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  1. #1
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    Let's see your raw aluminium!

    I,m not sure on the best place to post this, so i'll try here. I need some convincing to strip my paint and go with the raw aluminium look. It's an old Gary Fisher Paragon and the

    finish is pretty beat-up. Looking to freshing it up on the cheap. I've done alot of searching and see quite a few of you have tried it. Just wanted to see how everyone's turned out.

    Brushed, Polished, clear coated or not. Post them up!

  2. #2
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    Nobody wants to show off their baby? You put all that hard work into it, let everyone see why it was so worth it!

  3. #3
    The White Jeff W
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    Here's a Yeti 575 polished to a mirror finish. Not my bike.

    http://www.talonclub.com/forum/showthread.php?t=17166

  4. #4
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    Wow!!

    Now that's shinny! Maybe alittle more polished than what I think I would be after, but it looks great. Any more?

  5. #5
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    i dont like the looks of polished bikes at all

  6. #6
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    OK, I'll bite. Here's a pic of old GT bike that I wish I held on to. Ballburnished raw frame.

    <img src="http://img505.imageshack.us/img505/8049/92d5op7.jpg" alt="Image Hosted by ImageShack.us"/><br/>Shot at 2008-01-14

    Here is a shot of my current beater. Brushed 7075 aluminum. An old 1997 Trek 8000zx


    Shot at 2009-08-19

    Love that high polished look. Might have to try it over the winter on another frame I have kicking around.

  7. #7
    BH1
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    My old raw P.1 frame. I sold it a while ago.

    Aircraft strip and a power washer did the trick.



  8. #8
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    Nice P. 1

    BH1, thats more of the look i'm after. What did you use to get that brushed look like that?

    Thanks for the pictures everyone, I'd still like to see some more.

  9. #9
    maker of trail
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    You should do a search, there was a massive thread in the DH/FR section on how to strip your frame with heaps of pictures!

  10. #10
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    here is my work in process....I stripped it down to give it a raw look now I'm polishing it up. This is just the first polishing, may do three or four more times. let me know what ya think.....


    this was before I tore it down
    How's that dirt taste?

  11. #11
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    ^^ Very nice. Post a picture once it is done. Can't wait to see it completed

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghughes.hesinc
    BH1, thats more of the look i'm after. What did you use to get that brushed look like that?

    Thanks for the pictures everyone, I'd still like to see some more.
    I would think some sand paper would give you a nice brushed look. Just a light scuff is all that's necessary. That's my experience from working with aluminum, not bike frames though.

  13. #13
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    [QUOTE=yakuzafreerider]here is my work in process....I stripped it down to give it a raw look now I'm polishing it up. This is just the first polishing, may do three or four more times. let me know what ya think.....


    I think that it looks awsome just like that! What have you done to get to that point? Good luck with the finishing polishes, it should shine up great if your already there with just one polishing. I'd love to see the finished product.

  14. #14
    maker of trail
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    it just popped up so here you are, 2 pages of raw finish!

    Paint stripping/works finish

    Oh and to give that brushed look use coarse steel wool rather than sand paper!

  15. #15
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    Scotchbrite is what I use to keep my brushed aluminum looking like new

  16. #16
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    Here's my 2003 Epic
    Attached Images Attached Images

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmanuel09
    Here's my 2003 Epic

    Sweet looking Epic! What was your proceedure?

  18. #18
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    [QUOTE=ghughes.hesinc]
    Quote Originally Posted by yakuzafreerider
    here is my work in process....I stripped it down to give it a raw look now I'm polishing it up. This is just the first polishing, may do three or four more times. let me know what ya think.....


    I think that it looks awsome just like that! What have you done to get to that point? Good luck with the finishing polishes, it should shine up great if your already there with just one polishing. I'd love to see the finished product.
    well at that point, 3 cans of aircrat stripper, wire brushed everything, steel wool. As of today I sanded it with 800, and 1000 grit sand paper (wet sanded) and polished it 4 times. Its not a mirror finish but pretty darn close. I don't wanna get to crazy with it yet just want it to look good and be ready for powder coating if this doesnt grow on me first LOL hunters will definatley see me or be blinded! I'll post pictures tomorrow....
    How's that dirt taste?

  19. #19
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    Thanks - A buddy of mind did everything. Jasco Paint Remover, lightly sanding, and mothers polish.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmanuel09
    Thanks - A buddy of mind did everything. Jasco Paint Remover, lightly sanding, and mothers polish.
    Mother mag and aluminum polish is what I used....awesome stuff.
    How's that dirt taste?

  21. #21
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    Yes Yes Awesome stuff - goes a long way...

  22. #22
    BH1
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghughes.hesinc
    BH1, thats more of the look i'm after. What did you use to get that brushed look like that?

    Thanks for the pictures everyone, I'd still like to see some more.
    I used a pressure washer to literally blow the paint off the frame after it had bubbled up... So some of the swirls you see are from the pressure washer, but after that I used a fine-grit sandpaper to smooth out the finish and give it a slightly scuffed/polished look. After about a month of riding and no cleaning it began to oxidize and darken around the welds similar to the raw Intense frames...

  23. #23
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    well here it is semi-back together. Thinking of stripping and polishing my front wheel and doing the rear in black. Its gonna look so pimpin when finished!
    How's that dirt taste?

  24. #24
    You know my steez...
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    Not a frame, but it is raw (and polished)

    custom I9's
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Let's see your raw aluminium!-cimg0820.jpg  

    I'm unique, just like everyone else....

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by BunnV
    custom I9's
    Very nice...thats what I'm hoping to do...dig the orange spokes!
    How's that dirt taste?

  26. #26
    You know my steez...
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    Quote Originally Posted by yakuzafreerider
    Very nice...thats what I'm hoping to do...dig the orange spokes!
    Thanks!
    I'm unique, just like everyone else....

  27. #27
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    Very Very Nice Guys. BunnV - I am totally digging the wheels. How do you like the windcutters? I've been researching those and just wonder how they will do with Saint M810's which is my current front caliper.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmanuel09
    Very Very Nice Guys. BunnV - I am totally digging the wheels. How do you like the windcutters? I've been researching those and just wonder how they will do with Saint M810's which is my current front caliper.
    Thanks for the compliment on the wheels!

    The Wind Cutters totally exceeded my expectations! I bought them based on their claimed weight of 92 grams. One weighed exactly 92 grams on my scale, the other 93 grams.

    I have Hayes Stroker Gram calipers and was using the stock Hayes V6 (?) 160mm rotors. The stopping power of the Alligators vs. the V6's is no comparison! I have almost TOO much bite now with the Wind Cutters. They didn't howl, or screech but they do make a different kind of sound (kind of a metallic rub) than the more conventional rotors they replaced.

    On my first ride with them I found myself over braking and skidding (bad!) especially on the rear, and I don't even use the rear hard. Luckily the Strokers have great modulation and I was able to get a better feel for them over the course of the ride.

    They were only $15 each which is really inexpensive considering their weight and apparent quality. I love them!
    I'm unique, just like everyone else....

  29. #29
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    Man, polished alum is one of the sexiest finishes, imho. I wish mfg would have more faith in the material and offer more polished frame options. Thanks everyone for posting your polished rides!

  30. #30
    Nice day for a ride..... Moderator
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    I've done a few strip and polish jobs myself on some of my GT frames. Used a whole lot of chemical stripper, steel wool, then many hours with a rag and jar of Mother aluminum polish.

    Check these threads out, both bikes are mine.

    2006 Avalanche 1.0 - The polished Avalanche - version 2
    2003 Avalanche 1.0 - The Polished Avalanche :D
    Bikin' Bric's Bike Blog

    2012 Norco CCX3
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  31. #31
    The White Jeff W
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    Looks good guys. Reminds me of the chromoly BMX bikes from back in the day.

  32. #32
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    Well, you guys convinced me. The paint is gone, and the sanding has begun.

    I scotchbrited everything to get ride of all the paint. I was surprised to find quite a bit of scratches under the paint. So I've been sanding those out with 320 grit. Moved on to 600, 900, and will finish with 1200 grit. Then polish and shine.

    Quote Originally Posted by RatchAttack
    I've done a few strip and polish jobs myself on some of my GT frames. Used a whole lot of chemical stripper, steel wool, then many hours with a rag and jar of Mother aluminum polish.

    Check these threads out, both bikes are mine.

    2006 Avalanche 1.0 - The polished Avalanche - version 2
    2003 Avalanche 1.0 - The Polished Avalanche :D
    RatchAttack, Your GT's look great. Any problem with your decals. Does anyone know where I can get some vintage Gary Fisher decals (1995-1997ish).

    Thanks for all the photos and input everyone. I'll post some pic when it's done. Might be awile though.

  33. #33
    Nice day for a ride..... Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghughes.hesinc
    Well, you guys convinced me. The paint is gone, and the sanding has begun.

    I scotchbrited everything to get ride of all the paint. I was surprised to find quite a bit of scratches under the paint. So I've been sanding those out with 320 grit. Moved on to 600, 900, and will finish with 1200 grit. Then polish and shine.



    RatchAttack, Your GT's look great. Any problem with your decals. Does anyone know where I can get some vintage Gary Fisher decals (1995-1997ish).

    Thanks for all the photos and input everyone. I'll post some pic when it's done. Might be awile though.

    No problems with the decals. Just polish the hell out of the frame then apply the decals, DO NOT clear coat the frame. The clear coat will eventually get scratched and look like hell.

    I picked up the GT decals from eBay, maybe start your search there.
    Bikin' Bric's Bike Blog

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  34. #34
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    Finished product

    Well it's all done. I ended up going polished, just couldn't get a consistantly uniform brushed look. Over all I'm pretty happy with how it came out.

    It's way better than the beat up paint that was there. Thanks for all the advice everyone, isn't this site great.





    I can't get the pics loaded. This computer stuff is new to me. can anyone walk me through it?
    Last edited by ghughes.hesinc; 12-02-2009 at 08:55 PM.

  35. #35
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    Congrats - Very Very Nice. Can't wait to see the whole bike when its done. It's like falling in love all over again....

  36. #36
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    still working on mine, I sanded and polished up the bars on it, now working on the wheelset (polishing) hopefully tomorrow I'll have most of the bike together with the exception of the wheels looking just plain raw. Will post pictures soon.
    How's that dirt taste?

  37. #37
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    Finally!!!

    After too much time trying everything under the sun. Here they are.


    " width="549">
    " width="549">

  38. #38
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    All of these polished bikes look great, and you
    guys did a really good job. However after all that
    hard work how can you stand to get something
    that nice dirty?

    Best, John

  39. #39
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    07 Kona Coiler

    No clear cote
    Attached Images Attached Images
    It might get a little steep from here

  40. #40
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    What I do is later in the evening after the kids go to bed, I grab a couple of beers, a can of mothers, and a towell. Who needs tv.

    thecrackerasscracker - great looking Kona. I wish I had gone silver spokes on my wheels.

  41. #41
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    [QUOTE=mmanuel09]What I do is later in the evening after the kids go to bed, I grab a couple of beers, a can of mothers, and a towell. Who needs tv.

    I hear ya there!!

  42. #42
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    this is what it used to look like

    This is what it looks like as of today, its ready to ride but not all upgrades I want are on it yet....

    How's that dirt taste?

  43. #43
    yorkshire mud monkey
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    hi all, well iam in the starting stage of stripping a cannondale ready for polishing.
    whats the best way to get rid of the oxidization on the frame, as it doesnt look good and worried about the finish if i clear coat it after the decals are on.
    as steve said "As long as the rotor/rivets clears the fork, a miss is as good as a mile"

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by sausagedog
    hi all, well iam in the starting stage of stripping a cannondale ready for polishing.
    whats the best way to get rid of the oxidization on the frame, as it doesnt look good and worried about the finish if i clear coat it after the decals are on.
    From what I gather, some steel wool, a little polish, and you should be back to bright and shinny!
    Decals could complicate it.

  45. #45
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    I have an old carbon composite frame thats a mongoose iboc pro sx.
    What would it look like if i stripped it, the painted part is chipping really bad where its purple.




  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmanco
    I have an old carbon composite frame thats a mongoose iboc pro sx.
    What would it look like if i stripped it, the painted part is chipping really bad where its purple.
    I'm no expert, but I'm not sure paint stripper and carbon composite resin are real compatable!

    You might want to do alittle research before you try it.

  47. #47
    yeah it still hurts...
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    Stoooooop!

    Quote Originally Posted by ghughes.hesinc
    I'm no expert, but I'm not sure paint stripper and carbon composite resin are real compatable!

    You might want to do alittle research before you try it.
    paint stripper will immediatley dissolve any petroleum-based plastic it comes into contact with. thats how it dissolves paint. if the CF resin is petroleum based, it will be dissolved leaving you with a pile of worthless carbon fibers.

  48. #48
    yorkshire mud monkey
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    well ive been doing one my self and here it is http://www.flickr.com/photos/sausagedog77/4197009985/

    ive found that if you polish down the tubes it makes it dull but if u polish across then it make its shine more, all due to the grain when the tube is made.
    as steve said "As long as the rotor/rivets clears the fork, a miss is as good as a mile"

  49. #49
    yorkshire mud monkey
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    also if you want to powder coat it waste of time polishing it as they will only go and shot blast it to get a good key on the frame.
    as steve said "As long as the rotor/rivets clears the fork, a miss is as good as a mile"

  50. #50
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    That Cannondale sure looks nice! I love those crossing tubes.

    Quote Originally Posted by sausagedog
    well ive been doing one my self and here it is http://www.flickr.com/photos/sausagedog77/4197009985/

    ive found that if you polish down the tubes it makes it dull but if u polish across then it make its shine more, all due to the grain when the tube is made.
    Just to clairify down=long way; across=short way?

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