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How do I polish scratches and other marks off blades??
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I have many many old knives and need to polish some problem blades....I have buffing wheel....but do not know what to put on the wheel. Can anyone advise me???
Thanks!!!
Alex
 
Posts: 2097 | Location: Gainesville, FL | Registered: 13 October 2004Reply With Quote
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What kind of scratches ? What you do depends on the damage to the blade. Before you get out the buffer you might want to try polishing by had as buffers tend to round of edges etc.For deeper scratches start out with courser abrasives and progress to finer .Make sure everything is cleaned between steps so you don't carry over abrasive particles and have to start over.You can hand polish up to perhaps 800 grit then buff if you want a shiney buffed surface.If you don't want a shiney suface 400 or 600 grit will give you a nice matt finish.
 
Posts: 7636 | Registered: 10 October 2002Reply With Quote
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I use sewn cotton wheels and a variety of compounds. The buffing compounds are availble from knife supply shops such as Jantz or K&G.

Warning: The buffer is the most dangerous piece of equipment in my shop. It will snacth a blade out of your hand and throw it back at you unbeleivably fast. Be very very careful and always work on the lower part of the wheel (below centerline).
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Louisville, KY | Registered: 03 January 2009Reply With Quote
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THANK YOU BOTH!!
 
Posts: 2097 | Location: Gainesville, FL | Registered: 13 October 2004Reply With Quote
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In general, you really can't polish scratches out of a knife blade.

You may have to step back and go with silicon carbide paper. I usually use 120, 180, 300, 400, 600, and 1200 grit ... in that order.

Figure out how to support the knife so that the blade cannot be flexed away from the handle. Take a piece of 1x2 or 2x2 wood and cut a step in it so that the handle is lower than the blade. Use another piece of wood and a tight clamp to hold the handle with the blade on the high part of the first piece. Then vise up the knife on the bottom piece (which is the one that has been relieved for the handle).

Then sand the place with paper wrapped around a file ... or around a hockey puck if the blade has been hollow ground. Work at least two directions with each grade of paper. Stop with the coarse grades when you can no longer see the scratches. Work through the grades of sandpaper until it is at a point that you want to polish with a buffer.

1200 to 2000 will yield a very nice matte finish. If that's what you want, do the last grade with the paper wrapped around a large eraser rather than something hard. Will soften the matte finish nicely.

If you want a high polish, go to 1200 and then buff with a coarse buffing compound through white then red and on to green.

The warning given above that a buffer is dangerous is RIGHT ON! Do not use a buffer without given it your COMPLETE attention. Wear gloves. Polish below the center line of the wheel rotating toward you. Even if you have good control ... clear everything below and behind the buffer. Try to locate the buffer so that there is room behind it so that a blade if caught and thrown, it won't bounce back to you!

Be careful working around a sharp edge. Is all too easy get lax and drag a finger across one.

Good luck!


Mike

--------------
DRSS, Womper's Club, NRA Life Member/Charter Member NRA Golden Eagles ...
Knifemaker, http://www.mstarling.com
 
Posts: 6199 | Location: Charleston, WV | Registered: 31 August 2002Reply With Quote
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