Aluminum trim restoration dilemma

Restoration

  1. Jeff

    Jeff Well-Known Member

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    Thx Tom - good info. Didn't know the SF had a different panel.
     
  2. bluefury361

    bluefury361 Old Man with a Hat

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    [QUOTE="Big_John,

    . Nickel looks a little different than chrome too. It has a blueish cast to it, where chrome is yellowish.
    The rule of thumb is the chrome won't "stick" to an internal compound curve with less than a 3/8" radius. They refer to that as "3/4 ball". If a 3/4" diameter ball was placed in a sharp corner, the area it doesn't touch won't plate. QUOTE]



    I have to respectfully disagree with some of what your saying John.
    Nickel will have a tendency to dull and turn yellow with age. It's the reason for chrome which will preserve/seal the nickel. Chrome is a very thin, electrostactic coating that will take on a blush luster when correctly applied and polished. Best quality is a copper base, polish, nickel, polish, then chrome.


    I have a metal finisher that can obtain the bluish tint in stainless also.
    As for anadoized aluminum. Oven cleaner will remove it. I found a drain cleaner that works even better. It's in a black bottle and stored in a clear plastic bag. You can find it at the big box hwd stores. Serious stuff, hold your breath.
    Once aluminum is polished it needs to be cleaned with brake clean. Especially if it shows pits. If reanadizing is not an option, (it's expensive), then a clear, glossy powder coat will look great and be maintenance free.
     
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  3. rexus31

    rexus31 Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Thanks, Mike but the car pictured is not mine. I will be starting the restoration of my GTO soon though. This is what I'm starting with:

    38261757915_311930d374_c.jpg
     
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  4. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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    I don't think we are disagreeing at all. I agree that nickel won't last as long without the protective layer of chrome. It will tarnish without the layer of chrome etc.

    I did mix the colors up... Nickel is yellow and chrome is blue. Thanks for correcting me on that! :thumbsup:
     
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  5. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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    I wanted to mention this separately... Some of that is lye and some is straight up sulfuric acid. I know this because we grabbed a bottle of what I thought was lye just the other day. Turned out to be sulfuric acid and it stripped the chrome off the drain in my tub in nothing flat.

    You want the lye... same ingredient as in oven cleaner.
     
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  6. HWYCRZR

    HWYCRZR Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Not yet, I moved on to the interior part detailing and electrical for now. Then drive shaft, fuel tank detailing. If my car is back then I will put it back off longer for interior assembly.

    The little that I did seems like it takes forever to get the anodizing off and the fumes suck.
    I need to build a small trough to keep the oven cleaner off my concrete

    I will probably wait until spring and hit it again. They will be about the last pieces to go on. I am also hoping that a small miracle will happen and I will find some NOS.
     
  7. Zymurgy

    Zymurgy Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    I can see why you are restoring it. :poke: Just a bit better starting point than your '65 300.:thumbsup:
     
  8. rexus31

    rexus31 Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Just a tad!
     
  9. live4theking

    live4theking Old Man with a Hat

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    What about a section of house gutter.
     
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  10. HWYCRZR

    HWYCRZR Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Thanks for the idea starter with the gutter. To have a little more space for working and over spray I could do a 2x6 with 2x4 sides and drape poly in the inside. That may sit a little flatter than a gutter. I could also stick it up on saw horses to get it up to working level. That would work great for the straight pieces.
     
  11. WissaMan

    WissaMan Member

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    I'm going to want to start cleaning and polishing the trim from my 68 New Yorker. I would like to do the clear coat thing afterwards to protect the finish.

    I figure aluminum trim would need to be coated soon after polishing or it will oxidize and loose the shine quickly. But how about the stainless trim, will it stay shinny for a while? I could store the parts in my house.

    I just know I won't be able to get it all done in a short span of time, it could take me weeks. And to mix up the clear coat & hardener to do just a few pieces would be a pain. Unless...is there's something available in a rattle can that could give me an equivalent finish?

    Also, regarding the aluminum, can the anodize layer be removed with light sanding before polishing or does it have to be chemically stripped?
     
  12. Zymurgy

    Zymurgy Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    I cleaned and polished my stainless 6 years ago and it still looks good.
     
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  13. bluefury361

    bluefury361 Old Man with a Hat

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    [QUOTE="WissaMan,is there's something available in a rattle can that could give me an equivalent finish?

    Also, regarding the aluminum, can the anodize layer be removed with light sanding before polishing or does it have to be chemically stripped?[/QUOTE]





    If re anodizing is not an option, (it's expensive), then a clear, glossy powder coat will look great and be maintenance free.
    Sanding aluminum trim is not recommended unless repairs have been made, best left to a professional.


    If there is an anodizing co near you then they can remove the original anodizing easily in their tank. Most of the cost of anodizing is in the polish and re anodize process.
     
  14. Ripinator

    Ripinator Senior Member

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    If re anodizing is not an option, (it's expensive), then a clear, glossy powder coat will look great and be maintenance free.
    Sanding aluminum trim is not recommended unless repairs have been made, best left to a professional.


    If there is an anodizing co near you then they can remove the original anodizing easily in their tank. Most of the cost of anodizing is in the polish and re anodize process.
    [/QUOTE]

    Wil: Thanks for your insights here. I have a large grill assembly on my '66 300 that is partly chromed and partly anodized. The anodized portion is badly pitted in some places, so I've been thinking that maybe I'll just sand / grind out the pits and instead of re-anodizing, just paint that part of the grill with something like an argent color. It should turn out to look pretty close to the original anodized finish. What do you think?
     
  15. WissaMan

    WissaMan Member

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    Do you mean take them to a powder coating place or is there a DIY option for that?
     
  16. Fury440

    Fury440 At my age everything's a good idea FCBO Gold Member

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    I used a cloth wheel on my bench grinder and a stick of polishing compound to "removed" the anodizing. Before that step, dented were worked out with a few steel dollies and a small hammer. Then wet'n dry to remove scratches etc. When done, sprayed with a coat of clear. No change in the finish after 5 years.
     
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  17. TerryM

    TerryM Member

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    I’ve just recently stripped and repaired all the trim on my 65. A lot of it was knocked around but it all came out perfect with time. I’ve been doing stainless repairs and polishing for many years Which helps. I haven’t clear coated it yet as I’m still undecided whether I might still get it reanodized. Just take your time. One thing I have learnt from years of casting and polishing aluminium is that the tighter the grain when you finish polishing the longer it will take to oxidise. Try to finish it with 1500 wet and dry before even touching it with a buff. The end results are worth it

    0283C4F8-DE5D-4068-869C-7C1B7AF2EE2B.jpeg

    EA1ECD1C-890F-43B5-8923-6BF3E790DA2E.jpeg
     
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  18. bluefury361

    bluefury361 Old Man with a Hat

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    There are some DIY powder coating systems on the market the work well enough.
    As for a good clear glossy powder coat on trim, that is best left to a professional coating company. Look for a custom/ prototype/ short run powder coating company as apposed to an industrial coater.

    Your part should be ready to prep and coat when you take it.
     
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  19. bluefury361

    bluefury361 Old Man with a Hat

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    [QUOTE="Ripinator,
    Wil: Thanks for your insights here. I have a large grill assembly on my '66 300 that is partly chromed and partly anodized. The anodized portion is badly pitted in some places, so I've been thinking that maybe I'll just sand / grind out the pits and instead of re-anodizing, just paint that part of the grill with something like an argent color. It should turn out to look pretty close to the original anodized finish. What do you think?[/QUOTE]





    Hey Rip. You could do that. A lot depends on what your expectations for the finished look are. Argent looks like argent, not anodize. It would be nice but not authentic. You might try and locate a "non pitted" grille.
    Clear glossy powder coat works well on chrome also. Never polish it again. I have clear powder coated magnum wheels, (new out of the box), with great success. Brake dust wont stick, easy clean up.
     
  20. Ripinator

    Ripinator Senior Member

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    Hey Rip. You could do that. A lot depends on what your expectations for the finished look are. Argent looks like argent, not anodize. It would be nice but not authentic. You might try and locate a "non pitted" grille.
    Clear glossy powder coat works well on chrome also. Never polish it again. I have clear powder coated magnum wheels, (new out of the box), with great success. Brake dust wont stick, easy clean up.
    [/QUOTE]

    Thanks, Wil. As you suggested, I've been looking for another grill, but those I've found are in worse shape than mine. . . As Chief Dan George said: I shall "endeavor to persevere. . ."