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A cheap and highly effective rim polishing tool

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A cheap and highly effective rim polishing tool

Old 01-12-13, 09:36 PM
  #1  
16Victor 
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A cheap and highly effective rim polishing tool

Nice slow night...was PM'ing with afilado about polishing some wheels we swapped, and I figured I'd post my results, which were pretty good.

Keeping non-anodized rims looking good is a pain. I end up with sore fingers and dirty nails and not always a great job around the ferrules. Power tools don't really work well in this application either.

A few weeks ago I had the idea to use felt along with my favorite Blue Magic, and it worked great. Tonight I took it a step further by gluing some felt to a paint stick, simply giving the felt pad a handle. Results were almost eye popping.

I used 1/2" x 1" felt available from mcmaster.com, http://www.mcmaster.com/#felt/=l0dovx

I got P/N 5051K92. A bit over $10.

I cut the paint stick to about 9" or so, and trimmed the width of the stick so about 1/8" of felt sticks out from the sides and end so I could get to the ferrules. Used Gorilla Glue, which is fantastic.

Doesn't seem to use near as much polishing compound as rags, plus it gets the corners very well. Speeds up the process a LOT, and much more comfortable.

HTH,

Ron
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Last edited by 16Victor; 01-13-13 at 08:21 AM.
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Old 01-12-13, 09:42 PM
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Brilliant! I love it. A very clever tool for what is my least favorite task. Bravo.
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Old 01-12-13, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by rootboy View Post
Brilliant! I love it. A very clever tool for what is my least favorite task. Bravo.
That is almost a product, I have seen less become one.
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Old 01-12-13, 09:49 PM
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Thanks for sharing! I am definately going to try this one!
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Old 01-12-13, 10:04 PM
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Cheap felt pads can likely be had at dollar stores as furniture sliders. They also feature sticky sides to glue to sticks. Slick idea... gotta try it.
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Old 01-12-13, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by clasher View Post
Cheap felt pads can likely be had at dollar stores as furniture sliders. They also feature sticky sides to glue to sticks. Slick idea... gotta try it.
The McMaster referenced part is pure wool, the typical furniture sliders may not be. Wool I think is the way to go here.
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Old 01-12-13, 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
That is almost a product, I have seen less become one.
No *****. Nice job and great idea!
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Old 01-13-13, 09:13 AM
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Brilliant idea Victor, my fingers and I thank you!
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Old 01-13-13, 10:43 AM
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Super idea Victor. Now just sell it to Ronco and we'll see it forever on late-night cable tv ads.
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Old 01-13-13, 10:47 AM
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Way to use that grey matter!
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Old 01-13-13, 11:26 AM
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This is great, I know that cramped finger/wrist feeling well and this looks to make it much easier.
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Old 01-13-13, 02:02 PM
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Great idea. I will try this. Try glueing it to a ladies bendable nail file. Disposable one with foam.
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Old 01-13-13, 02:41 PM
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Thank you for sharing this tool design; it's so simple and such a great idea!
I wonder why felt is so expensive?
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Old 01-13-13, 04:21 PM
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That's a great tool,
picture made a similar tool.

6 x1 inch scrap of thick leather, drilled a hole on each end and put a cord in each end.
its a strop
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Old 01-13-13, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by VonCarlos View Post
Thank you for sharing this tool design; it's so simple and such a great idea!
I wonder why felt is so expensive?
Making felt out of wool is a time consuming and labor intensive process. I actually looked into one time years ago, as I thought it was spendy too. I was looking to buy a 1.5 inch thick piece for a queen mattress topper for our bed. Price put the squelch on that idea.
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Old 01-13-13, 05:00 PM
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Hmm, I got plenty of old felt slippers that woul be perfect.
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Old 01-13-13, 05:22 PM
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Excellent idea. Thanks!
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Old 01-13-13, 05:33 PM
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I will make 5 for prototypes, and post them in the Vintage Classified section when I do. Might be a few days. Rootboy and afilado got dibs if they want them - cost will be reasonable.
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Old 01-13-13, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
That is almost a product, I have seen less become one.
As well as being impressed by 16Victor's stick, I admire the economy of that sentence.
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Old 01-13-13, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by VonCarlos View Post
I wonder why felt is so expensive?
Simply because it takes a lot of wool, about double.

To give you an idea, a traditional Basque beret measuring around 10" across starts out about 20" across before it's felted (water, heat and movement cause little hooks on wool fibres to lock into each other, reducing the size and increasing the density of the fabric).

The things we cyclists know, eh?
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Old 01-14-13, 12:02 AM
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Absolutely not wishing to detract from 16Victor's stroke of geeeeeenyus, but I've had good luck with a 1" buffing wheel on a variable-speed Dremel for this application.
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Old 01-14-13, 06:39 PM
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Fantastic idea, 16Victor!!!!!!!!

Can you next invent a handy hub-cleaning apparatus? Please?
I'm using toothbrush with a drop or two of degreaser, but a polishing device for built hubs would be a great follow-up to the cleaning.

And I also like the 1" Dremel wheel disk idea. Do they sell those for Dremels or is yours home-made?
I sometimes wish there were a 3/16" shaft Dremel, for in between Dremel tasks and die-grinder duty, sigh.
The Dremel (with 1" stone wheel) was so handy today for relieving a PX10-style axle adjuster (that I added to the left dropout of my Steyr Clubman) to clear a Campag QR end housing.

I have blistered some finger skin out while polishing rims the usual way.

Last edited by dddd; 01-14-13 at 08:33 PM.
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Old 01-14-13, 06:54 PM
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Originally Posted by dddd View Post
Fantastic idea, 16Victor!!!!!!!!

Can you next invent a handy hub-cleaning apparatus? Please?
I'm using toothbrush with a drop or two of degreaser, but a polishing device for built hubs would be a great follow-up to the cleaning.

And I also like the Dremel wheel disk, do they sell those for Dremels of is yours home-made?

I have worn some finger skin out doing rims the usual way.
Isn't there a thing where people just ride with a leather strap around the hub permanently?
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Old 01-14-13, 06:59 PM
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I wonder why felt is so expensive?

McMaster is seldom the cheapest supplier for anything. But more stock and better service you'd be hard pressed to find. More expensive items I might shop around, but much of the time I'll gladly pay McMaster a few bucks more because they're such a pleasure to deal with.
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Old 01-14-13, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Dawes-man View Post

To give you an idea, a traditional Basque beret measuring around 10" across starts out about 20" across before it's felted (water, heat and movement cause little hooks on wool fibres to lock into each other, reducing the size and increasing the density of the fabric).
So I soaked a sheep in warm water and put it in the dryer with the intent of making a felt lamb....it didn't work

Well, I learned about felt making and rim polishing today....Thanks Dawesman and 16Victor
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