Having removed the external trim for body restoration, the thought crossed my mind to have all pieces chromed. Has anyone done this? Do you think it would look over-the-top? Should I stick with stainless steel? Cheers - Rob
Send all your stainless to a professional metal finisher. You will NEVER be able to produce the finishes that the a professional can. Its the diameter and the types of wheels they use that produce the polishing results that you cannot. You can get a 6-8" buffer and use the correct compounds and think it looks good until you see what really could be achieved. Good luck with your car.
Well, yes. A top shop with the right equipment and experience is going to produce better results than you're likely to get at home with Eastwood or HF stuff. It is a labor-intensive job, and you'll pay for that. If your goal is 100 points, it is the way to go.
If your goal is to make it a lot better than it is, but with the dual benefits of saving a ton of money and ending up with tools you'll use in other places, then home-polishing is fine.
Lastly, is the dreaded "chrome and polish shop disease". This is when they lose irreplaceable parts, or send them back knotted into a bowline from getting grabbed by the polishing wheel. Of course, you can do that at home, as well.
Meanwhile, not all shops are created equal. Check around. First rate will cost you tons, and probably not be nearby. The nearby and cheap shops will quite possibly produce a quality about equal, or less, to doing it yourself.
For instance, my nearby chromer/polisher had a guy would grind off perfections in the basic casting before chroming. This is a fairly common process. However, he ground away about 90% of the "Carello" ID on a license plate light assembly. Fortunately, I had a backup. These guys are not restorers, they are for-profit businesses with all of the variability in crew that all companies face.
If I'm going through all the work and effort in doing a body restoration I know I would want to have my stainless trim looking its best, instead of just settling for something mediocre 'cause that is what it will look like in a side by side comparison. You will not have any regrets in spending the extra dough. Its not as much as you would think especially in comparison to chroming. Your taking the trim off anyway, get some quotes and have a look at some of their finished parts. Do things ONCE, you'll be happier you did.
Most of the external bright work on the Montreal is stainless steel but there are a few pieces that are chrome plated steel. With the exception of the front grill the rest of the chrome plated parts will fit in a sandwich baggie; well that is what I used. There are chrome bits on the top rear edge of each door, cover plates and bolts for the rear window hatch and one center windshield squirter.