How to Buff Aluminum

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Aluminum can scratch easily and become dull. Before you polish your aluminum, you will need to buff it first. This will remove any damage that scratches or scraps have caused to the finish. If you polish before you buff the aluminum, the shine will not hold as well because of the damage and dullness of the aluminum. It is simple to buff aluminum with the correct tools. Depending on the size of the project, you will need to decide if sandpaper or a sander will work for the job at hand. Sandpaper can work on smaller projects or if you only need to buff certain places on the aluminum that you are working with. A sander will be helpful in a larger job.

Things You'll Need

  • Sandpaper or a sander
  • Zoft cloth towel

Look at your aluminum. You will need to decide what type of sandpaper will be helpful for this task. This will depend on how many scratches or how deep the scratches are.

Choose the sandpaper. If you have large and deep scratches, a lower grit number will do the job. Around 100 grit would be sufficient. If you just need to touch up a few mild scratches, a higher grit number will be required. You may choose a grit around 200 for this type of job. You will need to use your best judgment on the type of sandpaper grit you will need to complete the task.

Use the sandpaper or sander on the aluminum. Once you have obtained the correct grit, you will begin to sand your aluminum. You will need to complete this task in sections. Begin with a small area and use the sandpaper or sander over the location in a circular motion.

Use your soft cloth towel and wipe down the area that you just sanded. This will take off the loose aluminum so you can check your work. Sand again, if the area still has scratches.

Repeat steps 4 and 5 until your aluminum is completely buffed.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you are taking to much aluminum off, change the grit of the sandpaper.
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