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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I believe this has been brought up before, but I don't remember a sufficient conclusion.

I just got another piece of trim, from an '82 Sedan de Ville, which runs the center of the hood. The piece I have on my car (as some of you may remember) is broken in three places. The new piece is pitted and speckled with rust, and I was wondering what needs to be done to make it shiny again.



Last April I test drove an '82 Sedan de Ville, which inspired me to add this trim to my hood. Today I found that car, the exact one I tried to buy last year, sitting in the junkyard. It just seems right that I got to cannibalize it.

On a side note; what color is this? I liked the color when I drove the car, but couldn't find the paint code today. And My computer doesn't work well with the official color codes thread...

 

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1970 calais coupe
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346 Posts
take the part to a proper chrome plating shop....

they will strip the old plating off, rebuff the bare metal remaining & replate the metal.

if ya want it done properly that is..
 

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1979 Sedan deVille d'Elegance
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4,153 Posts
Color looks like 72 Colorado Copper of 97 Red Cedar Firemist. Good luck with the chrome. :)
 

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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
So far as fixing the speckling goes, Caswell offers chroming kits (that actually use cobalt) suitable for covering relatively small items. Here's the link:

http://www.caswellplating.com/kits/plugnplate.htm

Good luck & best wishes,
-- Warren R
Thank you... That looks like something I could use; for more things than just this trim. And for that price, I will probably get a kit or two.

But that won't be until at least next year... The trim still has a brilliant mirror image shine to it, with no clouding. Right now, I'm looking for a way to just get rid of the rust marks and maybe some of the pitting.

I should also note that I don't own any power tools and plan on fixing this myself.
 

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87 Brougham, 1969 Calais, 95 FWB, 07 SRX, 07 ESV
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4,246 Posts
try barkeeper's friend on it with some fine steel wool. That might do the trick.
 

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1990 Cadillac Brougham; 1989 Cadillac Fleetwood
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399 Posts
You won't get a shine in areas with rust, because the rust has eaten through the thin layer of chrome.
 

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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
I've heard of Bar Keepers Friend, so I'll give that a try. The piece is stainless steel, so that will come to a nice (but less than lustrous) shine, which, when polished, should blend into the existing chrome finish.

But will the steel wool damage the good chrome finish around the rust?
 

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87 Brougham, 1969 Calais, 95 FWB, 07 SRX, 07 ESV
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4,246 Posts
i dunno I've never tried it. someone around here said a fine steel wool won't damage the chrome. They suggested it for cleaning rust on chrome but I've never tried myself :(
 

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84 Coupe w/500
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5,670 Posts
I use steel wool on some of my chrome. I got the combo pack(different grades) at walmart and use the finest one available and it does a good job. I just dont press extremely hard. The chrome rims on the white caddy had rust all over the rim and I used it on them, worked great. Also cleaned up rust on the back bumper,that CC grill and the 20" spokes before I sold them. I use it alot but I dont know what the long term effects will be because I havent went through a winter since using it. But the fine stuff is really fine and actually shined it up pretty good.
 

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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Well the Bar Keepers Friend didn't do anything except make the trim bright enough that a blind man could see it on a sunny day...



Oh well. I guess if you can't look at it, you can't see the imperfections, right? I'll probably re-plate it next spring.

And here is another picture of the car that better shows the color. If I remember correctly, window tag said the color was copper, but I thought that was just the used car dealership's way of describing the color.

 

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87 Brougham, 1969 Calais, 95 FWB, 07 SRX, 07 ESV
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4,246 Posts
Man, I figured since the bar keeper's friend says "removes rust!" it would work! maybe it only removes like surface rust on chrome. ah well, now it's shiney ;)
 

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2014 ELR
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10,024 Posts
The problem is that the piece is pot metal. Once pitted, you can't get them out. Use the piece for now, but you are going to want to look for a better replacement.
 

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1986 Fleetwood Brougham d'Elegance
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647 Posts
Well the Bar Keepers Friend didn't do anything except make the trim bright enough that a blind man could see it on a sunny day...

I gotta get some of that for my bumpers and knobs, and the other hundreds of little chrome pieces on the car!
 

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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
The problem is that the piece is pot metal. Once pitted, you can't get them out. Use the piece for now, but you are going to want to look for a better replacement.
So even if I do take this to a chrome shop or some other place that restores metal, they won't be able to get it back to smooth?
 

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2014 ELR
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10,024 Posts
The problem is that blasting or stripping only removes the plating. The pits remain. They can sometimes be filled, then sanded, then buffed, then plated, but it will be very expensive. Keep looking for a good replacement.
 

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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
It took me a year to find that one. But I'm always looking for an excuse to wonder the junkyard, and with the local ones tapped out of Cadillac, I suppose I now have an excuse to take day long drives to find new yards and new parts (I can't wait).
 

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1974 Cadillac Hearse 472
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496 Posts
find a super cheap 472 or 500 HEI while you are at it :p

If you know anyone that has been doing body work for a long time they can easily redo pitted chrome. I had a few really badly pitted bits of chrome from the 1930s that a guy that does hotrods redid and some he sanded it till the pit was gone and then faded it in with the rest of the piece and others where it was too deep they used lead/tin to fill the hole.
 

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1989 Brougham d'Elegance, 1985 Fleetwood Brougham *Coupe*
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4,256 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
^In 4/5/10 years, whenever I get around to restoring my car that does not need restoration, I might try my hand at filling in the holes and then re-plating it. As for the engine; I'm looking to keep the factory 4-speed transmission, so in the future, I'm just going to do a VIN 9 upgrade and maybe add some parts from the better performing Oldsmobile engines.
 
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