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Article: Polishing (metalworking)

Polishing (metalworking)

Polishing Process and Techniques

  • Different types of abrasives are used based on the condition of the material
  • Rough abrasives are used initially to remove imperfections
  • Finer abrasives are used to achieve the desired finish
  • Lubricants like wax and kerosene can be used during the process
  • Buffing can be done by hand or using specialized equipment
  • Cut motion is used to achieve a uniform, smooth surface finish
  • Color motion is used to achieve a clean, bright, shiny surface finish
  • Pressure applied during buffing varies based on the desired result
  • Brass polishing involves using a very fine grit and copper plating
  • Polishing operations for tools like chisels and wrenches involve roughing, dry fining, greasing, and coloring
  • Abrasive flow machining
  • Electropolishing
  • Knife sharpening
  • Surface finishing
  • Use of kerosene in polishing metals

Equipment Used

  • Different abrasives are used for different types of metals
  • Polishing wheels are made from various materials like wood, leather, and cloth
  • Cloth wheels can be cemented together or sewn and glued
  • Felt wheels are popular for achieving fine finishes
  • Buffing wheels are made from cotton or wool cloth and come in various types

Types of Compounds

  • Emery compound is used for removing scratches, pits, and rust
  • Tripoli compound is used for general purpose cut and color on soft metals
  • Blizzard compound is used for color and final finish on harder metals
  • Blue wheel is designed to polish without cutting action, safe for thin plates
  • Green compound is used exclusively for stainless steel

Applications of Polishing

  • Polishing is used to enhance the appearance of items
  • It can prevent contamination of instruments and prevent corrosion
  • In metallography and metallurgy, polishing is used for microscopic examination
  • Polishing can be used to remove tarnish from metal objects
  • Electropolishing is an alternative form of polishing using electrochemistry principles

Notable References and Additional Information

  • Oberg, p. 1439
  • Deck, Clara, 'The care and preservation of historical brass and bronze,' retrieved 2009-01-06
  • What is Electropolishing? (source:
  • Oberg, p. 1440
  • Wikimedia Commons has media related to Polishing
  • Oberg, Erik; Jones, Franklin D.; Horton, Holbrook L.; Ryffel, Henry H. (2000), Machinerys Handbook (26th ed.), New York: Industrial Press Inc., ISBN 0-8311-2635-3
  • Retrieved from
  • Articles with unsourced statements from January 2009
  • Commons category link is locally defined

Polishing (metalworking) Data Sources

Reference URL
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