Polishing Solid-Surface Tops

You can bring solid surfacing to a high gloss, but that doesn't mean you should. June 12, 2014

(Laminate and Solid Surface Forum)
(WOODWEB Member):
I'm new to Corian, not new to brilliant finishes using automotive products. I need to bring Corian to a brilliant white finish and would appreciate a suggested sanding and polishing schedule.

Forum Responses
(Laminate and Solid Surface Forum)
From contributor G:
Finishing solid surface is similar to auto finishes but different. Most manufacturers do not recommend high sheen finishes on solid surface because it scuffs too easily, but sometimes that's what people want, so there you go. You really need a gem sander/polisher to do it right. Automotive tools don't work well on solid surface.

I don't have the book in front of me, but you sand with 100 micron, then 60 micron, then 30 micron, then polish with scotch bright pads of various grits to final sheen. High gloss requires polishing compound called Finesse-it.

From contributor L:
Hope this isn't a countertop! Full polish will show every item's path almost instantly and customer will complain.

From the original question:
Thanks for the heads up. What is your suggestion that I take it to… Abralon 1000?

From contributor G:
High gloss finish - dry sand - 100 micron, then 60 mic, 30 mic, 15 mic, then Finesse-it. Rinse off top between sandings and let dry. If you get swirl marks or want gloss over 85, then there are other procedures.

From contributor J:
It is not a good idea to polish a Corian top to that level of shine. It simply will not stay that way.

It will scuff/scratch immediately and work its way to its own natural sheen. Every application will have its own place. If you over polish, it will dull down. If you leave it too dull, it will polish-up with use.

It is virtually impossible to control it without constant care. Of course the level of traffic plays a part too.

From contributor E:
Before the gem sander was invented I had several customers that wanted black tops and wanted them to look like a mirror finish. Even though I told them what a bad idea it was, they wanted it and I was going to give it to them. You can use an auto buffer on a Corian top with compound or wax. My advice would be to use some cheap wax like turtle or Meguiars. I used to sand 80 120 150 220, then hand sand maroon and last grey scotch brite pads. Then to get the mirror look I used a Dewalt random speed automotive buffer with a wool pad foam I am sure would do the same. I could get a non-swirled even gloss using the above but it was like the solid surface would absorb the wax and it was many hours before I could get it where it looked good. I would say to get it right you are looking at about 4 hours per 6 lineal feet. After the wax get some Liquid Gold furniture polish and give it a few coats of that and it will look nice.