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Thread: CA Accelerant Tips

  1. #1
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    CA Accelerant Tips

    Any of you folks have any tips for using CA accelerant spray? I'd like to speed up the finishing time on my pens. Does the accelerant allow you to get into the final polishing and buffing sooner? Does it "freeze" the wet CA surface before it has time to get uneven?

    TIA -
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  2. #2
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    I've not used it on pens, I rather like using a plastic bag on my finger and let friction dry it out.

    I have used that CA accelerant, and it sure works, but boy I hate the smell.

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
    If you get CA on your fingers, and then get some accelerant on them too, your fingers get really, REALLY hot. Not that I would know from personal experience..............that's just what I heard.

    Vaughn, I just apply the CA to pen blanks with a lint free paper towel while spinning the blanks. I fold up a small square of towel, wet it good with CA, and wipe it on the blanks working from one end to the other. Repeat this a few times, and then buff with a white synthetic pad, and apply some wax of your choice and call it done. Russ Fairfield shows this technique in his finishing video series, and it works for me. In applying the CA using this method, it dries almost instantly, and produces a nice shine. I have never tried what you describe, but I can't see why it wouldn't work.

  4. #4
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    CA mixed with boiled linseed oil sets up faster than the plain super glue. Or so I see on pen turning forums. I'll wait between applications of any finish and have never used an accelerant. What works for one doesn't always work for another. The CA/BLO mix is cussed as much as it is praised.
    I know many use paper towels (VIVA seems the preferred brand) for applications and buffing. But, on a couple recent pens with special wood, I found after the fact tiny white specks in the finish. Paper towel. I have gone back to using old tee shirts and socks for application but I don't really like those materials and am searching for one that is soft but doesn't leave lint in the finish.
    Somewhere, there is an excellent tutorial on this subject. If I find it, I'll e-mail to you.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    II have gone back to using old tee shirts and socks for application but I don't really like those materials and am searching for one that is soft but doesn't leave lint in the finish.
    Those Scott "Rags in a Box" things work great, but they're not cheap.
    Where are we going? And what am I doing in this handbasket?

  6. #6
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    I'm probably doing things the hard way, but I slather on the CA pretty thick (multiple coats) with a plastic bag over my finger, spinning the pen slowly on the lathe. When it's cured, it's real bumpy and uneven, so I start at 220 grit, and sand it down flat (making sure not go through the CA). Once I have a nice even surface, I run through the MM grits to 12000, then buff with White Diamond. Done right, it looks like a thick, glass-smooth lacquer finish. I'll have to give the paper towel/lint-free cloth method and see if I like it better.

    I did try some spray accellerant this afternoon, and man, it sure does make the CA set up quickly. (An Kevin, you're not kidding about the heat that's generated.) It's still bumpy, but I can start the sanding process sooner afterwards.

    I'm trying to get my pen stock built back up quickly. I loaned my display case full of pens to a friend to take to her office last week, and she brought the display case back about half empty (as well as about $400 for the missing pens). This coming week I plan to take the case into my office and see if I can repeat the process.

    Thanks for the input, guys -
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn McMillan View Post
    I'm probably doing things the hard way, but I slather on the CA pretty thick (multiple coats) with a plastic bag over my finger, spinning the pen slowly on the lathe. When it's cured, it's real bumpy and uneven, so I start at 220 grit, and sand it down flat (making sure not go through the CA). Once I have a nice even surface, I run through the MM grits to 12000, then buff with White Diamond. Done right, it looks like a thick, glass-smooth lacquer finish. I'll have to give the paper towel/lint-free cloth method and see if I like it better.

    I did try some spray accellerant this afternoon, and man, it sure does make the CA set up quickly. (An Kevin, you're not kidding about the heat that's generated.) It's still bumpy, but I can start the sanding process sooner afterwards.

    I'm trying to get my pen stock built back up quickly. I loaned my display case full of pens to a friend to take to her office last week, and she brought the display case back about half empty (as well as about $400 for the missing pens). This coming week I plan to take the case into my office and see if I can repeat the process.

    Thanks for the input, guys -


    On one of my penturning forums, a member pointed out that White Diamond is a coarser polish than MM 12000. Personally, I dunno.
    My final polish is Turtle Wax scratch remover followed by Trade Secret Wax for car finishes, it is a caranuba based wax, very expensive. I do final buffing with a hunk of wool blanket.
    That said, I am still striving for the perfect shiny finish others are able to achieve. Close but no brass ring yet.

  8. #8
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    Vaughn, check out this thread from The Pen Shop:
    http://www.thepenshop.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=596

    Fangar produces some beautiful pen finishes. His technique works. Of course one can modify it for personal taste.
    Fangar is a fine guy and makes some tools for penturners.
    Only thing about him that would make me suspicious of him is the fact
    he is from California.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the link. Frank. I'll check it out, but carefully. I don't trust them Californians either. Buncha wackos, don'tcha know.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  10. #10
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    Vaughn,

    I always use accelerator on my finish (no patience ) and it works very well. Just let the CA stay a few seconds on w/o it. Note that the aerosol type works better than the liquid in plastic pump containers.

    Mine also comes out bumpy like you described but I trim it with skew or scraper before sanding. Saves a lot of time doing that. I haven't reached the point yet where the CA I applied is just the right amount and as smooth as I want it. It can be done with BLO but some reported some cloudy finish when BLO is used so I avoided it.

    Russ Fairfiled have a video clip here http://www.penturners.org/forum/topi...TOPIC_ID=17155 on how to do it. You might want to try it his way.

    FYI, Fangar (James) is a great guy
    -------------------------

    Dario

    http://www.aoturnings.com/

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