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I must’ve been caught in the rain one too many times, or something, because it just doesn’t have that shiny mirror finish anymore. A good Mothers application has always kept it looking like new until now. Now it just doesn’t get it done. Nothing works. It just looks drab . Suggestions?
 

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buffing wheel and some polishing compaund?
 

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Or you can get some high temp spray paint, and paint it to match the bike...

Just dont be like me and ride it the same day...
 

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the top layer of the paint set, but the bottom got soft from the heat. The result was a finish that resembles the skin on a 90 year old toad.
 

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JustLeanIt, the first thing I'd do is see how far I could throw that can of Mothers aluminum polish. It's hard to believe, but they actually put in certain ingredients that promote tarnish. I assume it's to increase sales, as you'll need to continually re-apply the junk every time you wash the bike or the neighbor’s water their lawn. Mothers isn't the only one that pulls that stunt. After years of polishing up the aluminum after every wash I happened across a product called English Custom Polish. I use it about once a year and my bike always looks like I polished it yesterday. I'm sure that there are other products out there that also have some sort of protecterant built in. I probably spend more time and effort waxing and taking care of the painted parts than I do with the aluminum. To get the more serious stuff cleaned up you can use Emory, Tripoli, and Rouge polishes (in that order), then use the English Custom Polish to protect your work. Now don't get the idea that this has anything to do with the initial preparation of a rough aluminum surface. That's a whole different story.
 

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+1 on the Flitz. Best polish I have ever used. When I had an aluminum exhaust I would make it shine like a mirror with Flitz. Now I go Ti and CF.

:2cents:
 

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I've never heard of Flitz before. Are you saying that it polishes well and protects over time? Every aluminum polish I've ever tested works great for bringing out the shine. Even Mothers will let you see your own reflection in the shine, but just one washing and your bike will look like you haven't polished it in three years. When I used Mothers I found that if I washed my bike three or four times without buffing out the aluminum, I would have to break out the electric buffing wheel and spend a few hours getting back to where I started. It's also important to use mild automotive washing soap and not dish soap or any number of the more potent cleaners.
 

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You can read about it and order it here. It's approved for use on food serving items by the FDA, so washing it is of little consequence. I've been using it exclusively as a metal poish for years, and a can of it will last almost forever.
 

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I used Flitz for a long time, but I have found something better.

Its called Purple Metal Polish. It comes in a small bottle and its very effective. You may be able to pick it up at your local tractor trailer supply shop.

This stuff is amazing. Give it a try if you can find it.

Tom
 

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Aluminum tarnishes easily after being polished because of how it rusts. As it oxidizes it create a very, very thin layer of crystal over it's surface that unlike iron does not expose new metal to air, it actually protects the metal under it from oxidizing. that is why aluminum seam to be a non corrosive metal, when it actually is. so why should you know that?

After you buff it wash it with plain distilled water (not tap water) or alcohol and wipe it dry with a clean terry cloth. then let it sit over night. this will allow it to re-build that layer of protective crystal. when you put any kind of protective compound on it before it has a chance to build that coating it will prevent it from forming and will tarnish easily.
 

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Most aluminum polishes are acidic and I stay away from them. I have a lot of bare polished pieces on my bike. If you choose to ride in inclement weather (i.e. water) you're gonna run into more maintenance in the long run. I don't even use a garden hose on my bike, and it's never seen a drop of water. At any rate, I just stick to plain old wax. I still take all my pieces off and run them on the buffer at least once a year.
 

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Polish for al. cans

+ one here on the Mothers...
It is very important to look at the products lsting of ingredients...If it says ammonia ANYWHERE on the label set the container down and back away...
Ammonia will give the metal a shine but it also keeps the door open for quicker degrading of your polished surface.
I ecmoend looking for an old 110V air compressor motor,go to the caswell site for buffing supplies and then have a go at it...you wont be sorry....but you WILL GET DIRTY!!!
so buy a respirator,shield,and good work gloves and wear long pants and long sleeves...
The work is worth it...
MIke S
1996 Ducati 900SSCR
Polished ...of course...
 
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