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A question for you more aesthetically- minded folks... when you buy a new set of aluminum heads they're so darn pretty, but can become kinda grubby, stained shortly afterwards. If you want to keep them new good for a longer time, what have you used on them? I'm thinking of trying a clear engine enamel for a light lustre coating, hopefully making them easier to clean up. Any ideas that have worked for you?
 

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I usually give the exterior casting a light acid wash with strong vinegar to remove the natural corrosion layer and immediately air dry followed by self etching primer then colors of choice. If you want the natural color then shoot aluminum, a clear can add some additional protection to the paint.

The problem with aluminum is always its oxide layer which quickly forms on bare aluminum to which paint won’t stay stuck as it is adhered to the clear oxide layer not the aluminum. Self etching primer adds another layer of protection for the paint by reacting with any remaining oxide. Then you can put on a color layer with reasonably good assurance it will stay attached to the aluminum.

Bogie
 
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