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Polishing epoxy


#1

I use epoxy to fill small pits and holes in agates. Once it sets, I
use a file to make the epoxy flush with the surface of the stone.
The file doesn’t scratch the agate. The problem is polishing the
epoxy so it doesn’t undercut because it is softer than the agate. I
have had better results with a UV curable from Locktite. Hand
polishingworks better than on a wheel because it doesn’t melt the
epoxy. Please share with me any experience you might of had with a
similar process.


#2

When creating and repairing inlay pieces I use my flat lapidary to
first grind flat (180 grit diamond) then work the piece with
progressively finer laps (340/600/1200). Once I’ve finished with
the 1200 it takes just a light touch on the buffing wheel with Zam
and/or Fabuluster to get a nice finish. Too much polishing on the
buffing wheel does start removing the epoxy as it is the softer
material.

To do this manually after you finish with the file start polishing
the stone on progressively finer grades of wet/dry sandpaper and
water on a flat surface (polished granite floor tiles work well).
You can get up to 600 grit wet/dry sandpaper at your local hardware
store or home center. Auto parts stores carry wet/dry sandpaper in
finer grits.

Hope this helps.
Rick Copeland
Silversmith and Lapidary Artisan
Colorado Springs, Colorado
http://home.covad.net/~rcopeland/


#3

Richard,

I too have used epoxy for many years to fill small hold in stone
surfaces. Don’t expect it to work on anything over a mm or so though.
On those larger holes, use Opticon which is a resin.

When polishing surfaces with small pits/holes filled with epoxy, I
usually go though my normal routine of working up to 50K diamond and
then use my normal oxide. If the epoxy doesn’t look good at that
point, I use ZAM to finish things off. Just keep in mind, the epoxy
will probably undercut slightly no matter what you do.

Cheers from Don at The Charles Belle Studio in SOFL where simple
elegance IS fine jewelry! @coralnut2