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What Is Metal Polishing

Metal Polishing

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Metal polishing is the process of smoothing, cleaning and brightening metallic objects. It enhances their appearance, creates a reflective surface and removes contamination.

Polishing also protects and deters oxidation, which can occur on metal surfaces that have not been polished. It also increases the working life of metals.


Metal polishing is a process used to clean, brighten, and restore solid or plated items made of gold, silver, stainless steel, brass, copper, aluminum, nickel, chrome, or other metals and alloys. It is performed by fixed, tabletop, or hand-held grinders, polishers, and buffers.

For example, a piece of stainless steel might require sanding and polishing to produce a shiny, mirror-like finish. To do this, start with sandpaper in the 80-120-grit range to level out any rough areas.

Next, sand the piece again with finer grit paper, in the 100-160-grit range. This will help eliminate any scratches and ensure that the piece is smooth before beginning the next step, which might be buffing.

The polishing process is usually done by mechanical methods, such as belt sanding or abrasive discs mounted to handheld power tools like angle grinders. It is important to use the correct application-specific tool for each job, as cutting corners with abrasive grits that are too aggressive, applying too much pressure, or using tools at incorrect speeds can increase costs, decrease productivity, and fail to achieve a desired finish.


Brass is a versatile metal that’s used to make jewelry, kitchen fixtures and even flatware. It tarnishes easily due to the combination of copper and zinc with oxygen, but you can keep it looking shiny with a little metal polishing knowledge.

The key to polishing brass is a mixture of lemon juice and salt that loosens oxidation, and a coating of linseed oil that forms a protective barrier against future tarnishing. This simple, DIY treatment will keep your brass in mint condition and give it a beautiful shine.

You can also use a commercial brass cleaning product that will strip away any lacquer or flaking paint that’s left behind. These products are generally inexpensive and available at your local hardware store.


Copper is a metal that is often used in kitchens to make a variety of cookware, drinkware and more. But, like other metals, it can tarnish over time and require a little polishing to bring back its shine.

It’s not easy to keep your copper wares looking new, but it is possible if you follow the right tips and techniques. We asked experts to share their best tips for bringing back the beautiful shine of your copper treasures.

The pros tell us that using a few basic ingredients you may have around the house can make your copper look brand new in no time. For starters, mixing salt and lemon juice together can banish stubborn tarnish.

But if those natural methods aren’t working, you can also use a tarnish-banishing product called Bar Keepers Friend to get your copper pieces looking good again. Just make sure to test it out on a small area first! Then, you can use a non-abrasive pad to scrub your copper until it looks like new again.


Aluminum is one of the most versatile metals to work with. It’s light, rust-proof and durable. However, its surface can get dull over time.

To keep aluminum looking pristine and prevent it from getting tarnished, you need to polish it regularly. Choosing the right polish will make all the difference in how it looks.

A good polish will not only give aluminum a new glow, but it will also act as a deoxidizer and sealant. This will help prevent rust and moisture from absorbing into the aluminum.

The first step in the process is to sand the surface down to a smooth, mirror-like shine. This can be done either by hand or with an orbital sander.

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