Author Topic: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?  (Read 937 times)

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Offline nab

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Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« on: September 18, 2019, 08:59:36 PM »
Any tips on what to use to get rid of this WA red dirt stain on my aluminium checkerplate sidesteps? These are some secondhand side steps I bought, I have tried my 1400psi high pressure washer and it only takes a bit of it off.
I'm not after a "brand new" result but looking silver again would be nice.
I'm sure I read about CT-18 on here somewhere but can't find it again.


Online Pete79

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Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2019, 09:23:26 PM »
I’ve found that most of the various alloy cleaners out there are pretty much all Hydrofluoric acid based (some even come with a splash of Sulphuric acid thrown in for some extra zing).

When I was looking for something slightly less toxic to clean up my boat hull I stumbled across Kleen-a-hull which is Phosphoric acid based and slightly less burn your face off toxic as the other options.

This stuff did a good job removing 10 years of stains off the tinny. Just diluted it as per the instructions and rinsed it off properly.

I would only go down this path if the alloy step is on its own and not connected to a steel frame (or vehicle).
« Last Edit: September 18, 2019, 09:25:44 PM by Pete79 »

Offline BC66

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2019, 11:25:28 PM »
I used straight white vinegar to clean up our van inc the gal chassis. Removed a lot more than I expected


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Offline sparksy

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2019, 12:40:55 AM »
Try Oxylic acid or citric acid.
Both are reasonably safe, citric is classified as food safe. pool shops sell citric and hardware shops for oxylic .
Both will remove ferric stains

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2019, 03:39:50 AM »
Use the same acid they use on boats stainless trim.

I use it on alloy trays, makes 'em look like new
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Offline Steffo1

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2019, 07:37:40 AM »
 :D


 which is Phosphoric acid based



So Coca Cola should work?  :D
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Online tryagain

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2019, 07:43:37 AM »
I have heard of this one working well, looks like it contains the acids Pete was mentioning. https://www.supercheapauto.com.au/p/septone-septone-ali-brite-aluminium-cleaner---1-litre/1747.html

Offline Pottsy

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2019, 09:03:53 AM »
https://www.repco.com.au/en/brands/california-scents/california-scents-purple-metal-polish-355ml/p/A9444164

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Offline Bird

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2019, 10:33:35 AM »
We used some on mates trailer I sold fo rhim, but be careful with some of these corrosive type things..
They clean up amazingly, but they must do something to the metal as it can dull again really quickly and becomes a permanent job.
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Online Pete79

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2019, 11:35:49 AM »
https://www.repco.com.au/en/brands/california-scents/california-scents-purple-metal-polish-355ml/p/A9444164

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Offline tedota

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2019, 01:16:05 PM »
I've used a wire wheel in a drill on checker plate toolboxes and it brings them up pretty good. Take the sharpness off the plate a bit but gets rid of all the stains.

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #11 on: September 19, 2019, 01:52:01 PM »
the main ingredient in the Shit I use, Is "darustdoesfukoffquick"

Drop over one morning, take no time at all and it will all be squeaky clean.

No charge of course, I've gotten plenty of the stuff.
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Offline RonnieQ

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2019, 06:55:04 PM »
Try these and some elbow grease.
I have used these in the past for finishing machined allow and steel parts that have been produced on CNC machines.
They come in  different sizes and grits and can even be used on orbital sanders if hand use is to big a job.
Definitely not as agresssive as a wire wheel and leave a nice brushed finish.

https://www.3m.com.au/3M/en_AU/company-au/all-3m-products/~/Scotch-Brite-Heavy-Duty-Hand-Pad-7440/?N=5002385+3293193718&preselect=8710644+8710812+8710964+8711730+3293786499&rt=rud

More in the range.
https://www.3m.com.au/3M/en_AU/company-au/all-3m-products/~/All-3M-Products/Abrasives/Industrial-Abrasives-Finishing/Hand-Pads/Scotch-Brite/?N=5002385+8710644+8710812+8710964+8711017+8711730+3294800572+3294857444&rt=r3

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Offline sparksy

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #13 on: September 20, 2019, 10:09:19 AM »
Chances are is by removing the staining by mechanical means you are going to "scratch " the surface and drive the dirt into the metal. might look good but after a while the stain will reappear.
Hard to get rid of northwest dirt as its mostly iron.

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #14 on: September 20, 2019, 10:10:27 AM »
Leave it there until you sell the trailer, then replace the checker plate.
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Offline nab

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2019, 01:14:48 PM »
Cheers guys. I tried the vinegar first as that’s what I had, that had zero effect. Last night some mates came round so we decided to chuck on the side steps (wasn’t the plan but can’t knock back free help) but I still wanted to clean them while they were off. I hadn’t got any acid yet so I just took to it with the wire wheel on the grinder, 15mins later all looked like new. The shine has gone but all the dirt/stain is gone. I might give them a lick of paint to keep them looking ok (not sure black or clear).

Offline nab

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2019, 08:04:25 PM »

Offline sharkcaver

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2019, 09:39:05 PM »
The ct18 stuff you mention (blitz) works well. Too well. If you don't rinse it off quick enough you will loose all its lustre and then you need to polish it back up with purple metal polish.

I cant find a link on supercheap site, maybe they don't stock it no more?

edit: its gone clearance, no doubt replaced by their own septone brand product. Never tried the septone one to comment.

https://www.supercheapauto.com.au/p/chemtech-chemtech-blitz-aluminium-cleaner---1-litre/104303.html
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Offline JD-120

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #18 on: September 20, 2019, 10:12:45 PM »
California custom purple polish.

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Offline nab

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #19 on: September 20, 2019, 10:20:30 PM »
Cheers Shane, I might have to grab a bottle for future cleaning.

JD, way too shiny for me haha!!!!

Offline Cruiser 105Tvan

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #20 on: September 21, 2019, 10:24:07 PM »
:D
So Coca Cola should work?  :D
Phosphoric acid, main ingredient in Drain Cleaner too!!!!
« Last Edit: September 21, 2019, 10:27:52 PM by Cruiser 105Tvan »
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Offline sharkcaver

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Re: Cleaning red dirt stain from checkerplate?
« Reply #21 on: September 22, 2019, 09:40:00 PM »
Cheers Shane, I might have to grab a bottle for future cleaning.

JD, way too shiny for me haha!!!!

I can loan you some if needed.
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