Friday, November 14, 2008

"How To" polish resin or at least how I do it

I did this little "How To" awhile back. Let's face it I'm a little bit better of a blogger now and though I'd revisit this info. Plus I flaked on the real "How To" I had planned for this week.

This is how I polish resin. I have no idea how other people polish their resin pieces. I came up with this all on my own after searching the net and coming up with basically nothing. Also by trying different methods that didn't work. This may be an off the wall way to do it, but it works for me. Also I use 2 part epoxy resin, this may not work on other resins. I haven't ever tried. If you do and it works let me know.

When I pop my resin pieces out of the molds they aren't very shiny. Some of them have a film like funk on them. I sand the edges of all my pieces to a nice rounded edge. Then buff and polish. This stuff works to get the surface nice and smooth. Yep, car polishing compound. I bought this at my local Wally World. It has a very fine grit and works like a champ. There is such a thing as jewelry polishing compound but this comes in a big tub for about three bucks at most stores. How can you beat that?

I do this all by hand, by choice. I have a dremmel but I like the control I have with my own little hands. So my dremmel collects dust in a cabinet somewhere.

So here is my polishing compound and a cloth. Any old cloth, this one is an old burp cloth.

I take my piece and run it around in there, get a fair amount of the compound. I have dampened my cloth. Then I'm going to buff away. Buff, buff, buff then take a clean microfiber cloth and wipe the piece clean. If it's up to your standards, your done. If it's not smooth enough, do it again. I don't use much pressure at all. You can ruin the piece with to much pressure. Actually put tiny scratches in the resin.

Now your piece is smooth and most of the time already quite shiny. I do one more step and polish the piece with carnauba wax(that pink stuff). Get that in the car section as well. I use my finger and smear it on. Put it down and go take a break. Go shop on etsy for 10 minutes.

Let the wax haze over. Generally 10 minutes is plenty of time. More than that and it gets hard to buff off. It can be done but it's a pain.
Buff, buff, buff on your clean microfiber cloth. Remove the wax and buff a little more and your piece should be nice and shiny.

Taaaa daaaaa. Add a bail and you've got yourself a resin pendant that is nice and shiny.
Please forgive my funky fingernails in these photos. I did have a manicure with fashionable shiny navy blue nails last week. Now they are chipped and just plain ugly. It's been a trying week!


kim* said...

ooh neat!

LeelaBijou said...

how cool! ^_^

LuvToSparkLe said...

Very cool! I usually paint a top layer of resin on to get it shiny which is time consuming :( I will have to try this! THX, do you use a dremel to put the hole through it?

Linda Chandler said...

Great idea...for those using a flex shaft.
Too much pressure for to long will heat up
your resin and cause damage.
Hand polishing is best.

laungnome said...

I just wanted to thank you for posting this it was a huge help. I had been doing the same as LuvToSparkle.

I was able to find the Turtle Polisher and I grabbed a thing of Carnuba wax but its a weird brown creamy consistency. From what I can tell its not AS good but close enough :)

cookievf said...

I just started to use resin to coat game piece pendants (pics of earlier versions r on my blog). So far, there hasn't been a need to polish or sand... but, then again, I'm not using molds.

I so love the cute little domed pendant that NOW I wanna try molds... but no clue where to buy or what's involved. Would love to hear from you via post or email.

- vicki xo