Australian Facetors' Guild Limited

Lightning laps- advice please

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  • 28 Feb 2024 4:18 PM
    Message # 13321806

    I have been advised that the lightning laps may help with better polish and sharper facets, I now have the LL-CEOX at 14,000 grit and the LL-D’lite diamond resin laps.

    I understand the CEOX is best for quartz, does anyone know when it is best to use the D’lite diamond resin lap? Topaz, man-made gems?

    Any suggestions on either would be appreciated. Up to now I have worked from coarse steel diamond toppers, finished with #3000, then pre-polish copper with #8000 diamond powder and final with #60,000 diamond powder.



  • 03 Mar 2024 9:13 AM
    Reply # 13323766 on 13321806

    Hi Carroll,

    I have a 60 K LL, which is great for polishing anything that needs to be polished using water. I first flattened the peaks into little plateaus using a piece of corundum. This made it really good for polishing large facets that tend to stick to the surface of the lap. The most successful piece I had was a very large table on a piece of Flourite which cannot be polished using oil as a lubricant/coolant.

    The surface of Quartz facets seem to craze on the 3k lap if you use oil as the cutting fluid but look much more polished if you use water with the same lap.  Ergo you could also use the 60k LL for polishing Quartz. 


  • 04 Mar 2024 7:06 AM
    Reply # 13324039 on 13321806

    Thanks Flash, I will look at the 60K at the next order, I’m working on a bit of quartz, first time, I usually work with nanosital or topaz. The table facet is 90% of the 14mm girdle, a large window for the sailboat design pavilion image. As you mentioned the table is a bit “grabby”, it starts to look evenly polished and then a little scuff, argh getting there slowly.

    It seems a strange transition to go from the prepolish copper lap with 8K diamond powder, then the 14K CEOX with water to finish with a polish lap 60K diamond powder.

    i’ve had to backtrack to the 3k cutting lap to try and get a uniform table, there always seems to be a small troublesome spot with a few scratches whilst the rest of the table looks great. Usually in a different place on the table.

    thanks, Carol

  • 04 Mar 2024 10:39 AM
    Reply # 13324093 on 13321806

    Personally I prefer an acrylic lap (perspex) with ceox for quartz though the "Darkside" Lap also works well. Can be a bit tricky to use ceox as needs to be just moist (spray mist), too much water & all your polish just spins off even at the slow speed required. Sanding the surface on a glass sheet rough's the surface & helps retain the ceox.

    I have had little luck with Lightning Laps.

  • 04 Mar 2024 4:03 PM
    Reply # 13324171 on 13321806

    Thanks for that Peter, I will look up the dark side laps and acrylic laps. Maybe, I’ve been using too much water.


  • 05 Mar 2024 8:50 AM
    Reply # 13324630 on 13321806

    Hi Carol,

    if you are having trouble with a piece of Quartz, the Aluminium Oxide Lightning Lap is a great alternative to Diamond.  You could go from the CeOx LL to the AlOx LL.  It is a 0.3 micron polish.

    i also apply a stripe of Zirconia batt stick near the centre of the lap and place a slow drip over the stripe.  This flushes a little bit of polish over the lap helping to stop it glazing.

    It’s the lap I first went for after having trouble with some Quartz, which can be finicky at times.  Recently had some Quartz that scratched with the LL but was happy with diamond and oil.  The reverse of the problem that had me but the Lightning Laps in the first place.

  • 05 Mar 2024 12:44 PM
    Reply # 13324708 on 13321806
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Hi Carol

    I use a Lucite lap for polishing all my Quartz and either Cerium or Tin Oxide mixed into a paste and applied to the centre of the lap and run my lap at around 250 RPM. Use water drip at a rate of a drip every 2 seconds, enough to keep the mixture damp and not too wet. When polishing a large facet like a table it will seem to grap at the stone but that is when it polishes best and only takes a couple of seconds. By asking about polishing Quartz you open Pandora's box for metheods and replies. If you do not have a Lucite or Perspex lap I have used and old CD as a lap and it worked well. If you buy new Lucite or Perspex lap sand the side you intend to use with 400 grit wet and dry to take the hard surface off.

  • 05 Mar 2024 2:13 PM
    Reply # 13324724 on 13321806

    Hi Carol,

    another thing you could try with your existing lap before buying another lap is to hold the lap steady m, eg a stationary lap, and swipe the table across the lap, then rotate the lap a little and swipe again.  This has worked for me in the past.  

  • 14 Mar 2024 7:54 AM
    Reply # 13329150 on 13321806

    Flash and Reg, thanks for your help! I can scrounge an old CD (heavy metal or rock seems appropriate) and I have some CeOx powder about. I will give that a try. 
    I kept telling myself I was only going to have the bare minimum of laps.



  • 15 Mar 2024 9:29 AM
    Reply # 13329768 on 13321806

    Carol, please simplify your life and go to and buy this film and cut into size and shape.

    Note: I have no association with this company but I have used this product for years whenever I come to a tricky piece of softer material.  We used to get this in round discs from the US very cheaply, once upon a time.

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