Author Topic: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone  (Read 30182 times)

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Offline Rob Z

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Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« on: December 04, 2011, 06:27 PM »
An FYI for anyone here working with stone....

We  recently got some Platin discs from Tom Bellemare for the RO90, and weren't sure what we would do with them (we already have platin for the RO150).    It turns out that the RO90 does a fine job shaping and polishing softer stone such as travertine.

We have a job now where it's dificult to set up outside and do much of anything, and with the cold weather my alpha wet polisher and profiling gear for the wetsaw aren't that attractive of an option.

We used various abrasives to shape bullnosed and chamfered profiles on travertine and then used Platin to hone the cut and sanded edges to match the honed finish on the stone.

Very handy, done onsite in the bathroom we are remodeling, no mess, and best of all----no freezing hands from using the wetsaw in the cold!

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Offline greenMonster

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2011, 06:39 PM »
That's very good to know!

What grit did you use? I'd be curious to see a video, if you're bored next time  [smile]

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2011, 08:46 PM »
We'll have to see about the video......I might be the only person in the US that hasn't made a video and posted it on youtube!

I recall Eddy (my employee-seen in the picture) told me that platin 500 was good enough for honing.  We've used the finer grits (down to 4000) to polish glass.   The roughing-in was done with (I think) Rubin 80 grit.

Offline Sparktrician

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2011, 06:58 AM »
The RO90 with Platin also does a spectacular job of buffing out well-worn polycarbonate headlight lenses so that they put light where it is needed once again.  I did my 13+ year-old truck's lights recently and was very pleased.  I also did a friend's truck's headlights with great success.  Nearly gave my friend a heart attack when I started using the 500 grit until I told him that it would look worse before it looked better.  When I got to the 4000 grit, he really started smiling.  A finish with Meguiar's PlastX on a felt pad on my RO125 brought things looking almost new. 

 [smile]
- Willy -

  "Show us a man who never makes a mistake and we will show a man who never makes anything. 
  The capacity for occasional blundering is inseparable from the capacity to bring things to pass."

 - Herman Lincoln Wayland (1830-1898)

Offline fatroman

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2011, 05:27 PM »
Just saw Rob and he says it was 180 Rubin and not 80 that he used for the rough part.
El duende está lleno de mierda!

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2011, 10:33 PM »
Steve, thanks for the assist!


Willy, have you ever used the Platin to polish painted metal surfaces on a vehicle?

Offline Sparktrician

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2011, 06:28 AM »

Willy, have you ever used the Platin to polish painted metal surfaces on a vehicle?


In a word, no.  I've wondered if the 4000 grit Platin would clean up clearcoat, but I've never tried it.  It's something to consider, though.  I do wonder if the clearcoat residue would clog the Platin, either wet or dry.  I did the headlights dry so the dust from the polycarbonate lenses would fall away rather than clog the abrasive pads.  The PlastX finish was done wet, since that's how it comes. 

 [smile]
- Willy -

  "Show us a man who never makes a mistake and we will show a man who never makes anything. 
  The capacity for occasional blundering is inseparable from the capacity to bring things to pass."

 - Herman Lincoln Wayland (1830-1898)

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2011, 11:18 AM »
Willy, thanks, I'll ask Tom about this.  I have a few stains and other thingss on our work trucks which I would like to make look better. I don't need a super finish like someone might want on their sports car, but at least I would like to keep the trucks looking decent (without buying a Shinex!)

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2011, 11:31 AM »
We ended up using coarser grits to hog out more material and make travertine  base trim.  The Platin then honed all the roundovers nicely.  Again, it was great to do this inside, no water, out of the cold.

One mishap occurred when Eddy was cleaning the grout joints.  He scratched the surface of a piece of stone, which normally would mean having to cut the tile out and then replace it with a new piece of stone (a real PITA).  

It was a real bonus to learn that he could polish out the scratch in place with various grits, then hone and blend the finish in to match the surrounding stone.   It's not practical to do this in place with the Alpha wet polisher because of the machine slings water all over the place .

I went by on Thursday, and Eddy showed me an area which contained a dozen or so tiles. I couldn't find the area which had been scratched, and I couldn't detect any difference in the honed finish.

« Last Edit: December 10, 2011, 11:38 AM by Rob Z »

Offline live4ever

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2012, 07:36 PM »
I've got some edges of marble backsplash on which I need to hone a bevel/chamfer and the backsplash is already installed.  I tried my RO90 with 60 grit Granat in rotex mode (speeds 1-2) and it actually does a fine job of honing the chamfer.  However, I'm a bit worried about wearing out the pad - I tried this for about 5-10 minutes and already the pad was loosing its grip in a few spots around the edge (and it's a fairly new hard pad).  Any tips?
Current systainer to productivity ratio:  very high

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2012, 08:34 PM »
Is the CT at full power?

When you're on an edge, it can't pull the sander in to the work and it will offer more pad cooling.


Tom

Offline live4ever

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2012, 09:31 PM »
Thanks Tom, that's a good tip.  I'll run the vac (it's a Fein, gasp) at full power. 

Looking forward to getting past the honing and trying out the polishing with the platin assortment I got from you!
Current systainer to productivity ratio:  very high

Offline jacko9

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #12 on: March 08, 2012, 10:23 PM »
I bought the RO 90 for sanding hardwood in furniture building but, this stone polishing has me interested.  I have a green/black marble fireplace surround facing that's getting dull after 30 years and was wondering what I would need to get the shine back?

Tom, do you have any recommendations?   

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2012, 10:50 PM »
I'm thinking Platin is part of the trick, Jack. I would start with the 4000 and see if it worked. It may make sense to go a little rougher, say 2000, or even 1000 and work your way back up. I would start with the finest first as a measure of safety.

I know Rob (OP) uses Platin to finish glass tile edges and seems pretty satisfied and he's somewhat of a perfectionist.

I would certainly defer to his expertise because he does this stuff all the time. My personal experience with marble is that there appears to be a lot of difference in hardness from one sample/species to another. I'm guessing that to get a really nice sheen, you'll end up with a polishing compound and a sponge or felt.

Is there a spot on that fireplace that isn't too conspicuous so you can experiment a little?


Tom

Offline jacko9

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #14 on: March 08, 2012, 11:09 PM »
Tom, Can you set me up with a kit that includes the 4000 and 2000 Platin and some polishing material with either felt or sponge or both if you think I might use them.

I also have a another fireplace with travertine tile with some rough edges that I would like to round over and polish.

Thanks for your suggestions,

Jack

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #15 on: March 08, 2012, 11:30 PM »
Jack:

If you don't mind, I'd like to talk to Rob and ask his opinion. I'd hate for you to go down a dead end...


Tom

Offline jacko9

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #16 on: March 09, 2012, 12:13 AM »
Thanks Tom,

Let me know what he thinks.  I also would like to polish my car headlight plastic cover that's turned very dull.

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #17 on: March 09, 2012, 12:21 AM »
The RO90 with Platin also does a spectacular job of buffing out well-worn polycarbonate headlight lenses so that they put light where it is needed once again.  I did my 13+ year-old truck's lights recently and was very pleased.  I also did a friend's truck's headlights with great success.  Nearly gave my friend a heart attack when I started using the 500 grit until I told him that it would look worse before it looked better.  When I got to the 4000 grit, he really started smiling.  A finish with Meguiar's PlastX on a felt pad on my RO125 brought things looking almost new. 

 [smile]


It sounds like Mr. Sparktrician has the formula for certain headlights, Jack...

I'll try to talk to Rob tomorrow. We had a conversation today and I know he's quite busy.


Tom

Offline FulThrotl

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #18 on: March 09, 2012, 02:22 AM »
The RO90 with Platin also does a spectacular job of buffing out well-worn polycarbonate headlight lenses so that they put light where it is needed once again.  I did my 13+ year-old truck's lights recently and was very pleased.  I also did a friend's truck's headlights with great success.  Nearly gave my friend a heart attack when I started using the 500 grit until I told him that it would look worse before it looked better.  When I got to the 4000 grit, he really started smiling.  A finish with Meguiar's PlastX on a felt pad on my RO125 brought things looking almost new. 

 [smile]


It sounds like Mr. Sparktrician has the formula for certain headlights, Jack...

I'll try to talk to Rob tomorrow. We had a conversation today and I know he's quite busy.


Tom

i had a nasty snarf on the plex windscreen of the suzuki, and a replacement is $150...

sanded the snarf out with 1000 platin, then went 2000 and 4000, and some black
magic detailing liquid on a buff, and it's pretty hard to tell anything ever happened.

i've taken a thick layer of poly off a dining room table with 120 grit in the ro 90,
and didn't cut thru the veneer, and it was around .040" veneer....

bunch of folks are using ro 90's and 150's for car detailing....


... it's not good.... my festool dealer
knows me by my first name....
...i'm suspecting i'm his 401K.....

Offline Matthewajones

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #19 on: March 09, 2012, 08:38 AM »
Hasselfactor has a whole series on how she cleaned up and polished the clear coat on her big sailboat with a RO125.  It was on talkfestool.
She has a ton of expertise. [smile]

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #20 on: March 09, 2012, 11:19 PM »
Hi Tom,

Now I know why I am seeing your name and number on my caller ID....


Hi Jack

The man you see in the pictures above is who we should ask.  He does most of the sanding work on our jobs. 

We don't always know what will work in a given situation and many times just experiment on scrap until we figure out what will work.  We have wet polishing equipment but haven't used it in years.

Same question that Tom asked: is there a spot where you can experiment that is covered by a fireplace screen or something else? 

Offline jacko9

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #21 on: March 10, 2012, 12:39 AM »
Rob,  I have a raised hearth on a 45 degree angle and I could use one of the ends to experiment with.  I would gratefully  appreciate any suggestions.

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #22 on: March 10, 2012, 08:07 AM »
Jack, I'll check later today when I get to the job and see Eddy. 

 The travertine  in the picture above was more polished than honed (although it was sold as honed). Eddy scratched the surface of a tile while he was cleaning the grout joints with a utility knife. With a little work with the RO90 and various abrasives, he finished the stone and eliminated the scratch so well that I couldn't find the area of the repair when I got there the next day.

How much of a polished surface does your stone have? 

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #23 on: March 10, 2012, 11:36 AM »
Thanks for jumping in, Rob. This is why I was calling yesterday...

I'm curious if Eddy has a technique for a high gloss finish on marble. What I've read about always included some sort of slurry with fine powder. I might have to give some 4000 Platin a try as an experiment. I did one of our bathrooms in 12" x 12" polished marble several years ago. It still has a nice shine so I haven't tried to fix it.

I have a couple of different types of loose marble tiles, the one I installed and one that appeared much harder. I chose the softer one for a couple of reasons, the look and thinking about fixing the cut edges.


Jack:

Can you take a picture of your mantle so we can see the type of marble and configuration?


Tom

Offline jacko9

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #24 on: March 10, 2012, 01:28 PM »
Tom and Rob,

I took pictures of both my travertine fireplace where the edges on the tiles are rough cut and my marble fireplace where the marble is just plain old dull.  I tried to buff the marble with stone polish and with furniture wax neither of which restored the original luster.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2012, 01:33 PM by jacko9 »

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #25 on: March 10, 2012, 02:35 PM »
So, I take it you want a mirror type finish on the marble and to clean up the edges on the travertine?


Tom

Offline jacko9

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #26 on: March 10, 2012, 03:09 PM »
So, I take it you want a mirror type finish on the marble and to clean up the edges on the travertine?


Tom

Tom,

Yes on the marble and the travertine might be a problem since the edges on some of the tiles are set back 1/16 inch or so.

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #27 on: March 15, 2012, 11:37 PM »
Jack, sorry it has taken so long to get back to this thread.   I just went into the shop and experimented on a piece of travertine. This travertine was honed, but had a bit more polish to it than what I normally see listed as "honed".

 I deliberately scuffed up the face with some 40 grit Brilliant, and then worked through the grits all the way through Platin 4000.  By the time I was finished, the "damaged" area was shinier than the untouched surface---the original honed surface.

I wouldn't consider this application to yield results equal to what can be done with traditional tools and method used by the stone fabricators.  I have Alpha wet polishing equipment, but it isn't suitable for use indoors or during the winter. I have some Alpha dry use pads, but they are dusty and again, not something I want to use indoors. 

I think with time and patience, you could use the RO 90 and get both those fireplaces looking really nice. I don't think you'll get it back to the original highly polished look that the dark stone once had.  The RO90 will be able to dress up those cut edges on the travertine hearth.  That's essentially what we did in the bathroom job which was pictured at the beginning of the thread. 

Offline jacko9

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #28 on: March 16, 2012, 01:00 AM »
Thanks Rob, 

I decided to try the Platin 4000 grit since I can't seem to get there with anything else.  I spoke with the Stonetech people and they also indicated that dark (black/green) marble is a problem.  I'm not that concerned with the Travertine and I think I can get that looking pretty good with some effort.

Thanks for your input,

Jack

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Rotex 90 for shaping, honing and polishing stone
« Reply #29 on: March 16, 2012, 06:37 AM »
Hi Jack

You mention Platin 4000.....did you buy the other numbers, as well?   We've always worked our way through the range of Platin.