Aussie Lapidary Forum

LAPIDARY => Gemstone Faceting => Topic started by: Aussie Sapphire on April 19, 2012, 11:51:17 AM

Title: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Aussie Sapphire on April 19, 2012, 11:51:17 AM
I find that I have to go looking for this article quite often so have decided to put a link to this very helpful troubleshooter by the Gem Doctor in a sticky.

http://www.thegemdoctor.com/wp/2010/01/is-that-a-scratch/ (http://www.thegemdoctor.com/wp/2010/01/is-that-a-scratch/)

This is a great resource for trying to identify the cause of scratching and some possible remedies.

We often find when people have problems polishing, a common reaction is to blame the polishing lap - this troubleshooter gives us a whole lot of other things to check out first which can save lots of aggravation.

Just to expand on sub-surface damage - we do find a lot of people using 80 or 100 grit laps for roughing out the shape.  Some faceting teachers recommend them so customers then come to us wanting to buy them.  For a bit more insight into this issue, see this article:

http://www.attawaygems.com/NMFG/cabinet_makers_and_chain_saws.html (http://www.attawaygems.com/NMFG/cabinet_makers_and_chain_saws.html)

Feel free to contribute other feedback and experiences on polishing or scratching problems - it all adds to the knowledge base for new (and not so new) facetors.

cheers
Leah
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: REXL on June 06, 2012, 04:25:50 PM
Thanks Leah thats good info. Funny how something that seems complex can have a simple , logical reason.

REXL
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Klingon on June 07, 2012, 01:42:28 PM
One of the best pieces of advice I have been given is to use a WELL worn pre-polish lap 1200-3000.
This helped me eliminate a lot of my scratching woes.
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Butts on June 08, 2012, 12:13:19 AM
yes good advice Klingon. I just recently purchased a Nubond 600 from Aussie Sapphire and it has made the world of difference. The 1200 diamond lap I was using was tearing/scratching the stone being new and I just couldnt eliminate the scratches. Now I use the 1200 more as a cutting lap and the Nubond 600 as a prepolish. Works well for me.

Cheers Butts
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: pete on June 08, 2012, 08:20:28 AM
The 1200 diamond lap I was using was tearing/scratching the stone being new and I just couldnt eliminate the scratches. Now I use the 1200 more as a cutting lap and the Nubond 600 as a prepolish. Works well for me.

Cheers Butts
Exactly.
The problem with using 'well worn' 1200 or 3000 plated diamond is actually getting it to that stage and all the frustration in between and then whether it's consistent or not. The Nubond has paid for itself over and over and not just in monetary value.
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Aussie Sapphire on June 08, 2012, 09:08:46 AM
Good to hear some positive results with the NuBonds.

One big thing is that there are lots of really good lap options out there now but often it is difficult to get faceters to try them - lots tend to stick with the method they learned when they may be an easier and/or quicker way.

We can offer lots of options for sale but it is those out there actually using them and reporting their experiences that gives people confidence to try something a bit different.  You can keep buying new stuff but this can be a money pit if you dont know if it will work for you. 

Thanks to all ALF'ers for sharing your information.

cheers
Leah

Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: scratchie on June 08, 2012, 01:12:42 PM
I can add my comments to those about the Nubond Lap. I have had a Nubond 1200 for some years - I use it mostly for prepolishing Quartz and softer stones such as tourmaline and it gives an excellent pre-polish. I have reservations about using it on harder stones like topaz, corundum and CZ because I am concerned the surface of the lap may get damaged. When the surface of the lap gets worn and cutting slows down I scrub it with lava soap and a nail brush and then rinse it well . As far as I know Lava soap is not available in Australia but whenever I have friends travelling to the US I ask them to bring a cake home for me.
John
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: pete on June 08, 2012, 05:32:51 PM
Is Lava soap similar to Solvol?

I've had no trouble with topaz on Nubond, works great.

The bonded layer is quite thin as I've found on the 600 Nubond where I must've bumped the surface with a facet edge or something and I've noticed a tiny flake missing. Doesn't seem to have affected the lap otherwise  but it's a reminder to be being very careful 110% of the time!
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: steveo on July 20, 2012, 09:12:46 AM
Do you use more water on the NeBond, I have a new one and the water seems to soak in as opposed to running off as it runs? I'm thinking the stone dust is not running off.
If this post goes somewhere else let me know or if it moves by itself I understand. ;D
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: scratchie on July 20, 2012, 02:11:38 PM
Pete ,
The Lava soap is much finer texture than Solvol. The grit in Lava is very fine pumice - the grit in Solvol feels more like sand . Solvol is great for cleaning metal laps but it might be a bit abrasive for the layer on the NuBond. Another source of pumice is Orange Scrub hand wash containing pumice. I have used this for cleaning metal laps OK
John
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Cheri Bate on February 19, 2013, 08:36:47 PM
All very handy info thank you! Been having trouble with a particular nova flex wheel and now I know why!
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Gearloose on February 20, 2013, 07:24:51 AM
I wanted to mention in this thread an explanation that helps some people sometimes.
There are cases, more common than most people expect, where polishing REVEALS scratches and previous damage that is hard to see before the polishing stage.
Once again, here is where a complete, good prepolish step, if neglected, can cause trouble.  Usually from a good 3K or 8K prepolish, most common-sized facets should polish in SECONDS, not minutes on most polishing laps and commonly cut minerals. Tables and big barion facets take longer, of course.

Another way of looking at  it is, suppose you are a woodworker, and buy a sawed plank from a lumber mill.
You would not use fine sandpaper or steel wool until you first removed the saw marks with something coarser, then proceed with finer sandpapers to get rid of the rough sanding marks, etc.

In either case, if you rely on the last fine finishing step to do what should have been done earlier, you will waste a lot of time, and end up frustrated.

Many times, these problems are not happening in the polishing step.
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Klingon on February 20, 2013, 12:23:32 PM
Very true Gearloose...you reveal scratches rather than make them most of the time. I have noticed one thing with some CZ i purchased recently. It appears to have a "grain" for want of a better term. I would pre-polish one facet and the next facet would appear grainy and nothing like the previous facet ?
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: dtvm on November 20, 2013, 09:50:27 AM
I read in this thread that Lava Hand Soap is not available in Aus. I live in Lenore Idaho USA and would gladly send some bars to anyone who would like it. I know it helps me clean my laps. Not sure what the freight would cost but I could find out.
Just pay freight and soap cost, I am not here to make any money.
The discount stores usually have Lava on their shelves. If interested let me know and I'll do some shopping for you guys. Your forum has been very helpful in my new hobby so maybe I could help in a small way. Send me a email: danwatson@inlandnet.com
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: agemcutr on November 20, 2013, 10:15:53 AM
We have lave soap here but its called solvol. Its soap inpregated with pumice which is really airated basalt which is hardness six to seven which will scratch most softer stones like labradorite,as i found with a returned lap i made. On investigation the lap was cleaned with lava soap and he was polishing labradorite from Springsure. Of course it scratched.

Regards Anthony
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Klingon on November 20, 2013, 04:45:20 PM
I now use the "Matrix Ceramic Composite" lap for polishing everything....its awesome !!!


Thanks Gearloose !!!!
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: Aussie Sapphire on November 20, 2013, 05:45:23 PM
I now use the "Matrix Ceramic Composite" lap for polishing everything....its awesome !!!


Thanks Gearloose !!!!

For those who might be interested in trying these laps, we do have them in stock but something went weird with the website listing and it disappeared on us.  Just havent had a chance to relist but available any time. Will do so asap.

cheers
Leah
Title: Re: Problems with Scratching - link to troubleshooter
Post by: PKJM Fine Art on November 04, 2019, 04:44:40 PM
About to introduce another, (like me), lapidary novice to these forums. He's going to freak when he sees incredible info like this.
Thank you!