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Hot Rods Best Chrome Paint

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Peter S, Apr 8, 2021.

  1. Peter S
    Joined: Jan 8, 2014
    Posts: 6

    Peter S

    Ok, this is an ugly subject.

    but, if one has no other alternative, what's the best product out there? I should say that I'm looking for a lower-tech solution, not anything that requires sophisticated equipment or conditions not achievable in a standard residential garage.

    All replies appreciated!

    Peter s.
  2. ol'skool
    Joined: Nov 13, 2011
    Posts: 6

    from Colorado

    warhorseracing likes this.
  3. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 7,873

    Bandit Billy

    Who was it that said "chrome wasn't built in a spray"?
  4. Wrench97
    Joined: Jan 29, 2020
    Posts: 449


  5. Nothing that sprays will look like chrome.....

    None of them are very durable either....
  6. flatheadpete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2003
    Posts: 10,208

    from Burton, MI

    I think it was The Bandit himself....Billy.
    mad mikey and Bandit Billy like this.
  7. greybeard360
    Joined: Feb 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,779


    Rustoleum. But be prepared to let it sit for a couple of weeks to fully cure otherwise the oil off of your fingers dull it. I have used it on model car parts and automotive parts and have used it quite a bit. It isn't chrome but its as close as you can get.

    Did I mention to let it cure for a couple of weeks? Letting it bake in the sun helps.... but still takes 2 weeks.
  8. Pitbullgoingpostal
    Joined: Jan 2, 2009
    Posts: 436


    I’ve seen all the videos of Alsa products, but I have no experience personally. I was seriously considering using it for my garnish moldings.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  9. Last edited: Apr 8, 2021
  10. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,180


    Good chrome paint is not a thing. You could go a wrap, but prep is just as crucial as prep for a good paint job.

    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
    mad mikey likes this.
  11. Peter S
    Joined: Jan 8, 2014
    Posts: 6

    Peter S

    Wrap is a new concept for me. I'll check that out.

    I'm basically trying to touch up a grill and some smaller trim strips. It's hard to imagine how this happened, but my grill (51 Hudson) has rather good plate on its upper surfaces but has moderate surface rust on the lower edges. Since these places are in perma-shadow, I am hoping no one will look too close.

    But I agree, nothing looks like chrome more than chrome itself.

    Peter S.
    mad mikey and dana barlow like this.
  12. fourspd2quad
    Joined: Jul 6, 2006
    Posts: 795


    If I were you I would focus on trying to bring back the finish you have. Look up coke and aluminum foil.
    Some guys have done amazing things with it followed up with a good polish/sealant like White Diamond.
    mad mikey and Just Gary like this.
  13. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 34,733


    There is no good chrome paint

    You have the perfect job for QUICK GLO!!!! The worlds best chrome cleaner. Trust me. or ask @Rocky , I gave him some 20 years ago and blew him away. There is NOTHING like it on the market
  14. Doublepumper
    Joined: Jun 26, 2016
    Posts: 1,077


    Pretty sure everyone already knows chrome paint isn't chrome....hope so anyway:eek:
    To answer the question: I've used the stuff from Rustoleum and been happy with it.
  15. Elcohaulic
    Joined: Dec 27, 2017
    Posts: 2,324


    I think aluminum color paint is the best.. Bumpers look decent with this so long as the car is high performance...
  16. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 15,253


    Polish up your grille as good as it's going to get. If it's got a few spots on the underside that have no chrome plating left on it at all, use a silver paint pen to fill in only the small spots. It makes the flaked off spots less noticeable, especially from a distance. I did this on my '57 Chevy with a few rear bumper ends, it really helped.

    If you have a really big peeled off spot, you could sand it smooth and put some foil tape over it, like what HVAC installers use. On my girlfriend's 51 Chevy, which was a super low budget build, she had pretty good bumpers but a couple spots around the bolt holes were totally peeled off, too big of a spot for the paint pen trick, so we used the foil tape. The smoother the surface underneath, the better it works. It looks good enough, gets the job done, and it's exactly the type of thing a guy with very little money would have done in the 50's or 60's.
  17. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 15,253


    Also should mention that buffing compound does a really nice job polishing up old chrome, the same stuff you'd use to buff out freshly wetsanded paint. I like Wizards Turbo-Cut, mostly because it smells good, but some of the other paint rubbing compounds work well too.
  18. lcfman
    Joined: Sep 1, 2009
    Posts: 287

    from tn

    Chrome paint is a oxymoron.
  19. Lloyd's paint & glass
    Joined: Nov 16, 2019
    Posts: 5,128

    Lloyd's paint & glass

    I got to do the alsa corp chrome first hand. Lot of prep to paint the parts black. The better the black looks, the better the finished product looks, but it still looks like paint. More like polished aluminum in my opinion.
    texasred and mad mikey like this.
  20. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 34,733


    Let me repeat. We started using this on vintage bike restorations 30 years ago. It will make the gnarliest chrome look passable.

    Dan Hay, 4woody, Blues4U and 2 others like this.
  21. slowmotion
    Joined: Nov 21, 2011
    Posts: 3,276


    If it's feasible size wise, and the actual plating is still underneath, a soak in Oxalic acid (wood bleach) is pretty freakin' amazing. Bicycle restorers use it on chrome seat springs, etc, with jaw dropping results. YouTube it!
  22. Try Molotow Liquid Chrome Marker, comes in different sized nibs. Found at Amazon and most art supply stores.

  23. Joe Travers
    Joined: Mar 21, 2021
    Posts: 374

    Joe Travers
    from Louisiana

    Yep, made down here in Red Stick by father and daughter team. Removes rust and provides good protection. If the rust is in nondescript location, try it out first. Black spot isn't going to kill the view but that red oxide sure will. Support Mom and Pop's. ;)

    fourspd2quad and Tman like this.
  24. Kevin Ardinger
    Joined: Aug 31, 2019
    Posts: 344

    Kevin Ardinger

    What is it Julius Geezer?

    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
    Bandit Billy likes this.
  25. I own a powder coat shop. These are some recent parts I coated in chrome powder. Down fall it's the least durable powder. The manufacture recommends applying a clear coat over the top but all that does is dulls it. Looks like a polished aluminum when you put clear over it. These pics are parts with no clear. If it's in an application where it's not going to see weather or abuse it would be fine. I've done like interior trim parts and what not with no issues!

    Attached Files:

  26. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 6,977

    from Oregon

    Crazy Steve's comment about durability is a bigger concern for me than how close it looks to chrome.
    I shot an intake, tie rod, and drag link with a chrome paint a buddy said came out looking like "polished aluminum". I figured that was good enough, and it came out very nice. But I spilled some motor oil on it, and when I wiped it off with a rag it took the paint right off! Ended up stripping it and repainting it all gloss black. Stripped the aluminum intake, and just left it bare.
  27. I tried that stuff, I was not even a little impressed... the slightest bump and it will mar. Still have a bottle of it around.
  28. Matt55folife
    Joined: Nov 28, 2020
    Posts: 126


    Believe it or not i just use fine steel wool. Just rub over the rusty chrome like you are hand polishing it and watch the chrome come back to life! That old chrome wont scratch up a bit! I did the bumpers on my 55 and they turned out great! They looked like a lost cause before i started but cleaned up nice just with the steel wool. Takes a little elbow grease but itll do! Id rather see rusty chrome than something painted to try to impersonate chrome! Atleast your original rusted chrome is american made and not this flaky taiwan crap they sale for top dollar these days!

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  29. indyjps
    Joined: Feb 21, 2007
    Posts: 4,305


    Damn, thats nice work.

  30. This is the new chrome powder that Prismatic came out with a few months ago. Looks decent, still not like real chrome. And yes it's not very durable. You don't want to polish on it or scrub it. Glass cleaner & a soft cloth are about it to clean it. I coated some interior trim pieces for my brothers 35' Olds project, not bad, he was happy with it The parts in my pic's are display pieces only not going to be touched much. Chrome powders were designed basically to be used as a base coat for transparent's & candies.
    ElmCityGeoff likes this.

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