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Polishing Motor Parts (how to's, what not's)

620 Views 18 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  pokey
I've got my motor all in pieces at the moment and was considering polishing some things up. I really wanna make everything in there a bright shinny silver. So bright, you can see your reflection.

Of coarse any part of the motor that reaches temps > 450 degrees (i.e.exhaust) will be ceramic coated, but I wanna know what exactly do you do/use to polish say, the valve cover? Newbie here so any info/suggestions are appreciated.

I know you first need to sand everything smooth, but then what??? Any specific products? Also, wouldn't the surface be all scratched up when you sand it with a dremel? Is there a VFAQ about polishing somewhere that I missed? Never done anything like this before.
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Cool, those help a lot. Thanks!
Be warned- polishing is a complete PITA and takes hours upon hours to get it looking good. Also be sure to use a mask. I haven't been wearing one and I bet my lungs look like a chain smoker's. But the results are a work of art. ;)


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Fierce, did you polish everything????

Fierce, did you polish everything?

You have to post a bigger picture so we can get some more details.

Check Out my webpage for details on how I polished my parts, I also have some cool before and after pictures.

At one time I was going to polish everything but it is just so much work, especially the small parts with lots of nooks and cranny's.

Take the time to polish your intake manifold, it really changes the look of your engine. :)
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I went insane and polished everything including things like the rear valve cover and anything attached to the block. I also polished oil lines going to the turbo and my manifolds and turbos are coated in a sterling ceramic coating that aids in heat insulation and has a polished look to it. I can get better pics today in the sunlight.
Nice job, here are a few link to my engine pics, I polished the fuel rails, plenum valve cover and will soon be polishing the lower intake manifold/plenum. And did a few other things like the top radiator hose treatment.

Oh these pics aren't the most recent, I now have a GTO polished with maroon powder coated letters spark plug cover, one of the one AAM sells.

If you guys have one of those metal spark plug covers take a look at how I polish them up, here's one I did today I have on ebay.

It was hard to show how shiny it is so I show the allen head bolts that come with it in the reflection on the plate. I also powder coat or polish plenum and valve covers.
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Valve cover is done too no new pics though.. took about 15-20 hrs on the plenium and the cruise controll box was about 2 hours... I was doing it at work so mostly hand sanding.


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{going shopping for stuff this afternoon}
Best part about polishing is bragging rights

As you can tell from the replys to his thread is that the best part about polishing parts is the bragging rights:D

You will also check your oil much more often because you will want any excuse to pop your hood. It is also difficult enough that many people will not bother. Its not like a Honda were everyone buys the exact same polished part. Its great when a Honda guy askes were you bought this or that.... and you scoff with indignation and tell him(or her) What do you mean buy??? I did this myself!

So take your time, polish your parts, and join the club.:)

John Monnin
I couldn't agree more, been thinking about running around with out the hood just to see how people react when they see the engine. I have tried to keep my car settle, except when I open the hood. You are also correct at car shows it does draw a lot of attention.

One suggestion, for what it's worth, if you guys add some color around the letters on the plenum, and then sand and polish off the tops of the letters it will bring the lettering up a lot more, just need a little contrast.

If anyone would be interested and live around Northern VA get in touch with me and bring your plenum over one day I'll powder coat around the letter, sand and polish off the tops of the letters for $10. Should only take 3-4 hours, the longest time is waiting for the plenum to cool down, you have to let it set after the coating flashes for 20 minutes at 400 degrees and then let it cool slowly. If it doesn't cool slowly you won't get a real glossy finish.

Dave Best

P.S. If you want a pic of the plenum powder coated around the letters just drop me an email and I'll send you one.
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Just seeing what you guys have done makes me want to rip into my car and do it. You guys have done amazing jobs! I hope when I get around to it mine will look somewhat like you alls :) Thanks for the great pictures.
I want to cry.De_am they all look good.I don't ever want to look under my hood again out of embarresment.High Fives to all that have done this polishing,,,,,really looks good!
More polished items

Check this site out:

Look under 3SX designs for some polished items and under our cars for some pics of my polished motor, tranny, etc.
Steve I love the polished Tranny

Steve I love the polished transmission.

When I had my car apart (for 1 /2 years) I kept looking at the transmission thinking how cool it would look polished, then I realized how much time it would take and decided not to.

I figured nobody would be crazy enough to polish the tranny, Damn it now I'm mad I didn't do mine.
Most of the metals under the hood if smooth can be polished real easy with a dremel tool, and rouge. The other stuff MUST be ground down gradually till smooth. It is a PITA.

I did go around with my hood off. OMG. The looks were incredible. People in parking lots would go over and just stare.


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Damn it pokey, i want your car!

If i get ahold of a digital camera some time, i'll post picts of my valve cover and heat shield all polished up...

Thinking about polishing my summer rims (the 5 spokes in my sig). What u guys think?
100mphstealth said:
Damn it pokey, i want your car!
ME too!!! Thanks
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