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Old 08-12-2005, 01:29 PM   #1
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Polishing a 94

Started on the polishing of my 94 25' Classic. I begain by stripping the clear coat. This was a major job becaues I think it had been resprayed sometime in the past because of the build-up of clear coat in certain areas. Removing the blue vinyl stripe around the trailer was also difficult. The remaing glue residue could not be removed with paint stripper,glue and decal remover,laquer thinner, goof off, goo gone or anything else that I tried. I finally had to sand it off using 800 grit and a random orbit sander. I then compounded that area with Nuvite F9, then G6 and finally F7. Major work!! If anyone knows what will remove the glue from these decals please post your solution. I've had no prior experence polishing aluminum but from reading the polishing posts, most recommend starting with Nuvite F7, but I found that this just wouldn,t remove all of the small cloudy marks in the aluminum. The Nuvite G6 seems to be a better polish to start with, although it leaves more pronounced swirl marks. Someone had posted that they know of people who are polishining a trailer in a week. I'd have to say that I would have to see that to believe it. Polishing is not for the faint of heart. To truly get a mirror finish takes a tremendous amount of work.
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Old 08-12-2005, 02:00 PM   #2
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1967 26' Overlander
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Check this thread for insight if you have not already.

The filtered Heineken solvent mentioned in post 26 was rather amusing.


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Old 08-12-2005, 02:17 PM   #3
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Interesting thread Tom. I believe that sanding is the only way to get rid of all the glue residue. When the decal is stripped off there is a grey glue reside left. You can get that off with stripper and a plastic putty knife. What's left is a very clear shadow of white glue that nothing takes off. If you try to polish over this area in hopes that it will come off with the compounding, the aluminum around it starts to shine but it's still there. After two days of trying most everything I resorted to sanding it off. I'm not putting a sripe back on unless it's just a pinstripe like the new Classics.If your through with most everything to do on your Airstream, try polishing. It'll keep you busy for awhile. It's also lots of fun. Someone said the new Airstreams won't take a mirror shine but I find that to be not true. They shine up pretty nice if you work at it. I'm just compounding, I haven't gotten to the Cyclo yet.
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Old 08-12-2005, 03:24 PM   #4
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1984 34' Excella
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My husband just spent over a week removing the blue tape from our '84 34' excella. Like you, he was totally frustrated at chemicals available to do the job. Finally, 8 applications of airplane stripper took the sticker and adhesive off. We were left with the white ghost image of the tape however but that's what 21 years in the sun will do. Looking forward to hearing how your polish job comes out. Do you have any pictures?
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Old 08-18-2005, 12:58 AM   #5
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1962 19' Globetrotter
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I am finding that a good poilsh job is more of an "artform" than just a lot of hard work, Every piece of alminum can react differently.I Have had several different results from the same compound. But after 2 weeks things are looking up. I still have some splotches to think about for next year. Time to quit working on the thing a go enjoy it.
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