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Author Topic: What are options for painting wheels?  (Read 2547 times)
belfert
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« on: February 25, 2012, 02:52:22 PM »

I have steel wheels that are not in the best of shape paint wise.  I need to replace some tires.  What is the best option for repainting them while the tires are off?  There are several layers of paint that are flaking off so they need to be blasted to remove the paint I guess.

I did find one local powder coating place that has a website with a price list.  They charge $100 for a 24" wheel including blasting, cleaning, and powder coating.  The thing is I could buy a brand new steel wheel for just over $100.  Would powder coating be better than a new wheel?

Aluminum wheels would be nice, but it would be at least $300 each by the time I buy a wheel and then install longer studs.  I would never save enough on fuel to justify the weight difference.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2012, 03:31:37 PM »

When I do it, I clean the inside of the wheels and paint with rustoleum; after the tires are on, I sandblast and paint the exterior. That way they don't get brutalized by the tire mechanic.
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Gary '79 5C
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« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2012, 03:35:39 PM »

Brian,

Another thing to consider, if thinking of purchasing new steel wheels, how old are your steel wheels ? I replaced two 15 months ago after I suffered cracking between the stud holes on mine. The mfg date should be stamped on the wheel.

Good Luck,

Gary
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« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2012, 03:44:44 PM »

We have a place here that comes around from time to time, picks up your wheels, sand blasts them and powder coats them white or gray and brings them back. $20.00 a wheel!
Jack
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Jack Hart, CDS
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« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2012, 03:57:08 PM »

How do they bake on the powdercoat with the tires on?
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belfert
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« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2012, 04:31:09 PM »

We have a place here that comes around from time to time, picks up your wheels, sand blasts them and powder coats them white or gray and brings them back. $20.00 a wheel!

$20 is way better than $100!  I'll ask the tire places if they do this or know anyone who does.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2012, 04:57:52 PM »

"Steel It" has a good system and others do also with the Stainless Steel paint little pricey if you pay retail 2 to 300 for 2 gals but I bought 2 gals for 75 bucks with the primer off a  Ebay seller good stuff

good luck
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« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2012, 05:03:22 PM »

I did my wheels on the Courier 96 a few years ago. Wire brush, sand paper, elbow grease, then Tremclad/Rustoleum either from rattle can or brush it on. Looks good. Touch up when needed, such as after changing tires.

JC
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JC
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« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2012, 05:50:29 PM »

  (snip)  $20 is way better than $100!  I'll ask the tire places if they do this or know anyone who does. 

     I tried powder coat - the color didn't match the sample on the sheet (which *did* match the color on my bus) and it scratched bad when the tire gorilla mounted tires on them.  Not really happy but I'm not sure any other paint would have done better (except for the color match, that is). 
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Bruce H; Wallace (near Wilmington) NC
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« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2012, 07:02:05 PM »

I clean mine up with solvent, lightly roughen with a MMM pad and spray paint with white epoxy appliance enamel. It doesn't pay to use an expensive system because any tire shop will destroy it in a minute. Changing truck/bus tires is heavy duty work!

My system is redoable in minutes once the wheels are well cleaned the first time and nothing looks as good as white wheels on a bus.
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« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2012, 07:15:54 PM »

Well, when I bought two new steer tires 2 years ago, I had them do mine. They said the blasted and powder coated for $45 a wheel. They looked pretty good
when I got them back, but it didn't look like powder coating to me. It lasted less than a year and the paint had cracked and was showing rust signs through
the cracks.

I have a small sand blaster. I'm going to pull them this spring one or two at a time and blast the rims with the tires still on. Then I'm going to tape the tires around the
rims, primer with Rustoleum primer, and paint with Rustoleum gloss. Will let them cure for a week or so before I reinstall them on the bus. Less chance of damaging
the paint if it has a better chance of curing properly.

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Craig Shepard
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« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2012, 07:16:39 PM »


I had mine sand blasted and powder coated on both sides.
Colours do not match from wheel to wheel.
Tyre man used a plastic sheild around nuts when mounting and did not do any damage.
I am pleased with the result--except for the colour mismatch
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« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2012, 09:40:38 PM »

Some large tire dealers do an exchange on them these days! I know Best One Tire does. I don't know what they charge but they have pallets & Pallets of them sitting there and from time to time when I'm there buying tires I here the service writer tell the tire jockey to do a wheel swap too!

Might check with Pomp's or some of the other large dealers up in your area to see what they offer.
Grin  BK  Grin
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« Reply #13 on: February 26, 2012, 01:31:09 AM »

Brian -

I'd have to agree with Gary.

If you're gonna spend $100 to dress up your old wheels, might as well get new for about the same price.

FWIW & HTH. . .

 Wink
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RJ Long
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belfert
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« Reply #14 on: February 26, 2012, 05:16:56 AM »

Some large tire dealers do an exchange on them these days! I know Best One Tire does. I don't know what they charge but they have pallets & Pallets of them sitting there and from time to time when I'm there buying tires I here the service writer tell the tire jockey to do a wheel swap too!

Might check with Pomp's or some of the other large dealers up in your area to see what they offer.

Are they exchanging for another used wheel that has been painted?  I did check with Pomp's Tire and they wanted $110 for a new wheel.

It seems silly to buy a brand new wheel when I really don't need one.  The only thing wrong with my wheels is they look bad and they need to be blasted and repainted. 
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
Gary '79 5C
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« Reply #15 on: February 26, 2012, 07:16:14 AM »

Brian,

Not to be a nag, check the date code on the wheel. 20 yo wheels could look great, but steel wheels do not flex like the Alum, they tend to crack.

After that, do as you wish, it is your coach.

Good luck however you proceed.
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belfert
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« Reply #16 on: February 26, 2012, 07:47:27 AM »

I have no idea how old my wheels are.  The bus is 17 years old, but I believe that Easter's Bus Sales replaced some or all of the wheels with old wheels and tires they had laying around.  I had to buy new tires before I could drive the bus anywhere due to the junk tires on the bus.  Half the tires were bald.

Logistically it would be easier for me to just get new wheels.  I'll try to see what the age on the wheels is today.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #17 on: February 26, 2012, 08:21:39 AM »

Buy all new wheels, don't let a tire guy near them with an air gun, and they should last a long time......peace of mind is worth the price. Grin
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« Reply #18 on: February 26, 2012, 08:24:00 AM »

I just recently wire brushed mine and brushed on some rustoleum. cost a few dollars for the paint and throw away brushes. Looks ok from a distance, but I plan on blasting them and spraying this summer when I get up north. While going through this process i did notice a small crack in one of the wheels, so that is on my "right away" list.
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« Reply #19 on: February 26, 2012, 08:33:42 AM »

Buy all new wheels, don't let a tire guy near them with an air gun, and they should last a long time......peace of mind is worth the price. Grin

I asked a local tire shop about checking the torque on my lug nuts.  They will put tires on my bus, but they don't even own a torque wrench big enough to hand torque the lugs.  They are off my list for tires for my bus, but I still use them for my car.

I've actually been looking for a torque wrench I could use to check the torque on my lug nuts, but ones that will handle 500 ft lbs are sky high.  I tried Craigslist with no luck so far.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #20 on: February 26, 2012, 08:56:15 AM »

I put a long bar on the wheel nut socket, and put my weight (170 lbs) 3 feet out. That puts 510 ft/lbs of torque on them. Easy and cheaper than buying an expensive wrench. On the back wheels, I made up a piece of 3/4" plywood with multiple holes in it to support the socket level with the nut so it doesn't fall out.

JC
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JC
Invermere, BC
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belfert
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« Reply #21 on: February 26, 2012, 08:59:16 AM »

Where would the date code typically be stamped on a steel wheel?  I looked at all six of my exposed wheels just now and I don't see anything stamped on any of them.  They all have have been repainted at least once and most of them have been repainted multiple times.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #22 on: February 26, 2012, 09:06:12 AM »

It is usually on the flat part of the rim. It is likely covered in paint.  The stamping is not very deep to start with.

JC
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JC
Invermere, BC
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« Reply #23 on: February 27, 2012, 08:57:11 PM »

I made up a piece of 3/4" plywood with multiple holes in it to support the socket level with the nut so it doesn't fall out.


I use a jack stand to support the extension on my 3/4 drive.
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« Reply #24 on: February 28, 2012, 09:08:58 AM »

  The problem torquing large wheel nuts to a max torque setting is they are dry and will often bind. Your wrench can say your at 510 when in reality your 200 pounds short. For years everyone said to oil them, then that changed. Now I read we can oil the threads, but not the chamfer. The problem oiling them is its too easy to exceed torque and you can stretch/snap the stud or crack the wheel.

  I will continue the breaker bar/cheater pipe method, I trust my sense of feel better than a number. You can use air to remove, not a problem. You can use air to snug them up, but best to rely on some hand torque method to bring up to full tightness.
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belfert
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« Reply #25 on: February 28, 2012, 10:21:48 AM »

I read somewhere in the past few days that hub piloted lug nuts should be oiled, but that stud piloted lug nuts should not be oiled.  It is hard to know who is correct on this.  I've seen other recommendations to do both stud and hub piloted dry with no oil.

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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #26 on: February 28, 2012, 05:27:00 PM »

Stud pilots lug bolt and nuts come both ways dry or lubed I never use oil I am a never seize and 1 inch impact gun type myself lol
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Gary '79 5C
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« Reply #27 on: February 29, 2012, 12:16:47 AM »

Here is a 600 torque wrench on CL,

http://southjersey.craigslist.org/tls/2865494572.html

Of which I have no comercial or other connection.

I dunno if hot, how hot, either.
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« Reply #28 on: February 29, 2012, 02:25:34 PM »

It all depends - both my manuals call for lug thread oil.
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« Reply #29 on: February 29, 2012, 07:25:57 PM »

Accuride Safety Manual, more stuff than you'd like to know...

http://www.accuridewheels.com/safety_manual.asp

Alcoa Wheel Service Manual, again, lots of stuff...

http://www.alcoa.com/alcoawheels/north_america/en/info_page/wheel_service_manual.asp

No matter what you do, be VERY CAREFUL with the amount of paint you get on the mounting points of the rim. Chamfer holes, flange contact circles, and the face that touches the drum.

Excess paint is blamed on many wheel-off incidents, as the excess paint compresses and squirms out from between, loosening the tightness of the assembly, and the fasteners start backing off.

Here in Ontario, those who work on tires and wheels are required to be certified. Here's the skinny on the course outline:

http://www.ontruck.org/iMISpublic/Content/NavigationMenu/Education/CommercialVehicleWheelService/default.htm

That book, Practical Tire and Wheel Service, was compiled with extensive industry involvement, and is considered best practices when investigating worker injuries.

happy coaching!
buswarrior

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Cary and Don
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« Reply #30 on: March 01, 2012, 10:11:08 AM »

We were trying to sand and scrape a bunch of layers of paint off the center caps.  Then got lazy and tried paint stripper.  The old paint melted right off. 

Don and Cary
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