BLACKFIRE Fine Cut Aluminum Polish
BLACKFIRE's most versatile, one-step metal cleaner & metal polish.
BLACKFIRE Fine Cut Aluminum Polish is step two of the BLACKFIRE Metal Polishing System. It removes minor oxidation, haze, light blemishes and it restores a brilliant shine on bare metals such as aluminum, brass, copper, magnesium and blended metals. BLACKFIRE Fine Cut Aluminum Polish quickly shines chrome and restores a like-new finish on stainless steel. It's the ultimate polish for bare metals! It is excellent as a one-step metal cleaner on near-perfect finishes.
This is an ammonia-based paste, combined with jewelers rouge and very fine diminishing-abrasives. BLACKFIRE Fine Cut Aluminum Polish is formulated to stick to vertical surfaces to make polishing large panels quick and easy.
WARNING: Do not use on plated or anodized metals or on painted or clear coated metals. While the jeweler's rouge in Fine Cut Metal Polish is very fine, it has enough cutting power to remove the thin gold plating used on automotive trim. Do not use on Porsche, five spoke, anodized wheels or on clear coated wheels.
In some cases, you may need to use a pre-polish to get the maximum shine. If the metal is slightly tarnished, just starting to oxidize or has very fine blemishes, BLACKFIRE Fine Cut Aluminum Polish will easily remove the oxidation and tarnish to create a bright, chrome-like shine. If the metal is quite dull and chalky from years of weathering or severely pitted or water-stained, you should pre-polish first with BLACKFIRE Heavy Cut Aluminum Polish.
If you're not sure, take this test. Polish a 1 or 2 sq ft area using Fine Cut Aluminum Polish. Then wipe off the residue and inspect the finish. If the gloss is restored and all oxidation and stains are removed, continue polishing the rest of the area. If you buff off the residues and still find surface dullness or spotting, you should use a pre-polish (BLACKFIRE Heavy Cut Aluminum Polish).
NOTE: Always test the metal first with Fine Cut Aluminum Polish. Once you use Heavy Cut Aluminum Compound you are committed to doing the entire surface. You cannot spot-polish metal with a heavy cut polish. Once you use a heavy cut metal polish, the polished area will always have a different gloss characteristic so you must continue polishing the entire area for a uniform shine.
BLACKFIRE Fine Cut Aluminum Polish is designed to deliver the best results when buffed with an Acrylic Wool Polishing Pad on a rotary machine polisher.
Application Instructions with a rotary polisher:
- Work on areas of 2-3 sq. ft., out of direct sunlight if possible.
- Wipe a thin coat of Fine Cut Aluminum Polish on the surface (just like waxing your car) using a dry Microfiber Applicator Pad.
- Use a dry 8-1/2 inch Acrylic Wool Polishing Pad on your circular machine polisher. Set the speed to 1,200 rpm.
- Using medium pressure, go over the entire area once using a left to right motion, then go over the entire area a second time using an up-and-down motion. A black residue will form on aluminum, brass and copper. On chrome or stainless steel, buff until stains are gone.
- Wipe off black residues and inspect the surface. If surface has a uniform, chrome-like finish, continue to the next area. If spotting, staining or surface irregularities are still visible, repeat the polishing procedure.
- Polishing aluminum is time consuming and DIRTY work. The wool pads are designed to "lint". The cast-off strands will cover everything. Always wear old clothes and an apron if you have one, eye protection (safety goggles) and rubber gloves. Eye protection is essential. The lint flying around during buffing is impregnated with polish residues and metallic particles. You don't want to get this in your eyes.
- At some point, the wool pads will cake with black residues, causing them to become ineffective. When this happens, "fluff" the wool using a stainless steel brush or spurring tool. Place the machine on the floor (or ground) with the pad facing up. Set the speed control to the lowest speed setting. Hold the machine down with your foot.
- Use one hand to turn the machine on and your other hand to hold the brush or spurring tool against the pad's surface. It only takes a few seconds for the wool pad to fluff up so you can continue polishing. Pads can usually be "fluffed" three or four times before they become so black that they must be replaced with a fresh pad.
- Before you start polishing, fill a 5 gallon bucket with water and put in two McKee's 37 Polishing Pad Rejuvenator pad cleaning packets. When you remove a blackened wool pad from your machine, immediately put it in the bucket to soak. Never let blackened residues dry in the pad. Do the same with your buffing cloths. When they become blackened with residues, throw them in the bucket to soak.
- Always apply polish to the surface. Never apply polish directly to the wool pad. Always use a dry pad. Never spray the pad with water or use a pad still damp from cleaning.
- You will always use more pre-polish than finishing polishes. A one pound can should do a 16 ft Airstream trailer but if the finish is excessively dull or spotted, get a second can of pre-polish. You cannot "spot polish" aluminum like you can paint. The polished area will always have a different gloss. Once you start with a pre-polish, you must continue polishing the entire area.
- Have extra Pre-polish, wool pads. You typically can not stop, wash a wool pad and wait for it to dry. If you're good, you might do a 16 ft Airstream with three pads, but you are more likely to require 5 pads. Beginners typically apply too much polish which requires you to change pads more often.
- After polishing in a left-to-right and up-and-down pattern, you need to wipe off residues with a cloth and inspect the finish. You can wipe the finish with an IPA solution. This removes the residues quicker and you can wipe more area before the towel must be replaced with a clean towel.
- If polishing trim on a vehicle, mask off adjacent paintwork.
Circular machine polishers will always do a faster and better job but dual-action machines like the Porter Cable 7424XP will do an acceptable job. They will certainly make the surface look better but may not have the cutting power to remove deeper spots, stains and blemishes.
If using a Porter Cable 7424XP polisher, use our 6-1/2 inch polishing wool pads (the 8-1/2 inch wool pads are too heavy for the counterweight used in the 7424 and could result in motor failure). This pad requires that your 7424 Polisher be fitted with a 6 inch Hook and Loop Backing Plate. Set the Porter Cable's speed control at 6. Follow the same instructions as outlined above for a circular machine polisher.
You can also fluff wool pads using the Porter Cable 7424XP polisher using a stainless steel brush or spurring tool but you must use a very light pressure on the pad. Exerting too much pressure with the brush will stop the pad from rotating.
Polishing should leave the finish with a uniform, bright, chrome-like shine. You now have three options:
Do nothing. If you're working on a show vehicle, most enthusiasts do not use any sealants so they can touch-up the shine, as needed, using Fine Cut Aluminum Polish and a microfiber towel.
Apply a sealant. If the vehicle or trailer is used on the highway, we recommend sealing the polished metal with BLACKFIRE Wet Diamond All Metal Sealant. This locks the shine under a protective barrier, resists bug build-up and makes future cleaning easier.
Take the shine to the next level. This is primarily for show or concours vehicles where you want a true, mirror-like, finish. Aluminum in particular is a remarkable metal that can be polished to a mirror-like reflection. Use BLACKFIRE Wet Diamond Aluminum Show Polish to create the ultimate, mirror-like finish.