Raw & Polish

We all have all at one point, had a set of cranks that looked a little tired.

Sometimes the expense and waste of replacing perfectly servicable components can be a bit too much. In those instances, adopting some BMX bling and rawing and polishing those cranks might be the answer.

The first step is to strip whatever coating is currently on the component you are raw and polishing. Whether this is anodizing or a painted surface will depend how you remove it.

Paint can be easily removed using Scotch Brite pads. Similar to the green pads you clean your pots with, they are akin to sand paper, being much more abbrassive and available in varying levels of abrassion.

Start with a stronger level of abbrassion and work done to smoother and smoother pads. Work lightly and in a uniform direction without undue pressure as this can cause deep scratches which will take longer to polish out. This will leave a smooth level suface without pitting in preparation for polishing.

If the part is anodised then a caustic cleaner like Oven Pride will be needed to remove the anodized surface. Do a test piece first on an unobstrusive area to work out timings before committing to treating the whole component.

The next stage is stage is polishing, the simplest method of polishing is to use a metal polish like Brasso or Autosol and a lint free cloth. This process can be sped up by using a polishing wheel either attached to a drill or a bench wheel.

A polishing wheel with some polishing compound will make light and fast work of polishing your rawed components and a basic kit is not very expensive. Regardless of wheter you use power tools (Polishing Wheel tutorial) and elbow grease, go lightly and take your time as the more time you invest in the polishing the better the result.

Polished Crank Arm

Published by


I am an artist living and working in Aberdeen, I ride bikes and like to write about it sometimes.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s