Archive for July, 2010

Wheel Revitalization on a Budget

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

Wheels are done:

My mom loves coming home to find car parts in the oven. Still not as bad as my dad putting a whole SBF block in there!

I had to sandblast all the centers to strip them of paint. Unfortunately it took forever because for some reason our blasting cabinet is garbage, I think the vapor catcher isn’t doing its job and there’s too much moisture in the supply :\

So to remedy this I brought the parts to my brother’s shop, where they have a soda blaster. I really want a soda blaster now, it works unbelievably quickly

Testing paint color. This is Rustoleum satin black, and it’s what I decided on. I was going to try flat black as well but I didn’t even bother testing it

Two centers painted and done

Brought all the nasty hardware (10lbs worth!) to the soda blaster. This box held up for approximately 4 seconds in the cabinet

The soda blaster did an incredible job with the hardware, I thought the plating on them was flaking off (saw rusty brown patches) but I guess it was just dirt.


Now, I only found three of the center caps when I picked these up from the junkyard, and only one was halfway usable, sooo…

The best of the bunch

Adobe Illustrator, Cooper Black and some pen tool later and I have a decent vector source to make new decals with. I’ll still have to find new plastic caps, though I’m not looking for an exact match for what I’ve got now. Just something similar

Stop me please

Unfortunately my brother, while dismounting the ancient tires off the wheels neglected to put hardware in one of the rims while the center was out. The rim split without hesitation so now I was faced with DEALING WITH IT. I found a good guide of reassembling multi-piece wheels on CCW’s website which helped immensely.

All the old silicone scraped off, and the mating surfaces cleaned up with a sandblast+wire brush

Prepare to get this all over your hands!

Center prepared with all bolts sticking through.

Very messy application of RTV.

Put the halves of the rim back together (carefully, don’t slide it around!) and hand tighten four of the wheel bolts, all 90° from each other. Smooth out the silicone bead, and push it into the crack. Then torque all the wheel bolts down (for the 3/8″ NF hardware these wheels use, I chose 31ft-lbs) and smooth out the bead again, once again forcing it back into the crack. Then let it sit for 24 hrs.


There’s still a little bit more work to be done on them, mostly dealing with some of the curb rash and some bends on the inside lip of the wheel. For that I plan to put the wheels on the rear axle, let the car idle in first on stands, and run over the lip with an air sander :V