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Cosmetic Maintenance: Washing, Waxing, Detailing, Bodywork, Protection Anything related to keeping your Camaro clean and in good cosmetic condition.

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Old 06-19-2012, 10:14 PM   #1
jtvst4
 
Drives: 2010 Camaro 2SS / RS
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Best way to shine our "polished alum wheels"

Just wondering the best way / products.... to bring back the brand new shine of the camaro's "polished aluminum" wheels.

Does anyone kow if these wheeels are clear coated ?
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Old 06-19-2012, 11:23 PM   #2
liquidsmoke
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Not only are they clear coated, but I believe they aren't polished either. It's all paint. So u can treat them the same as any painted surface.
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Old 06-19-2012, 11:26 PM   #3
ss04flores
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yes they are clear coated so no way to shine them up
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:36 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ss04flores View Post
yes they are clear coated so no way to shine them up
Sure there is...can't you shine up your paint? Same idea, polish and seal.

Give it a little tappy tap
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CamaroDreams07 View Post
Sure there is...can't you shine up your paint? Same idea, polish and seal.

Give it a little tappy tap
Agreed. You care for painted (clear coated) wheels just like your paint! Griot's Garage makes an excellent 3 Inch Polisher, that when used with 3 inch pads, works extremely well at accessing small areas.
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Old 06-20-2012, 01:19 PM   #6
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Yep... clear coated, and unfortunately a lot of the issues on the factory wheels are under the clear so theres only so much you can do to 'shine them up'.

If you're brave, bored, heavily motivated, or some combination of the 3 it is possible to strip the wheels down to raw aluminum and polish them out to have a a TRUE polished finish. They look great, but this is not a project for anyone lacking patience:


Quote:
This was a little project I began last fall when I pulled these wheels off in order to swap my winter set on...for the winter we never really had here in Northern Indiana.

It ended up being a pretty tedious process and overall, I spent about 10-12 hours total to get them from the factory finish to the polished finish that you'll see in the pictures.

The process I used was as follows:

I began with aircraft stripper applied with a paint brush. The first coat of stripper was blasted off with the Adam's Fire Hose Nozzle opened all the way up. That was enough to get the majority of the clear coat off.

I then used a different kind of sprayable stripper and applied another full coat of that. Agitated with an Adam's VRT block sponge, then sprayed off with the hose. That got 99% of the clear off, and I just spot treated any left-over stubborn areas with the sprayable stripper and some #0000 steel wool.

Once all the clear was gone, it was time to polish. I used an un-named red ball on a cordless drill with Adam's Metal Polish #1 for the majority of the heavy lifting. I did 1 wheel with MP #1 by hand and it nearly killed me, so that's why I switched to the ball.

After everything has been hit with MP #1, I started with Metal Polish #2 and a Blue MF applicator. This step made a HUGE difference! They looked nice after MP #1, but they really popped after #2 did it's work!

After the MP combo was done, I did a quick IPA (Iso Propyl Alcohol) wipe down to remove and left over polishing residue, then applied two coats of Adam's Quick Sealant with an Americana applicator. I also put one coat of QS on the barrels of the wheels, but didn't do any polishing on them. Followed that with a coat of Adam's Americana Carnuba Paste Wax and some VRT on the tires. On to the pictures....

Before:



In progress:



Bottom two spokes are polished here:



Here's a pretty good illustration of what the Adam's Metal Polish combo is capable of. Bottom three spokes are finished and you can see the half-finished, half-not line at the 9 o'clock position:



Finished!







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Old 06-23-2012, 06:11 PM   #7
jtvst4
 
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thanks for the info everyone !
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Old 06-23-2012, 10:04 PM   #8
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I guess after stripping as Dylan did and polishing you could either have them clear coated or clear them yourself and that would save having to polish again in the future...
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Old 06-23-2012, 10:11 PM   #9
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I learned something new in this post. Thanks!
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Old 06-23-2012, 11:06 PM   #10
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Well i literally just finsihed putting a coat of synthetic wax on my wheels, it was the turtle wax ice stuff paste. My wheels are the 45th painted alum. and they attract brake dust like a magnet. So i lifted the entire vehicle took all 4 wheels off and used my adams APC to clean all wheels and tires. Applied wax to the rims inside and out. I just wonder if the wax is even worth applying inside the barrel of the wheel? Due to the fact that the surface is clearcoated but the texture is rough :/ And I know most are thinking why would I take the wheels off just to wax, well i was able to clean all my suspension components ,clean my brake dust shields, knock of very minor rust off my hubs and then applied i little WD40 to help , and dress my fender wells completely Super black under there, no nasty grey when light is shined on em ^_^. Oh and also I found out that All my wheels were torqued at 100 ft lbs, and this was the first time the wheels have been off the car since december . With exception of the rear passenger which had a nail 3 days ago , but was fixed at discount, BUT they torqued it to 140 ft lbs @_@ , so today I kept all four at 100ft lbs just to keep it even
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Old 06-27-2012, 07:17 AM   #11
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After 2+ years my polished wheels became dull no matter what did to clean/polish them.
I was never happy with the lack of bling anyway, so i got a set of factory chrome wheels for my SS.
imo looks great and another plus is that brake dust doesn't stick to chrome.
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