How to Make Your Own Rock Polishing Grit

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Rock polishing grit is made of silicon carbide, a substance harder than most rocks. It is much the same as silica sand, a sand used in sandblasting with a primary component of quartz. Polishing grit comes in coarse, medium and fine grits, just like sandpaper. The 80 grit is coarse, like unground sea salt; 120 and 220 are medium grits comparable to sand; 500 is the finest and feels like powder. It is possible to make your own polishing grit with quartz and a lot of elbow grease. Be sure to make some of each grit, as you will need them all to polish your stones properly.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 or 3 large pieces of quartz
  • Stainless steel hammer
  • Cloth bag
  • Place the quartz pieces into the cloth bag and place the bag on a very sturdy surface. Keep the quartz pieces close together in the bottom of the bag.

  • Smash the quartz with the hammer. It should bread into several large pieces.

  • Hammer at the quartz, aiming at one piece at a time to break it up completely. Shake the small pieces into the bottom of the bag and continue hammering until the pieces resemble unground sea salt.

  • Remove about a third of the quartz pieces. This is the coarse polishing grit.

  • Smash the quartz with the hammer until the remaining pieces look and feel like sand. Remove another third. This is the medium polishing grit.

  • Hammer the remaining pieces until they are the consistency of powder. This is your finest grit.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use a sturdy canvas bag and don't hit an area too many times to avoid holes forming.
  • Keep hands well clear of the hammer at all times. Wear protective eye wear to avoid getting quartz dust in your eyes.

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