Hi, Posting this in case any of you are interested.
It takes a little longer (min. 5 days) to finish the case of any machine using Button Polish, but the results are worth every moment spent. Shellac is a product made from ground shell and used in conjunction with turps, linseed oil and beeswax in the furniture trade to French polish high quality furniture. For the purposes of polishing your machine you do not need to go to the lengths of French polishing it as this would produce a high gloss finish not in keeping with the age or condition. However by just using the Button polish on it's own you can achieve a rich warm durable shine without the mirror finish achieved with the French polishing method or the harshness of polyurethane.
A simple guide:
Button polish can be bought cheaply on line, I get mine from Ebay.
1. Sand the outside of the cabinet approx. 3 times reducing the grade each time until you are down to 600 grade glass paper.
2. Wipe over with lint free cloth dampened with white spirit to remove sanded dust.
3. Using lint free cloth, make a 'rubber' by making a small ball of cotton wool and covering it in the cloth leaving enough cloth to hold on to.
4. The button polish is very liquid so be careful when upending the bottle to coat the 'rubber' Coat the rubber with a little polish and with a small circular motion rub the polish into the wood. Complete the whole machine using this method.
5. Leave to dry overnight. Next morning, a very very light sand using the 600 gauge paper. Remove dust as before.
6. Repeat stages 4 and 5 building up the layers, a minimum of 4 is recommended but the more the merrier.
7. The final coat can be applied with a brush using straight up and down motion.
8. If you require a higher shine just add a coat of furniture wax.