Here is Dave Shaeffer's guide to refinishing wheels:
1. You will need a GOOD electric motor. At least 1 hp, 3450 rpm is acceptable.
2. 1-2 good sticks of "white rouge". I recommend a no-cut compound. Available from companies like Eastwood,Tarheel, or C&D.
3. Lots of wet/dry sandpaper 320,400,600 and 1000 grit.
4. 2-4 "loose-section" cotton buffing wheels. For large objects, like wheels, use as wide a wheel as possible. "Stack" them if necessary.
5.Buffing wheel rake.
6. Cotton buffing gloves.
Process as follows:
1. Strip the paint of the wheels using "Aircraft stripper" Follow directions carefully. Some would say it's easier to have them sand-blasted but this leaves with more work to remove the blast marks
2. Sanding is the key to a mirror finish. It's HARD work but it is what ultimately makes the finish. Start with the 320 using plenty of water with a few drops of dish soap(This keep the sandpaper from loading-up).
Rinse paper and wheel often. Change the paper as soon as it loses it grit. Work your way up to the FINEST grit until the aluminum as if it's already polished but hazy.
3. PAD the motor stand and area under the buffer with dense rudder or equal. VERY IMPORTANT!!! Things do get away from time to time!
4. "Load" the buffing wheel with the compound. Work with the piece below the center line of the buffing wheel as viewed on edge. You want to barely kiss the piece to the wheel keeping a steady circular motion. This prevents "tearing" the aluminum. Rake the wheel often to remove the compound and aluminum build-up.
5. When finish is achieved clean with "Never Dull" or similar.
I DO NOT clear coat. Just Never Dull every couple of weeks and the parts stay beautiful. Plus, if they do ever need a touch up or re-finish, you don't have to strip them again.
Hope this helps and doesn't scare you too bad. Any questions, feel free to contact me.
Dave '85 S Auto Schieferblau ober Dunkelblau
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