View Full Version : more on cork belt polishing

12-14-2002, 05:42 PM
Some time ago Steve posted about using a cork belt with compound to get a mirror finish. Since then I've been using that method for mirror finish with great results.
I've been using Masters green chrome grease based. Today, just to experiment, I took a couple blades that were at 100 grit and took it to the cork belt to see if I could get the scratches out. The darn thing worked faster and better than I could have even guessed. I'm used to taking a blade down to X30 or X16 Norax and going from there to the cork. The difference this time was I really pushed on it, much harder than I had in the past. It flat wiped out the scratches. I'm still amazed. Great technique Steve. I appreciate you sharing it.

On a tangent, I've tried pink no scratch on a belt and it clouded things up. Also Jacksons White (1200) grit, same thing. Any one found something that works better than green chrome?

Here is the original thread (

In re-reading it again I noticed that you twice mention it takes some pushing. I didn't really appreciate how much pressure would be even more effective until today.

Dan Graves
12-16-2002, 10:21 AM
What speed are you running you grinder with the cork belt and when chaging rouges do you have to clean the belt and how?Thanks

12-16-2002, 06:41 PM
Hi Dan.
A little faster than 1/2 speed which is around 2,000sfpm and that's only because faster slings off the buff compound in a snow storm of green chunks. Even at that speed, enough compound comes off that I use a full face shield and a hat so that I don't look like the creature from the black lagoon when I'm done.

I use a 400 grit belt that I've worn down like Steve describes. If I started over, I'd start with a 600 grit just in case any grit peaks through the rouge. The green chrome buff compound builds up on the belt so that little if any of the cork actually touches the blade when polishing.
I add more compound at least every minute. More works better.

When I have tried a couple other buff compounds like pink no scratch and jackson white 1200 grit I used different belts to keep the grit compound pure. The pink and white didn't work as well as just using the green chrome.

One belt seems to last forever. My only problem is that I occasionally scalp the belt sending a shower of cork and compound all over the place. Another good reason for the full face shield.

Dan Graves
12-16-2002, 07:54 PM
Tracy, Thanks for the info. Have never tried this before and sounds great.

12-16-2002, 11:16 PM
From 100x to 400x or 600x?? I'll have to try that! I don't think it'd work on my 2-3 yr. old belts, but I'll give it a try. That's one giant leap for polishing-kind, you know!

May I say here, with care, Please be careful with that pressure, the harder you push, that more chance of an accident, OK??


allan lanigan
12-18-2002, 10:05 AM
Tracy, what steels have you tried with this aproach.

12-18-2002, 10:38 AM
How much heat does this generate having to push so hard??

12-18-2002, 04:52 PM
Allan: 440c and 154cm.
Fitzo: if you push real hard, it'll get warm fairly quick, maybe twice as long as grinding time getting hot. If you do it normally, something like grinding pressure, it heats up slow enough so that it's not a huge problem. You could dunk it in water to cool it off, but it gets messy if you do that.

Just to clarify this a bit, I used really hard pressure to see what would happen on some tough scratchs as an experiment. It cleaned them up to the point I was surprised in basically one step. I will continue to take steps up in belt grits to a 15x Norax and then switch to the cork. The amount of pressure I used seeemed OK for a tough spot on a blade to clean it up, but I wouldn't push that hard for an entire blade. Too exhausting for good control and probably unsafe trying to do a whole blade.

12-19-2002, 08:20 AM
Thanks, Tracy. I had cork belts a long time ago, didn't like them. Curiosity has returned with this method of using the buffing compound. Gonna have to try it again!

01-02-2003, 04:48 AM
Outstanding! Thanks for this thread Tracy!
I've had a cork belt hanging in the shop for a couple years. Bought it and tried it once and didn't get any decent results with it but I ran it slow and didn't push hard on it. I'm gonna have to break that thing out again and give it a try.