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 [Picture Journal] Polishing the Intake Manifold 
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Post [Picture Journal] Polishing the Intake Manifold
I've always wanted one... I've decided I needed to "Man up" and do it myself! I'll be posting pictures after every day I work on it with a brief description of what I've done, starting yesterday! I only get a hour or two to play, so it'll be very slowly. But I thought you guys may enjoy watching it, and see if I pull it off or bung it up!



02/01/12 - Day 1:

Disassembly
Pulled the Intake off the ZE:

Image

Cleaning
Cleaned with a wirebrush attachment on a drill
Began filing down seams

Image


02/02/12 - Day 2:

Smoothing
Cast aluminum has many ridges, often uneven. began smoothing with a combination of sandpaper, drill and dremel work.

Image


02/03/12 - Day 3:

Seams
Before tackling the seams:

Image

Ran out of time to finish it up:
Image

End of day 3:

Image


02/05/12 - Day 4:

Between The Runners
Working on the seams between the runners. Here's one already done, and about to work on the second runner:

Image

After smoothing out the runner:

Image

Working on the pipe by the VRIS as well:

Image

End of Day 4:

Image


02/06/12 - Day 5:

Rear Runner Seams
Working on the seams on the rear runners now. Here's where I started:

Image

What I accomplished on this side:
Image

Also tried smoothing some areas that I could reach with my wheel:
Image

The other side is very complex so I will have to revert to my dremel before hand sanding:
Image

Alternate side of the rear runners:
Image

02/07/12 - Day 6:

Unproductive
I am running out of areas I can reach with my dremel and drill, which is making it harder to get anything productive done.I tried smoothing out the waves that were caused by the drill and dremel, there is a lot of material I need to get rid of in order to get some of these dimples out, I found out. Sad...

Image
Image

End of Day 6. It is getting shinier. A lot of areas are now smoothed out too.
Image

02/07/12 - Day 7:

Dimples!
Did a little hand sanding with some sandpaper I found in the garage.

Image

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Last edited by SuperK on September 24 2014, 6:16 PM, edited 8 times in total.



February 02 2012, 5:28 PM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
lookin good man!
for some reason it's super cool to watch the steps as it gets shinier XD

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February 02 2012, 5:30 PM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
looking good. keep up the hard work. ive been thinking of doing the same thing but i hate sanding by hand. my plan was to build a 8 or 10" polishing wheel out of an old AC motor. polishing wheel kits can be had for about $100 with all the wheels and types of polish youd ever need.


February 02 2012, 7:11 PM
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Lesson from my intake: don't screw around, go buy a $30 carbide. Flame shape is best.

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February 02 2012, 7:43 PM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
It's a start, post pics as you progress along.

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February 02 2012, 8:34 PM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
curious ryan, how long did you spend polishing your intake?

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February 02 2012, 11:53 PM
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So long I've repressed it.

Spent most of the time dicking around with dremel sanding drums.

Angle grinder and carbide is where its at.

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February 02 2012, 11:59 PM
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LOL stupid dremel sanding drums, they look so tempting to use and draw you in... then you realize, that's the wrong thing to do! I already used up all the ones that came with my dremel kit. *break* next! *wear out* next! SANDING DRUMS, Y U NO LAST MORE THAN 5 MINUTES??!?!

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February 03 2012, 12:05 AM
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Image


That was my kit.

It is now gone.

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Black GS - Summer DD/Race car - Fancy KLZE
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February 03 2012, 12:13 AM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
stone wheels = useless

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February 03 2012, 12:16 AM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
SuperK wrote:
stone wheels = useless

Agree !!


It's a lot of work to polish the manifold ! Just take your time and don't rush.

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February 03 2012, 3:28 AM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
Belt... Sander... Epic.

I took all the casting flash from the front 3 runners in about 5 minutes with my 1/2" belt sander, and another 10 minutes completed my rough sand. I still haven't ordered finer paper, but I imagine 3 hours would be the max I could spend on this before having a mirror in front of me...

Granted, the straightneck isn't exactly curvy.(hence the name :lol: ), so I didn't have as many tough spots to hit.

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February 03 2012, 3:33 AM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
what grit paper were you using on the belt sander? you didnt put any massive scratches in the manifold when removing the casting lines?


February 03 2012, 4:45 PM
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I just attempted to check, and honestly it's not labeled. I bought the little sander at a Big lots for a pittance and figured I'd give it a go. The back of the belt is blank, it's just what it came packaged with. :shrug:

It's pretty rough though, if the sander wasn't variable speed it could have been ugly. I verified that it is a 7 speed, not 12 as I had previously stated.

No massive scratches, I had a LOT of material to remove on the sides of the runners, the casting flash was pretty thick on it. I didn't tackle the flat surfaces, since the 1/2" belt wouldn't allow a smooth finish. I've got another belt sander I'll be trying for that later on. :welder:

My advice is to just take it slow, and use a variable speed sander. Hobby sanders like the one I picked up are great for tight spaces.

I'll be hand sanding the final touches, most likely.

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'92 GS 5 spd - Straightneck KL, 67mm TB, MegaSquirt, Coilpacks, 5 lugs, Speed6 brakes, FD wheels, wiretuck, progressive coilovers, shorty headers w/ custom collector, AEM WB, 2.5" straight, Borla XS
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February 03 2012, 7:00 PM
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Post Re: Polishing the Intake Manifold
i was planning on rough sanding with a palm sander on the flat surfaces atleast. there awesome cuz you can put whatever grit paper you want but as you probably know theyd be useless for removing casting marks or irregularities. as far as i know belt sanders dont have a very high grit paper available, but with common sense and some care they can be great tools.


February 03 2012, 7:29 PM
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