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Urban Guerilla
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404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My headers have apparently received years of abuse from road grime. They should be silver (ok, gold after the heat gets through them), but instead they are mostly grayish and black from all the accumulated dirt.

I'd REALLY like to do this the easy way - clean them up while on the bike and be done with them. Is there anything out there that could bring back the shine with some time and elbow grease?

If not, would you suggest hi-temp paint and in what color? Will I need to replace the gasket after removing the headers for paint?

OR... what about header wrap, just on the four tubes? I imagine that that will get real grimey real soon.

Here is a pic that shows the exhaust well - I'm going to be installing a bellypan in the next few days after I get some paint done (original Suzuki red on the bellypan, fender, tailsection; tank's good). I guess since she's getting new paint I should take care of the only other eyesore on the bike, and do something about the header.
 

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Urban Guerilla
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404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, money's an object for sure, but I was hoping to go the lazy route and not have to remove them ;) Time is a big thing for me right now. I think if I wire wheel them I would need to recoat them with something, no? I know it's a botch job but if I could get away with just taking the drill or Dremel to the accessible parts for now, and not repaint, I might go that way.

I wish there was a really good stainless steel polish or something, though that would probably take more time and effort than removing them, lol.
 

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GURU
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4,412 Posts
Nah..paint them, install them, turn the bike on. That will bake the paint on just fine.
 

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Urban Guerilla
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404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
In theory, it sounds like half an afternoon's work... no big. But that's only in theory, and my my bike seems to like to disprove such crazy notions, lol. Everything seems to take longer on this thing, partly because the PO didn't really take care of it too well.
 

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Function IS Form
19 Z900, 88 Kat11
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17,434 Posts
Doesn't take long. I suggest getting new bolts and USE A TORQUE WRENCH WHEN PUTTING THEM ON.

USE. A. TORQUE. WRENCH. WHEN. BOLTING. THE. HEADERS. ON.

I bake high-temp paint with a heatgun so I don't scratch it putting the parts back on.. not cause I give a shit about scratches, but that's a depressing fuckin thing.
 

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Build It Ride It Live It
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10,684 Posts
If you want a quick way to bring back some shine with out having to pull the pipes. Get a can of degreeser, WD40 and a Scotch Brite pad.

First wash the pipes with Soap and water. Dawn works good.

Once they are dry hit them with the degreeser to get all the hard stuff. Rinse them off and dry them.

Spray them with WD40 and start scrubing with the Scotch Brite Pad.

This brings back some of the shine and helps get the cooked gunk off the pipe. The WD40 does what it's sapossed to and lubes the Scotch Brite and basicly wet sands the stainless.

If you want them to be really shiny you'll have to polish them back after that. You can get a soft polish wheel that hooks into a drill. That would work pretty well to finish them off.
 

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Urban Guerilla
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404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
haelo said:
Send them to Jet Hot and let them take care of it...

:)
That's definitely outta my budget, lol, especially since I can't be running around without headers till they come back.

I got some steel wool pads (super fine), and Formula 88, gonna try the "easy" way first. It will have to wait as I spent the day with my dad patching up a hole in the ceiling in my room - a big chunk of it came down after all the heavy rain this past week. Fixed now, just waiting to paint it.

Always something...
 

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fighter transplant in NC
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14,319 Posts
lets just say that industrial scotch brite pads are right up there with duct tape and zip ties. they work AWESOME
 

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Eff Tee Pee
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29,647 Posts
Scrapyard said:
If you want a quick way to bring back some shine with out having to pull the pipes. Get a can of degreeser, WD40 and a Scotch Brite pad.

First wash the pipes with Soap and water. Dawn works good.

Once they are dry hit them with the degreeser to get all the hard stuff. Rinse them off and dry them.

Spray them with WD40 and start scrubing with the Scotch Brite Pad.

This brings back some of the shine and helps get the cooked gunk off the pipe. The WD40 does what it's sapossed to and lubes the Scotch Brite and basicly wet sands the stainless.

If you want them to be really shiny you'll have to polish them back after that. You can get a soft polish wheel that hooks into a drill. That would work pretty well to finish them off.

LISTEN TO THE MAN
 

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fighter transplant in NC
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14,319 Posts
on the 8th day God created scotch brite, duct tape, zip ties and aircraft remover
 

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Wannabe
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1,502 Posts
The toolroom guy at school had an interesting method for cleaning pipes. I'm not sure I'd want to try it though.

Basic story was that he has a customer come in really late with a broken horn while on a long trip. So he said "yeah I'll change it for you, just to keep you going." So he's up inside the hot bike trying to pull the horn off. But it's REALLY stuck! So he pulls and pulls, then it finally comes loose and he accidentaly drags his bare hand down the hot pipe.

Burnt the everliving shit out of his hand (still has the scar), but it cleaned the pipe to just like new where his hand dragged across it!!! Tres cool.

Might be a good use for cats? Shave the fucking things and rub them over a hot exhaust pipe :D!
 
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