Polishing aluminum slots

Tires and Wheels (Mopar Hubcaps Too)

  1. f8-4life

    f8-4life Well-Known Member

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    I am taking the time to restore a set of aluminum slots for my roadrunner.
    Between sanding, wet sanding, polishing, taping and painting the inserts..
    well they are taking a decent effort to get done.
    They are looking like a million bucks now, but I am concerned that if I don't clear coat them, they may re oxidize over time.
    Question I have is how long will they look great before they go down hill.
    Car would be a summer driver.

    IMG_0788.JPG
     
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    • Lionized

      Lionized Well-Known Member

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      I'd recommend checking your local area for a reputable powder coater and ask them about clear powder coating.
       
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      • Badvert65

        Badvert65 Well-Known Member

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        You can also use stuff like "Wenol". It polishes and protects.
         
      • bearman

        bearman FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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        i believe that you can white shoe polish them and that will protect them. never did it myself
         
      • 69L48Z27

        69L48Z27 Well-Known Member

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        Keep a good polish every once in while on them and they should look like that forever.
         
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        • POMONAMISSEL

          POMONAMISSEL Well-Known Member

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          an old timer used aqua net womens hair spray between shows to keep his mags polished . it washed off with soap n water .
           
        • f8-4life

          f8-4life Well-Known Member

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          Finished out these in a 600 wet sand.
          Then used mothers on a powerball/drill to final polish.

          IMG_0875.JPG IMG_0876.JPG
           
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          • dadsbee

            dadsbee FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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            Nice, I was up to 2000 with mine to clean them up (that I originally bought in '79! and have never really cleaned correctly) and then cleared them with Tremclad clear "anti-tarnish".

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            Last edited: Nov 16, 2018
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            • steve340

              steve340 Well-Known Member

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              I would not put clear on them after all the work you have done. The water gets under it eventually and it goes all spidery and oxidised. It does take a while however.
              My advice is leave them polished aluminium as you have them and periodically I use a product called Autosol which is a fine polishing compound.
              I used to wash my wheels and around every two years take them off and give them a hand polish with Autosol.
               
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              • Don Frelier

                Don Frelier FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                If you clean and shine them occasionally they will stay nice.
                 
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                • 493 Mike

                  493 Mike FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                  You might also consider one of the metal preservation products on the market. I have some experience with a product called "Everbrite".
                  Mike
                   
                • CudaChick1968

                  CudaChick1968 Leanna ~ The Mistress of Metal FBBO Gold Member FBBO Sponsor

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                  I disagreed with you on this only because the OP indicated he had already painted the inserts. The powder will not adhere where the paint is, and curing the clear topcoat will destroy his efforts.

                  I suggest checking into the ceramic clear coats available from NICIndustries.com.
                   
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                  • mopar 3 B

                    mopar 3 B Well-Known Member

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                    Finally an expert answer. Listen to her boys. Blade had told me if you want them you have got to polish them. I like this approach much better.
                     
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                    • Lionized

                      Lionized Well-Known Member

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                      By "inserts" I was under the impression he meant center caps.
                      At $60/pint I'm not certain Ceracoat is a road the OP want's to go down. Definitely an excellent product though!
                       
                    • f8-4life

                      f8-4life Well-Known Member

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                      Thanks for all the insight here.. I am thinking to leave them raw and give them a semi annual polish, while keeping an eye on deteriation. Sounds like they will hold up ok.
                       
                    • 73HEMI_RR_GTX

                      73HEMI_RR_GTX Well-Known Member

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                      I polish my wheels with mothers than I apply 3 coats of a good car wax such as meguiars Gold Class.

                      IMG_0817.JPG DSC_8204 (1).jpg
                       
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                      • CudaChick1968

                        CudaChick1968 Leanna ~ The Mistress of Metal FBBO Gold Member FBBO Sponsor

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                        I haven't followed up with him yet but @abodyjoe may have some input here. We talked awhile back about preserving his polishing efforts on some wheels he had; I thought the trial size might be enough to do all four (a little bit goes a LONG way). Did you have a chance to try it out yet Joe??
                         
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                        • abodyjoe

                          abodyjoe Well-Known Member

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                          not yet. i have everything here to do it though.. i did buy tires so now i have to get off my ass and coat the wheels so i can get the tires mounted..:).. i'll update ya when i do it..

                          i even bought a sample of their high temp coating that a friend is gonna try on an alumn intake and see how it holds up..


                          stuff i bought for the wheels. well worth the money if it holds up like @CudaChick1968 says.. i follow her work so i trust her word on it..: https://www.clearcoating.com/products/MC-160/

                          can't find the receipt but i think this is what i bought for the intake.. https://www.clearcoating.com/products/MC-157/
                           
                          Last edited: Nov 21, 2018
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                          • coloradodave

                            coloradodave FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                            I've had a lot of aluminum wheels over the years. What works for me is keeping them out of the weather (sun and rain) as much as possible, as in garaging your ride, and occasional maintenance with Nevr-Dull, which is cotton wadding saturated with a mild chemical cleaner. It comes in a metal tin, works fast and is really easy to use. Almost any parts store will carry it. For aluminum that has been neglected, Mothers is my favorite. I've tried various clear coats over the years but have never been happy with the results. They all seem to start peeling, some sooner than others, then you have the fun job of removing it and starting over, Yuck... DSCN0055.JPG
                             
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                            • Hey-O

                              Hey-O FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                              I would not clear coat them. How many times have you seen wheels that look cloudy on a factory car 3 to 5 years old. It will happen. Aluminum can to polished again and again and look great. The last thing you want is to start all over again .Imo. been there, gone that, got a t-shirt.
                               
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