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Old 01-25-2011, 11:16 AM   #1
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How to Polish Exhaust Tips

Can anyone tell me a way to get a high polish on the stock exhaust tip on my 2004 Boxster. I have tried metal polish, by hand, and 000 steel wool but I still end up with the dull finish. Any ideas are appreciated!

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Old 01-25-2011, 11:30 AM   #2
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Wink How to polish exhaust tips

Dave,
I happened to come across this cloth applicator dipped in some kind of oily polish, and it really worked well. it is multi use so i've have it for the last 2 to 3 yrs now.
i know it's no help for you without knowing the name or where i got it from.. but just in case i find out i will surely share them in the forum.
for the meantime i think using a polish called "SOL" would be worth trying..
thx,
t2 04S
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Old 01-25-2011, 12:57 PM   #3
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000 steel wool will create a satin finish all day long; even 0000 will not polish. I've used Blue Magic and a dab of 3M hand glaze to polish all sorts of metal pieces, including my exhaust tips; however, I don't want bling back there, but it does produce a decent shine (I used to be involved with the concours crowd, but lost interest when I really learned to drive).

You're going to have a bit of work ahead of you, so be prepared.
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Old 01-25-2011, 01:46 PM   #4
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Try Eagle One wadding polish. It's a can of soft fibrous stuff with petroleum distillates.
Slow but effective at removing the grime.
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Old 01-25-2011, 02:51 PM   #5
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A gent on here recommends Showman's................my tips are now black ceramic so no need!
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Old 01-25-2011, 04:28 PM   #6
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Use this. It works!!

http://www.englishcustompolishing.com/usca/showmans.html
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:28 PM   #7
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Use Blue Magic. Take the tips off, lock them down in a vise and use steel wool to smooth out the brushed stainless. Then pull out a drill with a buffing wheel and put on a shine that will look like chrome.

I did and it is a nice touch in the back of the car.
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Old 01-25-2011, 07:09 PM   #8
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Can you take the tips off on 2000 Base?

I couldn't find anything there to dis-assemble

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Old 01-26-2011, 05:38 AM   #9
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Visit your local Honda motorcycle dealer and get some Honda metal polish. It works excellently on stainless steel. No power tools needed. Here are a couple pics of a BMW stainless exhaust. It works equally well on the Boxster tip. I don't know what's in the Honda polish but it is the right stuff for stainless exhausts.


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Old 01-26-2011, 11:22 AM   #10
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I've tried many chemical cleaners, including many of those mentioned in this thread, and I've found the Borla polish to work better and easier than all of them on Stainless Steel. but this will only make your tip look clean and new again.

Chemicals work well if the surface is smooth and only discolored or oxidized, like with the BMW exhaust pipe in the previous post. But you can't get a Boxster exhaust tip looking like that with chemical cleaners because the original surface is brushed with a very course, very deep texture.

If you want to bring a tip to a chrome like finish, you're going to need to spend some time smoothing that surface with a buffing wheel. Here's an example on a Cayman S tip. This tip had some light mileage and use, maybe 10,000 miles.

Before:








After Buffing and Polishing:












In these examples, I used the Borla polish to clean the inside of the tips, where I couldn't get with the buffing wheel.
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Old 01-26-2011, 11:37 AM   #11
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More on polishing Stainless Steel

I dug up some more pictures I can use to help demonstrate what's possible with polishing stainless steel.

This is a Borla exhaust, out of my 2007 Cayman S.



It has about 5,000 miles on it, and it's pretty disolored. This won't do because I had entered the car in an exhaust competition. If you look at the rear pipes, then look diffrerent, smoother than the rest of the system. That's because I polished them before I put the system in, but only from the back of the mufflers back.







Closer to the engine, and the discoloration is brutal.



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Old 01-26-2011, 11:43 AM   #12
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Continuation

But don't worry. Stainless can be brought back from the brink of dissaster when you have a bufing wheel and the right compounds.

Here's a demonstration on the worst spot of the pipe, so you can see the progress.



Buffing is a two stage process. First there is the cutting stage. In the cutting stage you use a very coarse compound on a wheel that actually removes the top layer of material like a sanding wheel, leaving a nice brushed surface below.



Then comes the 'coloring' phase. For this you switch to a soft cotton wheel with a
very fine compound that really brings the shine out.



Can you see my reflection in the pipe.....? Well, don't stop there. Keep on going and you end up with this:







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Old 02-08-2011, 06:45 PM   #13
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Gator Bite, these pictures are awesome. One of my next projects is to do my dual tips on my 'S'. So do you just use a cotton buffer on a drill and go from med to fin compound? I also noticed my tips are welded on so I guess I have to work on it while on the car.
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Old 02-09-2011, 05:36 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhipE350
Gator Bite, these pictures are awesome. One of my next projects is to do my dual tips on my 'S'. So do you just use a cotton buffer on a drill and go from med to fin compound? I also noticed my tips are welded on so I guess I have to work on it while on the car.
A drill isn't the best tool for this. A small motor is much better. You can even convert a bench grinder. I've done miles of buffing using an old motor out of a washing machine. Anything from 1/4 hp up. On stainless, 1/2 hp or more is best, somewhere around 2,000 - 3,000 RPM.

You can get lost of cheap buffing supplies here: http://www.caswellplating.com/buffs/

No affiliation. I've used them. They have OK stuff, good prices, lots of knowledge.

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