Polishing compounds

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  • #49454
    tukat44
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    • Topics Started: 8
    • Total Posts: 76

    Thanks to everyone in advance for helping me with this one- anybody have any luck using common household polishing solutions to get the desired effect on modern clock movement parts (Arbor Pivots specifically)? Tukat

    #61766
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Tukat,
    I have purchased many types of polishing compounds from Ebay. Give them a look and you can probably find the exact product you need for the job.
    david

    #61767
    randy
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 39
    • Total Posts: 594

    David is spot on for finding polishing pastes etc…I have bought diamond pastes on Ebay at very reasonable price ..and I use MAAS polish ( a rouge type ) for many, many watchmaking applications. Crystals, movement plates, cases, arbors ,..etc.

    Best of luck !

    Randy

    #61768
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    You would be better off burnishing your clock pivots as it helps to work harden the surface of the pivot as well as polishing it. Just a little clock oil on the burnisher.
    Paul.

    #61769
    chris mabbott
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 119
    • Total Posts: 1525

    I agree with Paul, burnish the pivots. It is said, or possibly written, that using diamanteen can embed itself into the pivot, which aint good news :?

    #61770
    randy
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    • Topics Started: 39
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    I’ve used the MAAS and n some cases Diamantine to remove staining from some wheel parts.but you do have to be very careful with the diamantine.
    I’ve migrated pretty much to burnishing as much as possible.
    Bob posted a very thorough explanation awhile ago around burnishing which I’m offering up for this discussion.

    The end of the pivot must now be polished. I’ll explain briefly three methods here. You can use Diamantine powder (most watch supply houses) and a flat piece of iron or copper. Sanding smooth a copper penny works well. Diamantine is extremely hard and will tend to embed itself in anything that’s softer than it. The steel pivots are softer so if the polishing is done on a surface that’s as hard or harder than the pivots the diamantine will become imbedded in the pivot. If this happens the charged pivot can actually grind a hole in the cap jewel over time. By using a softer plate like copper or iron the diamantine will become embedded in the plate rather than the pivot and will polish the pivot to a mirror finish. The polishing process is done the same as the grinding process only with a soft plate and diamantine powder rather than a stone. If only a very small amount needs to be removed from the pivot then using diamantine rather than a stone can do the job. When using diamantine remember to clean the pivot very well before inserting it back into the jewel hole for testing.

    Another very good way to polish pivots and at the same time eliminate the risk of diamantine becoming embedded in the pivot is to use a Jasper stone. I personally find that diamantine gives a smoother “blacker finish” but many people use a jasper stone and like the fact that they don’t need to worry about embedded diamantine.

    If you’re in a hurry and don’t have any diamantine or a jasper stone you can still get a good finish by making a quick burnishing tool, preferably out of something harder than the pivot. The only problem with burnishing when using the pin-vise method that we’re discussing here is that burnishing doesn’t really remove much if any material but rather lays the steel over itself. You can get a beautiful extremely smooth polish using burnishers but the unevenness that I mentioned earlier may still remain. If you decide to burnish then an old flat jewelers file works great. Just grind one face smooth with a stone. You can then take a coarse stone and lightly cross grain the face of the file (not down the length but across at 90 degrees until you see some very fine lines). This will be enough to lay over the steel of the pivot and will impart a nice polish to the pivot end. You can then apply a small amount of oil to the burnisher when polishing. The actual method of polishing with the burnisher is the same as above.

    #61771
    david pierce
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Randy,
    I think you got in some good typing practice with that one. 😆
    david

    #61772
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    I just picked up a polishing compound today that I have never tried before and know nothing about. It is called VIENNA LIME. When I looked up the product on Ebay the only supplier of the product was a place in England, and is was expensive to ship it to the USA. As is turned out Vienna Lime is actually Calcium Carbonate (chalk) ground into an extremely fine powder. I found a supplier on Ebay that sells it as CHALK PAINT POWDER and bought a 10 pound bag for $15.00. It is supposed to be used after all of the other polishing compounds have been applied to the polishing process.
    david

    #61773
    maitai11
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 62
    • Total Posts: 428

    Hey Brother, good question ;)

    #61774
    randy
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 39
    • Total Posts: 594

    Nah David…I cheated and used the cut and paste option !!!
    Never heard of Vienna Lime…interesting though…I’ll have to check it out !

    #61775
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Vienna Lime I think it is just chalk dust. I still use a block of chalk, I run my “clean” clock brush over it to give the movement plates a final polish and as the link states to remove any polish residue (although that should have happened in the ultrasonic) and to remove any accidental finger prints. I only tend to use this on better quality movements with un lacquered / un painted plates.
    Paul.

    #61776
    randy
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 39
    • Total Posts: 594

    OK Paul…I think it’s also called French Chalk???…I’ve read where it’s been used in the manner you described.

    #61777
    tukat44
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 8
    • Total Posts: 76

    David, Chris, Paul, Randy, Thank You All for this good Information
    Tukat

    #61778
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Randy,
    French chalk is what tailors use for marking out material and is a hydrated magnesium silicate. But, if Bergeon ever decided to market chalk they would probably call it “French Chalk” cut it into 1cm cubes and stuff it in a pretty yellow box for just $29.99 :)
    Paul.

    #61779
    arutha
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    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Randy, looks like I need to eat my words – https://www.cousinsuk.com/product/french-chalk?code=P7846 Unless it is just chalk from France? 😯

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tukat44Polishing compounds