Production chrome stripping

Marktastrophe

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Nov 19, 2021
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I know I'm not the only one, but I hate the production kit chrome that comes on wheels and accessories.

BUT! I'm interested in hearing all the ways we all remove that chrome.

Most recently I've used distilled vinegar from the kitchen cabinet, I dropped it in and forgot about it for 4-5 days, and here we are!
PXL_20220411_124641207.jpg PXL_20220411_124934097.PORTRAIT.jpg PXL_20220411_124853743.jpg
 

urumomo

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I love vinegar .
Aside from it's culinary uses , cleaning rusty tools with it is so satisfying . Might take a week but who's counting .
 

Marktastrophe

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I've used Super Clean engine degreaser to strip acrylics with great success, I haven't tried it on chrome though.
I've also been told Simple Green works well, but I've never had any luck with it (it ran through the carpet cleaner after I gave up stripping with it pretty nicely tough)
 

Little Cutie

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I haven't used colas (with caramel colouring) but I have heard others doing it. I have a cousin that used to work for Pepsi and he said that they wear HAZMAT suits as the chemicals in the caramel colourant are highly toxic to the body. This is why it removes chrome from plastic. This is nothing more than simple aluminum that has been vacuum plated. I don't use vinegar for anything except for cooking. However I bought gray bottle of rust remover (I can't remember the name of) from the automotive store that removes rust in about fifteen minutes to an hour. It's water based and has no odor.

The ammonia content of Brasso removes the plating from plastic but you have to use a cotton swab or toothbrush to help it get into smaller areas. NEVR-DULL works really good too! Unlike Brasso it doesn't make the parts dull after using it. I pull some of the cotton wadding wrapped around a toothbrush and rub lightly. It removes without damaging the surface. Most chemicals including acrylic paints will mar the surface ever so slightly but NEVR-DULL doesn't. This comes off fairly easy and quickly. This is simply a suggestion - don't shoot the messenger!!
 

Marktastrophe

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The second batch of 8 wheels stripped in about 36 hours, and honestly was close enough at 24 hours. Used the same vinegar as the first run.
Seems like it'll remain my go to based on price, availability, and not requiring a respirator.
 

the Baron

Ich bin ja, Herr, in Deiner Macht
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I've used Super Clean engine degreaser to strip acrylics with great success, I haven't tried it on chrome though...
SuperClean can remove the chrome in two minutes or less.

Years ago on the Agape forum, I saw a post from one of the guys who used SC to strip the chrome from the Tamiya chromed P-51D kit. I was building the old Monogram Tom Daniel Red Baron hot rod at the time, so I decided to buy a bottle of SC and try it to remove the chrome (Advanced Modeler Syndrome-I couldn't live with the seams and sprue gate scars). The degreaser took the chrome off in two minutes. I saw the chrome dissolve into the solution. It left the styrene literally squeaky-clean-the chrome was gone, leaving the bare plastic. It squeaked when I rubbed a finger on it.

Since then, I've used SC to strip paint from metal figures before repainting them, and to clean styrene and resin before working with those materials. Instead of dishwashing liquid, I add a couple drops of SuperClean to warm water, and give the parts a bath.

I've even used it when working on a figure or a model, to spot-strip paint when I've made a mistake. It has saved me from stripping the whole piece. I just use a paintbrush to apply it in that case.

And it appeals to my Dutchy sense, since it's a general de-greaser. I use it around the house for cleaning tasks involving cleaning up greasy stains, or on laundry. I even pour a cup down the drain occasionally, when it gets a little clogged.

It's reusable, too. I use glass jars of different sizes to soak parts. Oven cleaners and other materials people use are pretty much once-and-done per batch. At eight bucks a gallon, it's a bargain.
 

Eagle-1

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You need to try the Super Clean (NOT the purple power substitute). It'll strip chrome in about 30 seconds.

**(As I now read "the Baron" just mentioned. I can verify that though. ;))
 

Marktastrophe

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SuperClean can remove the chrome in two minutes or less.

Years ago on the Agape forum, I saw a post from one of the guys who used SC to strip the chrome from the Tamiya chromed P-51D kit. I was building the old Monogram Tom Daniel Red Baron hot rod at the time, so I decided to buy a bottle of SC and try it to remove the chrome (Advanced Modeler Syndrome-I couldn't live with the seams and sprue gate scars). The degreaser took the chrome off in two minutes. I saw the chrome dissolve into the solution. It left the styrene literally squeaky-clean-the chrome was gone, leaving the bare plastic. It squeaked when I rubbed a finger on it.

Since then, I've used SC to strip paint from metal figures before repainting them, and to clean styrene and resin before working with those materials. Instead of dishwashing liquid, I add a couple drops of SuperClean to warm water, and give the parts a bath.

I've even used it when working on a figure or a model, to spot-strip paint when I've made a mistake. It has saved me from stripping the whole piece. I just use a paintbrush to apply it in that case.

And it appeals to my Dutchy sense, since it's a general de-greaser. I use it around the house for cleaning tasks involving cleaning up greasy stains, or on laundry. I even pour a cup down the drain occasionally, when it gets a little clogged.

It's reusable, too. I use glass jars of different sizes to soak parts. Oven cleaners and other materials people use are pretty much once-and-done per batch. At eight bucks a gallon, it's a bargain.
That is good to know. I know I've stripped paint with it before, but once I did run into an issue where it took everything off, down to the Tamiya Rattle can primer...but didn't remove that. It did turn into a happy little tree for me though.
00000PORTRAIT_00000_BURST20200704155156665.jpg 00000PORTRAIT_00000_BURST20200704155031987.jpg 00100trPORTRAIT_00100_BURST20200704154912195_COVER.jpg 00100lrPORTRAIT_00100_BURST20200704155132721_COVER.jpg 00100lrPORTRAIT_00100_BURST20200704155233951_COVER.jpg 00100trPORTRAIT_00100_BURST20200704155312052_COVER.jpg
 

Little Cutie

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You need to try the Super Clean (NOT the purple power substitute). It'll strip chrome in about 30 seconds.

**(As I now read "the Baron" just mentioned. I can verify that though. ;))
I forgot about the Castrol Super Clean trick. I know that they changed names and so after that I didn't keep up with them. I only do small parts and not many at a time when cleaning or removing chrome. Someone else said that they used Oven-Off cleaner to remove paint from polystyrene. I haven't - do any of you have pictures of this before and after? I've been thinking about getting some but I don't want to ruin a 36 year old model that needs a good bath in it.
 

Eagle-1

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Before:

51VYWF-SkYL._AC_.jpg

After:

sc2022.jpg

Unless you was talkin' about stripped chrome "before" and "after"?

These are a specific brand/kind of Cake Pillar (yes, I said "cake pillars") used for various studio scale builds of Space:1999. These pillars are something anyone interested in Space:1999 builds grab whenever we can get them and in THIS case, they happened to be chrome plated versions. Much older than 30 years at about 45 to 50 years, the chrome is much thicker plated than most models, even of the same era.

This took slightly longer in a Super Clean dunk than usual, MAINLY due to the glue used to adhere the chrome to the pillars (the chrome came off in about 3 or 4 minutes) but still had these stripped in 20-30 minutes of the remaining glue. Although NOT a model, they are in fact the same styrene used for a model (back in the day for sure) and the chrome appeared to have that same type glue used on a model of the era. I can surely speak to "the era" also because building Space:1999 ALL my model kits are from the 60's and 70's that I need for builds.

Before:

b94b_1.jpg

After:

a9b1_1.jpg

Super Clean will take the chrome of a NEWER type model before you could dip it in and pull it out of the bath. Maybe not completely, but it will certainly be too late to change your mind about it because the chrome WILL be gone in quite a few places.

Super Clean is HANDS DOWN the best at removing paint and chrome of anything else you'll use and can be acquired from the automotive department of your local Walmart. If you live in the UK, (My best friend does) there is no suitable exact substitute for Super Clean. DO NOT substitute a product called "Purple Power" also located at Walmart right next to the Super Clean, cheaper. You'll be disappointed and may think it's the same as Super Clean and it is NOT. A full gallon of Super Clean, according to Google, is $8.97. You can use it MANY times. Using Super Clean for models is no trick. There is NOTHING better.
 

Eagle-1

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And just in case there is ANY concern about Super Clean damaging ANY model...

I once did a test, and posted the results on another forum, where I left a 1969 1/25th British Chieftain model kit that I paid over $150.00 for which was already assembled (Because they are rare kits and were even more rare back in 2001-2002) for OVER a year, just to prove/see what it would do to plastic. It came out clean as a whistle and even the clear lenses for the lights and such were perfect. I have screwed up paint jobs and soaked the SAME model in a Super Clean bath several times, with the clear parts in tact, and have never had even a slight problem. In fact, instead of washing a new model in warm water to remove any mold release, I often give the kit a Super Clean bath instead. There will be NO release residue after that.

DO NOT use it for resin though. Wiping resin with it or a quick 30 second dip should be fine, but soaking will make resin soft. It will stay soft for days too and there may be a point at which it wouldn't harden back up. My piece did harden eventually, but I was worried.

Real worried.
 

Little Cutie

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Jun 20, 2009
Messages
173
Before:

View attachment 91055

After:

View attachment 91057



Super Clean is HANDS DOWN the best at removing paint and chrome of anything else you'll use and can be acquired from the automotive department of your local Walmart. If you live in the UK, (My best friend does) there is no suitable exact substitute for Super Clean. DO NOT substitute a product called "Purple Power" also located at Walmart right next to the Super Clean, cheaper. You'll be disappointed and may think it's the same as Super Clean and it is NOT. A full gallon of Super Clean, according to Google, is $8.97. You can use it MANY times. Using Super Clean for models is no trick. There is NOTHING better.
NOW you tell me!! :rolleyes: I bought the Purple Power and soaked some parts in in thinking it would do the job - nothing doing!! I don't know how long I did this until I gave up. I ended up using it for something else but I don't remember what. Apparently it doesn't matter - I would remember if it did. I wish I had Castrol Super Clean back in the day when I bought a '63 Shelby Cobra that someone had painted the body on and I needed to remove the paint so I ended up SANDING it off with 600 grit wet-or-dry sandpaper. That didn't ruin it but it DID make the emblems and the rivets on it very soft in their detail. It doesn't matter as I plan to make new rivets and new emblems for this car. I just have to figure out how so that this will be convincing - they made the cobra raised up and it should be engraved.
 

Eagle-1

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As I've stated, you can use Super Clean over and over many times. Let it settle for a couple days and it will even turn purple again as the sediment settles out. Slowly skim the top and your Super Clean will LOOK like it's never been used... unless you use it on something red. Red, will tint it red and even though it will not affect the cleaning power, settling will never remove all the red tint.
 

Marktastrophe

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As I've stated, you can use Super Clean over and over many times. Let it settle for a couple days and it will even turn purple again as the sediment settles out. Slowly skim the top and your Super Clean will LOOK like it's never been used... unless you use it on something red. Red, will tint it red and even though it will not affect the cleaning power, settling will never remove all the red tint.
I have re-used Super Clean a number of times, just never on chrome plating.
And can I ask where you buy it by the Gallon? I only eve find the 32 oz spray bottles for about the same price you pay per gallon, lol.
It took me like 3 years to get through 32 oz, and I stripped a couple of large pieces. But I don't want to pay a premium for a spray cap I'm not using :p
 

Eagle-1

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Of course you can ask! I won't answer and if I do, I'll be mad about it.

:mad:

Just pullin' yer leg.

If you've got a Walmart, you are here!

This is a link to the Walmart website for the product Super Clean in a 1 gallon jug. It says "Robot or Human", but it is an official Walmart link. Don't be scared.


You can use it over and over again even if you use it for chrome. Let it settle. It'll be good as new. Once you've used it 50-100 times for models, use it to clean your oily driveway... or engine bay. That's what it was designed for anyway.

If you don't have a driveway or car, pour it down your sink. It's biodegradable and can be poured down a drain and will clean your pipes.
 

Little Cutie

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This took slightly longer in a Super Clean dunk than usual, MAINLY due to the glue used to adhere the chrome to the pillars (the chrome came off in about 3 or 4 minutes) but still had these stripped in 20-30 minutes of the remaining glue. Although NOT a model, they are in fact the same styrene used for a model (back in the day for sure) and the chrome appeared to have that same type glue used on a model of the era.
Sorry but - no glue. These are vacuum plated and it's hot when they do this so that the plating will stick to the parts. It's most likely that they used thicker plating for models than they do now. Don't feel bad - I too thought that the plating was glued somehow or dipped but if this happened it would make a huge mess! Either way I want to remove the remaining traces of paint from my Cobra but I don't know what to use that will do the trick safely.
 

the Baron

Ich bin ja, Herr, in Deiner Macht
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...Either way I want to remove the remaining traces of paint from my Cobra but I don't know what to use that will do the trick safely.
SuperClean should do it.
As I mentioned, it can even be used to spot-strip, applying it with a paintbrush, to remove paint from specific areas, without soaking the piece.
I did neglect to mention that I do use a rinse-and-scrub method with it, too. That is, I'll soak a piece, let the liquid work on the paint, then rinse the piece under running water and use an old toothbrush to scrub away gently any softened paint that doesn't dissolve right away.
I've only had one piece whose paint didn't come off right away. It was a toy soldier that had been painted with some kind of gloss paints, and they were tough. I don't know if they were enamels or lacquers, because I've removed both from other pieces using SuperClean. But ultimately it just meant that I had to soak the piece longer than I usually do.
 

Eagle-1

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SuperClean should do it.
As I mentioned, it can even be used to spot-strip, applying it with a paintbrush, to remove paint from specific areas, without soaking the piece.
I did neglect to mention that I do use a rinse-and-scrub method with it, too. That is, I'll soak a piece, let the liquid work on the paint, then rinse the piece under running water and use an old toothbrush to scrub away gently any softened paint that doesn't dissolve right away.
I've only had one piece whose paint didn't come off right away. It was a toy soldier that had been painted with some kind of gloss paints, and they were tough. I don't know if they were enamels or lacquers, because I've removed both from other pieces using SuperClean. But ultimately it just meant that I had to soak the piece longer than I usually do.

It takes a little while on store bought paint too, Mr. Baron. By that, I mean Hot Wheels and the like. It takes a couple days (a fresh model paint is usually minutes) and takes it off a little at a time with gentle toothbrushing, but it finally does get it. Personally, I wouldn't use anything else.
 

Eagle-1

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Sorry but - no glue. These are vacuum plated and it's hot when they do this so that the plating will stick to the parts. It's most likely that they used thicker plating for models than they do now. Don't feel bad - I too thought that the plating was glued somehow or dipped but if this happened it would make a huge mess! Either way I want to remove the remaining traces of paint from my Cobra but I don't know what to use that will do the trick safely.

Ma'am, what cobra kit is it?
 
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