grosbeak -> RE: Polishing an aluminum spinner (12/20/2012 2:53 PM)
For power polishing I found an excellent resource from Caswell: How To Buff And Polish. All of the supplies were at my local Princess Auto:
6" spiral-sewn buffing wheel (x 1)
6" loose cotton buffing wheel (x 3)
4 oz. Polishing compound, Brown Tripoli (x 1)
4 oz. Polishing compound, White Diamond (x 1)
4 oz. Polishing compound, Blue (x 1)
4 oz. Polishing compound, Jeweler's Rouge (x 1)
I mounted the spiral-sewn wheel and one of the loose cotton wheels on my bench grinder; the Brown Tripoli compound went on the former and the White Diamond on the latter.
The next step were the blue and the Jeweler's Rouge compounds, both onto new loose cotton wheels.
Now, Caswell says the rouge is the finer of the two so I started with the blue and moved to the rouge. I took another look at the packages, however, and the compound manufacturer shows the blue to be the finest. So I finished with the blue. The final result:
Reflections (pun intended) on the polishing process:
The Flitz method:
Good results and, once you realize that all of the oxidation can never come off, fairly quick. At $12.99, Definitely the cheapest.
The Tru-Turn method:
Poor instructions and results to match. About $15 in sandpaper - and you still need the Flitz.
The power polishing method:
Quick and easy. The most expensive, though, at about $45. And that's if you already have a grinder.
In conclusion, I'd recommend the Flitz, at least to start with. Lots of folks recommend Mothers Mag & Aluminum Polish so that's certainly an alternative. I'm not sorry I tried all three methods - I sure learned a lot and hopefully some of it will be helpful to others.