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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Do IT Yourself Polishing

For all that are interested I am going to start posting the steps and process that took place in the removing of scratches and polishing of my 2005 Triumph Thruxton 900. This will help those whom have more time than money.

What I started with after going down on Pete Gravel

Equipment needed for this project
-Brown Buffing Compound
-White Aluminum Buffing Compound
-A good Stripper ( I used Zip-Strip Premium Paint & Finish Remover )
-Various Stages of Wet/Dry Sandpaper 400, 600, 800 than 1000 grit wet sandpaper.
-Bucket of water
-Bench Buffer/Grinder ( I picked mine up from Harbor Freight)
-You will Need a Cutting Pad and a finishing pad for the buffer
-A set of Wrenches or hand tools to take everything apart with.
-New Gaskets from your dealer to reassemble after project is completed
-Service manual for the Motorcycle.(Torque Specs and proper assembly and dis-assembly instructions)
-A good polish and sealer for maintaining (I use Wizards Metal Polish and Shine Master)

First step is to take everything apart and properly cover internal components for protection.

Next is to Strip the Clear Coat from factory off of the parts. I didn't feel the least bit bad about doing this because I was noticing some Oxidation starting in a couple of small spots.


Once all is stripped then the Wet sanding process can begin
Start with heavy grit and work your way up to the finer grit paper

After Scratches are smoothed out and have worked your way up to the finest (1000) grit paper you need to have your bench buffer on h

There are two buffing wheels you should have on hand one is called a cutting wheel (More tightly sewn), which you use with more aggressive buffing compound.

and. I bought mine at Harbor Freight.

The Second Wheel is a finishing wheel (Loosely put together) which is used with a finishing compound.

This is when you really get to see results of your labor. I advise to put cardboard down on the ground in the area that you are working and wear gloves. I had a piece pulled from my hands to end up flying into the ground, so to protect your project take some precautions and wear safety glasses through this process or face shield.

Of course start with the cutting wheel installed on the buffer then work your way to finishing wheel.

Yeah, I like my Bling, Bling...

After everything is polished then you can start to put the Project back together again with new gaskets and torque everything to factory specifications.

I also bought a skid plate that was never offered in a chromed or polished state. They also officially are for a Triumph Scrambler, but that shares the Same frame as my Triumph Thruxton 900. Looks great and offers a little extra reassurance from road debris.

Thank you for visiting!!!


  1. Hi Nice Job. Did you lacker after if not how does it stand up how much maintenance polishing is needed to keep it looking good

    Regards Carl

    1. Sorry I didn't see this sooner. I run bare metal with Various polishes, but most of the time I use Wizards Polish and a variable speed car buffer. Very easy upkeep.

  2. I like that you put patience as the number one equipment needed for this project. This is very important when handling this project because your first attempt at polishing the scratches might not yield a good result. It will require your extreme tolerance and endurance so you can stay with the project until it produces the sparking result that you want. However, the outcome also depends on the polishing wheels and tools that you use.

    1. Scratches need to be hand sanded out completely before taking to the Buffer. Start with the rougher grit sand paper to remove the scraches then use the finer grit sand paper to remove the scratches from the rougher paper. Once you have gotten to the finest paper then your ready for the bench buffer.

  3. Wow, that looks great. I thought they were painted on the original and I didn't know they could be polished.

    1. Originally they were painted. Once stripped you can polish the aluminum to a shine.

  4. What did you use to re glue the triumph sticker back on?

    1. 3m Molding tape from body shop supply

  5. My husband is going to be so happy that I found this. He has been complaining lately how his bike has been looking dull. I know he's going to want to make it look nice for summer.

  6. I have been wanting to learn more and more about aluminum polishing. It is amazing to see these kinds of things and really just enjoy these things. It is really cool and amazing looking. You did a really great job polishing that aluminum on your bike. It looks really amazing. Great work man and keep up things like that.
    Jak Manson |

    1. Thanks for the positive feed back. It's a lot of work but after your done, its worth it.

  7. I've been trying to do this same polishing on a few other projects I've been doing and was wondering what kind of polish would be good to use? My friend suggested getting one that he used from Busch Enterprises (, but I wanted to get more opinions before actually choosing one. Which would you suggest to use? I'm polishing an aluminum hood ornament and grill for my mom's truck, if you want to know what I'd be using it for.

  8. I appreciate you sharing this info! I've been looking for some insights on what to look for in quality aluminum polish, and this helped a ton. I'm excited to go find some and start using it on stuff that my parents own.

  9. That's great. Now its looking like new. really Aluminum polish works very good for polishing any aluminum items.

  10. Bike Metal Polishing informations are very nice to read . Thanks for sharing this post.

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