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Old 05-18-2012, 08:21 PM   #1
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1975 27' Overlander
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Scorching the skin?

1975 Overlander, I am polishing it with 3000rpm polisher, with an 8 inch jestco buff, using the grey and pink bars, finishing with the cyclo. I am getting bad spots and I think it is because I am scorching the skin when I am trying to get out stubborn oxidation, but i am not sure that is what is going on. The spots really show up with the cyclo, the polish just sticks to the spot, the only way to get it off is with mineral spirits. Getting frustrated. There will be a mirror like shine, and right beside it is a hazy,white looking spot, that I think is where I overheated the skin. Is it possible that is what I am doing? What does the aluminum look like if it does get too hot?
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Old 05-18-2012, 08:47 PM   #2
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Without pictures it's hard to tell, but I will tell you that using kerosene is just as good as mineral spirits and a whole lot cheaper. Won't dry out the surface as it stays wet longer. Good luck with your project---others will chime in here.
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Old 05-18-2012, 09:11 PM   #3
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Old 05-18-2012, 09:37 PM   #4
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I will tell you what I have been taught by the others...if your Airstream is like ours, it has the wonderful feature of 'ALCLAD' Aluminum. A sort of heavier layer of Aluminum than the newer models and can be polished quite a lot. Why not just use the cyclo in all the proceedures instead of the mega super dooper polisher? For the aggressive polishing you can use simple '3M super duty polishing compound to start with. (comes from R & E paint supply if you google it) It's in a cream liquid form and really does a great job of pulling up the BLACK. Then wipe it away next with the kerosene and then proceed to finishing out with the cyclo again. I had to use trial and error to get my formula going with the polishing. But DO get the black off before you continue.
And that 3M 'Gravel in a bottle' really does all the work for you. Nuvite is too expensive for me so I just finish out with Mothers Mag and aluminum polish.
Mothers and Gravel in a Bottle Polish/70' Airstream - YouTube
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Old 05-18-2012, 10:21 PM   #5
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I used nuvite F9/F7 with a twisted wool pad at about 2800 rpms to get out the stubborn spots.
Vintage trailer supply sells nuvite in small quantities. If nothing else works it might be worth a try.
I have not used the 3m products. You will have to keep us updated on how it works out!
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Old 05-22-2012, 02:03 PM   #6
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Add a little more polish and move just a little faster next time the spots will buff right out.
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Old 05-22-2012, 08:09 PM   #7
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So the hazy cloudy areas are spots where I have burned through the alclad?
If so, from what I have read, there is nothing I can do to get rid of it.
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Old 05-22-2012, 08:18 PM   #8
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well heck, I hope you didn't burn thru it. Sometimes I will wonder when I am going to 'break through to China' with mine...but haven't yet. They say the alclad is both on top and under too. Try working on one spot with just elbow grease and see if that will do the trick. But I have yet to hear of anyone burning through the coating. Pretty tough stuff. But when you talked about that nuclear turbine gizmo that goes almost as fast as the speed of sound, I said 'oh lord' lol.
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Old 05-22-2012, 08:42 PM   #9
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I doubt you've burned thru, not saying it isn't possible but you'd see a change in the color of the metal, not cloudiness. I think that you are "burning" polish residue on to the metal. I think that if you go over it again, moving the polisher CONSTANTLY it'll buff out. Also mineral spirits can leave cloudiness residue. Vintage trailer supply has polishing tips on their website....
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Old 05-22-2012, 08:51 PM   #10
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I have ordered two new buffs from jestco, as the two that I am using are pretty badly gunked up. I rake them often, but have noticed they aren't working like they did when they were fresh. The part about burning polish residue makes sense. When I get the new buffs, I will let you know how I make out.
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Old 06-17-2012, 07:46 PM   #11
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Update

Well, I am pretty much finished. Sad to report that I have burned through the alclad in several places. The new buffs and rake did make a difference, but I still managed to burn through in a few spots. I think it was more the rake not cleaning the buffs well enough. I had worn the teeth right off the first rake.
Now I am just finishing up the tight places with the drill and by hand. Overall I am pretty disappointed with the results. Too bad because I worked long and hard at it. Probably just me not knowing how to do it properly, but I wonder if the grey bar and buffer isn't too aggressive. The good spots turned out like a mirror, but the places I burnt through the alclad look like crap.
Anyway, we are camping and loving it.
Carry on.
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Old 06-20-2012, 11:14 AM   #12
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Pictures

How about some pictures of the finished job.

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