Hello all, While setting a rhodalite cab yesterday I nicked the
stone with a punch. I know I can polish it if I had the correct
flex shafts wheels. I have tried charging felt buffs with diamond
paste, and found that method wasn't aggressive enough. I think I
need a pre-charged product, if it exist. Perhaps something used by
gem carvers that will allow me to get into a tight spot.
elt just soaks up the diamond compound, leaving nothing at the buff
surface to do anything. Instead, try making small wheels from wood
dowel cutoffs. Slice a bit of dowel off, drill the center out, the
spin against files, etc, to true up the shape, and then sand smooth.
Now use just small amounts of diamond compound on the mini wood laps.
If the nick is substantial, you'll probably have to use several of
these, starting with a coarser grit, say peryaps 1200, and then move
up to finer grits. If you want to spend money on stuff, you can
also get small (half inch, to inch, or thereabouts) mandrel mounted
rubber disks, to which you glue (lapidary contact cement) matching
little disks of the treated canvas cloth used in traditional diamond
polishing pads. They work well. These can also be used with oxide
polishes. And for quick fixes of minor nicks, some of the rubber
wheels put out by pacific abrasives, and others, use aluminum oxide
abrasives, which will also affect these stones. The ones I'm
thinking of are white in color, quite hard for a rubber wheel, and
will leave a moderate degree of polish on the stone as it abrades
into the stone. The only trouble with these methods is that it takes
considerable care to get a polish on a nicely shaped surface, instead
of a nice polish on a visible gouge that your attempts to repair the
stone have now produced;. Especially rignt next to a bezel or a
setting, it's difficult to maintain a surface that still looks as
though you didn't damage it and then repair it. And one final
comment, for very minor scratches on softer stones, the platinum
polishing compounds sold by Gesswein, which are micro graded aluminum
oxide, will affect many stones too. The 8000 rouge compound does a
quite passable job of restoring the gloss to softer stones, just as
it does to the metal. You have to be careful to avoid overdoing it,
or you get orange peel effects. These compounds, which I LOVE,
are not without danger, as a result of this. Polishing a piece set
with a cab is cool, as the most it will usually do is improve matters.
But facetted stones look better when they don't have all their facet
edges slightly rounded over and highly polished... Nuff said...