes
[LDW] low powered bench grinder with buffing wheel
[Cool Hand] Any particular kind of buffer top on it?
[LDW] I bought one of those
[Cool Hand] I don't know the difference between buffers, I told you I was green!
[steve sells] the buffer wheels you get depend on the "stuff" you are using
[LDW] one that has stitching
[steve sells] soft floppy for my 5000 grit,. but stiff stitched for the emery, plus I have a soft stitched for the green chrome its about 1200 to 1500 grit,
[Cool Hand] so my car polisher is not likely to work huh?.....lol
[steve sells] depends on what ya want it to do, Kill you and some bystanders? Yes work great for that
[Cool Hand] heheh
[steve sells] ANY buffer is good for that, some are better at it than others
[Cool Hand] I have just been putting a BS finish on everything, time to stretch my wings.
[garey] i have 4 grinders set up on the bench one for grinding 3 for buffing
[Cool Hand] I need one of them 1 kind fits all sort of things
[LDW] cool hand, they can snatch a knife out of your hand pretty easy
[garey] remember a grinder or a belt sander can and will sooner or later grab a blade and sling it past your head at the speed of light!!!
[steve sells] REMEMBER NEVER use a wheel for anything except ONE compound, NEVER mix them on same wheel, always change the wheels when ya change the compound
[Cool Hand] BOTH are great advice!!!!
[steve sells] emery gets the stiff stitched, when I finish .. I change out the wheel, place in a zip loc bag, and get out the soft stitched for green chrome. After the green, change out to soft floppy, and white rouge, ALSO throughly clean blade between types of buffing compound
[Cool Hand] what is "green chrome"?
[steve sells]
[LDW] buffing compound
[steve sells] there are many different compounds for buffing, the coarsest I have is Emery its about 700 grit, which I why I normally only grind up to 400 to 600 grit,
[steve sells] no reason to go finer,when I ise non belts for finer :)
[Cool Hand] Is there a buffing lifecycle? If I where buffing a raw, newly formed blade to a sheen, how would it go?
[LDW] I found some one time that after applied it hardened and would create sparks when you used it
[steve sells] but I have had a few disagree with me, but I have never seen any blade THAT person either LOL
[Cool Hand] Ah there is prolly a bp on that huh?
[steve sells] I dont know
[garey] am sitting here hand (finger) sanding a blade with 500 wet dry paper now.
[Cool Hand] what grit would you start with, what next, then what to finish?
[steve sells] the green chrome (a name fro one manufacture , may be called something else by another) is about 1200 to 1500 grit, the white rouge is close to 5,000 grit but I rarely use that for a blade, mainly brass or bronze fittings.
[LDW] like Steve said, you can get the compounds in different grits
[Cool Hand] what are the best 3 grits to start with?
[steve sells] all depends on where ya want to blade to go.. if I got belts in finer grits I would not need the emery...
[steve sells] I prefer to use belts to 400 then emery polish
[LDW] I usually hand sand to 1000 grit then polish,
[steve sells] some like to go to 1200 them use the polishing wheel, its all a matter of choice
[Cool Hand] Belts are not an option yet.
[steve sells] many of mine are machine sand to 400, etch the damasucs, then hand 500 then 600 then a fast emery and/or 1200 and ready for sale,
[steve sells] no belts? then files and Block sanding
[garey] if you do japanjese blades you will need fine emery and finer water finger stones. thats what im doing tonight.
[steve sells] I have papers up to 3,500 grit for mirror finish then a fast 5,000 grit polish at the wheel, but rarely use them.
[Cool Hand] It will be years before I attempt a fine blade, I have lots to learn.
[garey] me too.
[steve sells] me too
[markb] here here
[LDW] I watched Jim Batson draw file on a rough bowie one time, and cleaned it up as quick as a belt sander would
[steve sells] not me garey... I don't do traditional Japanese, my Katana are modern Katana style I make that very clear to my clients
[Cool Hand] I prefer to learn slowly, when I do, I never forget.
[LDW] I take that back cleaned it to what an 80 grit belt on a belt sander would do
[Cool Hand] How does one go about getting knife quality steel, all I have is industrial and car parts.
[steve sells] buy it from speicalty places, on line works
[Cool Hand] Blanks?
[steve sells] security steel supply 1080 and 5160
[Cool Hand] Thanks Steve. What is the difference in the two?
[steve sells] read the sticky on choosing steels we covered that a few months ago in this chat,m and I added to it a lot and made it a sticky http://www.iforgeiron.com/forum/f75/choosing-steel-9286/
[garey] knife supply stores that sell blade steel. Texas knifemakers or Jantz supply
[Cool Hand] I want tough, durable field knives. Not show pieces
[steve sells] Knife Making Supplies A Rich Hale favorite
[garey] Snappper and Troybuilt mower blades make a good thin fixed blade small knife. other mower blades don't seem to have as good quality

Edited by mod07
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