Polishing Aluminum Intake

Does anyone have some experience in polishing cast aluminum intake manifolds?  I have been polishing one and while it’s come out decent, I feel as if it’s not as good as it could be.  Thus I’m wondering if the techniques &/or products I’ve used may be the issue. 


  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 1,949Senior Contributor
    Eastwood sells kits for that type of work.
  • 40indianssgmailcom40indianssgmailcom Posts: 224Senior Contributor
    I polished some stainless parts for my 1940 Indian sport scout and I thought they were pretty good so I gave them to my friend who was a professional to make show quality.  His comment was to not try to help the next time.  No doubt that he took them to another level.  He was a good friend until his death
  • Lklemm1Lklemm1 Posts: 75Member
    I agree the Eastwood polishing kit has everything you need and it works great. All you need is a cordless drill and time. 
  • charles4dcharles4d Posts: 554Expert Adviser
    Eastwood have very good products 
  • BigSkyBigSky Posts: 576Senior Contributor
    Thanks guys.  I know Eastwood very well & I agree they have good products. 
  • RichardDRichardD Posts: 693Member
    Soda blast before polishing !!
  • airbrushguyairbrushguy Posts: 354Member
    Process is similar to color sanding a paint job, sand in graduating grits until you are up to at least 1500 or so (the finer the better). Then instead of compounds, use a polishing wheel and the rouges appropriate for the metal you're using.
    Not very easy to achieve superior results if you've never done before.
  • KdancyKdancy Posts: 2,471Senior Contributor
    Its a lot of work to do it right. I've done several without a buffer, but don't think I would do another without one. And, it does make a mess as compound is thrown every where !
  • BigSkyBigSky Posts: 576Senior Contributor
    It was definitely a lot of work & I learned a lot along the way.  It was done only with the drill and some of the buffing wheels & rouge but I agree, having a bench style buffing setup would definitely be the way to go.  I think it will look pretty good once installed but it will definitely make my carb look like it needs the attention now!  

  • 40indianssgmailcom40indianssgmailcom Posts: 224Senior Contributor
    Unfortunately you are correct, the carb looks a bit shabby.  Nice work on the manifold.  It takes patience and perserverance
  • VicTor ZVicTor Z Posts: 697Senior Contributor
    The Beauty and the BEAST!
  • Fred_PitzFred_Pitz Posts: 35Member
    Nice job!
    A suggestion for maintenance.  Coat it with Cerakote cleat ceramic gun coating.
    I had to strip all the aluminum trim on my 80 Malibu M 80 and re-polish it.
    I haven't touched in over 3 years and it looks the same as it did when the polisher finished.  It is an air dry coating that is applied with a detail gun and is good to  over 500 degres.
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