cleaning chrome

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cleaning chrome

Post by bigfuckinandy on Mon 8 Oct - 23:29

How it works
A common way to clean a rusted chrome surface such as a fender is to use a fine steel wool. However, when you use this method you have to use a lot of elbow grease and you still end up with a slightly dull surface with some amount of scratching not to mention the messy 'dust' left over from the steel wool. That's because you are physically scraping off the rust.

When you use the aluminum foil method you are dissolving the rust chemically so you don't need to rub nearly as hard and since the aluminum foil is softer than the chrome, you are left with few if any scratches. This method also allows you to get the rust out of some minor pitting without having to dig into the surface.

The aluminum oxide that is created by friction when you rub the surface of the chrome leeches the rust away and when combined with the water you added creates it's own polishing compound so you end up with a clean, smooth, shiny surface.

Step by step
By the numbers, people
Step 1
Cut the aluminum foil into small squares. 3" by 3" should do.
Step 2
Wipe down or wash the surface to remove any surface dirt.
Step 3
Dip a square into some water or sprinkle some water on it and spread it around on the surface of the foil.
Step 4
Cup the wet square over the surface you want to clean so you get a nice even coverage.
Step 5
Start rubbing a 6 or 8 inch area and remember you don't have to rub very hard. As you rub, you'll feel the surface get smoother and smoother until the foil just glides over it. You will also notice a light brown paste building up. This is the polish that results from the chemical reaction.
Step 6
When the surface is nice and smooth and you have polished it, take a clean cloth and wipe the polish off.
Step 7
Once you finish cleaning and polishing the item you need to cover the surface to protect it from the elements. At a minimum you can wipe it down thoroughly with a clean cloth. Since cloth inherently contains some amount of oil, this will give you at least some protection. The best method would be to use a small amount of chrome polish or maybe something like turtle wax or an equivalent kind of wax or polish. Make sure you wipe the surface down with a paper towel first instead of a cloth because paper doesn't contain any oil so you will have a clean and dry surface for the wax or polish to adhere to.

Limitations
There's always a catch If the surface is severely pitted or some of the chrome plating has peeled off, there is a limit to how much you can do. Since this method removes the rust chemically, you should still be able to get rid of most if not all of the rust. And since it creates it's own polishing compound, you should be able to feather (taper) the peeled off edges to help prevent more peeling in the future. Again, once you have the surface as rust free and smoothed down as much as possible, don't forget to apply some form of wax or polish.

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Re: cleaning chrome

Post by bigfuckinandy on Mon 8 Oct - 23:30

And before any fucker says anything yes this is the first time my bike has been cleaned
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Last edited by bigfuckinandy on Mon 8 Oct - 23:31; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : smelling mistakes)

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Re: cleaning chrome

Post by Blacklisted on Tue 9 Oct - 7:47

Fire up a pic and let us see how she's looking mate

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Re: cleaning chrome

Post by bigfuckinandy on Wed 10 Oct - 6:22

The bikes in bits right now. I'll take some photos when I can. My new bits have arrived at Ducati. Nothing exciteing. Engine studs and shims. Wooo

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Re: cleaning chrome

Post by G-force on Fri 23 Nov - 8:13

Any progress?

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Re: cleaning chrome

Post by G-force on Fri 23 Nov - 8:30

Have you actually tried this Andy? I've noticed a bit of surface rust at the top of my forks, Thinking of giving it a go..

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Re: cleaning chrome

Post by bigfuckinandy on Fri 23 Nov - 8:34

Yeah done it on the bezal round my headlight and it came up tops

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Re: cleaning chrome

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