Online Community of Zenith Builders and Flyers
There is along post in this forum where I relate my experiences of polishing my 601. I now have over 100 hours into polishing my plane - and I still wasn't happy with the finish. It was NOT that perfect mirror finish that I had imagined when I first made the decision two years earlier. All the time invested and I still couldn't get the finish I was hoping for.
I had read a number of posts here, and elsewhere, regarding the Cyclo polisher. It was reported that it got the final swirls out. The problem for me was the cost of the polisher. They are $320 new and no one has any deals on them. There is no equivalent knock off. Even a 20 year old Cyclo polisher still sells for over two hundred dollars, if you can find one.
I just could not justify spending that much money for some unknown results. I was very skeptical that it could really make a difference compared to a normal polisher. Isn't it just two small rotating heads instead of one? How much difference can it make?
Then last week I had a small cash windfall and did a search on Craigslist. By some miracle there was one for sale nearby and I ended up buying it. It was over 20 years old and cost me $200.
So today I grabbed a full size cotton towel, my Nuvite S polish and my new-to-me Cyclo polisher.
First off, it is much easier to use than the normal 7" orbital polisher that I used on the plane. There is no chance of ripping metal when you are close to the edges.
Secondly, you do not need any downward pressure, unlike the 7"er, so it is much easier on the arms (at least on horizontal surfaces).
I did one pass on a 2 square foot patch on the top of the wing with the Nuvite S and then a pass with a clean towel.
Holy cow! It was the mirror finish I had been imagining for a very long time!
I was shocked that a single pass, with almost no effort, could make such a significant difference on hard metal. I went ahead and finished the top of one wing. The wing looks like an almost perfect mirror.
I don't really understand how this tool can make such a difference, but it does. Now I can't wait to finish the entire plane.
In case someone else is wondering if it is really worth the money, in my opinion, absolutely.
I'll post pics once I get the entire plane done.