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Cleaning "Black Chrome" Hardware

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Obese Chess, Feb 5, 2016.

  1. Obese Chess

    Obese Chess I'm Your New Dad Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2005
    Portland, OR
    That's right, everyone. You know it, you love it, you... can't get those spots off of it, ever.

    I've got a Dingwall here that has Hipshot-licensed hardware on it in "black chrome" or "cosmo black" or "smoked chrome" or whatever you want to call it. Bass is about four, five months old and is already starting to develop black and brown spots on the hardware that don't polish off easily. Eventually I'll just go for black hardware because I like it better anyway, but in the interim I'd love to be able to polish and clean it up.

    Anyone have any thoughts? I've already contacted Hipshot and will probably contact Dingwall as well but I'd like to see the community's take on it since the last thread about this was many years ago and the one response was "don't polish it, it's mojo."

  2. JustForSport


    Nov 17, 2011
    I haven't had much success with evening out the finish once it starts to change.
    Any abrasive including an eraser just takes the darker (black) part of the finish off faster and finally leaves a more silver chrome.
    I had got a bass with the bridge already pitting from lack of care, so tried a few things and ended up using a pink eraser to make it all the same shade as well as leveling out the pitting.
    Then I wiped it good with 3-in-1 oil, but any thin gun oil will work- it gets into the pits to stop oxidation, and can leave a thin film on the surface. The intonation springs/screws as well as the saddle height adjustment screws are good to hit with the oil while there, to keep them working well over time.
  3. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    Don't polish it, it's mojo. lol Everything I've found says to use plenty of water, a microfiber cloth, and non-abrasive cleaners and polishes. Doesn't sound like much help to me.
  4. Obese Chess

    Obese Chess I'm Your New Dad Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2005
    Portland, OR
    Ugh. This is what I was afraid of. I get that it's a cosmetic decision that looks great new, but hardware pitting after less than six months on a bass with an MSRP of $2,150 is really disappointing.
    Not Dingwall's fault, of course, especially since they don't make the hardware, just seems to be the nature of the beast with this color.

    @Sheldon D. - any thoughts/tips/input on how to make this look more like new again? It's an NG2, Serial Number 00948.

    Last edited: Feb 7, 2016
  5. guitarded


    Oct 23, 2005
    I use Wrights silver polish.
  6. I'm a troglodyte about a lot things & this is one. I use vinegar.

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