It would be easy to remove the scratches but impossible to duplicate the rough texture of the cladding.
Abrasives would remove the surrounding area so all is flat and the scratch is gone....But I have no idea how to impart the pattern again unless you had some sort of thing you could put on the cladding and hit with a hammer to impress the pattern.
Your best bet would be to smooth the scratch so it is less visible. How to do this would depend on how big the scratch is.
I have not tried this on the Avalanche yet but have had
some success on other plastic with scratches. Try using
a heat gun to heat up the area then use a course scotch
brite to add the texture. Be carefull not to over heat the
plastic as it may discolor it.
Ok try this xrover. This will be a PIA but it may work.
You have the texture but no shine....What you need to do then is remove the scratches from the sand paper by using finer abrasives. You could go to a 2000 grit sandpaper and then try the steps below.
Try getting a Swirl mark remover and apply it on there using a foam applicator. Work it until it dries then quickly wipe off excess. Check it out. did it improve? if so do it again until you are happy other wise you may just want to try a heavier cutting product like 3m Finnesse It 2 or even a polishing compound.
When done and you see the white haze from this stuff that you did not removesee the other thread on how to remove it.
There are also some plastic polishes like Plexus and novus but they are more made for Plastic rear windows on Convertables and gage cluster screens.
My roomate works for 3M so guess what, I tried doing exactly what you suggested. I tried microfinishing compound, finesse it, clear plastic cleaner the only thing to do next is going to involve a sledgehammer.
The cladding has a shinny coating of some sort on it. It looks like a clear coat for plastics. My scuffing it up with the sandpaper has removed the coating.
I bet if there were really a clear coat for plastic that would do the trick.
P.S. I already tried a urethane based clear coat which just peeled off.
I did clay it first. The clay kept comming apart. I made sure to keep the area lubricated with soapy water from a spray bottle. The distributer told me to cut the clay bar into 3 to 4 pieces and work with those. I think the clay might be bad because it seemed to be a little on the dry side and would not stay together.
hmmmmmmm Send Zaino an Email and ask him whats up.
When first using clay I normallyh knead it very well and kinda warm it up. Then I break off a piece about the size of a walnut and use that on the car. I then smoosh it flat and then start claying using a 10/90 mix of car shampoo and water.
Rub back to front on the horizontals and up and down on verticals surfaces. Make usre after say every square foot you reknead the clay.
Really! [ But, remove ALL chemicals, waxes, Polymers, etc. from the surface of the cladding before trying this. ]
If it really is plastic it was heat that put that shine on there, in the first place.
Do NOT use a torch, of any kind. Just hot air will do the trick.
I would try the wife's blow-dryer first. But, if that doesn't do the trick, (probably not hot enough) then you'll have to get ahold of an electricians heat-gun. The thing they shrink the heat-wrap with.
Now, be very careful with that gun. They do get VERY hot.
Work slowly, a little bit at a time and watch carefully for what is happening. Remember, you only need to melt the surface-abrasion that was created by the sand-paper. You do not want to melt the original texture. Start from a distance far enough to prevent rapid melting of the plastic. I'd say at least a foot away, more if you think it's too hot. Remember, do only a little at a time, until you get more comfortable with the proceedure.
It would probably be a good idea to keep the gun moving "back and forth" a little bit, so as to prevent a strong concetrated flow on a small spot. It can be very easy to over-do it.
Take your time and move-closer or apply the heat longer only in small increases. If this 'plastic-cladding' goes under the truck, anywhere, I would slide under there and experiment under there first, if I were you. You'll want to get a feel for how much heat and for how long "it" will take to react to the heat to get the desired effect.
Now, to tell you the truth, I do not yet own an Avalance but, I have done this with plastic panels on other vehicles and other plastic parts. It almost looks like magic when it changes.
But, be careful, don't over do it.
(I seriously doubt the hair-dryer will work but, give it a try, you never know)
BTW This is the same process used for putting the SHINE on gold-bullion and ingots. Yep! That bright shiny yellow stuff all stacked up in Fort Knox. But, with gold they do use a torch.
I wouldn't recommend that on plastic though. ?
Alex - where is it? In the sense of time/effort it actually may be cheaper to just replace the panel. Let us know where and how long - going to be hard to match the texture, but it sure beats repainting!
the scratch is on the right rear quater panel right near the bumper. in the end i will probly just get it replaced, my dad knows almost every one at the local chevy dealer so i sure he can snag one for free, since he gets about every thing else for free there
The plastic on the AV does scractch easily. Last night I set (didn't drag) a snowboard on top of the cargo cover panels while I was unloading the bed. This morning, after the snow had melted, I see a nice outline from one of the snowboard edges. Argh! I've also put some smaller marks in the lids of the side saddle storage bins when I set some tools on them. I think I'll try the heat method.
Instead of buying a new front bumper cladding (after I had a minor fender bender ) I was thinking that maybe it could be repaired by sanding the scraches out and filling the cuts in with plastic cladding compound. Had anyone done this or have any suggestions on how to do it.
What is the effect of sanding on the cladding? Does it leave a white place on the cladding? Anyone with some spare cladding try sanding on it to see what it does.
I wonder if you could melt the area and mold it back in place. Just thinking of ways to do this cheaply.
If all else fails, does anyone know the part # for the front bumper cladding?