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polishing cast/raised letters

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  • polishing cast/raised letters

    Hey everyone I have been doing metal polishing for a few months now. It has all been kind of trial and error. But now that I found your forum I can rest a little easier. I have a 240z valve cover I am currently working on. My question is what is the best way to do the letters and around the letters. The valve cover is aluminum and I don't want melt the edges of the letters. I have tried a number of very small point dremel tips but they are always still to wide once the tips flies off on em. I even tried the rubber tips but the just seem to loose their point after a few seconds. Someone please help!!

  • #2
    I am somewhat familiar with your valve cover. I had a 240Z engine that I was going to put in a car i designed and began to build. But I suddenly got married and moved to the city.

    I am not sure what you want to accomplish. Do you want to polish the tops and the sides of the letters, or just the tops? And the grooves in between? What do you want to do with them?

    One thing—a Dremel is not nearly enough tool for the job. You could do it with something like the 1/3 hp Foredom tool, but an air die grinder would be better. Or if you have to go electric, an electric polisher such as this

    with an attachment from Caswell to mount a buffing wheel:



    • #3
      Hey Richard,
      Thank you for your response. I want to mirror like the rest of the valve cover. Sides, top, cracks. I have a polisher like you showed but not for a knit polish wheel. It is set up to use the flat pads. I only use that for car paint usually. I have a 3500 rpm Eastwood buff motor with different wheels and compounds. What kind of bits would you use for the fine detail work? I going to grab an air drill or die grinder today.


      • #4
        I think, given the nature of the work you want to do on that valve cover, that greaseless compounds would be your best bet to begin with on a hard sewn cotton buffing wheel. Here is the kit Caswell sells:

        Or you can buy them individually.

        The greaseless compounds accomplish what sandpaper does. Then you would move to a regular buffing compound. Probably emery first and the a white finishing compound.

        Use the search function here to find detailed discussions about how to use greaseless compounds.



        • #5
          I have and do all that already. I even got a couple air powered die grinders today. Results were slightly better than dremel. Still not sure how to do the letters without melting their edges. I would like uniform shine to the letters and around them. Is there some super fine edge tool i don't know about maybe? I tried using the dremel bits in the die grinder today. the small loose cloth ones kind of get stuff outa the cracks but they dont grab much compund.


          • #6
            Why is polishing cast letters on this like the super secret technique? I can never find anyone talking about it.


            • #7
              Felt bobs seem to be a good way. In your new die grinder at a reasonably slow speed.