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Old 12-16-2012, 07:00 PM   #1
fed4life
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Default Ruined beyond fixing/polishing?

So here is two pics of my lower forks which are from a 2005 Vegas. It looks like the previous owner had taken sand paper or a green scrub pad to the forks to scrub what looks like some pitting.

My question is: can this be polished out with any special type of polish and/or tools or is it too far gone? If it is too far gone, does anybody out there make chrome covers for the lower part of the forks?

Same goes for my front wheels, looks like it has some pitting along the leading edges, can it be polished/buffed out or are they done.
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Old 12-16-2012, 07:56 PM   #2
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aluminum wheels on my wife's truck are doing the same thing, I think you are stuck with replacing or re-finishing the wheels, I'm not sure on the lowers.


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Old 12-16-2012, 08:32 PM   #3
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Looks the clear coat on the forks got messed up. On. My previous scoot I removed the front wheel, applied some not alot of stripper, and what that didn't take off I followed by sanding with 1500 I think, or finer either way I ended up very fine sandpaper. From whenever I wash her I would take a rag with aluminum polish and wiped it down. Always stayed shiny for me.

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Old 12-16-2012, 08:34 PM   #4
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I wonder what made the aluminum finish pit like that? Salt? Dunno? Pictures are also hard to determine how bad or good some things are, so don't take it as gospel.
How handy are you with sandpaper and a polishing wheel? Beyond help? Hard to say since some are more adventurous than others and have good results. I can't blame anyone who won't or is timid about doing it.
If you plan to replace them anyway, what do you have to lose. Just keep in mind it is always better to STOP short on those kinds of projects than force it trying to get perfection. The results are usually less than optimum when this happens.
Good Luck.
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Old 12-16-2012, 10:22 PM   #5
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It can be fixed. Just need to use the right power tools or plenty of elbow grease and start with the level of wet sandpaper below what caused this then work with finer and finer sandpaper until you get to where a polishing wheel and some polishing rouge of the right grit will get it to that level of shine you are looking for. You might need 2 or 3 types of rouge just like you would need finer and finer type of wet and dry sandpaper.

Might need to start with something to remove the plastic coating to do the best possible job.

Definitely fixable though..
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Old 12-16-2012, 10:24 PM   #6
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Best to take the wheel or wheels off to do this job. No sense breaking your back and doing a half ass job with it on the bike.
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Old 12-17-2012, 05:35 AM   #7
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Or take the parts in to be powdercoated and go with the blacked out look.
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Old 12-17-2012, 09:34 AM   #8
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the whole set of 4 directional mags on my pickup were like that when i bought them for 60.00 for the set. i used paint remover to get off the remaining clear coat, then sand paper starting coarse ,going down to a 400 wet. then steel wool,[ painters type, not kitchen pads, something like 000 grade], then polish with car polish. they looked great but i haven't kept them polished and after about a year they are dull but still not pitted.
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Old 12-17-2012, 10:33 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the replies, i dont mind putting in the elbow grease if you have the right tools to get the job done. Like one poster said, im concerned that i put in the work and get less then desirable results. The other part is that i have no experience wet sanding, especially dealing with metals. I have done the basic wax polishing/rim polishing on my cars but nothing beyond that. I guess i would be more inclined to pay a professional to do it and do it right the first time.

My plan for the rims was to buy an identical set used on ebay or something thats in great condition and have them either chromed or powdercoated instead pulling mine off, sending them to the shop and waiting for them to come back...i dont wana wait that long to ride my bike.
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Old 12-17-2012, 04:46 PM   #10
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Sounds like you have what it takes. All you need is motivation and confidence. IMHO, and we are still dealing with pictures, would be to start with 400 or 600 grit paper. Working down to 1500-2000 grit. Don't concentrate on a single spot, keep moving around so as not to create deep spots.Wet sanding isn't the red eyed long clawed snaggle toothed monster some seem to think, it is water and sand paper, it helps slow the process and gives a better chance to "see" things while helping keep dust and sanded off particles from coming into the mix.
Polishing wheel, ball (I thing Mothers makes one fairly inexpensive) isn't scary either, you may need help on the polish but some folks here or any good auto paint shop are usually willing to help on that one. A place that sells custom truck accessories might also be of help.
Rule of thumb, Take Your Time. If you are in a big hurry, then taking it and having it done might be best, these things do seem to take some patience.
How ever you go with it, good luck.

Last edited by Lostintexas; 12-17-2012 at 04:49 PM.
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