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Do I need some sort of cleaner when I'm polishing chrome/stainless with steel wool? Like brasso or turtle wax?
 

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I never use anything except 0000 steel wool. Afterwards I polish it.
 

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I'd try it without the steel wool first.....unless it's real bad. Brasso or any paste shiner should do quite well.....
 

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4/0000 steel wool and wenol or semi chrome polish---works wonders---mask around your window stainless and do it on the car---great for alum wheels---i've actually used it carefully on badly waterspotted glass
wenol/semichrome will resore your plastic stuff too
doctordesoto
 

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Would you use wenol or semichrome to polish the tail light lenses? Mine look great cept you can see a little dirt or fading where the grills were.
 

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yes---but to do a good job , the covering grill needs to come off---don't try to do anything but washing the reflector (rough) inside
doctordesoto
 

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Sort of on topic to the lights, some years ago, I was given a roll of heavy mylar to be placed inside the reflector housings of the tail lights.

Any issues that can be seen from doing so?
I'm not sure what the heat tolerance is for that stuff but I'll test it also.
 

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Thanks Doc, I do have the grill portion off as I want to repaint the black. Chrome looks real good to me as is.
 

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A couple of tips for painting the tail light grilles: one way to do it is to clean them thoroughly, then spray paint them without taping the ribs off, only at the license plate lenses. Once the paint is dry, carefully rub the black paint off of each rib with 0000 steel wool, and take the tape off near the license plate lights. The other way is to tape off the area near the license plate lights, and use pinstriping (or masking tape cut into small strips) to mask them off before painting. The third way, which I have not personally tried, was to use the first method I described, but use a rag wetted with brake fluid to carefully wipe off the paint on the ribs.
 

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I really don't like the sound of painting everything then wiping it off but I really don't want the little edge that masking tape leaves either sooo. I think I will paint it all then carefully use steel wool? Question here though, would you strip the old black off or just lightly scuff it up?
 

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When I am detailing some thing like this I use Dupont self etching primer , and before it drys I start the painting . This way the paint will actually bond better with the wet primer and testing has shown it holds up really well . I figure I have one good layer rather then two layers with sanding in between .

On larger parts I will primer over the etching while it is wet , sand and re prime again . I do this with Krylon on all my suspension stuff.
 

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Why not use SEM Trim Black (which is self-etching) for a one shot treatment? I spray without masking and then carefully wipe off the areas I want chrome with lacquer thinner.
 

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When I did my 70 tail lights I took a q tip but some Vaseline and rubbed the chrome areas. Painted the black allowed to dry some, took a clean polishing towel with tip of my finger rubbed along the chrome. Paint came right off and the black looked great. Also spraying mostly from the backside(lens side). Also how I did the front grill.
 

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Bob I have the SEM Black, Was just wondering if to strip the old paint or just ruff it up a little.
 

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Well for mine I just sanded it down. Got whatever pits down and the old black off. Not all of it. Then several light coats.
 
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