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I'm not sure but Wizards has a product called new metal that works very well on chrome and aluminum. It may help on the fine scratches but you have to try it to know for sure. I sure like all there products.
 

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I imagine it would be difficult to try and buff the scratches out. You might be able to do it though, I dont know of a product that would really get down and remove the scratches though.
 

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Are they extremely light lines or scratches? The kind that the light or angle has to be a certain way to see them? If so, I've had great success with Mothers Billet Metal Polish and a polishing or finishing foam pad on a Porter Cable Random-Orbit Polisher. A buffer with a foam finishing pad would probably work as well, but I'd try not to use too much pressure and just go over it lightly.
 

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Given that you can't use large polish/buff wheels and motor, you'll have to do it by hand or with a hand-held motor like a Dremel tool. I'd do it by hand because of the finished wood. I assume the anodizing has been removed from the alu ? If so, then sand with the Alu grain (and only in one direction on each spoke) with gradually increasing grit number ending with 2000 (or finer if you can find it). Maybe start with 1000 so that you don't take out the engraving. You need to get all the line going parallel. Then start with the polishing and buffing componds. If you don't have gray SS or white rouge/chrome, then start with Semi Chrome Polish. It has a fine abrasive that will soften the 2000 grit lines. Add lot's of elbow grease. It will take several hours to approach a black shine by hand, unfortunately. Once you have the polishing where you want it, then use a liquid buff or soft paste polish for final shine, followed by a liquid wax for protection.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
There's no anodizing or coating of any kind on the alum.

The lines are very, very fine. You can't really see them unless it's under the "right" light, meaning you don't see them in daylight, but put it under a fluorescent lamp and "holy ****!"

Had the same problem with black cars under fluorescent lights in the showroom (years back).

I am down to using a jeweler grade paste similar to SemiChrome by hand. I can get most of them out doing that but if apply just a bit too much pressure I start to see what looks like scratches caused by the cloth.

My Wife told me to shut off the fluorescent light. I quote, "Are you going to have one of them hanging from the visor? No, right? Can you see them when you shut that stupid light off? No, right? Then why are you using one now?"

I told her, same reason I married you...I'm damn picky.
 

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OK, if you're at the Semi Chrome phase, have all the lines in parallel, expended all your elbow grease and still not happy, then you are picky. Perhaps you didn't get some of the lines out with previous grits? After Semi Chrome (a polishing paste) you could move to a fine buffing liquid, like the stuff used to buff silverware. I find that the lines I see in the "right" light when "finished" with the buffing "disappear" once the part is installed.
 

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The procedure for polishing is to start with a coarse grit sandpaper and work your way up to finer grit papers and polishes always completely removing the scratches of the previous, coarser grits. If you have lines that won't buff or polish out then you need to go to a finer grit sand paper. Six hundred grit will polish out readily with buffing compound such as rouge,but you might want to go as high as 1000 or 1500 grit to make life easier. It also helps to use these fine papers wet to help flush out any debris. Polishes such as Simichrome are very fine and won't take out any significant scratches without a lot of work so work your way up through the various grades of sandpapers before trying them.

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks again everyone for all the help and suggestions.

The wheel was polished to begin with, no coatings, etc.

The kinds of lines I am talking about are really, really, really fine.

Example-

Wiping the polished area with dry terry cloth makes new lines appear.

Polishing with the Semi-Chrome and soft old t-shirt material begins to remove them.

Get just a hair too much pressure on the cloth, I can start re-adding new lines. Literally going from lines-to almost no lines-to more but finer lines.

So I am going to mask the wood and start hand buffing. 1st with the t-shirt cloth and Semi chrome, then with a foam pad and semi chrome.

Whatever's left I'll live with. :D
 

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I have billet wheels on my car and they are very touchey on what to use. a t-shirt will scratch them. I tried some of Adams polish and was very impressed.. took the fine scratchs out by hand.. I use it with a micro fibre applicator and remover.. Summit carries it......
 

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Only way I know is to take the buffer with it, start with a sisal wheel and green then work up to a softer cotton buff, green/white compunds etc.

I would leave it after making the wood look so nice, being as using those buffs it should go with the grain or direction of the lines; almost impossible to do in your case. If it looks halfway acceptable under flourescents its gonna look great in your car.

Easy to get carried away in pursuit of perfection and all of a sudden create a whole lot more work for yourself.

Expert part wrecker here. :D


These guys have a TON of know how and willingly share it..not to mention some fairl deals on supplies.

www.tarheelparts.com

Good people over there. :beers:
 

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Fred, Semi Chrome paste has an abrasive and cotton is an abrasive. That is why you still see the fine lines. I suggest going "final" with a microfiber cloth and a liquid polish, such as Adam's Metal Polish #2, or non-abrasive paste, such as Wenol Blue. Having said that, aluminum is very soft and scratches easily, so you may never get it perfect.
 
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