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Removing corrosion from vintage motorcycle's chrome plating

I have recently bought a vintage motorcycle. On some of the chrome parts there are small brownish corrosion marks visible. Could anyone please tell me which is the best way of removing these marks without damaging the chrome plating or without having to re-plate the part?

Joshua Kruger
- South Africa


My best experience with antique bicycles was naval jelly [on eBay or Amazon affil link] and a lot of elbow grease. Make sure that you wax the parts really well, and keep them dry and waxed all the time. This worked for me on small spots and stains.

Once corrosion has penetrated through the chrome plating "film" it will be a constant headache. Truly the best solution is to replate the parts, but the procedure outlined above will handle the problem temporarily.

I might be tempted to try a metal prep type product to reduce some of the labor. You can get this material at automotive body shops - some even advertise that they convert the rust to an inert compound. I would try this on a non-visible area first though.

Good luck

Mark Atterbury
- Lincoln Nebraska

I have a old vintage motorcycle and I put lacquer thinner [on eBay or Amazon affil links] and scrub then wax and sand lightly then wipe it off with Simple Green [adv: item on eBay or Amazon] .

Kyle Hentzen
- hasslet, Texas

The kind of corrosion in chromed metals are treated by cleaning well all parts of dark points, which are the unstable parts, and after it's well dried you must use a passivation film, like clear varnish. If it would be a museum piece you should remove the stains under a magnifier.

Best luck,

Rodrigo Bettencourt da Câmara
- Lisbon, Portugal

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