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Thread: Barrelling and shot problem

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    10

    Default Barrelling and shot problem

    Hi
    I'm ready to throw my barrel out! I'm struggling to get a glossy finish. I used the shot the barrel came with and got a good finish,but it left a shadow around raised bits, so after reading all the treads I could find on here re shot etc I got some smaller shot from MM. This gave a satin finish, like lots of little pin pricks, so I removed all the long sharp bits, but it made no difference. Then following a recommendation on here I ordered some shot from Rio grande, I'm still getting the same problem....what am I doing wrong? I'm using a teaspoon of barrelbrite and about 1/3 full of water, any suggestions?
    Thanks
    Lorry

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Stourbridge
    Posts
    30

    Default

    Hi Lorry
    I've had the same issue with my barrel polisher when polishing things with raised bits even when using shot with most of the long sharp bits removed and I put it down to the fact that the shot is too big to get in really close around those raised areas, thus creating the shadow effect. There may well be better or clever ways around this and I'm sure some of the helpful and experienced folks who inhabit the forum will tell us if there are but I revert to small bits of different grades of sandpaper and radial discs to get rid of the shadow area. It seems to work for me.
    Sue


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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Cornwall
    Posts
    3,168

    Default

    I think using radial discs to polish around any raised bits is good advice. You won't get a mirror shine with a barrel polisher though. I really only use mine for small textured pieces which I can't polish with a mop.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Central London
    Posts
    7,439

    Default

    As Carole says, there is no way of getting a mirror finish with mixed shot, it is only fit for textured pieces and round wires as they don't show the pin pricks.

    If you are tempted by a machine, then a magnetic polisher might be your answer, because although they work on needles alone, they function differently. An inexpensive small version is the Bumblebee.

    Dennis.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    London
    Posts
    272

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    Lorry - there are some things that a barrel polisher does really well, and some things that it doesn't. Am working on a 0.6m wire chain and putting the links in my barrel polisher for a few hours has brought them up lovely and shiny. and ready to put together. On the other hand, with a love-knot chain I made last month, the barrel polisher didn't really get nicely into the nooks and crannies, so although I put the links first into the barrel polisher, I had to hand finish them with tripoli and rouge. I notice you say you fill yours up with 1/3 water - I usually only put in enough water to just just cover the shot I have in there and cut down on the barrel bright accordingly. I don't think you're doing anything wrong, just expecting it to do something that it isn't capable of.

    Susie

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Posts
    10

    Default

    Thanks for your responses, I think I was just feeling very frustrated as I've spent ages trying to get it right, and friends who use the same shot don't have this problem...I probably am expecting too much, but I will reduce the volume of water and accept what I get and use the little discs to clean round raised areas.
    Thanks again

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Cheshire
    Posts
    359

    Default

    Thanks to you too, your thread helped me to understand too. A few days ago I put a flat piece in my barrel, thinking it would come out all shiney and sparkley just like my wire pieces, and tiny pieces, only to find that it had an almost matte appearance due to all the tiny pin pricks. Not what I was looking for at all! I had to go back to the grades of emery to take it to as shinney an appearance as I could. It has been a disasterous piece from the start! My first go at rivets, it went quite badly and I decided to have another go, managed to get the pieces I had riveted onto it off in order to start again with the rivets, only to chuck it in the barrel after emerying (as it had file marks and hammer marks on it) and then it came out matte, so back to emerying again! Never mind, it's all good practice.

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