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TheBearken

10-Hole Wheel Restoration

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Hey Folks,

 

I've been on a quest for some OEM wheels for a minute, and have my heart set on a set of turbines. I recently came upon a Cherokee for sale that had 10-holes (my 2nd choice) along with a ton of interior and power goodies I'm coveting, and the deal was too good to pass up. I figured I could post my experience trying to refinish the wheels and maybe get some pointers along the way. 

 

to start, I dropped the wheels after fighting some seriously overtorqued bolts and hit them with soap/water and a scouring pad to get off the surface dirt

 

If I had more time and resources to dedicate, I would have had the tires removed, but since they're junk anyway, I'm just working around them the best I can

 

I used KleanStrip Premium Stripper to remove the existing coating. Stuff works within 10 minutes and paints on with a brush. I coated the entire surface with a thin layer.

 

After a few minutes you'll see the layers pealing up:

 

20190929_123436.jpg.37226f5f2bcc5437742464da4085b0ef.jpg

 

I used a plastic scraper to remove the gelled up coating. It melted off like nothing for most of the areas, here is half the wheel scraped:

 

20190929_123627.jpg.3ce410c2ae1f90364ead7462cbbc4036.jpg

 

After the first round, there are still a few spots needing hit again, so I applied more stripper and repeated the process. After that I hit it with a scouring pad and hose to get the residual goop off:

 

20190929_124347.jpg.35de1b6ce8070dd7c1cf9cd8a0564da9.jpg

 

At this point I know there's a decision to make about clearing up the damaged areas, and how far I want to go with the resulting finish. I ordered sanding pads for my orbital sander, a grinding/polishing wheel set, and some nylon pad-like attachments for my angle grinder. I started with the pads, which ended up working way better than I expected, and will most likely be where I end up.

Afterwards I tried using the polishing pads, since they are listed as going up to 2000 grit whereas the pads are supposedly 320. Those ended up leaving a lot of black marks, and since they were rigid, they were leaving erratic patterns.

 

Here is the wheel after going over it a few times with the scouring pads:

 

20190929_140139.jpg.0918340a409daed24bab810dc29a88aa.jpg

 

I'm still working on the finish before I clear coat them. While I think they look 100% better than before, what I didn't account for is how the machining grooves which run perfectly circular would interact with the sanding marks. I did my best to hold my grinder so that the wheel would sand along the plane of the marks, but as you can see, I'm not able to do that in the tighter spaces.

 

For cleaning up the holes, I just threw a small wire-wheel on the dremmel and it ran itself around each of them easy enough.

 

I'll add some more when I finish, currently my obstacles are getting the finish more consistent, getting to the area around the valve stem, and removing the micro debris that accumulated in the machining grooves on some of the rougher areas (mineral spirits, aluminium cleaner, soap/water, thinner, nothing has wanted to make it go away).

 

Let me know your thoughts or if anyone has some suggestions, thanks!

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I actually wouldn’t recoat with clear. I’m currently restoring my aluminum wheels, and I think that just keeping them straight aluminum will be easier to clean and re-polish if they get gunked up.

Before

e0d744f485a286e7904a360e7344db4e.jpg

After

1453c4474228105f500f237617e097bc.jpg

 

All done with Scotch-Brite, a drill with a polishing wheel, and time.

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

 

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8 minutes ago, Dammerung said:

I actually wouldn’t recoat with clear. I’m currently restoring my aluminum wheels, and I think that just keeping them straight aluminum will be easier to clean and re-polish if they get gunked up.

Before

e0d744f485a286e7904a360e7344db4e.jpg

After

1453c4474228105f500f237617e097bc.jpg

 

All done with Scotch-Brite, a drill with a polishing wheel, and time.

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

 

Hot damn. Like I need to add another anal detail to my list. 

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3 hours ago, Dammerung said:

I actually wouldn’t recoat with clear. I’m currently restoring my aluminum wheels, and I think that just keeping them straight aluminum will be easier to clean and re-polish if they get gunked up.

Before

e0d744f485a286e7904a360e7344db4e.jpg

After

1453c4474228105f500f237617e097bc.jpg

 

All done with Scotch-Brite, a drill with a polishing wheel, and time.

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

 

 

That looks pretty damn good, what polish did you use, and how bad was the corrosion beforehand? I definitely wouldnt have been able to get by with just scotchbrites in some areas but I may be sold on skipping clear based on your results.

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  That looks pretty damn good, what polish did you use, and how bad was the corrosion beforehand? I definitely wouldnt have been able to get by with just scotchbrites in some areas but I may be sold on skipping clear based on your results.

 

I used mother’s mag and aluminum polish. My clear looked like garbage, but the aluminum underneath was mostly good, just some curb rash and deep scratches. Hardest part is getting the clear coat off. I used Jasco paint stripper and goof off graffiti remover, but I had to hit it about 5-8 times. The stripper also forced me to repaint the interior triangles for the wheels.

 

 I wouldn’t have even thought about doing this if my Dad hadn’t told me about it when he had his S10 rims done 20 years ago.

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

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I actually wouldn’t recoat with clear. I’m currently restoring my aluminum wheels, and I think that just keeping them straight aluminum will be easier to clean and re-polish if they get gunked up.
Before
e0d744f485a286e7904a360e7344db4e.jpg
After
1453c4474228105f500f237617e097bc.jpg
 
All done with Scotch-Brite, a drill with a polishing wheel, and time.
 
Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
 

That looks amazing!
I'd love to do this with some turbines.


Founding Member of the Comanche Preservation Society

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On 10/2/2019 at 9:15 AM, Dammerung said:

I actually wouldn’t recoat with clear. I’m currently restoring my aluminum wheels, and I think that just keeping them straight aluminum will be easier to clean and re-polish if they get gunked up.

Before

e0d744f485a286e7904a360e7344db4e.jpg

After

1453c4474228105f500f237617e097bc.jpg

 

All done with Scotch-Brite, a drill with a polishing wheel, and time.

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

 

Beautiful! :bowdown:

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Ok, time for some tricks! I refurbished my Alcoas for my Ranger a while back. They were machined finish and had the clear flaking off and a bit of corrosion on the lip. And I also wanted the polished look. Started with 80 grit for the rough parts, 220 for the rest working my way up to 3000, ending with a buff and Mother's aluminum polish. Clear won"t work on such a smooth surface; after some research, I found a great product: Alumaclear. It's what truckers use to protect polished aluminum parts on their rig. Lasts 1-2 years and can easily be stripped off with acetone or mineral sipirts (can't remember which) to then be reapplied. It's been pretty much 2 years now, just starting to get a little bit of a dull, but no chipping of flaking otherwise. Downside is that it's not as self-leveling as automotive paint, so you'll end up with orange peel unless you practice your application a bit. Other bummer is price (60$ for a can IIRC) but worth every penny in my opinion. A can is just enough for 2 coats on 4 wheels. Pics are before and after, the after doesn't have the alumaclear yet:

29744652_10156278618769948_3306606441670999250_o.jpg

29749621_10156281794424948_229993348077308012_o.jpg

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27 minutes ago, OldSch88L said:

Ok, time for some tricks! I refurbished my Alcoas for my Ranger a while back. They were machined finish and had the clear flaking off and a bit of corrosion on the lip. And I also wanted the polished look. Started with 80 grit for the rough parts, 220 for the rest working my way up to 3000, ending with a buff and Mother's aluminum polish. Clear won"t work on such a smooth surface; after some research, I found a great product: Alumaclear. It's what truckers use to protect polished aluminum parts on their rig. Lasts 1-2 years and can easily be stripped off with acetone or mineral sipirts (can't remember which) to then be reapplied. It's been pretty much 2 years now, just starting to get a little bit of a dull, but no chipping of flaking otherwise. Downside is that it's not as self-leveling as automotive paint, so you'll end up with orange peel unless you practice your application a bit. Other bummer is price (60$ for a can IIRC) but worth every penny in my opinion. A can is just enough for 2 coats on 4 wheels. Pics are before and after, the after doesn't have the alumaclear yet:

29744652_10156278618769948_3306606441670999250_o.jpg

29749621_10156281794424948_229993348077308012_o.jpg

 

Doesn't look like the same wheel. That is some high shine right there. Nice!!

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I had restored a set of spoke wheels. Wish I had a picture of the before but they were painted spray paint black and still had the clear underneath. I stripped it off after like 12 cans of stripper. Then sanded starting at 100 grit all the way to 3000.  Then polished with blue magic metal polish. Stuff is so awesome. It leaves like a protective coating on it. No need to clear just some clean up once a while. Made it two Winters and with some polish in the spring good as new. That's an old pic but the best once of them done after painted inside the spokes. 

IMG_20180530_233123.jpg

IMG_20180608_155634.jpg

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ooooo, now I want to polish my set of turbines!

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Those are fantastic looking! Turbines were my #1 choice but I came upon the 10-hole sooner and for far cheaper. Someday though!

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