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Old 05-28-2006, 07:50 PM   #1
Jag32
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Member#: 36951
Join Date: May 2003
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: Florida
Vehicle:
2006 Impreza WRX STI
World Rally Blue

Default Painting my silver STI wheels to gold

I just bought a new blue STI but it had silver wheels and the dealer didn't have any other STI's with gold wheels to swap the silvers with, so I ended up with the silver wheels. I really want the blue/gold look and I think I want to get them painted gold and have them look identical to the factory gold wheels.

What do you guys recommend I do? Should I get them powdercoated or another type of painting method? What "shade" of gold should I request? How much do you think something like this will cost?

Thanks!

I would trade with someone, but haven't been able to find anyone in my area.
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Old 05-28-2006, 07:55 PM   #2
WR^2X
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2007

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Powdercoating the stock wheels is a bad idea... Weakens them.

Personally, I'd either hold out for someone local who wants to trade (there's got to be someone with CGM that got stuck with gold wheels. Yuck.) Or, buy gold wheels and then resell the silvers. You'll take a bit of a hit, but I doubt it would be any more than what painting them would cost.
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Old 05-28-2006, 08:23 PM   #3
Jeff B
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crystal grey

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Quote:
Originally Posted by WR^2X
Powdercoating the stock wheels is a bad idea... Weakens them.

Personally, I'd either hold out for someone local who wants to trade (there's got to be someone with CGM that got stuck with gold wheels. Yuck.) Or, buy gold wheels and then resell the silvers. You'll take a bit of a hit, but I doubt it would be any more than what painting them would cost.
Good advice. I second this.

If you really want to change their color (rather than trade the wheels), most seem to think that regular painting is safer than powdercoating. There have been some threads on this, although I do not remember anything conclusive. If you come up with a good system, let us know. (Hey, I want to paint mine black.)

IMO, the darker shades of gold (towards bronze) look better than the lighter golds. Still, just my opinion.

Good luck,
J
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Old 05-28-2006, 08:32 PM   #4
Jim Lewis
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Post in "private for sale" and offer to trade another STI owner your silvers for their golds. You might have to drive out of the area, but that's still cheaper than buying and selling.
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Old 05-28-2006, 08:39 PM   #5
semaj
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I thought the World Rally Blue STi's all came with the gold BBS wheels??? And any other colour STi came with silver??? Check with your dealer...maybe they owe you a trade?!?
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Old 05-28-2006, 08:59 PM   #6
WR^2X
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You can get them with either wheel color. WRB does not only come with gold, just like CGM does not only come with silver.
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Old 05-28-2006, 09:01 PM   #7
semaj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WR^2X
You can get them with either wheel color. WRB does not only come with gold, just like CGM does not only come with silver.
Good to know! Thanks!
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Old 05-28-2006, 10:39 PM   #8
stentorian
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If you decide to paint here is BBS wheel paint.
http://www.hrpworld.com/index.cfm?fo...action=product
-Joe
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Old 05-29-2006, 12:23 AM   #9
wundej
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Crystal Gray Metallic

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Quote:
Originally Posted by WR^2X
Powdercoating the stock wheels is a bad idea... Weakens them.
A bit more info on the above comment, this is something I posted a while back on iwsti. There are a lot of things to consider but powder coating isn't all bad if done correctly. IIRC there was a video here a while ago about the Rays mfg process, I'm pretty sure they had a section showing they PC some of their wheels.

Powder coating can weaken any wheel (forged or cast), but before anyone says that it weakens our wheels they should look into a lot of things. The main concern with PC on aluminum wheels is that if not done properly it will overage the aluminum, effectively lowering its strength. People talk about it weakening the wheels by 50%, I'd like to see something from the ASM handbook (or something along those lines) to back that up.

The alloy(and heat treatment if any) used for a wheel is the #1 thing that needs to be known before commenting on this subject. Once you know the alloy you can then look at the aging temp for that material. Since the PC process is basically heat treating the wheels you can then look up different heat treat specs for that alloy.

You then need to know what temps the powder will be cured at and for how long. It is important to know max deviation from the target temp their oven will see, there is a lot of cheap stuff out there and if the temp can fluctuate a lot there is more chance for failure (both material and powder coat).

If most pc shops will use ovens ranging from 375-425 for wheels (which is what most places I have talked to use) you will most likely see a reduction in yield stress, ultimate stress, etc. It all depends on the time it takes for the pc to cure but you probably would see a decrease of around 5-15% of those original values. This is all worth nothing though unless you actually know what material it is, the heat treat process that was originally used, and the temp/duration of the coating process. The only real way to know how they will perform is if you perform tensile and durability tests on samples.

Many people have PC'd their wheels, many many wheel repair shops use this process when repairing wheels, many OEM's PC their wheels. I haven't ever come across someone saying their PC'd wheels failed on them, but I'm sure under extreme conditions they could. It is important to be confident in the coater, talk to them, ask questions about their process and if you aren't sure they are a quality shop...go elsewhere.

A lot of people think "if you PC your wheels they will break", that isn't really the whole story.
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Old 05-29-2006, 01:55 AM   #10
Jag32
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World Rally Blue

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by stentorian
If you decide to paint here is BBS wheel paint.
http://www.hrpworld.com/index.cfm?fo...action=product
-Joe
Good stuff, thanks for that link!

I have a hard time painting a small R/C car body evenly, so I can't imagine how badly i'd mess the wheels up if I did it myself .
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