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Polishing up aluminum

559 Views 14 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  gonX
I've got some pieces of aluminum with scratches and the such-like, and I want to get them to a highly polished finish without the scratches or marks or whatever.

Whats the best way to go about this? Preferably quick, and I'll use power tools if I've got the right ones
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Buy new parts!

Find a lapping guide here on ocn, I think that would get you the desired effect. If you want quick, you won't be able to get the scratches out, but you could go and find a polish and make it real shiny then you take a few steps back and you won't be able to see the scratches at all!
Polishing rouge will work (requires a buffer or Dremel - though one could do it by hand....slowly).


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I don't think T-Cut is a polish. The Motorcycle polish is, so you could go with that stuff.
There are a messof different metal polishes and not all of them work real well.

First off all the scratches need to be very light to merely polishout, Polish is really best on a slightly oxidized otherwise perfect surface.

I have several motorcycles--and some have a LOT of of aluminum to polish..
what I found to work really well is Simichrome and a white cotton buffing wheel attched to a drill with a mandrel.

Apply the simichrome to the edge of the wheel and polish a small area ata time wiping it with a clean cotton rag to remove the black residue from polishing.

You will be AMAZED at how fast this works.

However if your Aluminum is coated oranodized such polishing opens a can of worms since it burns off the coating and therein lies a problem as you will have to remove the entire coating to look right.

You can acheive remarkable results by hand with Simichrome or Flitz and soft cloth. Just work a small area at a time.
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Cheers CD

Its angle, and the place which was selling it was also selling an anodized version. Anyway for me to check if its coated? I don't think it is...

I'll have a look through the tools to see if I've got a mandrel, I know I've got a drill

Is this the stuff your talking about?

The scratches don't seem to be very deep - most of them are just from getting knocked about by the drill or screws, that sorted thing. Its quite soft stuff really
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I used metal polish and a cloth. I have to polish it a few times over to see the difference, but it's worth it.
*Edit* It's in paste form like the link above.
Woohoo, a UK guy
What stuff did you use?
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I was lapping for the first time and my dad suggested this stuff link, as he had some lying around.
Note : It's now called Autosol, Was called Solvol if you can't get the new stuff.
He just ordered a couple of tubes for himself and said "If they come you can keep the other one"
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Awesome, ty.

Just wondering - couldn't I just use a normal buffing wheel, or do I *need* the polish too?

The material can be seen here:

Yeah. Dad (again) wanted to use a dremel + buffing wheel. I refused as I wanted to just lap it with wetordry and the paste. I mean, it was only a proc/chipset heatsink as in my sig, not the rails your working on for your case.
so to answer your question, a buffing wheel would do it alot quicker I imagine lol.
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Awesome, cheers

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Originally Posted by cgrado View Post
Or some sort of polish.
How nice, that site came up as a virus by my virus scanner
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