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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What do you guys do to maintain your polished aluminum valve covers?
I use Flitz and am finding that the valve cover needs to be repolished quite often. Otherwise it'll start to dull and what looks like tiny corrosion pits can get started. Flitz supposedly has some kind of anti corrosion ingredient but I'm still finding that I have to check the cover quite often.
 

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Old Opeler
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Try Silicone Car Polish!

A good quality Car polish - like Meguire's - will put a durable coat on the ali and be easy to reapply each time you polish the car! Try it on a small area first incase there is some strange reaction with the ali. Mag wheel cleaner/polish is another option.

HTH
 

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Powder clear coat after you polish and your done :D
Guyopel
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How does car polish or wheel polish handle the heat? Just wondering if there are any issues with that?

Do they sell engine temp. clear coat paint in spray cans? That coould be a solution provided there's no wax or polish ti interfere with the paint.
 

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Wow, Tim, that is a serious shine! Can anybody top that? :cool:
Hey let me give you a tip for finishing off the header wrap. As the instructions suggest, paint the wrap with header paint, lots of it, soak it in good. It hardens and bonds the wrap real good, makes it very tough and looks great! I never did like how crummy the wrap looked on most race cars, it unwound and fell off and soaked up oil and was a mess. When I did mine I vowed to find a way to make it nice, and lo and behold the tip was right there in the instruction book!! :eek:
 

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Thanks Jeff I didn't know I could do that.I will do that to the wrap as soon as I get back to work on my gt.Thanks Tim
 

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Opeler
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Mothers Mag & Aluminum Polish or Billet Polish

BDD said:
What do you guys do to maintain your polished aluminum valve covers?
I use Flitz and am finding that the valve cover needs to be repolished quite often. Otherwise it'll start to dull and what looks like tiny corrosion pits can get started. Flitz supposedly has some kind of anti corrosion ingredient but I'm still finding that I have to check the cover quite often.
Was watching car show on ESPN 2 last night. "Mr. Chemist" (Mothers) recommended their "Billet Polish" for bare aluminum.
http://www.autogeek.net/motbilmetpol.html

http://www.detailguide.com/
I polished my GT valve cover few years ago and completed with Mothers Mag & Aluminum Polish. I did not intend to achieve show finish, but a "Clean" OEM Factory appearance. Do not see any aluminum pitting on valve cover.

Also like to use "Oil eater" from Costco, as it does not attack polished aluminum (and paint too much). Oil Eater is water-based, and it can be diluted with H2O.
http://www.clarkindustrialsupply.com/oileater.htm
 

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Good tip, Lindsay. The Mother's site also suggests using their "Mag and Aluminum Polish" for valve covers, but maybe more to GET them polished rather than keeping it that way:

http://www.autogeek.net/motmagalpol.html

Mothers™ renowned metal polish is legendary in detailing and collecting circles.

The secret formula combines brilliant shine with ease of use, resulting in the sharpest looking wheels, brass, alloys, and accessories.

Mothers™ Mag and Aluminum Polish does amazing things to polishable metals. The unique cleaning and polishing characteristics make it a favorite among professional detailers, enthusiasts, and collectors. Strong enough to shine even the most horribly neglected metal; yet gentle enough to use regularly.

Mag and Aluminum Polish has a pasty texture, the consistency of cold cream. It shimmers like pearls in its container and applies with ease. Armed with a clean cloth and a little elbow grease, you’re destined for greatness with Mothers™ Mag and Aluminum Polish. Don’t stop at your wheels, use it on all your polishable metals... valve covers, header plate, exhaust, straps on induction, stainless steal, flat cast, brushed, and shot finished aluminum or magnesium. Use it to clear hazed and discolored plastic taillight and headlight lenses. Even if your exhaust isn’t chrome it will shine like it is, after you’ve used Mothers™ Mag and Aluminum Polish!

Always use Mag and Aluminum Polish while it is still wet. For easiest removal, don’t allow it to dry. Use a dry, soft towel and buff to a brilliant finish!

5 oz. jar
 

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Ok, now that you've nice and shiny, how do you keep it that way? I bought some glisten PC, http://www.por15.com/product.asp?productid=144, but have been hesitant to use it on the valve cover. I had intended to use it on my Aluminium wheels. Has anyone used this on their valve cover or wheels and what were the results? Thanks, Jarrell
 

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Jarrell, I used Glisten PC on my wheels after I spent months polishing them by hand and I wasn't impressed with it at all. Same with some of the other parts I used it on, except for my electric fan , fuel pump and filter, it peeled away after about 4-5 months. I sent them pics of the wheels and got no response. It kinda bugs me about that. One other thing, if the hardner or thinner gets just a litle bit of moisture in it, the PC turns opaque. So I would look for another clear coating product.
 

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My solution was to plate it.Just wipe off with diaper once in awhile.Only cost $80.Thanks tim
How's that cover holding up? Mine was chromed at some point by PO (I think via OTGS since everything else was bought through them, but can't be sure)

Mine looks awful, chrome coming off in droves, getting all over the engine bay. I got a spare from Gene, it had a few deep gouges that I ground off with my grinding wheel (very carefully) then I took a palm sander to it. It got to the point of being much better quite fast but getting that last mile to a nice highly polished finish is the hard part. Got an estimate from a polishing outfit, they want $120 to put a shine on it. Um, no.:sigh:
Can they be chromed and expected to stay nice? Or can a nice polish be had cheaper? I can always do it myself for next to nothing, just time, lots and lots of time.....powder coating is an option too but again cost is important, it is just for looks after all...
 

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I took a super fine wire wheel at a very high speed as to not create any swirls. Wiped it off, and then applied a high temp clear coat in a rattle can. I dont have the can anymore but i am almost positive it was made by rustoleum. This was over a year ago and it still looks wet!! I think the key to it was not waxing the cover before the clear coat.....gave the clear coat a good surface to bond to. I used this stuff on the entire motor and it still looks like the day it was put on. I would highly recommend this stuff. There should be a few pics of my motor in my album....... My only boo-boo was that I forgot to spray the oil filler cap and now its starting to rust up a lil...oh well.
HTH
Joe
 

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Opeler
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Clean and Polish

As mentioned, (super) fine wire wheel in drill motor with light pressure will clean the aluminum. Followed by, flap wheel with light pressure to remove any wire wheel marks. After using MOTHERS Mag Polish, valve cover finish still looks good after all these years. I wanted an OEM look or cleaner, but not custom polish/ chrome look.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
After this last winter I opened the hood and, sure enough, the brightly polished valve cover was once again covered with white corrosion spots.
I spent the better part of a weekend hand polishing it.

First, I used Flitz and washed that off each time with a clean rag and water. I didn't like the residue that the stuff left on. The chemicals turn the aluminum black while polishing and I wanted to remove it to stop the chemical reaction. Next, I used a fine rubbing compound and by hand returned the entire valve cover to a very bright shine, almost like chrome.

To try to preserve the surface, I cleaned it off with mineral spirits then sprayed it with clear, ceramic engine paint. It dulls the finish very slightly but should protect it from watever has been causing the corrosion.

Acetone might have been a better choice to degrease the cover. I'll have to wait and see how well the paint adheres to a highl polished surface. So far though, no trace of corrosion at all. It looks very nice.
 
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