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Thread: oilhead valve cover refinish

  1. #1
    I'd rather be riding... spanky's Avatar
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    oilhead valve cover refinish

    Ever notice how the finish on older oilhead valve covers tends to oxidize and develop checking in the factory finish? Mine are like that but it's mainly on the upper portion of the cover, the one that's always exposed to sunlight.

    I've search through this forum and can't find a thread about cleaning/restoring this type of finish. Anyone out there have any suggestions?
    Regards,
    Randy
    '99 R1100R & '02 RT
    '06 K12s bumblebee

  2. #2
    RD'nNH&AZ rdhudson's Avatar
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    Hum, try...

    I had one that had some lower side scratches. Not gouges just paint scratched. I lightly sanded it with 400 grit wet and dry paper, shot a bit of grey primer to fill the scratches, sanded again (w/time to dry) and shot a coat of Krylon dull aluminum on it and honestly I can't tell it from the top half.
    good luck
    2002 F650GS, 1998 R1100R 75th anniversary edition, 1983 R80RT (just sold), 1959 R60 (in restoration), Honda CT90
    If you must make a mistake, make a new one each time.

  3. #3
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    autobody paint supplier =wheel paint,FWIW, most alu paints are too "metallic/sparkly" to replicate the OEM finish you mention.

  4. #4
    I'd rather be riding... spanky's Avatar
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    Well, DUH!!

    I should have looked in my own cleaning supply cabinet. Last night I went rummaging through the cabinet and found an old jar of Mother's Metal and Aluminum polish that I'd forgotten I had.

    I used a small portion on one of my oilhead valve covers and the change was immediate. The Mother's paste removed the oxidation and made the checking in the finish disappear. In fact, I couldn't get over how nice the covers look and marvel at how little "elbow grease" it took to get 'em looking nice again.
    Regards,
    Randy
    '99 R1100R & '02 RT
    '06 K12s bumblebee

  5. #5
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    Powder coat solves it nicely too.

    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

  6. #6
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    covers

    Bikerfish,
    Did you strip the paint off of them or did the powdercoater? How much with it normally cost to get them done?
    Thanks

  7. #7
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    i had the factory paint stripped, but would not recommed doing so- its not necessary, the stock stuff is on there really well, and stripping does not produce a better finish.
    cost will depend upon local pricing. i paid about $80, iirc for strip and p/c, but next time would be less (i have a new guy, who did an entire /2 frame and front end for that same amount).
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

  8. #8
    Day Dreaming ... happy wanderer's Avatar
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    The covers look awesome. Nice touch!
    MJM - BeeCeeBeemers Motorcycle Club Vancouver B.C.
    '81 R80G/S, '82 R100RS, '00 R1100RT

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