How to clean HO Scale Wheels on Model Trains
There are a lot of methods to do this. My experience shows that using metal polish is the best way whenever possible.
For brass, use Brasso, Simi-Chrome or Flitz.
For all others, you can use those three and Noxon is also very good. I don't use Noxon for brass because I have Brasso, but it will work on brass.
The results are excellent.
I put the polish in a glob on a heavy duty micro fiber cleaning rag and just rub the wheels until clean, works really fast. After that I use a tooth brush, dish soap and COLD water.
It is totally possible to put wheels in the drill press and do this, but you need to know how to get them back into gauge after you do that using the Tacky glue method I showed in the SDP40 rebuild video. Once wheels are removed from their axles they tend to go out of gauge quite often.
There is another way to use the metal polish and that is to put it on the cloth wheel of a flex shaft moto-tool that has a slow speed and then put it in a bench vise. This works very well on wheels that don't come off their axles - this is a future video.