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What's the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by lucky1330, May 30, 2003.

  1. lucky1330

    lucky1330 Newbie

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    What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    I have some 1990 factory alum. wheels that need a good cleaning. What can I use to get them looking good again.
    Thanks,
    John
     
  2. 2Dogs

    2Dogs 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    Are they clearcoated?
     
  3. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    The factory aluminum wheels of that time frame had a clear coat and will clean up nicely with just some soap and water. However, if the clear coat got damaged and the aluminum underneath is corroded, then no amount of scrubbing will get them clean. /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif About your only hope would be to strip the clear coat, polish up the aluminum and then apply new clear coat. /forums/images/graemlins/eek.gif
     
  4. lucky1330

    lucky1330 Newbie

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    It looks like the clear coat has been damaged I see some spots that are corroded.
    Thanks,
    John
     
  5. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    That sux. /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif Unless you can do it yourself then it's probably cheaper to buy some custom wheels than to have those redone at a body shop. /forums/images/graemlins/eek.gif
     
  6. 2Dogs

    2Dogs 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    Now that you are a veteran of 3 post please fill out your profile.... /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

    To make them look REALLY nice at this point:
    strip clearcoat
    wet-n-dry sand til very smooth (400-600 grit paper)
    machine polish/buff

    Or go get the 15x10 or 16x10 wheels that you will need soon anyway.... /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif
     
  7. R72K5

    R72K5 Banned

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    safest chemicals to strip aluminum with ?
    how about easiest/fastest ?
     
  8. 2Dogs

    2Dogs 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    There is an aircraft paint stripper - forget the name but it has dichloromethane or some-such as the active ingredient.

    Nasty stuff, be careful.

    Get a HD stripper and let sit for awhile. Probably best not to get it on the tires so take them off.

    All else fails go to a body/paint shop and ask them what they use or sell.
     
  9. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat Fetch the comfy chair

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    Re: What\'s the best wheel cleaner for factory alum. wheels

    I redid my Alcoa's a while back. They didn't come with a clear coat. I went to a shop in town that advertised metal polishing. The guy told me it would run about $50 a rim to polish them. $200 wasn't worth it to me and he agreed. He kicked down some polishing compound to me. I went and got some polishing wheels from the hardware store and did it myself. It was a filthy job and it took quite a while. Now I see that POR-15 sells a kit that comes with the different grades of polish. I only had one grade. If you can get that clear coat off, you are in for some fun. I haven't found a chemical cleaner yet that does a good job once the rims get thrashed and I've tried every brand they sell in the regular auto parts stores. I've even used the S-100 motorcycle cleaner that I use on my Harley which is outstanding stuff.
     

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