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What finish is on the valve covers and clutch cover?



It is not chrome, it is not just polished as the valve covers are frequently seen to be peeling.



If you are to refinish the valve covers and clutch cover what is the best method?
 

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I have polished several parts on CX/GL bikes and the first step is to use stripper and get all

the clear coat off the part. Most parts polish fairly easily. I use a 6" polishing wheel on my

bench grinder, and it needs to be a pretty powerful grinder to work well. Caswell Polishing has

the wheels and polishing compound you need. I use black compound in the beginning and finish with

brown compound for the final gloss. Polishing is not easy and is a nasty job but worth it for me.

The only problem I had was putting the black stripes back on the GL650 valve covers, finally gave

up and left them plain. Paint would not stick to the polished surface. I do not clear coat the

parts, I polish them with chrome polish, car polish or something like that.
 

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I have polished several parts on CX/GL bikes and the first step is to use stripper and get all

the clear coat off the part. Most parts polish fairly easily. I use a 6" polishing wheel on my

bench grinder, and it needs to be a pretty powerful grinder to work well. Caswell Polishing has

the wheels and polishing compound you need. I use black compound in the beginning and finish with

brown compound for the final gloss. Polishing is not easy and is a nasty job but worth it for me.

The only problem I had was putting the black stripes back on the GL650 valve covers, finally gave

up and left them plain. Paint would not stick to the polished surface. I do not clear coat the

parts, I polish them with chrome polish, car polish or something like that.




I stripped mine with chemical stripper. Then use the wire wheel, and steel wool. I wanted the black stripes to make them stock appearance.

So I painstakingly masked the entire cover, trimmed with an Exacto knife, then applied primer (you are correct; paint alone will not stick to the bare surface). Sanded smooth with wet-or-dry then applied three coats Krylon gloss black, followed by Krylon clear. Let dry for a few days then peeled off the tape. They look very good, but not excellent. It is very time consuming to get them masked perfectly for the fin stripes.
 

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What finish is on the valve covers and clutch cover?



It is not chrome, it is not just polished as the valve covers are frequently seen to be peeling.



If you are to refinish the valve covers and clutch cover what is the best method?
I think there is a certain wire brush wheel. Likely very fine. Bob Logue had told me that he knew the original wire brush or steel wool to use, but he didn't tell me which one. Maybe take a real fine wire wheel or some 00 steel wool and test it on some aluminum or a spare cover from another bike.
 

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I spent the time and effort to paint the stripes back on the valve covers of my GL650I and was not at all happy with the way it turned out. Wiped the paint off and polished the whole thing over, gonna go without stripes.

I would be careful with a wire brush on these aluminum parts, scratches are hard to polish out. I have used very fine sand paper to clean up some really rough stuff and that worked for me. Going to do the valve covers on my CX500TC and hope to have better luck with the paint stripes.
 
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