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Old 04-09-2013, 06:24 AM   #1
Coop07 OP
Joined: Apr 2013
Oddometer: 1
New (to me) 1150GS

Guys (& gals),

I just picked up a new to me 2000 R1150GS with 115,000 miles on her with all kinds of farkles (jesse bags, driving lights, screen, front and rear Ohlins, etc.). The bike is mechanically in great shape (rear drive replaced at 95,000 miles), but cosmetically it is a little challenged. I am working on it piece by piece but had a question for you guys.

What is the best way to clean and restore some of the BMW aluminum parts. For example, the lower triple trees which should be nice aluminum is covered in white stains. It is almost as if the clear coat is gone. Cleaning with soap and water has no impact. Am I going to be forced to either finish removing the clear coat and polish, paint or powder or is there some "magic" way of restoring these parts to like new?

Thanks for your help.

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Old 04-09-2013, 07:07 AM   #2
Beastly Adventurer
Joined: Aug 2007
Location: San Marcos, California
Oddometer: 1,326
Welcome to the asylum, congratulations on your new bike, they are a blast.

We used to use mother's mag polish on aluminum parts, but the best way is what you already mentioned, remove and have refinished with either powder coat or hard annodize.
2012 R1200GSA
2009 F650GS (Wife's)
1987 Husqvarna WR 430
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Old 04-10-2013, 05:50 AM   #3
Studly Adventurer
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Joined: Apr 2010
Location: Western Canada
Oddometer: 993
A nice coating of mud and road grime is the easiest.
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Old 04-10-2013, 06:39 AM   #4
Joined: Apr 2010
Location: Quebec, Canada
Oddometer: 55
Congrats on the bike! I have the same year and love it. As for your alu. polishing issues, we have a product here in Canada called Autosol. It's sold in a tube like toothpaste, and you can buff alu. with it to a "chrome" finish. It also leaves a protective finish that lasts a while, worth a try!
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Old 04-10-2013, 09:54 PM   #5
the famous james
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Joined: Dec 2005
Location: Villa Maria Sanitarium, Claremont, CA.
Oddometer: 12,046
The problem is all the alloy is coated. You will have to remove the coating, then you can paint or polish. Metal polish like Mothers or Autosol do no good on the coated parts. If you can't clean it with soapy water the coating is damaged. Some degreasers also damage the coating and the parts go 'cloudy'. I have had some success making the cloudiness go away for a while using paint thinners or WD40 on a rag and rubbing the parts, but it only lasts until it gets wet again.
James and Colleen Tucker.
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