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Old 01-14-2005, 09:31 AM   #1
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Polishing update

For those who have stripped and polished their units I wish to share something I have found.

I live w/i 8 miles of the Atlantic in Palm Bay Florida.

I originally stripped and polished my unit in Jan 2003. That took 200 hours of work using Kleen Strip Aircraft stripper, compounding with Nuvite "C" then polishing with Nuvite "C" and "S" The polishing was done with the Cyclo polisher.

I did the second polishing Jan 2004. I polished with Nuvite "C" and "S". That took about 30 hours.

I am doing it again now, Jan 2005. For some reason, the aluminum is more oxidized than last year and I had to compound with "C" then polish with "C" and "S".

About 1/4 of the way through, I was getting frustrated with the amount of time, work and polish it was taking. As one of the things I tried, to cut down on the amount of work, was to compound with "S". Now this is not supposed to work because "S" doesn't have the grit that "C" does. But to my great suprise it worked to perfection.

Vigorously Compounding with "S" leaves the finish in a near mirror finish with virtually no swirling. The finish gets covered with the black messy aluminum oxide. I don't compound until it goes away. I wipe with a piece of sweatshirt material and then polish with the Cyclo/sweatshirt combo. The outcome is near mirror. If there is any hint of oxidation left I either recompound or just polish by hand using a daub of polish and a microfiber towel. Then polish again with the Cyclo.

Using the "S" and the compounder leaves NO VISIBLE SWIRLS! I don't know why this works but it does. The work goes faster because I don't have to deal with the swirls left by compounding with "C".

As a finishing touch, I wash the polished area with Mineral Spirits to remove any residual aluminum oxide, then I put on a coating of Liquid Glass and polish it off with the Microfiber towel.

I got the Microfiber towels from perfectpolish.com along with all my other polishing needs. The towels WILL NOT SCRATCH no matter how hard you rub the finish. This is amazing because one of the problems of washing and waxing was the scratching of the finish that occurred. The towels have solved that problem.

Also I have purchased the Mr. Clean car washing system and I use it on the trailer to remove water spotting from rain. The Liquid Glass seems to facilitate the removal of the spotting. Washing with the Mr. Clean and using the Microfiber towel to wash then rinse with the Mr.Clean leaves no spotting. There may be some almost invisible streaking from the Mr. Clean but a quick wipe with the towel eliminates that.

I know this all sounds like a lot of work, but if you polish, you commit yourself to keeping the finish presentable. It is part of the pride of ownership.

There are as many methods as there are people who polish. For maintenance polishing, I think I have hit on a good method.

Vic Smith
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Old 01-14-2005, 10:30 AM   #2
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Sounds like you've struck on a nice method! I'll come back to this thread when I get to that stage, and try it out on mine. Thanks for posting it!
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Old 01-14-2005, 11:40 AM   #3
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How is the Liquid Glass holding up for you? I find it lasts a really long time.
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Old 01-14-2005, 11:44 AM   #4
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Vic

Good to hear from you - S does contain a little grit - when I do my annual update polishing, thats all I've ever used - I agree - it works great.

Ken
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Old 01-15-2005, 02:25 AM   #5
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Thanks for the tip...
I'M PRINTING THIS...as I expect to be reunited with my unit very shortly...
I also keep mine within 2 miles of the ocean in Va.
ciao
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Old 01-16-2005, 10:37 AM   #6
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1978 31' Excella 500
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALANSD
How is the Liquid Glass holding up for you? I find it lasts a really long time.
Alan,
I did a test area in two places on the unit last year. The first was under the front window and the second was between the door and the kitchen window. Both areas seemed to retain their lustre longer and were easier to clean. Additionally, I had used Mothers aluminum wax which was fine except it put a haze on the finish that dulled the shine a little. The Liquid Glass is well... like glass. No haze or discoloration. That's the reason I decided to use it on the whole unit. The Liquid Glass is a bit pricey at $16.00 a pint, but it works so well then I consider it a good buy.

Vic
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Old 01-16-2005, 06:35 PM   #7
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I Love it!!!!!

A product that I have used for the past 25 yrs. comes to realization! Originally it was called "Nautical Glass". Designed for boats in the water, (in my case "fresh water") to help keep the boats looking good top side and the grunge from adhearing to the bottom. Use it, you will not be disappointed.

Oscar
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Old 02-02-2005, 10:23 PM   #8
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stripper??

We just purchased a 1978 Sovereign. Lots of the clearcote is gone leaving a blotching, dull surface. I've read that there is a stripper by Napier that can be purchased @ Sherwin Wms. Any suggestions. With 31' of trailer, I hope we can get it right the first time. Thx. Windyg
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Old 02-03-2005, 09:27 AM   #9
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Windyg

I have not tried Napier but I suspect that it isn't as strong as Aircraft Stripper. I have used a Klean Strip stripper from Wal-Mart that was not as strong and did not do the job as quickly and cleanly. I tried Citristrip and it was a miserable failure. The Klean Strip Aircraft Stripper is what professional automotive painters use. It is toxic and needs to used with care. Don't get it on plastic, vinylclad or glass. I put it on with a brush and used a plastic scraper to gently lift off the residue. Keep a hose handy. You will know immediately if you get some on your skin. Water will clean it off quickly. The positive side is that you only have to strip once. Polishing, however, is forever.

I got the Aircraft Stripper from an automotive paint store. In Melbourne Fla it is Finishmasters. I don't know if that is a national company.

Vic
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Old 02-03-2005, 12:34 PM   #10
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The Napier surprised me! I've had wooden boats for many years and was accustomed to using the Aircraft stripper and the JABSCO paint/epoxy stripper. When we had the Overlander I tried a section with both and neither one really attacked the old clear coat. I too tried the citri strip and the only thing it might have removed was dirt. I ordered the Napier and applied it with a airless paint sprayer on a cloudy damp but warm day and after about 20 minutes of sitting the old clear coat came off with a power sprayer like big blue pieces of snot. I don't know how it works but it does. The ambient temp does need to be in the upper 70s or 80s in order for it to work the best (according to the AS owner that told me about it) I've got two gallons waiting until the weather warms up to do our Caravel.
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Old 02-03-2005, 12:39 PM   #11
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By the way...

I tried to find the Napier at the local paint store and they said they would have to order it. I bought it from http://www.aircraftspruce.com/ and it was called 13-01515 NAPIER STRIPPER SV-35PMA GALN $55.850. It took 3 gallons to do the Overlander.
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Old 02-05-2005, 12:28 PM   #12
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stripper (remember we're talking Airstreams)

I really appreciate the insights regarding which stripper to use. I'd heard about the Kleen Strip, but when I looked further there was a $19 haz mat charge on an order. That stopped me as we'll be doing this in our gravel driveway & we live in a wildlife/dog/grandchild area. The Napier products are environmentally safe and can be cleaned off with a hose. Sounds good for us. Now the question is - our trailer is 31'. Do you think 3 gallons will do it? Don't imagine we'll have another use for the excess once it's done. Thanks again. You folks are terrific.
Windyg
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Old 02-05-2005, 01:14 PM   #13
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ICI sells it

If there is a ICI distributer by you, Napier sells the product under their "Hydrostrip" label at ICI. Apparently the Napier product works with peroxide to lift the paint. I hope to use it this summer on my Argosy and will post results later (much later, I'm in the Northwest! )
Marc
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Old 02-06-2005, 09:38 PM   #14
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1978 31' Excella 500
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Bullet
A product that I have used for the past 25 yrs. comes to realization! Originally it was called "Nautical Glass". Designed for boats in the water, (in my case "fresh water") to help keep the boats looking good top side and the grunge from adhearing to the bottom. Use it, you will not be disappointed.

Oscar
Oscar,
The Liquid Glass works great for me too. I checked the underside of the Excella and not one barnacle could be found.

Vic
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