Aluminum carb covers need polishing

I’m restoring an old classic car and have three aluminum carb covers (see picture below) that I would like to polish to a mirror finish. Many other owners of these carbs have accomplished this with a polishing compound (rouge) although I’m not 100% sure on what color rouge to use on aluminum.

My question is, can I use the grinder in the Metal Shop to perform this task? Should I provide my own polishing wheel for the grinder to do this? Just making sure this is a permitted usage of the tool.

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I don’t know about the tool usage, but what polishing compound are you going to use? If you haven’t decided, check out the airstream forums for polishing ideas. They’re polishing many feet of aluminum.

we used to have buffing wheels and compound. I haven’t see them in a year or two. There isn’t a problem with doing it, in principle, depending on what you want to do.

First, you’d want a buffing wheel. After that, I’m with you. I’m not sure what rouge you’d use on aluminum. That said, isn’t the color just a marker for what grit it is?

Oh, and it is quite acceptable to bring your own wheel for such use. Using our grinding wheels on aluminum? No. Bringing your own buffing wheel? Go for it.

I use my personal sand blaster using crushed walnut shells as a medium. It works great on brass carburetor parts, however never tried on aluminum.

Anyone know offhand what size wheel our grinder can use? Also the size of the shaft seems to be important to my getting a buffing wheel.

The bench grinders are 8" wheels and IIRC a 7/8 shaft. They’re the Delta 8" units

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Are those Strombergs on a Fair Lady or TR6?

If so, you are wise to proceed with caution, they are becoming very pricey!

SU’s on a 1969 Jaguar E-Type Coupe.


In that case, you should just gold plate them!

I should have seen the tubular aluminum frame bar below the manifold. It’s been 40 years since I was under the bonnet of my 71’ XKE convertible. It only had 2 Strombergs.

Yes, do be very careful.

I use a grizzly 1700 rpm buffer for stuff like this. Has longer shafts. Not a lot of room converting a grinder. Vector had a set up but never got responses on the machine back there. Red rouge on a semi hardwheel for first go. White on a loose wheel for mirror shine. Grizzly and Eastwood sell the wheels.

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