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Old 06-26-2009, 09:16 PM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 210453
Join Date: May 2009
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Cambridge
Default Question about painting rims.

This seems fairly obvious to me, but I'm curious of what the group here thinks:

Painting rims: What kind of paint are people using? DIY rattlecan? Brand? Spraygun? Primer? Clearcoat? How long have you found the finish to last? This is all prefaced with: powdercoating is not an option and it wants to be done on the cheap but not look like arse.

Ok thoughts? Thx in advance.
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Old 06-27-2009, 03:07 AM   #2
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 101188
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia
MY07 WRX Wagon


Lots of good pics and info in this thread: http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=1203882

I did mine on the cheap with DIY etch and paint rattlecans (just ones from the local speed store), (followed by a 1200, then 2000 wet sand) and a few layers of VHT clear over the top. Finish is far from perfect/smooth, but for my gymkhana/track rims, carefactoris pretty low. More coats of paint would probably fix that issue
Although I did lash out and get all 4 media blasted beforehand (back to bare metal). I tried sanding back the OEM paint, but it was just waaaay too thick and would've taken forever (paint stripper barely touched it)

And for a bit of a picturewh0re:

Attempt at paint removal - fail:


Metal Etch Primer:




Last edited by 05-rsx; 06-27-2009 at 03:53 AM.
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Old 06-27-2009, 09:31 AM   #3
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 136498
Join Date: Jan 2007

^^^ those look pretty good for DIY rattle can.
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Old 06-27-2009, 07:50 PM   #4
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 151360
Join Date: Jun 2007
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: Manalapan, NJ
2007 STI RIP


Not everyone has access to a media blaster. That itself will cost you $$$. I suggest bringing it to a local body shop. Most will get it painted for $50 per wheel. (professionally painted)
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Old 06-28-2009, 11:32 AM   #5
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Member#: 210453
Join Date: May 2009
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Cambridge

Thanks for the tips guys. Have some leads on bead blast/chem dip/powdercoat shops but the $ can get out of hand rather quickly. Checking that linked thread now...
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Old 06-28-2009, 07:04 PM   #6
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Member#: 184605
Join Date: Jul 2008
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Woodinville, WA
2006 wrx wagon
SGM vf39'd


this was my process. Took me about 4-5 days to complete.

-remove wheels and clean thoroughly with soap and water.
-Dip the sand paper in the soapy water and wet sand the entire wheel to remove the rest of the dirt and some clear coat.
-Dry wheel and begin sanding every crack and crevice with dry sandpaper. The goal here is to remove all of the original clear coat. The wheel should have a dull look by now and there shouldn't be any shiny spots.
(Don't worry about it if you live somewhere warm but the wheel should be at around room temperature before you start painting. I let mine sit in my house overnight)
-Now you need to put 2 coats of primer on the wheels. If you can find it use black primer. First layer of primer should be nice and light making sure you cover most of the wheel. 2nd layer should cover the rest of the wheel nicely.
-Let the primer dry for a few hours and then lightly sand the wheel again for better paint adhesion.
-Now take the paint and apply 4-5 light, even layers. Let the wheel dry for 20-30 min between coats. The method I used was even, sweeping bursts. 1st layer is pretty light and will make the wheel look gray. Continue with the light layers until you have the entire wheel covered.
-Let the painted wheels dry overnight in a warm room preferably with a small heater.
-Apply 4-5 layers of clear coat. This part is really important, i missed a few spots on my wheels and they ended up getting speckled and had to redo them. Just make sure you get every part of the wheel. Let the wheel dry for 15-20 minutes between each coat.
-Now let the wheels dry for at least 48 hours before putting them back on your car.

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