Motorcycle – Cafe Racer, Polished Aluminium Dash Assembly

Lovely little job here, drawings were supplied by customer which we duly transferred to a 2d cad program ready for loading onto the laser machine in order to cut the main parts from 10mm thick aluminium.

Laser cut parts

Laser cut parts

Once parts had been laser cut, I had a very good friend drop them on his cnc mill, and counter bore the back of the cut holes, smaller ones were for various warning lights and needed to be recessed to allow for the fixing nut, the large clock apertures counter bored to allow the rolled aluminium clock tubes to sit neatly into them.

Trial assembly

Trial assembly

The clock bodies / drums were fabricated from 1.5mm thick ns4 aluminium sheet, cut, rolled and tig welded together, re-rolled and checked for size against the recess diameter in the back face and also the bottom discs.

Clock bodies rolled, welded and checked fro size

Clock bodies rolled, welded and checked for size, polishing begins

Once all parts were manufactured a mammoth polishing effort commenced

Showing underside of assembly

Showing underside of assembly

Several grades of soap and mops were used in the polishing process, even wet and dry grades were used on the face to try and remove as many marks as possible. Its always handy to have a good polishing motor as the mops can really drag the spindle speed down. Ideally you want to be polishing at about 2800 rpm, with good quality mops and soaps to get a good finish. Its important to start with a rough sisal fast cutting and hard polishing mop, they are particularly useful for first stage polishing on all metals including aluminium, brass, copper and steels. These will remove light marks left from preparation and are usually used with Brown metal polishing compound on soft metals or Black metal polishing compound on steels.

After a couple hours polishing

After a couple hours polishing

Stitched polishing mops are versatile cutting and polishing mops for general polishing but are less aggressive than sisal polishing mops. Stitched polishing mops are ideal for use on aluminium, copper, brass and steel and can be used with -Brown, Blue, Black, Green or white polishing soaps.


Ready for soft loose leaf final polishing mop. The most popular type of finishing mop, loose fold polishing mops can be used with Blue, White, Pink and Jewellers Rouge polishing compounds. Loose fold polishing mops are manufactured from 100% white soft cotton, with no hard pieces.

Finally polished and ready to pack up and despatch to customer

Finally polished and ready to pack up and despatch to customer

After polishing with mops and soaps I always use a good metal polish to bring up a bit better and add a lustre to the parts.

Hopefully soon have a picture once fitted to the bike.


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