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What shines up an aluminum trailer??

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Old 07-23-2002, 01:28 PM
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Default What shines up an aluminum trailer??

Anyone use anything on their aluminum trailers to shine them up. I saw a trailer this weekend that was the same manufacturer as mine, but it had a mirrored finish on it, really nice. I called the manufacturer and they said they don't offer different aluminum grade options. Said the owner must have done something to it. It was smooth and bright mirror like. No swirls, didn't see any dull spots around the bolts or tight areas. Couldn't find the person that owned it. Any ideas????
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Old 07-23-2002, 01:50 PM
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Sounds like the owner disassembled it and spent many hours polishing with a buffing wheel.
After all that work I'd be looking for something to coat the finish with to keep it from corroding, and I don't mean wax either. Salt water use is out too.
I'll leave mine the way it is. I have enough things to wax and polish as it is.
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Old 07-23-2002, 02:03 PM
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I looked for swirl marks and didn't see any, to me it looked like it came that way, but the manufacturer says no way!!!
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Old 07-23-2002, 02:16 PM
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If you didn't see any polishing or buffing marks, it might have been 'electropolished.' It's a dielectric process, in which the metal is dipped in an ionized solution of certain acids and then electricity is applied to the entire bath.

This can also be done by connecting large components(like trailers) to a power source and then applying the solution with a grounded brush.

This process frees up some of the aelements in aluminum alloys such as chromium, tin and zinc and brings it to the surface. This results in a mirror-like shine. It's a costly process, but has good results.

It's a similar process used to gold plate emblems and rims on some of our finer ethnically-enhanced automobiles.
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Old 07-23-2002, 03:01 PM
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I worked for a company the manufactured custom hospital equipment and some of the stainless parts they didn't polish were sent out for "reverse chrome plating".
The process is the same, drawing the chromium to the surface. And what a finish it was. Like a mirror.
I'm surprised more companies don't use it.

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.......some of our finer ethnically-enhanced automobiles.
Couldn't have said it better myself.
LOL

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Old 07-23-2002, 03:11 PM
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I just cleaned mine up this weekend. I used Aluma-brite or a aluminum cleaner from the hardware store or Boat US. Scotchbrite pad and dip into the cleaner, let it set for a few minutes and follow up with the pad. It took me 2 hours on a 35' trailer. Looks very shiny but not mirror finish. Don't waste the time or money on polishing to a mirror finish as it will not last.
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Old 07-23-2002, 03:23 PM
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Never Dull and alot of elbow grease! Looks great .....but not a mirror finish........yet!!
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Old 07-23-2002, 03:33 PM
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John, when you get done with yours, I've got a 32-footer you can go for. It's only been in salt water, oh, 10 times......
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Old 07-23-2002, 04:08 PM
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It is most likly a polished finish. If you get aluminum clean and POLISH POLISH POLISH it will end up with a finish that looks better than stainless. First you would use a flap disc and then a special polishing wheel. Very time consuming. I would geuss whoever you saw that did it is in the metal fabricating business and did it in his own shop. It also needs to be kept up with more polishing. If your interested in giving it a shot I sell the wheels. Let me know.
Another place where it is comonly seen is on street bike frames. The bikes that look like they have chromed swingarms or frames are most likely polished aluminum.
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Old 07-23-2002, 04:12 PM
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Thanks For all the responses!!! I need to find someone that goes to Raystown lake and find out who owns that thing!!
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