View Full Version : Removing oxidation on an aluminum engine custom bike

05-16-2016, 05:14 PM
Hey guys, I need to remove the oxidation on an aluminum engine on a custom motorcycle. I was looking into a product called aluminate but not sure if it would be ok to use on an engine.

05-16-2016, 07:17 PM
Acid based Aluminum cleaners/brighters like the one you listed will only remove light oxidation from my experience. If you are talking about the crusty white oxidation, some agitation with a cleaner may help some but the surface may not look great after. There may be pitting, spotting, and a general haze leftover that would need to de sanded out to look better. Quite a task on a motorcycle engine if it's in bad state.

If it's just lightly oxidized/milky looking, the cleaner/brighter should brighten it up some.

I'm not sure how safe it would be to use on a motorcycle engine. You may have to worry about overspray on certain materials.

05-17-2016, 02:47 PM
Thats what I was worried about. I also don't want it to turn out "blotchy" if you know what I mean.

05-17-2016, 04:27 PM
Have you tried Bar Keepers Friend?

05-18-2016, 10:19 AM
How well does it work?

05-18-2016, 10:33 AM
I've never tried it on an engine but it's amazing on stainless steel surfaces. It's similar to using Comet... just mix some powder with water to whatever consistency you want and do a little scrubbing. I have no idea if it will do what you want, but since you can get it in just about any grocery store, Home Depot or someplace similar, and costs only about $4, it's worth a shot. Use it with a mild scotchbrite pad.

05-18-2016, 11:14 PM
I haven't used it but Flitz has this aluminum precleaner that seems to work great. Mike did a post on it I believe along with some pics and vids.

12-18-2016, 08:01 PM
If it's really bad wet sanding may be needed.
I just restored a 1983 Honda CM400A
The engine covers were awful,I sanded with 400, 600, 1000, then 1500.
Afterwards I started polishing using the brown and white compound brick, came out looking like chrome.

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12-18-2016, 08:45 PM
BKF is a acid. Not recommended for alum.

12-18-2016, 09:19 PM
I wouldn't use it on good condition or highly polished raw aluminum, but I would use it or do use acid brighteners on heavy oxidized raw aluminum prior to polishing.