Customizing and TuningHow to remove chrome, products and video

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I didnt find a thread specific to this topic started and I have looked on the innerwebs and found everything from easy off over cleaner to coca-cola as removers.

Has anyone tried these or other methods and been successful?

I have tried Simple Green with success for paint and chrome removal on plastic. It strips it right off with no harm. My method was to put enough simple green concentrate in a glass jar (ie; jelly/jam jar) to cover the part and let it soak overnight.

I can't say for certain if it removes factory paint or tampos though, as I tried it on old cars I painted as a kid that I wanted to restore.

Simple Green

Interesting about the SImple Green! Some of my child hood sizzlers cars may need restoration to OEM status someday. I have some simple green I was going to try. Sounds like you used it uncut. Do you remember how long it took?

The first product I tried yesterday - is called Formula 88. It is a de-greaser/cleaner. I used a plastic food grade storage container and just sprayed enough product in to cover the test chrome piece. The test piece was part of a cut up plastic chassis. The chromed inside of the test piece came off within a minute or two. After an hour of occasional jostling - two of the side rails had became splotchy. After 8 hours the piece still had chrome on the outside, but it easily wiped away under a warm water/soap wash.

I am also remembering some cautions about acetone/finger nail polish remover and unwanted chrome removal as having been posted here. Does anyone have experience with that? Does it immediately come off or does it become noticeable only later?

Here's a video a great customizer on youtube made that demonstrated how to remove chrome off plastic parts:

Must have missed that one. I have the acid he uses in our pool supplies, but looking for something I can do indoors. Might try the vinegar he mentioned.

I did try a tile cleaner called ZAP! today. It hasnt done zip after soaking for over an hour now...


I use nail polish remover for taking Tampos off with a Q-tip or cotton ball. YMMV

I've had very good luck with Easy Off. You just need patience cause it doesn't happen too quickly. I use nail polish remover to remove tampos but only on metal. Tried it once on a plastic HW Subaru and it ruined the body.


I did try a tile cleaner called ZAP! today. It hasnt done zip after soaking for over an hour now...

A little over 4 hours now and all of the chrome has gone away!

I am trying to stay with less caustic stuff, so this afternoon I tried the rubbing alcohol bath. Nothing happening after two hours of soaking!

I also had tried 409 this morning. Best results so far! Most of the chrome was gone within 5 minutes and all was gone in 15 minutes.

Trying the vinegar bath this evening as well. Not much going in the first 30 minutes.

Thanks! That is the video that set me on this quest! I havent seen that product around here though, so I am trying out what we already have in stock and your suggestions!

I did the nail polish remover on three tampos this evening - metal body. Lots of elbow grease, but it removed most of the material. Like Smitty also noted with the alcohol on wheel chrome post it also did leave tampo in the negative (recessed) part of the body.

Although I could see body color on the q-tip it still had a nice finish and didnt seem harm it.

The vinegar is still soaking, but not a flake is missing or will rub off...

...The vinegar is still soaking, but not a flake is missing or will rub off...

After 48 hours about 95% of the chrome had come off in the vinegar bath. The part remaining still wouldnt rub off though.

Think I am going to stick with 409 as the best indoor product for removing chrome for now. It is relatively fast and cleans up with warm water and soap easily.

Just paint the chrome white with plastic model paint. Like many race cars were doing when chroming was too costly...I did it on some rims when I was just a teenager, yes back when dinosaurs roamed the earth....

Finally found the product used in the video! Two for one at O Realys auto house. We then went out to the new big Wally World and they had gallon jugs of it in the automotive section for just a buck more.

Diecast Cars, Hot Wheels, Matchbox

I have been using the Super Clean exclusively for over a month now.

The chrome starts coming off within a few minutes and is mostly gone in 10.  The rest will easily wipe off or wash off with water.  I have also let it sit over night and there was no degradation of the plastic or any detail loss.

The liquid darkens over time, but continues to work effectively.

I am using a Rx pill bottle that will hold an entire chassis piece as my soaking container.

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