The pitting is not very noticable once they're polished up. They look great! Nicely done.
You might find what you need here:
Excellent work polishing those grips, do you have any tips you could pass along, mine are a bit foggy as well.Thanks for the tips Mark. I did realise after a while that those pics weren't of the original but I'll live! I'm using an album of the prop from Worldcon for detail references so I've got it covered. That said, all I'm really trying to do is correct some of the more glaring (to me) inaccuracies of the PKD-2 design and come up with a happy medium between the two - don't plan on going too mad with it!
Got the grips polished. Some pitting came up on one which was annoying - will deal with it later. The polish really showed up the unmixed pigment which I'm really unhappy with. Against a white background it stands out quite a bit.
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They do look better against a brushed steel finish, so hopefully they'll be OK. If not I'll mould them and vacuum cast a better set - don't particularly want to go to that bother, but we'll see how it looks at the end...
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Excellent work polishing those grips, do you have any tips you could pass along, mine are a bit foggy as well.
Fantastic advice, thank you so much for taking the time to respond. Excited to get my grips looking like yours.Thanks. I used polishing wheels on a bench grinder to get at really deep polish. It's fast, you only need to work it to 800 grit by hand and it gives the best finish by far.
The trick to getting a really good polish is to work up the grades of paper and make sure you eliminate the marks from the coarser grades before you move on to the next.
Use a reasonably coarse paper to smooth out the casting - 240 or 180 or so. Try and do all of your sanding in one direction. When you move on to a finer grade sand at right angles to the direction of the previous grade and you can see when you've taken out all of the coarser scratches. Work up the grades 320, 400, 600, 800. I'll normally start wet sanding around 600.
Always try and sand in one direction rather than in a circular motion - you'll never see when you've removed all the coarser scratches if they're swirls and any you do miss will stick out like a sore thumb on the final polish.
If I'm using a wheel, I'll stop at 800 and use medium and fine compounds on soft wheels.
If I can't use a wheel I'd go for a polishing mop in a dremel with a polish like T-Cut or Auto Glym. In that case I'd continue hand sanding to 2000 grit before polishing.
You can get a decent result without a dremel too - use the back of a piece of fine wet and dry (the paper side) to work the surface with T-Cut or your polish of choice.
You're doing one hell of a job transforming that prop. Saying that and knowing the history of that recast of a recast of a recast (I could go on and on) and the fact that Rick Ross (RPF member) did the first one, looking at bad pics from a VHS tape of the movie and getting the results that you've held in your hand is, in itself, quite good. What makes this gun interesting in the history of the different makers who, along the years, made their own interpretations of the weapon (until it surfaced at World Con and was photographed by Karl...another RPF member) is that each has their beautiful "faults" that make them special. The slotted screw, for example, is screen accurate; not the one that was replaced on the World Con gun (ironic that one). As far as I'm concerned, I would've built (and fix) the prop and would have left it as is...but that's me.
Keep up the great work!!