" " wisno wood furniture finishing: Rubbing and polishing 1

Monday, June 14, 2010

Rubbing and polishing 1

Rubbing in the furniture finishing

Rubbing is process to finish the finishing layer. Most finishing process now are ended
with an application of top coat. The top coat is the last finishing material that serves to coat the stain and glaze underneath to protect the color and also to form the finishing looked and feel. Usually when the top coat is applied and dry, the finishing process is finished. But some time there are some peoples who want to do rubbing process for his finish as the last process. Rubbing is a process to sand and or rub the finish to get the smooth, even and soft finishing surface. 
In few decade ago the rubbing process is undertaken to produce a better finish when the application of finishing materials could not make an even and smooth surface. In the past when the spray gun was still not popular in the finishing application, the finishing materials were applied by brush, rag or cloth. This method of course cannot produce a flat surface especially for the last coat. The application by brush or rag will always leave mark on the finish result. Then to produce a flat and smooth surface, a sanding and rubbing process is carried out at the finish layer, known as the rubbing and polishing.

Now with the use of spray gun, the coating material can be applied on the surfaces with better results. The film surface produced is more even, smooth and can be adjusted to get the required thickness.
With the development of the finishing material we can also easily define the gloss of the finish. Currently almost all of the finishing gloss can be produced with an appropriate application and proper selection of the finishing materials as well.
However this time there are still some peoples who want do rubbing on their finishing product. Rubbing process can indeed produce a distinctive looked that can not be imitated only with the top coat application. According with the development in finishing industry, the rubbing process in this time also can be done in better way with better result. There are many materials available to do the rubbing. There are also many equipments which are designed  to do the rubbing and polishing available now. Then the rubbing and polishing can be done with better results.

Here are the benefits of rubbing:
  •  Rubbing produces a soft, elegant look that can not be obtained by the top coat application.
The application of top coat by spray gun that can produce a perfect material atomization  still  produces orange peels on the surface. Although in  the perfect coating application, the orange peel is very thin and only visible when viewed with a magnifying glass, but it is still there and  form the looked of the finishing. The rubbing process will cut the orange peel on the surface to produce more even and flat surface. Although there are scratches mark leaved., but with good rubbing technique the scratches mark are regular patterned to make a unique appearance that cannot be obtained with the top coat application. 
  • Rubbing can overcome some problems resulting from the imperfect application of the top coat.
Top coat application in the finishing process should be done properly since it create the quality finishing instead of finishing color. The top coat top applications will determine the feel and look in finishing. But in a finishing process, sometimes we find difficulties  to get the perfect results for the top coat application There are some reasons such as: inadequate equipment, the finishing room which is dirty and dusty, the unskilled operator, etc. Some minor problems on the top coat can be fixed with a rubbing process. Problems such as  a rough surface, uneven gloss, orange peel, stripy layer or the top coat and blushing in some case can be healed by rubbing the finish.

  • Rubbing can form gloss in the finishing.
Now the gloss of a finishing surface is mostly created by choose the top coat sheen. In  the top coat gloss is determined by the flatting agent in the top coat mixed (see my articles: gloss in the wood furniture finishing). But gloss is also can be created with rubbing and polishing on the finishing surface. Gloss of surfaces are largely determined by the evenness of the surface, more even surface make the higher gloss finish. Rubbing process is the process of sanding and cutting the surfaces that will produce more even and smooth surface. Thus, the rubbing process will form the gloss of finishing surface. Surface with high gloss is obtained by cutting using a finer abrasives until get the more even and smooth surface, with less and smaller sanding mark. leaved. Polishing materials such as compound or stone powder actually has a similar function with the sandpaper, but with a fineness sanding mark. The use of compound will result in an increasingly the evenness of the surface and will produce a surface with higher gloss. Conversely, if it is desired low gloss, then the rubbing and polishing methods should be done  to  leave more and deeper sanding mark.

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