Mini-How To: Paint Aluminum Wheels

Discussion in 'How-To' started by buggman, Mar 22, 2012.

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  1. buggman

    buggman Do not touch the trim!

    Here's a mini how-to for anyone interested in painting your aluminum wheels.

    Use a scotchbrite green pad to remove any debris from the area to be painted.

    Wipe the area to be painted with acetone (I used fingernail polish remover with 100% acetone) and let dry.

    Mask any areas you do not want to paint or get overspray on with good masking tape.

    Ensure the edges of the masking tape adhere as best as possible to prevent the paint from bleeding through.

    Spray light coats of Self Etching Primer to all the areas to be painted. Multiple coats may be needed for full coverage. Let dry as per instructions on can.

    Inspect areas primed for any imperfections. Lightly wet sand any imperfections using 600G or finer sand paper.
    Wipe away any sanding residue and re-prime as needed. Let dry.

    Once the areas are primed to your satisfaction, begin painting...

    I used Rustoleum Engine Enamel for my wheels, but there is a "wheel paint" that should work just as well.
    Shake can for several minutes to thoroughly mix the paint.
    Spray light coats until all areas are covered. Let dry according to directions on paint can.

    Inspect for any imperfections & lightly wet sand using 600g or finer sand paper.
    Apply additional thin coats as needed, allow to dry fully between coats.

    Once paint has cured apply thin coats of clear wheel paint to help seal the paint. Let dry according to directions.

    Remove masking tape & inspect for any paint bleed through, remove any paint residue with acetone or carefully scrape away with sharp razor blade.

    A few pics of sanded/scotchbright'ed and painted wheels:



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