The Test Results are In!
Well, today I cracked open the mold for my test pieces. I slapped my diamond grinding pads on the variable speed grinder and poured water on my test slabs, pulled the trigger and ground away. First with the 60 grit, then the 100 grit and finally the 220 grit. The book says to grind with 400 and 600 grit pads too but I just need to see the pieces wet in order to get an idea if what they will look like finished. I then melted the wax strips and forms with a butane torch. I ground the surface a bit more to remove the wax that cooled on the surface, then mixed up a "slurry" with portland cement and black pigment. This was applied over the surface to fill the voids. After the "slurry" had dried a bit I sanded the excess from the surface and wiped it with a wet paper towel to reveal this!
Here are the close-ups.
The colored part that I did on the back surface of one of the test pieces retained the color but was much softer upon grinding and probably would need to cure for a couple more days. Here is what it currently looks like.
So I will go ahead and make my actual pieces based on what I have learned...... This is going to be fun! Sure beats stripping woodwork.