Aluminum cast parts typically have a dull, matte finish after coming out of the casting process. The part on the right shows this ‘raw’ surface finish. A quick method to significantly improve the aesthetic finish is to tumble the part with a stainless steel media in a barrel tumbler. The ‘finished’ part on the left was barrel tumbled for only 15 minutes with a Stainless Steel Round Ball in a wet process with a burnishing compound. This quick polish resulted in a part with a higher quality finish without significantly added processing cost.
Note: Use stainless steel media with aluminum or other soft metals to minimize the risk of iron contamination and oxidation/rusting during storage.