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Old 10-12-2010, 01:14 PM   #1
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Polishing + Baking soda = SHAZAM!

I've stripped the clear coat off and got down to polishing but wasn't seeing the results I wanted to. I've read so many opinions on how to polish and thought I'd have it down by now. But I've been frustrated and overworked with the task. Last night I had a eureka moment when I was cleaning some jewelry with baking soda and thought why not?! I searched it and there had been a post somewhere saying it work well to neutralize the aluminium after stripping. I tried it this morning and BLAMO, it work great at evening the surface and removing small scratches. In the photo you can see the difference- The top is done with the baking soda 1.5 hrs and the bottom is 8 hrs of compound buffing.
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Old 10-12-2010, 01:18 PM   #2
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Looks really good. How did you apply the baking soda, by hand or buffer?
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Old 10-12-2010, 01:25 PM   #3
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I made a paste with 3 part baking soda- 1 part water and applying it on by hand using more force and baking soda on the scratches and dull areas. Then I went over it with an reg auto buffer but misted the now dry baking soda with water to even it out.
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Old 10-12-2010, 01:54 PM   #4
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wish i knew how to edit to correct spelling in the post title.
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Old 10-12-2010, 02:16 PM   #5
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wish i knew how to edit to correct spelling in the post title.
you can't. But I can.

Now, bring the trailer to a neu rally, and show us in person.
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Old 10-12-2010, 02:33 PM   #6
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Oh thanks, you're a gem! It'll be a while before this silver hits the pavement, but when it's ready, I'll be there! I've named it 'PlushOrama' and you won't be able to miss it
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:03 PM   #7
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you will not like my honesty... I looked at that photo. Blew it up, and really studied it. The compounded part looks 8x better. Just being honest. Maybe if you spend 8 hours with the paste, it will look 8 times better than the compounded area. It might also turn out that the abrasive nature of the baking soda will never give you a mirror finish.

This is just my opinion. I am sure it will met with some displeasure. I apologize it it does. I am just trying to be honest with you. Polishing is not easy.
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:13 PM   #8
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I agree with 62overlander - The bottom compounded section is much better than the top. Now try a cyclo polisher with Nuvite S on both areas and compare the results. Just my thought....Tim
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:33 PM   #9
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Yes the top is foggy and the bottom is looking correct. And I am not apologizing --it just looks better on the bottom. How bout posting some more pictures.
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Old 10-12-2010, 08:22 PM   #10
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i hear you

I do intend on polishing, sorry, a wee bit misleading the way I've written the first post. This is to prep the aluminium so hopefully when I get down to polishing it'll actually look decent. I'm not happy with my work on the lower part, it's blotchy and cloudy, I should expect better results for the amount of time I slaved.

To be honest, I'm not so interested in getting a bitch'n mirror finish, I'd be happy with an all over, even, satin gloss.

I wouldn't post here if I didn't need/want honest opinions, so I'm grateful for the advice given. I need it. Total newbie, I've never even worked on cars (actually I did replace a radiator in my 240 z 25 yrs ago) I'm in way over my head and everyone around me thinks I'll fail so I have to prove them wrong So far so good. Thx again and I will continue to post my progress.
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Old 10-12-2010, 08:28 PM   #11
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also, I was trying to find the link from a polishing company that I came across when searching "baking soda for polishing airstream' and they suggested to use the baking soda to neutralize the aluminum after using stripper solution. if I come across it again I'll post it here.
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Old 10-12-2010, 08:30 PM   #12
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I am using the Nuvite system and advised technique as well as not polishing in direct sunlight.
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Old 10-12-2010, 11:44 PM   #13
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...Last night I had a eureka moment when I was cleaning some jewelry with baking soda and thought why not?! I searched it and there had been a post somewhere saying it work well to neutralize the aluminium after stripping...
polishing jewelry with sodium bicarb is not wise, it will ABRADE the soft metals and stones.

DEtarnishing jewelry (especially silver) is a good thing,

but this is simply a chemical reaction that converts surface metal back to the UNtarnished state,

it's not a true cleaning unless a brush or u/s gizmo is used.

a water/bicarb solution with a bit of aluminum foil can be used as a DIP.

the tarnished silver will DEtarnish in the solution (and the aluminum foil will darken)
_______

IF an acid wash has been used on the stream a solution of bicarb/water can be used to neutralize the acid.

again it is simply a chemical reaction, no buffy/rubbing is required,

just wipe on rinse off (about 5-6 cups of water PER cup of bicarb)

using sodium bicarb to mechanically polish doesn't make much sense...

what "grit" is the bicarb?

there is an urban myth/internet viral post about some guy selling baking soda/water for polishing at 20$ a bottle in hiway rest stops...

the story includes a magical polishing demo and then the guy DRINKS some of the stuff to show it is 'safe'...



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Old 10-13-2010, 07:11 AM   #14
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You will be ok deelind...if you want opinions you will certainly get them here! Your 'Stream' is - or should be made out of (what they call) 'Alclad' type aluminum. And because of the ages of our Airstreams, we got lucky and fell into that group. Alclad is a much heavier application of the aluminum onto itself, making a thicker coating.
The newer Airstreams DO NOT have this. Ours and yours can produce a fantastic shine (almost like mercury) and you should enjoy the in's and out's of learning while you experiment with different things. And brother you are not alone when you say it wears you out polishing. But keep in mind it is a great upper body work out and you are going to bust muscles you never knew you had. I have my own formula way of polishing using kerosene and two other basic tools.
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