The best burnishing machine should improve the quality as well as the surface hardness of both external and internal surfaces. With the best machine, you can also eliminate the need for secondary operations like honing and grinding.

This, coupled with the fact that most of them are priced below $250 offers you great value for money. While shopping for the right one, you need to consider such aspects as the ductility, tensile strength, diameter,  and shape of the rolls. 

Reviewed below are the top five burnishing machine models you should consider buying.

What is a Burnishing Machine?

Burnishing is essentially a surface finishing technique that uses hardened, highly polished steel rollers under pressure to polish a metal or wood surface without removing any surface material. The best burnishing machines increase the pressure gradually until it exceeds the yield point of the material.

When the yield point is exceeded, its surface is plastically deformed by the cold flowing of sub-surface material. This results in a mirror-like finish as well as a tough, work-hardened surface. The process will also produce load-carrying characteristics that are superior to those of an abrasively polished surface. 

Some of the leading burnishing machine models are specifically designed to burnish external or internal surfaces. However, some models may be adjusted to burnish both the internal and external surfaces. These machines will come in handy in any metal or woodworking workshop.

How Much Does a Burnishing Machine Cost?

The price of a burnishing machine varies from one model to another and mainly depends on the power, features, and capabilities as well as its make and model. On the affordable range, you can get a great burnishing machine below the $ 170 price point. 

Most of the hand-held burnishing machines are priced anywhere between $190 and $350 apiece. However, the cost of the heavy-duty industrial models can be as high as $1,200 per unit.

Comparing the Best Burnishing Machines 

1. Porter-Cable PXRA2676 Multi-Surface Restoration Tool Kit

For more than 100 years, Porter-Cable has been manufacturing and servicing quality power tools for professional woodworkers and tradesmen. Just as is the case with other tools by this manufacturer, this Porter-Cable burnishing machine is engineered to deliver high-quality, professional results at a great value.

The burnishing machine primarily serves as a restorer tool, but may also be used for several other applications. For instance, it may b used for almost any application that requires the use of any powerful hand tool. Although it is a hand tool, this model may also be mounted on a benchtop for enhanced precision and easier operation. 

As one of the most versatile burnishing tools in the industry, the tool may be used to buff, sand, grind, polish, scrub or clean almost any surface. Its design makes the restorer very balanced and compact for maneuvering in tight areas as well as around tough obstacles. Powered by a 3.5 amp variable speed motor, it features a pistol-grip design that allows the operator to control the tool with one hand.

2. SPTA 1200W 110V Burnishing Polishing Machine 

If you are looking for the perfect blend of affordability, quality design, and powerful performance, you should consider getting this SPTA burnishing machine. It is powered by a 1,200 

W, 110 V motor that allows for rotational speeds of 600 to 3,000 RPM. 

Equipped with variable speed settings, the model allows you to preset the right speed setting depending on the project you are working on. The tool features an ergonomic design, featuring rigid inner construction to protect the motor against breakage or damage by dust and debris. 

You will also find the hand-held burnishing machine relatively easy to control and comfortable to use for long hours. The tool is also quite versatile and may be used for such applications as tarnishing, burnishing, and polishing stainless steel and nonferrous metals, removing rust, oxide layers, scratches among others.

3. ZFE 1200W 110V Burnishing Polishing Machine 

Powered by a 1,200 W motor, you will find this burnishing machine to be comparatively powerful. Provided that it is coupled to the right sleeve, it may be used on an array of tarnishing, burnishing, and polishing projects involving stainless steel or other nonferrous metals. 

As such, it has been proven to be highly effective at removing rust, oxide layers, and scratches from stainless steel, steel non-ferrous metals, plastic, and wood surfaces. With such materials as cast iron, steel, stainless steel, and nonferrous metals, you may use the tool for grinding, polishing, and fine polishing. 

For enhanced safety, the machine is double-insulated to help prevent electric shock to the user. The single-phase motor not only delivered the required power but also allows you to work faster and more conveniently.

4. Hardin HB-5800 Hand Held Angle Burnished Stainless Steel Polisher 

The Hardin HB-5800 burnishing machine is ideal for finishing and polishing stainless steel for commercial kitchen and lab equipment. It is fitted with overload protection, effectively protecting the model against electric damage for improved durability. 

The spiral bevel gears used in the model allow for an efficient transfer of power from the motor to the spindle. This, in turn, maximizes power, while allowing for quieter operation. Some of the safety features used on the machine include a spindle lock. This lock allows for easy and safe removal and tightening of the accessories. 

The tool has an input rating of 900 watts, efficiently delivering a no-load speed of 900 to 2800 revolutions per minute. The Hardin HB-5800 is 13.5″ long and weighs just 8 lbs. The unit also comes with an assortment of standardized accessories.

5. BLACK+DECKER BDJD2674 Multi-Surface Restoration Tool Kit 

Superior versatility makes this Black & Decker burnishing machine a preferred model among professionals and DIY enthusiasts alike. It is essentially a patented hand-held or benchtop tool that may be used to buff, sand, grind, polish, scrub or clean any surface. 

Its design makes the burnishing tool very balanced, while the compact construction allows for easy maneuvering in tight areas and around tough obstacles. It can be used on any type of surface, Flat or curved, wet or dry. It may also be fitted with any type of roller from sanding sleeves, abrasives to wire wheel, and everywhere in between.

The powerful 3-amp motor drives the unit to high rotational speeds, while its variable speed adjustment dials allow you to choose your preferred burnishing speed. To allow for easier change of the roller, it is equipped with a quick-release latch. It is backed by a 2-year limited warranty by the manufacturer. 

Factors to Consider Before Buying a Burnishing Machine

The amount of downward pressure exerted on the material is key to the quality of burnishing, regardless of the material you are working on. You should consider getting a machine that applies enough pressure evenly across the surface to polish it, without removing any surface material.

In order to get such a machine, here are some of the important considerations you need to make:

Pressure Levels

The amount of pressure applied to the workpiece surface is one of the aspects that will determine the burnishing quality. These are some of the pressure qualities you should consider while shopping for the right unit:

Ball Burnishing Pressure

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If looking for the best roller burnishing tool, you need to consider the amount of pressure the rolling ball produces. When operated, the ball rotates freely in the direction of the main motion and feed direction. When used alone, ball rolling pressure can usually obtain a very low surface roughness, often between Ra0.2μm and 0.10μm.

If the other process parameters are taken care of as well, the surface quality of the rolled part can be as high as Ra0.05. The good thing with ball burnishing machines is that they are simple in design, hence are relatively lightweight. 

Shaft Burnishing Pressure

Just as is the case with ball burnishing, shaft burnishing produces comparatively quality surface roughness. Even so, you will find the best shaft burnishing machines more durable than rolling ball burnishing machines. 

Shaft burnishing machines may also be used in a large feed. The machines usually use 0.75mm/r-0.80mm/r, which guarantees improved production efficiency. 

Type of Burnishing Tool

Whether designed for burnishing metal or wood surfaces, these machines come in a myriad of shapes, sizes, and designs. Depending on the effectiveness of the machine, you may use it on different materials, such as stainless steel, aluminum, cast iron, and brass.

These are some of the commonest burnishing machine types you should consider:

Multi-roll Burnishing Tools

The best multi-roll burnishing tools are designed to offer accurate sizing and can show significant improvements in the surface finish of steel and high ductility materials. Some of the leading models have been proven to produce a finish of 2 to 8 Ra micro-inches in a single pass.

In their design, the machines feature fast cycle times and built-in micrometer adjustment settings, allowing you to adjust the desired quality in positive increments. These burnishing tools are completely interchangeable with Madison-style burnishing tools.

Diamond Burnishing Tools

Diamond burnishing is one of the most versatile metal burnishing solutions available today. It can be used on a variety of metals and can produce a dense, smooth surface. The setup for diamond burnishing is quick and comparatively affordable.

As a matter of fact, diamond burnishing eliminates the need for secondary processes like grinding. Overall, this process is easy, efficient, and will deliver high-quality results.

Carbide Roll Burnishing Tools

This is another, highly-efficient metal burnishing option you should consider using. With a carbide roll burnishing tool, you will not need to use any secondary operation on the burnished surface. This has been proven to reduce costs significantly. 

The best carbide roll burnishing tools are designed to remove any surface impurities, producing a 4 to 8 Ra micro inch finish in a single pass. The tools are also renowned for their superior durability and feature fast cycle times for enhanced finish quality.

Burnishing Length

Most of the burnishing tools in the market offer standard burnishing lengths, and are suited for an array of regular applications. You may also order a tool with a customized burnishing length, based on your unique requirements. 

Internal Diameter Range

The minimum internal diameter burnishing range for most of the available machines is about 5mm. As far as the diameter is concerned, there is no industry standard for the maximum internal diameter a tool can have. For units with a diameter of more than Ø34 mm, the diameter does not have to be stated.

This is because such burnishing machines tend to have an unlimited rolling length. However, units with a diameter of less than Ø34 mm need to have the internal diameter range clearly stated by the manufacturer. On average, machines with a diameter of more than Ø35 mm have a standard rolling length of about 50mm.

Machines with a larger diameter may also offer other rolling length options, including 100, 150, 200, 250, 300 mm.

Internal Diameter Adjustment

For enhanced versatility, some burnishing machines will allow you to choose your preferred internal diameter depending on the project at hand. The diameter of the roller burnishing tool can be adjusted to a limited range for the purpose of setting the diameter initially. 

The range of the adjustment settings on your preferred model will vary depending on the size of the tool.

Type of Material

Any Ferrous or Non-Ferrous item can be burnished. Normally ferrous materials with a maximum natural hardness of 35HRc are recommended for burnishing operation. 

You need to choose a tool that is powerful enough to deliver the desired results on materials of varying hardness. Ideally, the hardness rating should be less than 40 HRC. However, some materials as hard as 45 HRC may be effectively burnished as well.

Desired Output Roughness 

An initial 80- to 120-microinch is the standard required level of roughness for roller burnishing. The rougher starting finish allows for a more dramatic change in the final finish because the rollers can apply greater pressure to more of the surface.

Ready to Use a Burnishing Machine?

With the right tool and skills, you can effectively polish the surface of metal and wood materials without having to remove any surface material. With the right tool. You can also improve the surface hardness and quality of the workpiece. 

Just as is the case with the five machines reviewed above, your preferred product needs to be relatively adjustable, offer the right hardness level, and be usable on different materials. This guide will help you choose the best burnishing machine that suits your requirements.