During the renovation of the Laboratory, my budget would not allow me to buy any but the least expensive finish for my kitchen and bath faucets i.e. simple polished chrome. Brushed chrome or nickel often cost a couple of hundred dollars more, potentially adding thousands to my budget.
I discovered that I could lightly dull the few pieces which were just too shiny by scouring them ever-so-gently with a super fine grade sponge sanding pad. I stumbled on this useful tool when the contractor Skip Geiger bought some for the painter to sand between coats of the gloss paint used throughout the space. Something made me try using one of the sponges to sand the ugly green-topped heating pipe we were afraid to move for fear of impacting the entire heating’s building (and costing a fortune). The pad removed the green enamel in a jiffy and brightened up the copper pipe enough to make it more sculpture than eyesore (below), until some time down the line when I might update the heating.
Since then, I’ve used fine grit sanding sponges to bring down the shine on the shower bar, the pot rack, and the vintage-but-unused fondue forks I bought on Ebay for cooking (in the photo, above, the bottom fork has been dulled slightly).
I also use them to polish my stainless steel on my Danish Modern tea kettle and my stove, and any other bit of metal that needs a mellow cleaning.
Zoro Tools sells a wide variety of contour abrasive sanding sponges. Amazon also sells them. Be sure to get “contour, softback” which are pliable sponges, not hard sanding blocks meant for walls. (Note: For chrone faucets, I recommend doing a test spot in an area that won’t show, using the finest grit you can get). Sanding sponges are also a good way to rough up the plasticky powder coating that’s on a lot of furniture these days.
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