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polishing 6061 aluminum w/bad results

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  • polishing 6061 aluminum w/bad results

    I am cutting pieces of t-6061 into different shapes and trying to
    polish it. tried sisal wheel with emery and did not like it. i get better results with brown and spiral sewn wheels. the metal is already smooth
    and sanded out scratches with 320 grit and tried to polish it to a mirror
    finish. the black really scratched up my piece. with the brown/spiral combo
    the results are good in some places and bad (brown and hazy) in others.
    then the white seems to dull it. i am using a double shaft 1hp 9amp
    3450rpm motor it does not bog down. can anyone suggest how to get out the bad spots and create a mirror shine?

  • #2
    don't use the black sisal combo ...on soft metals i use black on a sprial ... then the brown followed by white all on a sprial ...... sisal is a hard rope like stuff and it scratches to easy on the softer metal ..... give that a try


    • #3
      thanks customandsound am going to give it a try


      • #4
        let me know your out come .... thanks


        • #5
          still bad results

          i have tried emery then tripoli then white. it seems that when i start to get out all of the scratches i have pits. then as i am getting out yhe pits i form new pits in a different direction. i have raked my wheels and it still does the same thing. i have this so close to a mirror shine then the pits appear. why?


          • #6
            that there would be gas in the metal ... little pin holes that form during the casting or forging of the metal .... the worst part about that is the some times you can sand them away ..but they can get out of hand to .....


            • #7
              clockman, try rotating your direction of polishing 90 degrees between compounds. That'll helpt reduce scratching and pitting. Also, make sure you clean the part THOROUGHLY between compounds. There's no better way to scratch up a piece than by contaminating your finer grade wheels with leftovers from the lower grade process.

              I've been using 50:50 Castrol Super clean and HOT water for the initial clean, then regular old dishwashing soap (Dawn/Joy/Palmolive etc..) with HOT water, then I wipe dry with a clean chamois cloth before moving to the next step.