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Go Back   Madabout Kitcars Forum > Mad Build Area > Marlin Sportster, Cabrio, Berlinetta and Roadster builds

Marlin Sportster, Cabrio, Berlinetta and Roadster builds Enthused or Confused about your vintage Marlin build? Ask away here or show off your build.

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  #1  
Old 12th June 2009, 13:41
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MartinClan MartinClan is offline
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Default Polishing yer bonnets....

I have been thinking about polishing the bonnets rather than painting. The main enemy of ally is salt and as I don't intend to use the car over the winter this shouldn't be a problem.

Has anyone else done/considered this? You see some of the "seven" style cars with polished bonnets although they may be stainless - I am not sure.

I think a polished bonnet would look good especially if combined with a dark paint elsewhere. Also it would be less to get painted! (and hence cheaper...)

Robin
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  #2  
Old 12th June 2009, 13:50
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Robin

You could consider laquer/varnishing it to protect the aluminium?

Mike
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  #3  
Old 12th June 2009, 13:56
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Robin

You could consider laquer/varnishing it to protect the aluminium?

Mike
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Old 12th June 2009, 16:22
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Hi Robin
Yes, I'm thinking of doing the same. Someone also suggested laquer to me, will try and see if he has any more details...
Tim
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  #5  
Old 12th June 2009, 16:27
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A guy that makes machine turned ally dashboards once told me that the best way to protect polished ally was just a wax polish. Of course it has to be done regularly.

What I am more concerned about at the moment is how you get that polished finish to start with. My bonnet tops have some quite deep scratches. And then, once they are out, how do you get that even finish with all areas having the same level of "shine"?

Robin
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  #6  
Old 21st August 2009, 13:11
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Well - I had a play last night with the litle polishing kit I bought to do the grill and windscreen escutchens. The ally polishes very easily and even the deep scratches seem to come out after a bit of pursuasion. So it looks like polished bonnets and a DIY paint job it is....

Robin
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  #7  
Old 31st August 2009, 18:56
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Default You live and learn....

I went to the Knebworth Classic Car show today. Quite busy once the weather had cheered up and lots of interest in the Sportster.

One guy I met was building an E30 based "Special" from scratch - with a hand formed ally body - from the pictures he showed me it looked a bit like the Cabrio. But - to cut a long story short - he gave me a tip for finishing/polishing ally.

Get rid of all the major scratches using 120 grade wet and dry. Then use a Scotch Pad (the sort you use for washing up) with plenty of WD40 as a lubricant. I tried it on a test patch and it works great. It doesn't give you a mirror finish (which I didn't want anyway) - but a semi matt look in which you can just see the marks from the pad if you look close. Anyway I shall have a go with the top bonnets in the next few weeks and I will post up some pictures when it's done.

Robin
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Old 31st August 2009, 19:06
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Funnily enough I just used a scotch pad on my steering wheel. I'd stuck a crash pad on it using Evostic for IVA and peeled it off today. Spent a long time scraping the glue off, then finished off with the scotch pad. Came up really nice.

I'v also made some bonnet stays following GOO's pictures.
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  #9  
Old 25th February 2010, 13:35
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I have just found some more info about polishing car body panels - in this case a vintage Rolls Royce.

http://www.irinfo.com/polish/html/polish.html

I am making the first attempt at my top bonnets this weekend - albeit not using this guys method.

Robin
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  #10  
Old 25th February 2010, 14:19
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Although the polished bonnet looks excellent, have you thought of the sun reflecting in your eyes while driving, (on the three days it does shine) how about a matt black area?
MADMAN
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  #11  
Old 25th February 2010, 21:44
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My guy suggested anodising the ali bonnet...
Tim
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  #12  
Old 26th February 2010, 08:28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timbo View Post
My guy suggested anodising the ali bonnet...
Tim
Hmmm. What sort of finish does that give? I thought anodised ally had that matt grey look. Perhaps there are various finishes available?

I guess though, even if it was annodised, you would still have to polish it first?

Robin
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Old 26th February 2010, 09:35
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I'm not sure about whether you would need to polish it first. I think you can choose what colour you anodise it in, the finish is a bit like the sort of shine you get on eg iPODs apparently, and a lot easier to maintain the finish afterwards although I haven't researched it enough yet...
Tim
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Old 26th February 2010, 10:18
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What colours are out there for anodising? Only ones I've seen the look good are black and silver. The blue not nice and niether is the red. Not seen other colours
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  #15  
Old 6th March 2010, 17:46
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Bother (or words to that effect) Tried to polish one of the bonnets today and it was a total failure. I am not sure why - I used the same method that I had on a test piece a few weeks ago but all I could get was a smeary mess. I don't know if it was the temperature - or perhaps the ally is different - or perhaps I am just cak handed today...

Now it's a toss up between giving up on that or buying a proper orbital polishing tool like they use to compound paint. Hmm...

Robin

PS. Her indoors has now expressed the opinion that I should get the car professionally finished - she can't stand me grumping around any more when things don't go quite according to plan. I have to say there is now a certain attraction to that - specially as the spring is on the way.

Last edited by MartinClan; 6th March 2010 at 17:47.. Reason: PS added
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Old 6th March 2010, 17:54
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Damn.

Does it look really bad? Does the smeary mess clean off with some solvent? Maybe it's just over cooked polish...

I'm thinking of having my side pipes polished professionally - I have the polishing mops I got from frosts for the drill, but I don't think I'd get an even finish over the full length of the pipe. I think it, like painting, is more of an art than a science.
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  #17  
Old 6th March 2010, 17:59
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Mess clears off ok but just leaves a very patchy finish behind. As you say - its probably more of an art than a science. It's doubly annoying because I got right on the test sample, so I know it's do-able...

Have you come down from cloud nine yet? I remember that feeling and it took me two goes!

Robin
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  #18  
Old 6th March 2010, 21:31
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Default Polishing stainless

Quote:
Originally Posted by GreatOldOne View Post
Damn.

Does it look really bad? Does the smeary mess clean off with some solvent? Maybe it's just over cooked polish...

I'm thinking of having my side pipes polished professionally - I have the polishing mops I got from frosts for the drill, but I don't think I'd get an even finish over the full length of the pipe. I think it, like painting, is more of an art than a science.
Goo

You can polish stainless yourself and make a professional finish. I contacted a company selling polishing kits and they advised using lime powder to finish the polish - and they're right it made all the difference by taking the smear away. Ok I was only polishing my radiator grill. But if you had seen it straight after being welded: even my local friendly stainless fabricator shop couldn't believe how good it looked.Have a look at my flickr site.
If you are interested I'm sure I can find the company's details: you can do it - anyone who can get a first time pass can do anything!!!
I don't know about polishing aluminium ...........
Mike
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Old 6th March 2010, 22:43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartinClan View Post
Have you come down from cloud nine yet? I remember that feeling and it took me two goes!
No - took the IAC into town today to a high end print shop so I could make some nice copies for framing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike View Post
Goo
You can polish stainless yourself and make a professional finish. I contacted a company selling polishing kits and they advised using lime powder to finish the polish - and they're right it made all the difference by taking the smear away.
Good to know - I've polish small stainless bits already (the door plates & rear light trims), and they've come out OK - I just didn't know whether I could achieve the same results on a much larger piece. I have some lime powder somewhere, as it came with my polishing kit.
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