I purchased a bench grinder for polishing about a month ago. It works
but I spend more time on the floor looking for my pieces than I do
Please, O Friends of Orchid, tell me what I am doing wrong and give me
or techniques to prevent this. Pieces flung against the wall after they
spun out of my fingers certainly have that “flawed” look everyone has
discussing in another thread!
I do not know what kind of pieces you are buffing. One thing that could
possibly help is to design some simple pieces in brass or bronze and in
some quantity (something real simple, like 25 of something) and then just
sit down and buff (sort of a buff-a-thon). The wheel will teach you what
you need to know. The angle you hold the piece to the wheel is important.
The type of wheel you use for different areas of the piece is important
also. Buffing production style is the fastest way to gain experience.
Production style buffing also helps to develop speed and efficiency.
It is also important to understand what is going on in a somewhat molecular
level. What is the buffing wheel and compound doing to your jewelry piece
and how is it doing it? Learn to visualize what you can’t see happening to
your piece in your mind. Believe it or not this really helps.
Another consideration is design. Are you having problems buffing because of
design? Are your buffing wheels able to reach the areas you are trying to
One thing I do to help minimize buffing is tumbling. Many jewelers I know
do not tumble because they do not get the finish they want through
tumbling. Many of our designs are of this nature. However, I still tumble
them and save 30% to 40% off of the buffing time. This means I don’t have
to buff edges and backs of many pieces.
FWIW I still have pieces thrown by the wheel even after buffing for 20
years. I have literally gotten the jitters after having large cuff
bracelets thrown a couple of times in a row. (BAM!!!)
Another thing that could help is insulating your fingers from the heat of
the piece being buffed. We use rubber finger cots and a small tub of water.
When I buff larger pieces such as bracelets I use rubber finger cots inside
leather finger cots. The bracelets usually get hot enough to sizzle the
water. Always use finger cots and never use gloves. GLOVES CAN GET CAUGHT
ON THE WHEEL OR SPINDLE AND MANGLE YOUR HAND.
Date: Thursday, December 05, 1996 10:13 AM
They (whoevever THEY are) say there are no stupid questions. So be kind
bear this in mind when you read mine!