Cleaning chrome on or refinishing a Vox amp front cover - how?

Discussion in 'Tech-Talk' started by Oldguitarguy, Sep 26, 2020.

  1. Oldguitarguy

    Oldguitarguy Squier-holic

    Mar 2, 2019
    Nj
    I have a Vox VT15 amp and the chrome looks corroded or stained with some white residue. See pictures below. It also has a little pitting and I and used some naval jelly for the rust. Tried Lysol, Goo Gone, and a little 0000 Steel wool on the chrome with no real results getting the corrosion off and shine back. Any ideas on getting the chrome shine back? Also, has anyone refinished the chrome with paint or anything else? If so please post picks showing what you did. Looking for ideas. Thanks.

    8D59F3ED-FA6F-467C-9CB8-FC07C97254D3.jpeg 25AB8509-7C1C-4819-863C-D2FD449C067A.jpeg 41DB0B5B-0156-4C0C-A8AA-D6A987DCA441.jpeg
     
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  2. drewcp

    drewcp Squier-holic

    Dec 14, 2018
    Saint Paul, MN
    If it were mine, and I cared, I would either scratch it up a lot and try and make it look like a brushed finish, then hit it with clear...or paint it black.
     
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  3. squierTony

    squierTony Dr. Squier

    Age:
    47
    Jul 4, 2012
    MAUD Oklahoma
    Try some barkeepers friend. That would probably take care of the rusty looking spots. I’d hit it with some kind of protective product after. I’ve used barkeepers friend on lots of chrome guitar parts with very good results.
     
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  4. speelyei

    speelyei Squier-Meister

    Age:
    48
    127
    Sep 22, 2020
    Mesa, AZ
    I’ve heard of people using the dull side of aluminum foil. The idea is to wad it into a ball and rub. It was explained to me that the aluminum flakes off and transfers into the little pits and scratches.
    I have not done this myself, so maybe do a little research before you try it?
     
  5. Zipslack

    Zipslack Squier Talker

    Age:
    50
    57
    Jan 7, 2018
    Brookhaven, MS, USA
    Simichrome paste.
     
  6. Oldguitarguy

    Oldguitarguy Squier-holic

    Mar 2, 2019
    Nj
    Some guy on the internet used Coca Cola and rubbed it in with crumpled aluminum foil and it actually works on chrome.
     
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  7. Big tuna

    Big tuna Dr. Squier

    May 6, 2014
    east Tn
    If the coke works let us know. If it will dissolve a tooth in a glass of coke overnight it should do something to the grill corrosion you would think.
     
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  8. Lonn

    Lonn Squier-holic

    Age:
    58
    Dec 19, 2009
    Carmel IN
    I've painted a couple of Vox amps but always left the grill alone. These are different amps.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. Oldguitarguy

    Oldguitarguy Squier-holic

    Mar 2, 2019
    Nj
    I tried it and it seems to work better than 0000 steel wool and compound. Surprising. I still have some corrosion left and will try Turtle Wax Chrome Polish and Rust Remover arriving today . Will try to report results. Here is the grill so far after the coke and aluminum foil work. image.jpg
     
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  10. DrBeGood

    DrBeGood Squier-holic

    Dec 9, 2014
    Sutton QC, CANADA
    You tried that yourself ? There are some persisting urban myths [​IMG]
    I once painted my AD30VT grill. Not because it was in bad shape, just because ...

    I sanded it with an orbital sander and used a flat black metal primer if I recall. It held pretty good for the time I kept it.

    VOX AD30VT black grill.jpg
     
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  11. duceditor

    duceditor Squier-Axpert Gold Supporting Member

    Age:
    73
    May 29, 2014
    The Monadnocks, NH USA
    Old fashioned "chrome" is largely illegal to apply these days. I don't know the details as well as some here likely do, but the process is one that when done on a large scale is hard to make environmentally safe. Thus we get stuff that looks okay when new, but that quickly corrodes.

    The various steps to "fixing" it are not actual "fixes," in that they do not correct the cause of the quick corruption. They are at best clean up jobs.

    Among motor heads this is well understood and thus 'restorations' often include having parts rechromed the old fashioned way -- something that small shops can safely (and legally) do.

    My `76 Silverface TR was in remarkable shape when I bout it used about twenty years ago, bit some of its small chrome pieces were a bit corroded. The only solution to that was buy replacements -- some of which still sit bagged as the amp would have to be partially disassembled to replace them. A "when I get around to it" project for now another 20 years.

    The grill on my Vox is not yet corroded, but in truth its finish looked so-so at best from day one. And that plasticky "VOX" logo looks to my eyes even worse. (sigh)

    -don

    Age 44 years. Generally nice, but look at those top chrome strip pieces. Blech!


    1976FenderTwinReverb--TheBeast.jpg
     
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  12. Big tuna

    Big tuna Dr. Squier

    May 6, 2014
    east Tn
    It doesn't work on teeth just discolors urban myth. It does work on his grill for sure much better.
     
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  13. Oldguitarguy

    Oldguitarguy Squier-holic

    Mar 2, 2019
    Nj
     
  14. Oldguitarguy

    Oldguitarguy Squier-holic

    Mar 2, 2019
    Nj
    Flat black looks good. Will consider as an option. Thanks
     
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  15. Oldguitarguy

    Oldguitarguy Squier-holic

    Mar 2, 2019
    Nj
    So here’s the final product. Out of all the things I tried, oddly it seems like the coke and aluminum foil did most of the work. If you look close on the lower right, there are still some spots left. Didn’t want to rub off the chrome.

    By the way, a magic eraser and some Lysol cleaner really took some tough grunge off the tolex that I couldn’t get off with paper towels, and it didn’t damage it.

    6A5BEA9C-6C9F-42FE-942D-6F07798966C4.jpeg
     
  16. Big tuna

    Big tuna Dr. Squier

    May 6, 2014
    east Tn
    Man it looks so much better than before and it cleaned up nicely good job.
     
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  17. SoundDesign

    SoundDesign Squier-holic

    An old girlfriend of mine's dad was a car guy. He restored oldies - Model Ts, Oaklands etc. He had "guys" - body guys, leather guys, chrome guys, engine guys and so on. Chrome work is definitely serious business.
     
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