Polishing Rims - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
Hotrodders.com -- Hot Rod Forum

Register FAQ Search Today's Posts Unanswered Posts Auto Escrow Insurance Auto Loans
Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board > Tech Help> Body - Exterior
User Name
lost password?   |   register now

LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 01-20-2003, 08:08 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 53
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Post Polishing Rims

I have a set of Iroc wheels off an 86 Camaro, I was wondering if anyone out there is familiar with turning a dull finished rim into a polished finish. I would like to know what is the best way to go about doing it, and what tools to use. Another thing is after they are polished how do i keep the shine? with a clear coat or just cleaning them?

Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 01-20-2003, 08:20 PM
Halloweenking's Avatar
Fantastically cannibalistic!
Last photo:
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Spooksville
Posts: 1,353
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

Polishing is a long monotenus job. Go to Por-15.com they have a kit that has everything you will need to polish your wheels including a clearcote for afterwards. Have fun!

Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 01-20-2003, 09:12 PM
4 Jaw Chuck's Avatar
Hotrodders.com Moderator
Last photo:
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Age: 49
Posts: 6,177
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 120
Thanked 450 Times in 325 Posts

As an alternative to a polished aluminum finish why not try this;
  • -Remove all traces of clear coat on the rim, oven cleaner works pretty good, paint remover too.
  • -Using a pump bottle and a good toilet brush use a 50/50 mixture of CLR or other phosphoric acid based cleaner, scrub the rim clean, clean, clean. Essentially your etching the rim in this step.
  • -Get a good pair of goggles or face mask and rubber gloves for the next step.
  • -Mix a solution of Muriatic acid and water 50/50 to start (remember science class? Always mix acid to water not vise-versa). Fill a pump bottle with the solution and spray the rim and scrub with the toilet brush at the same time, slowly the rim will start to turn grey. Keep spraying and scrubbing until the entire rim is a flat greyish hue, pay attention to spots still shiny and concentrate on them.
  • -After securing a uniform grey film on the rim rinse it thoroughly with water and use some baking soda as a paste to scrub the rim with the brush.
  • -Let dry, baking is preferable (hydrogen embrittlement has occurred so a day in the sun usually works fine for a surface treatment).

Voila your rim is now coated with a conversion coating of aluminum oxide, not unlike one created when anodizing. The difference is you do not need to coat the rim to seal the coating although it doesn't hurt.

I have done this to numerous pitted aluminum rims and it looks good, kinda old school with the flat grey look. If you like you can sand and polish high spots to get a different look. Try it on a aluminum fan spacer to see if you like the colour, it's kinda like a battleship grey. Best part of the whole thing is you don't have to remove the tire to do this!

Chuckies cheap rim trick for the day.
“She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts, kid. I've made a lot of special modifications myself.”

— Han Solo
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 01-22-2003, 07:07 PM
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: 4839 university ave ne. columbia hgts mn. 55421
Posts: 49
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

I've used aircraft stripper to remove clear sanded out the imperfections with a DA sander starting with 180 grit working my way to 500 or 600 grit.Then doing by hand what I couldn't get with the DA.Once I got a fairly even surface I used a arbor with small buffing pads I got from Eastwood you can get different shapes and sizes. I used 3M heavy duty compoundto buff then used mothers aluminum polish on a clean pad to polish.The wheels looked good but were not shop quality.It seems the sanding is the most important buffing was easy.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 01-22-2003, 07:57 PM
New Member
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Posts: 15
Wiki Edits: 0

Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

I've sandblasted my rims before with a fine grit sand, then polished with a wheel and rosen, then clear coated. Turned out just like chrome. Worked for me!

Good luck!

[ January 22, 2003: Message edited by: Racenuts ]</p>
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Recent Body - Exterior posts with photos

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name (usually not your first and last name), your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:
Please select your insurance company (Optional)


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:26 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright Hotrodders.com 1999 - 2012. All Rights Reserved.