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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry for not paying better attention over the years. I did a quick search and didn't see anything directly on point.

I'm treating the Jack Taylor to a new paint job and rims. I also want to clean and polish the Campy Record parts. What are your favorite methods? I was thinking soap and water followed by Simichrome, but since I haven't really done a "restoration" before I wanted to see if you wise ones could lead me in the right direction. Thanks!
 

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Good starting point: http://www.raydobbins.com/polishing/

Mother's Mag polish works well for aluminum parts, Simichrome or one of the less expensive clones (Maas, Hagerty 100) work well for chrome.

If you want to know more than you ever thought possible about polishing, read this detailed tutorial:
http://www.vintagebmx.com/community/index.php?showtopic=4005471

I buy my wheels and compounds from these folks:
http://www.caswellplating.com/buffs/buffman.htm

I've also found that a Dremel with a brass brush is great for removing rust specks on things like Campagnolo QR's and small nuts on brake calipers.

The Dobbins site tells you what is anodized and what isn't, as far a Campagnolo. I wouldn't remove the anodizing unless it was very scratched to begin with. If you need to remove it, EZ Off oven cleaner is what you want. Not the 'eco-friendly, smells good' stuff, the stuff that contains lye. Any brand will work, lye is the key.

Looking forward to pictures of your finished results!
 

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I've only ever used really fine steel wool, but then again my parts haven't been in bad shape.

Zmud has set you up nicely.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks fellers!
 

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Dave Hickey said:
My two favorites are MAAS metal polish and Simichrome, In my experience, Maas gives a brighter shine but Simichrome give a deeper, longer lasting shine
Didn't you have a thread a long time ago about refinishing aluminum parts?
 

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My understanding is that aluminum parts, which most components are made of, have a clear layer of anodising. If you polish, sand or steel wool the parts you are removing this protective layer of anodising and thus exposing the aluminum to corrosive creating elements. Not a wise thing to do if you value your components. It is better to deal with a scratch here or there and leaving it as is.
 

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Here is a bit more information regarding the above:

Anodizing, is an electrolytic passivation process used to increase the thickness of the natural oxide layer on the surface of metal parts. The process is called "anodizing" because the part to be treated forms the anode electrode of an electrical circuit. Anodizing increases corrosion resistance and wear resistance, and provides better adhesion for paint primers and glues than bare metal. Anodic films can also be used for a number of cosmetic effects, either with thick porous coatings that can absorb dyes or with thin transparent coatings that add interference effects to reflected light. Anodizing is also used to prevent galling of threaded components and to make dielectric films for electrolytic capacitors. Anodic films are most commonly applied to protect aluminium alloys, although processes also exist for titanium, zinc, magnesium, niobium, and tantalum. This process is not a useful treatment for iron or carbon steel because these metals exfoliate when oxidized; i.e. the iron oxide (also known as rust) flakes off, constantly exposing the underlying metal to corrosion.

Anodization changes the microscopic texture of the surface and changes the crystal structure of the metal near the surface. Thick coatings are normally porous, so a sealing process is often needed to achieve corrosion resistance. Anodized aluminium surfaces, for example, are harder than aluminium but have low to moderate wear resistance that can be improved with increasing thickness or by applying suitable sealing substances. Anodic films are generally much stronger and more adherent than most types of paint and metal plating, but also more brittle. This makes them less likely to crack and peel from aging and wear, but more susceptible to cracking from thermal stress.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
How about scratch removal--will a Dremel with some type of wire brush work or do I need a full on bench grinder?
 

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rcnute said:
How about scratch removal--will a Dremel with some type of wire brush work or do I need a full on bench grinder?
What parts are you talking about? It makes a huge difference. A dremel is handy for hubs, brake calipers and the like. Anything bigger, like a stem, cranks, seatpost, you really need a wheel, or a lot of time.

The only thing I use a Dremel for is rust removal on nuts and QR's. A brass brush is better than steel, it won't scratch. Heavy scratches are best removed with sandpaper before buffing, in my experience. same with heavy rust.

I would never remove anodizing unless the part was trashed badly by scratches. The Dobbins link tells you which Campag parts are anodized and which aren't.

If you don't want to lay out the cash for a buffing setup, which I've found to be extremely useful, plan on spending time and money on piles of sandpaper. 2000 grit wont get you as shiny as rouge on a wheel. You don't need a fancy bench grinder. I use a $30 Lowes/Home Depot bench grinder and the $50 kit from Caswell. For less than $100 I can do everything I need. I've had guys give me Campy SR seat posts that were so trashed they couldn't bear to ask money for them, and have buffed them to mirror finish in short time. Same with Cinelli stems, though they are heavily anodized, and you have to go the lye route to remove it.

Post some pics of what you are doing, and I'm sure we can help you along.
 

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Again, I would stay away from polishing your aluminum parts. I made this mistake 15 years ago and render parts god awful ugly. Sure, they look great after you polish them but when you remove the protective layer of anodising you have stripped the compnent bare of the ability to prevent corrosion. And when it begins to corrode it will pit and form small white powdery stuff. Thus, it looks worse than the scratch.

However, if you are not going to use the component in real life situations, and rather hang it on a wall.....then maybe it doesn't matter.

BTW, you can not buff a scratch out of an anodised product. The depth of the scratch often goes deeper than the layer of anodising.

Anytime I see a vintage ad that states they have polished the component to a great shine I quickly rule out the component as having any value or use. It is better to leave the scratch than compromise the component.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
zmudshark said:
What parts are you talking about? It makes a huge difference. A dremel is handy for hubs, brake calipers and the like. Anything bigger, like a stem, cranks, seatpost, you really need a wheel, or a lot of time.

The only thing I use a Dremel for is rust removal on nuts and QR's. A brass brush is better than steel, it won't scratch. Heavy scratches are best removed with sandpaper before buffing, in my experience. same with heavy rust.

I would never remove anodizing unless the part was trashed badly by scratches. The Dobbins link tells you which Campag parts are anodized and which aren't.

If you don't want to lay out the cash for a buffing setup, which I've found to be extremely useful, plan on spending time and money on piles of sandpaper. 2000 grit wont get you as shiny as rouge on a wheel. You don't need a fancy bench grinder. I use a $30 Lowes/Home Depot bench grinder and the $50 kit from Caswell. For less than $100 I can do everything I need. I've had guys give me Campy SR seat posts that were so trashed they couldn't bear to ask money for them, and have buffed them to mirror finish in short time. Same with Cinelli stems, though they are heavily anodized, and you have to go the lye route to remove it.

Post some pics of what you are doing, and I'm sure we can help you along.
Thank you, sir--shall do when I have a moment (in the process of moving--ack). I have some Sugino cranks that have a few good scratches. I should just break down and get the proper tools.
 

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I don't believe Sugino cranks are anodized. With cranks it is usually best to start with sandpaper. Use a grade that is slightly finer than the scratches you are trying to eliminate. You may have to start with a 80 grade and work your way finer, depending on the scratches.

I have polished Dura Ace cranks and other Shimano cranks that were originally anodized. Once they are scratched to a certain point, there really isn't much choice if you want them to look nice. For example here are some 105 cranks that were a mess:


I've found that a coating of good paste wax works well to protect them, but your climate will have a lot to do with that. When I had a bike with polished cranks at my folks near the ocean in S. Ga , they needed a lot of attention. In AZ, not so much. YMMV

Mothers works well to keep them shiny.
 
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