Re-painting mag rims?

anybody know the best way to re-paint mag rim, and the best type of paint to use?


Re: Re-painting mag rims?

i have all sorts of spray equipment .. from tiny air brushes to a big compressor, guns, etc.. But on fairly small things like a bike frame or a tank or parts, i really like spray cans. The spray is fine and even and easy to control... no mixing.. rainbow of colors, etc.

The thing i don't like is cost. A can contains only about 10% paint and 90% propellant... and they are like $3 or more.

So, building a thick coat takes a lot of thin coats and a lot of cans. I assume you want to do a nice job, sanding out all blemishes and 'orange peel' effects with 1000 or 1200 fine grit paper.. and that requires thickness. Too thin a coat and you'll sand right through it to metal.

Aluminum or mags (actually an alloy) can be painted with anything .. sure, some suggest special methods.. basically forcing the metal surface to oxidize to one degree or another... like a millionth of an inch thick.

Those metals naturally get some oxidization on the surface immediately on exposure to air, BUT, unlike rusty iron, the oxidation is stuck tight to the metal surface and will grab the paint.. So an oxidized surface is a benefit.

Only real consern is first getting a perfectly clean dry surface. If the pain peels it'll be because of traces of an oil on the surface. After soap and water and rinse, a final wash with something that evaporates completely, like acetone, will leave a clean surface. Dont even touch it with a finger or a "clean" rag after that.

I like (cheap) enamels cause it drys fast between coats .. epoxy will wear better but drys slower and costs more.. In either case let them cure for a couple months before waxing.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

Hey Joe,

Do you know of any good spray can paints that are gas resistant?

Re: Re-painting mag rims?


any of the paint types found anywhere on a vehicle will be resistant, to one degree or another. Lacquers, enamels, acrylics, epoxy ..

The fuel tank inner coating, Kreem, is more like a latex than anything else.. so maybe even latex paint.

The thing is that gaoline contains additives .. like alcohol and acetone (both dissolve contact cement when few other things will) and a percentage of toluene .. Toluene is a major component in commercial paint removers.. attacks most paints (but it won't touch latex and acts slow on epoxy if i recall)

The best thing is to keep all chemicals away from your paint surfaces.. wipe them off immediately .. wash and wax regularly.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

Joew, I know you to consistently have good, sound and informed ideas on numerous subjects in this forum, so my question is along related lines: I have an old set of those Grimeca criss-cross rims that some idiot painted black (poorly) then eventually abandoned to the back yard corner for years where they acumulated dirt in all those little crevices that those rims feature. Got any ideas on how to clean those rims thoroughly (hopefully leaving the tires on) without being reduced to a toothbrush method? The rims seem salvageable and the tires too (not stock, cheap tires, but higher ply 2.75 tires that cost more than $30 each) so I really would prefer not having to remove them. My goal is to either strip them back to original paint or repaint them something other than black.

Ideas? Chemicals? Car rim cleaning solutions? Pressure washing? (I'd have to borrow one). Looking for the best (if not easiest) method.

Thanks for the thoughts.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

my first choice for paint removal would be sandblasting... but since the wheel is mag or aluminum, not with an abrasive like sand.. something like glass beads or walnut shell.. glass is expensive and walnut shell or similar may be hard to find.

If you're set up for it, 'sand' blasting is fast .. gets into every little crevice.. cheap, no chemicals .. removes rust along with everything else..lots of advantages. With some care aluminum and other softer stuff can be done.

Otherwise paint removal is gonna involve at least a toothbrush. To make it easier on yourself give the wheel a pressure wash.. maybe use a booth at a drive-in car pressure washer for a few quarters. This removes greases and dirt.

Grease and dirt resist paint removers. Clean paint strips fast.

If the tires stay on, mask them off with tape no matter what method. My preference would be to definately remove the tires.. i can't see doing it with them on the rims.

Splurge on a quart of Jasco Premium Paint and Epoxy Remover.

It'll remove just about any common paint (urethanes, latex included)

They say to "brush in one direction".. Just lay it on thick in one stroke and don't mess with it, even if it looks too thick.. Disturbing it reduces it's power and spreading it out actually wastes it.

Leave it for 15 or 20 minutes or longer .. (do some test spots to get the time down) and steel wool or brush it.

Do small areas, scrub with a brush and wipe most off with a paper towel (I wear gloves .. my hands are tough, but this stuff eats flesh)

It is "water rinsable" so don't get the wheel wet with water if you plan on applying more. After you give it a once-over, go over again and get the little spots of paint you missed.

Other remover chemicals might do a better job or be easier or less expensive, but without knowing exactly what paint type is on the wheel, it's difficult to recommend what else to use.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

rims arent that big so i suggest fully sanding it cleaning it with a thoothbrush and using whatever you can go get in the creases. duplicolor sells rim coating. i used the clear one and it has little metal flakes in it to make whatever you are painting have kind of a glitter. the toughest clear is polyester i think. but then its hard to use. i would just use anything you can find at autozone. one thing you must remember. your final appearance is all about preperation! a glossy clear finish can only be done on a smooth surface. you can use bondo on any holes you have in the orinigal rim. or dent. and then sand it flat. then you can prime/seal, color coat and then seal. after plenty of clear coats you can either leave it like that. or sand it flat with high grade sandpaper moving up on the grits. and then final polishing.

i feel bad for leaving the reranchers forum but i havent had much to repaint. wheres butnut?!

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

Invariably a thank you due to joew (though not to ignore you joe ho). After all, the j in my name stands for something too.

And I was hoping not to resort to sand blasing/etc., or the toothbrush method, but looks like I'll have to look around

Regarding Jasco: Excellent choice! That premium gold and maroon Epoxy remover is the best stuff I have ever found! I have gone through dozens of gallons restoring houses and furniture and swear by the stuff. I never recommend anything else. It is well worth the price. (By the way, how much is it in your neighborhood? In Honolulu, I almost never get it for under $23 a gallon and it can go up to nearly $30.)

Gonna have to do some research on the blasting method. Can't think of anyone I know who has the tools. More reflection.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

it's the most expensive.. i forget.. about $6 a quart, near $20 a gallon.

try and find out what kinda paint is on there..

if it's a real crappy job it may be something that a night's soak in a tub of paint thinner will soften or maybe dissolve..

speaking of dissolve i wouldn't want to splash any of that Jasco stuff on a nice tire.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

Brian Mikami /

Wassup AJ. If you wanna clean the rims first, get some wheel cleaner like Armorall or any brand that tell you to use caution...LOL. It's very similar to the detailers acid I use in my biz. Get a stiff detail brush, looks like a giant paintbrush. Shoot the cleaner and let it sit a minute, Work the detail brush in all the tight spots, rinse off with a hose, blaster nozzle is best. Respray and work any grease/ dirt off...this will leave it very clean and oil free. If the paint is bonded good, I'd just scuff the paint with a 3M Scotchbrite pad (coarse) and shoot some epoxy need primer. Takes a week to cure, but it sticks good, not many color choices though. If painting with the tire me, those tires are a BITCH to remove, take all the air out, push the bead down and you can tuck paper or tape to mask the tire. Good luck. Alohaz.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

Hey, Brian. Looked out the window this a.m. and trying to decide whether or not to risk taking Mr. P. to Chinatown vegie run, since he hasn't been out of the house with all the rain (Yeah, you know!).

Haven't had much time to investigate the black gloss paint on the rim. Poor job of amateur spraying, that's evident and yes, THOSE BIG TIRES ARE TOUGH! So, no, I'd prefer leaving them be. My actual hope was just to remove the black and maybe the original would be okay. I have another one (front) that some idiot sprayed even more poorly(!) with red paint, but it's lacquer and it comes right off with lacquer thinner. Easy. I think this one will be more work. Maybe this weekend I'll have time to give it a try. Just getting over being sicker-than-shit and gotta play catch-up with all.

Again thanks to all, guys.

Re: Re-painting mag rims?

hey thanks a bunch for all the feedback...i haven't had much of a chance to get to my computer been busy..but sincerly thank you for all the advice....-tom

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