How to generate a high quality mirror polish surface in 5 easy steps
Polishing components generated by the DLP or MJP process in 5 steps without chemicals
Let’s get started…
Our initial condition after the printing process is a rough uneven surfaces with ribs.
Before we start, please note the following generally applies:
Multi-stage working (fine graduation in abrasive grits) as a rule means shorter processing times. Possible defects, isolated deep scratches, are visible earlier and can be polished out by stepping back through one or two steps or stages.
Coming to step 1: Homogenizing the surface
Grind flat and generate uniform surfaces without deep scratches and unevenness. Use an abrasive cloth with a grit of 600 or 800.
Make sure that all surfaces of your part are equally frosted.
After homogenizing the surface we can start with the polishing process.
Polishing the surface with diamond polishing strips with a grit of D64.
With a diamond polishing pad in grid D10 we make the surface ready for final gloss and mirror polishing.
For gloss polishing we need more softer cloths and pads.
Use a soft diamond polishing cloth in grid D3 to get a glossy effect on your printed components.
To get the maximum quality of your surface use a soft diamond polishing cloth with a grid of D1 or less until a brilliant mirror finish is obtained.
And voila, we have generated a high quality mirror polish surface.
Step 6: Hints and tricks
Here are a few more hints and tricks for grinding and polishing:
Make sure that the surface of the previous polishing step is no longer recognizable.
In order to determine this, cross the grinding / polishing direction at an angle of 90 degree for each step.
Choose your grid accordingly
If the difference of the grain size from step to step is too high it´s not possible to get rid of the scratches from the step before.
If the difference of the grain size from step to step is too low, you’ll need a lot of time for finishing.
The best rule of thumb is to divide or multiply the grain size / grid stage by 3.
Surface grinded with grid D10 – next grid should be D3
Use a hard surface for grinding or polishing to make sure that the edges of your part will stay sharp.
For curved surfaces use smooth grinding or polishing tools to make sure that the tool adjusts to your part.