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Old 07-09-2017, 07:39 PM   #1
Fentum
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Alloy wheels - paint stripping

Advice, please!

I'm in the middle of sorting my Mrs' SLK out and have decided to tackle the wheels which are incredibly corroded.

So I've spent all day today giving my wife's rear rims a seeing to (stop tittering at the back!). I applied some paint stripping gel I bought locally here in Italy and followed the instructions. Nitromors it ain't!

I was expecting to see the paint flake and bubble, and then to be able to scrape it off. Rinse and repeat as necessary. This stuff is barely making an impression although it has enough cancer inducing chemicals to persuade me to use a mask. Three applications and glass scraper are doing nothing much.

Is Mercedes paint especially thick? Or do I have a duff stripper and should go to the factors and get something better? I assume using a blow torch is a no-no on alloys?

All I want to do is strip, sand, prime, paint, clear coat and seal. Nothing special.

Thanks for any thoughts.

Peter
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Old 08-09-2017, 07:39 PM   #2
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A day later and I've had to resort to using a Dremel to sand off the paint and clear coat.

I bought another brand of stripper last night and tried again even scuffing up the surface with a Scotchbrite again. Still no luck.

Fortunately, I had a large pack of the small sanding tubes and a wheel flap.

I've managed two wheels and am covered in dust.

Then hand rubbing with wet and dry because even my 3" plate is too big for the cavities and the contours of the wheel.

Mercedes are not mean when I comes to laying down paint on their wheels!

Still, two coats of Zinc primer and a coat of basic primer applied and that's me for today.

I'm beginning to see why people pay to have wheels done!

Peter
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:12 PM   #3
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I was in a same boat as you, keep it up buddy. I gave up in the end and took my wheels to a specialist.
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:17 PM   #4
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It's a tough job to do in your garage, bud. If you knew anyone with a sand/media blasting cabinet, it probably would save your knuckles (and sanity) if you asked them to sand blast the wheels.

Any pics of your progress (through the dust lol)?

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Old 08-09-2017, 11:10 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cookies View Post
It's a tough job to do in your garage, bud. If you knew anyone with a sand/media blasting cabinet, it probably would save your knuckles (and sanity) if you asked them to sand blast the wheels.

Any pics of your progress (through the dust lol)?

Cooks
Hi Cooks,

I'll put some up shortly but I didn't think to take pics until I was at the primer stage!

But my feet are grey!

Best

Peter
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Old 09-09-2017, 11:26 AM   #6
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Here we are:

Close up of rear wheels with zinc primer (below)








Then a coat of normal opaque primer:



[img]https://i.imgur.com/OrXHrHMl.jpg[/im
g]



Evidence of multi-tasking. I'm doing lots of small bits on the SLK while paint dries..:



I'm wondering whether to leave the two front wheels alone!



I'm at my place in Italy (rather than the UK) and don't know anyone here with a media blasting cabinet. I've also been lazy and kept the tyres on (which I haven't done for the classic Alfa wheels which are up next).

Peter
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Old 09-09-2017, 11:44 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fentum View Post
Hi Cooks,

I'll put some up shortly but I didn't think to take pics until I was at the primer stage!

But my feet are grey!

Best

Peter
Lol, I know what you mean.

I usually start doing something with the car, with the intention to fully document it on here. Then you get wired in, and you just get absorbed in what you're doing. If I can remember correctly, it's called 'content seduction' lol.

I'd love to see your grey feet lol. Anything like this? Lol
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Old 09-09-2017, 11:44 AM   #8
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Your work is admirable but I can't believe that the same wheel specialists that abound in the UK don't exist in Italy. How they can remove & replace a tyre, acid dip, address any damage, multi-coat paint/lacquer then re-balance for £80 a wheel and sometimes less, is beyond me. I couldn't justify the time that I know it would take without specialist equipment and skill, trying to do the same and probably failing.
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Old 09-09-2017, 11:51 AM   #9
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Great work bud. It looks like you're definitely getting there. I find that there's a huge amount of satisfaction in doing jobs like that yourself. Do plenty of sanding and prep the primer really well, as any marks will be like the flippin grand canyon when you get the paint and lacquer on. I speak from a position of experience in that regard lol.

I think you'll probably need to give the fronts a going over too, buddy. The finish you get from the rattle cans will be a fair bit away, in both colour and gloss, from the very shiny front wheels.

Sure it's tinkering value!!

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Old 09-09-2017, 11:55 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derek-Eddleston View Post
Your work is admirable but I can't believe that the same wheel specialists that abound in the UK don't exist in Italy. How they can remove & replace a tyre, acid dip, address any damage, multi-coat paint/lacquer then re-balance for £80 a wheel and sometimes less, is beyond me. I couldn't justify the time that I know it would take without specialist equipment and skill, trying to do the same and probably failing.
Derek,

You are, of course, right about such places existing but I had, or thought I had, the time and wanted to do it myself. I'll suppose that I will be happy knowing that I've done it.

The other thing is that I have spent more on the car this year than it is worth (because 'er indoors loves it). It is only a 230 not an AMG.

So paying good coin to have this work done would rankle. Mind you, I've probably spent 100 Euro on bits and bobs to do it - Dremel accessories don't come cheap and the knock-offs are rubbish!

I've got a set of Borrani wire wheels to refurb and I'm beginning to think that they will go off to the specialist.

Best

Peter
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