This is part four of a series on how to make a spoon.
The spoon is nearly finished, all the cutting and hammering has been done. All that’s left to do is file and polish the piece. In this post I will go through the different stages of finishing as well as the tools and products I use.
I begin by filing the edges to even out any roughness. Once I’m happy with the shape of the spoon I remove the file marks with emery paper. I use different grades of emery paper from 320 to 1000 so I have less work to do on the polishing lathe.
Then I polish the spoon on the lathe. This is done using two different mops. The first is a roughing out mop which takes out the scratches and marks. This mop is made from numerous circular layers of fabric that are stitched together at the centre. The mop is used along with a polishing lustre. This is an abrasive compound that comes in a bar and is applied to the mop. While this initial polishing removes marks left from the emery paper it doesn’t bring up a bright reflective finish.
The next stage of polishing on the lathe uses a softer mop which is made up of layers of soft fine fabric. This mop is used along with a polishing rouge. Jewellers rouge is a red coloured compound bar that is used in the final stages of polishing. This rouge like the luster is used on the wheel to refine the surface. The rouge helps to obtain a fine mirror finish on the metal.
Because of the shape of the handle I use a small mop on my drill to get into the areas that the larger mop can’t polish. Like the polishing lathe I use the same lustre and rouge to bring up the finish. Now that all the marks have been polished out and the metal is bright and reflective I can clean the piece in the ultrasonic.
I’m going clean the spoon and set it up to be photographed over the weekend so I’ll post the results on Monday.