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Tips For Finishing Micarta?

Discussion in 'Fit & Finish' started by dancom, Dec 21, 2020.

  1. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Was wondering if anyone has any tips for cleanly finishing burlap micarta?

    I have tried sanding to 400 and a buff with pink, but it looks sort of unfinished. Might just be the coarseness of the weave that throws me off. Linen and paper types seem to present very well.

    Some time ago, I read in this forum that a maker (can't remember who) got black compound stuck into the weave and ruined a handle. I kind of don't want to do that.

    Dan
     
  2. FORGE

    FORGE Maker of the Year Best Knife

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    Dan I have never used burlap Micarta.
    If you are concerned about "black crap" getting stuck in the weave or on light coloured woods or micarta after sanding to 400 or 600 I coat the handle with a wax then buff.
    The wax I use is called FORMULA FIVE MOLD RELEASE WAX. I use it for popping fiberglass parts out of the molds. I use it on blades as well ( both stainless and damascus ) it lends to keep finger prints off of them especially at shows. You should be able to find it a places that do fiberglass work.
    Rub it on let dry and then buff with a rag. Then buff the handle on your buffer sure helps keeping that black out of the handle.
     
  3. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Thanks Cal. Yes, I don't want to get it all permanently dirty by buffing it. It's not quite a tan, but more of a medium brownish colour. I am not sure that I could source Formula Five in time as I essentially need the knife done tonight to make it on time for Christmas. I do have some Renaissance Wax. It was formulated for protecting museum pieces, keeping fingerprints down etc. I don't really want a super-glossy finish.

    Dan
     
  4. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Well, this is how it came out.
    [​IMG]
    Still not all that impressed with this material. But this is my first experience with it. Or maybe this is the way burlap is supposed to look.
    I sanded to 600, applied automotive wax (Turtle Wax Hard Shell) dried and buffed with a new clean wheel. The grip is good both wet and dry.

    I tried the Renaissance Wax first, but it I found it leaves the material kind of milky looking. Works great on the blade and wipes out all smudges and finger prints.

    The material is from Custom Composites Lab in Ukraine. Definitely a solid board with no inclusions or bubbles in the areas I worked. It has a slightly sweet smell when machined, not the phenolic resin smell associated with the original Westinghouse product.

    Dan
     
  5. Grayzer86

    Grayzer86 Active Member

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    When I use micarta I will wet sand at all grits up to about 800. I find that a couple flood with CA at 400 and 600 will fill any voids and fibres and give a nice smooth surface. Just had to do this procedure on some fire hose micarta I was using.
     

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