Dulling shiny over the counter aluminum Z28 valve covers

Discussion in 'Original Drivetrain Topic' started by COPO, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. COPO

    COPO Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    I’d rather find a used pair of 1970 Z28 valve covers. But not junk then sell my new ones.
     
  2. FlaJunkie

    FlaJunkie Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Are your originals that bad?
     
  3. COPO

    COPO Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    My originals on the drivers side has 1 mount ear welded and both tops were
    run over with a belt sander by my engine builder to take the peak down and shine after painting the covers black cause he said the covers looked like chit.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
  4. 70lt1z28

    70lt1z28 Veteran Member Gold Member

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    Its tough getting the original finish back. Not sure it can really be done. They were die cast and then put in a big machine called a wheelabrator:
    https://www.wheelabratorgroup.com/e...nes/express-delivery-tumblast-machine-tms-tmr

    Even the vibratory machines don't do it right. MacNeish and those guys say they can re-skin them, but generally its snake oil.
    What you are looking for are NOS, never been mounted valve covers bought over the counter in 1970 thru 74. Expect to pay over 500 for them. Be careful. I've seen many on eBay that said they are "Original NOS" blah blah blah and they are the polished ones you have already.
    I spent many hours with my stock ones and got them to my liking. Started out with paint stripper, then de-smutted (removes oxidation) them with a weak, heated nitric acid mixture. Moved to the blast booth with walnut shells and very low pressure, just enough to pick up the media and clean them without etching. Then 0000 steel wooled the tops of the fins to put a light shine on them. Then cleared them with satin finish clear from I forget.
     

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  5. l16pilot

    l16pilot Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Those look really nice Dave. I've used a PPG aluminum etch wash on AIR pump housings with good results and it tended to bring out the original die-cast surface finish. I need to pick up some walnut shells for my blast cabinet and play with that media. Just how low of pressure did you use? Personally, I like hearing all the amateur ideas and then pick and choose what works best for me. All we're doing anyway is creating a grand illusion...working to make the cars appear original when they aren't.
     
  6. COPO

    COPO Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Dave, yours look outstanding and no I’m not looking for NOS plus all over the counter as far as I know are shiny. Plus they have additional part numbers on the underside. I’m looking for a good used set.

    I have a wanted ad here and on camaros.net and hoping someone in Canada has a set.
     
  7. 70lt1z28

    70lt1z28 Veteran Member Gold Member

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    I used I think about 40 psi with the walnut shells. Held the nozzle at about 1 foot away. It doesn't seem to etch the surface but cleans it well.

    You are right, its all just an illusion. We should also be hitting them with hoist chains to simulate the dinks and bumps and bruises and whatever from when the guys on the line were dropping the engines in at one a minute.

    A good used set may not be too hard to find. My biggest problem with buying used parts is that the photos never seem to show the bad stuff. I guess I just need to ask for more photos. Weren't the 69's the same but without the dippers on the inside? If that isn't a problem they may be easier to find. They made alot more of them.
    Good luck.

    The Canada thing will make it more of a challenge. Can't figure out why the shipping is so much more. There is another guy here that posts quite a bit from Canada. He has a web site here:
    http://www.camaros.ca/

    Maybe he can help?
     
  8. l16pilot

    l16pilot Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Thanks Dave. I'm sure my home system doesn't have the CFM of yours, but that should put me in the ball park.
     
  9. COPO

    COPO Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    I know Sonny and visited him when I was in Vancouver. He took me for a blast is his late 69 Z/28, and I saw his green 70 Z28 that Charlie used to own. I talk with Sonny several times/wk. I asked him actually today about covers. Ya he had an excellent pair he sold Months ago and will ask around since he belongs to the BC Camaro Club.
     
  10. COPO

    COPO Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Why not buy in the USA you say. Here’s why:
    1.00 CAD = .79 USD
     

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