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Unread 09-17-2009, 12:16 PM   #1
twoleos617
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1986 CJ7 
 
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How to clean rusty wheels for rattle can paint?

I'm thinking I'm not gonna spend money on more wheels when these are as round as any other new ones! Just gonna freshen them up a little. Any ideas on how to remove as much rust as possible on these? I know i wont get a "show" quality but im not looking for that. I know there will be quite a bit of pitting but thats ok too.
should i use a filler primer on steel wheels and would that even adhere well?

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Unread 09-17-2009, 12:52 PM   #2
davistroy
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If those were mine, here's what I would do (unless you have a sand blaster). PS - DO NOT USE THIS WITH ALUMINUM!

1. Take them off, remove the tires.

2. Clean them with a brush, soap and water.

3. Get a two plastic containers that will hold them and let them be fully covered by water

4. Go to Home depot and get these two things:



The first one is Lye, or Sodium Hydroxide, and the second is Phosphoric Acid, which converts rust. It has to be these two specifically.

5. Put enough water in the first container and dump the drain cleaner in and stir - DO NOT GET ANY OF THIS ON YOU - IT WILL BURN THE CRAP OUT OF YOU OR ANY KIDS OR ANIMALS

6. Put the etcher in another container with enough water to cover the wheels - DO NOT GET ANY OF THIS ON YOU - IT WILL BURN THE CRAP OUT OF YOU OR ANY KIDS OR ANIMALS

7. Let each wheel soak in the drain cleaner solution over night, then rinse with plain water - DO NOT GET ANY OF THIS ON YOU - IT WILL BURN THE CRAP OUT OF YOU OR ANY KIDS OR ANIMALS

8. Move to the etcher for an hour or two - DO NOT GET ANY OF THIS ON YOU - IT WILL BURN THE CRAP OUT OF YOU OR ANY KIDS OR ANIMALS

9. Rinse with plain water

10. Clean with Acetone or Mineral spirits and Paint with your choice of primer/paint. I like POR 15.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 01:54 PM   #3
bigjoe
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I re-did a set for my Jeep. They were not too bad as far as rust went. I ran a wire wheel on them, (I was lazy and did not remove tires from the rims either) once the loose paint was off and the rust spots down to bare metal, I masked off the tire edge and side walls, layed down three coats of primer and two coats of paint. Came out pretty good. I'm even guilty of using cheap paint from Wal-Mart on this one, as in the stuff that's less then a buck a can. My thought was I can always just touch them up if I need to.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 01:59 PM   #4
twoleos617
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very interesting. but wait, im confused, will it burn the crap out of me?!!
j/k. thx for the process. i think this might work ok.
i do have small kids and animals too so i might have to shy away from doing it this way. i have a small area to work and its shared by the whole family.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 02:02 PM   #5
twoleos617
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjoe View Post
I re-did a set for my Jeep. They were not too bad as far as rust went. I ran a wire wheel on them, (I was lazy and did not remove tires from the rims either) once the loose paint was off and the rust spots down to bare metal, I masked off the tire edge and side walls, layed down three coats of primer and two coats of paint. Came out pretty good. I'm even guilty of using cheap paint from Wal-Mart on this one, as in the stuff that's less then a buck a can. My thought was I can always just touch them up if I need to.
was there a certain type\grit of wheel you used?
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Unread 09-17-2009, 03:53 PM   #6
bigjoe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twoleos617 View Post
was there a certain type\grit of wheel you used?
I recall, I just used a wire wheel I had in the garage. The wires may have been like a 24 or 22 ga. size, I think.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 05:28 PM   #7
HighFive
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Use a brillo pad first and see if the rust comes off easily. They even clean the chrome and make it shiny again. Then see if you want to paint.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 06:12 PM   #8
sbcranger
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x2 on the brillo pads, same idea as a scuff pad. itll definitely take care of the surface rust. and just go for some industrial strength cleaner like zep royal purple, put some elbow grease into it and rinse.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 06:54 PM   #9
gojeepin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davistroy View Post
Outstanding method to really prep them well... I've got to use that.

One note... most concrete cleaners are muriatic acid (Hydrochloric acid solution) not Phosphoric. I don't know what BEHR used but both clean metal and treat rust... phosphoric will leave a protective coating.
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