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Thread: Tips on painting your own wheels?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    The Windy City
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    Tips on painting your own wheels?

    I'm about 99% sure tomorrow when my new rims arrive I am going to just paint them myself to avoid a $500 tab at the local shop. I'm wondering who here has tackled the job successfully and has some tips or DIY links for anyone looking to do this?

    I have done it once before and to be honest the conditions and my technique weren't very good so the paint came out "chunky" and not smooth like it should've looked. Thank God they were my winters and I didn't care.

    Anyway, this is what I am planning on - feel free to jump in to add or tell me not to do stuff if it will increase the quality.

    Supplies-
    3 cans of dupilcolor wheel paint
    2 cans of duplicolor clear coat
    180 grit sand paper

    My Plan -
    The wheels are coming to me BRAND new (kind of a risk painting them I know but whatever). I chose 180 grit because they won't be dirty or anything so I want to only sand them down very minutely to help the paint stick. I am not using a primer so this should help instead. I am going to start with 1 light coat of paint on the wheels - let them sit for 10 minutes and then 1 full coat of paint (wet). Depending on coverage and supplies I might add 1 more light coat of paint after this also. Then I will let them dry and apply 2 coats of clear. I will also let them cure for about 24 hrs or more before moving them back into boxes to bring to my shop to have the tires put on.

    Suggestions/tips please?
    Call me Seth
    CURRENT: 2016 Long Beach Blue BMW M2
    RETIRED: 15 F22 M235i | '08 E90 M3 DCT "GoinHAM3" | '04 E46 M3 6MT "WEGOHAM" | '04 330i ZHP | '11 E82 135i | '08 E90 328xi | 07 E91 328xi SportWagon

    Quote Originally Posted by danewilson77 View Post
    If I wore panties, I'd be dropping them right now.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Asheville, NC
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    3,240
    I've painted 5+ sets of wheels.

    After sanding, wipe down with denatured alcohol (rubbing alcohol).
    Use a primer. 2 coats.
    Check the temperature and humidity. Temp should be above 65F and humidity under 50% (lower the better).
    Paint at least 3-4 coats of color, allowing each coat to dry (not cure), roughly 30mins depending on temp and humidity. Your paint layers can be heavy, but keep the can moving and at least 4-6" away to prevent runs. Watch for overspray, I suggest seperating the wheels far enough apart that overspray isn't a problem.
    When it's time to clear, the color paint has to be very dry, so wait at least a hour before starting with the clear. Repeat the painting technique just as if it were color. The more coats, the better protection. I recommend 4-5.

    These are my current wheels I painted.





    In this video- 4:53 shows great technique to using the spray can. (Note, I have used the wire bristle sanding method, it's a little harsh and can leave sanding lines in the metal and can be seen after painting. I do not recommend it)

    Please visit my build page here, on CarDomain.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Location
    NJ
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    1,933
    Wow. I did not take anywhere near that level of time/care, but I was just covering the crap on my winter wheels. It's held up, though.
    - Marc

  4. #4
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    What if I use adhesion promoter instead of primer? Any thoughts? I hate sanding


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk... Bitches
    Call me Seth
    CURRENT: 2016 Long Beach Blue BMW M2
    RETIRED: 15 F22 M235i | '08 E90 M3 DCT "GoinHAM3" | '04 E46 M3 6MT "WEGOHAM" | '04 330i ZHP | '11 E82 135i | '08 E90 328xi | 07 E91 328xi SportWagon

    Quote Originally Posted by danewilson77 View Post
    If I wore panties, I'd be dropping them right now.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Valparaiso, IN
    Posts
    3,591
    Plasti-dip?

    That's my answer to everything...


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    The Windy City
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    9,115
    I also really would love to avoid sanding if possible


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk... Bitches
    Call me Seth
    CURRENT: 2016 Long Beach Blue BMW M2
    RETIRED: 15 F22 M235i | '08 E90 M3 DCT "GoinHAM3" | '04 E46 M3 6MT "WEGOHAM" | '04 330i ZHP | '11 E82 135i | '08 E90 328xi | 07 E91 328xi SportWagon

    Quote Originally Posted by danewilson77 View Post
    If I wore panties, I'd be dropping them right now.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    The Windy City
    Posts
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryankokesh View Post
    Plasti-dip?

    That's my answer to everything...


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Except my text to you like 5 hrs ago!

    #toocooltorespond
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk... Bitches
    Call me Seth
    CURRENT: 2016 Long Beach Blue BMW M2
    RETIRED: 15 F22 M235i | '08 E90 M3 DCT "GoinHAM3" | '04 E46 M3 6MT "WEGOHAM" | '04 330i ZHP | '11 E82 135i | '08 E90 328xi | 07 E91 328xi SportWagon

    Quote Originally Posted by danewilson77 View Post
    If I wore panties, I'd be dropping them right now.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Valparaiso, IN
    Posts
    3,591
    Already addressed that in another thread...

    Sorry, you got me in the middle of a three hour meeting. Which you'd think would be the perfect time. Unfortunately at that point my brain was the consistency of Greek yogurt.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    The Windy City
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    back on topic -

    also how do you go about painting the inner side of the wheel? what order should I be doing this in? is it possible to do it all at once?
    Call me Seth
    CURRENT: 2016 Long Beach Blue BMW M2
    RETIRED: 15 F22 M235i | '08 E90 M3 DCT "GoinHAM3" | '04 E46 M3 6MT "WEGOHAM" | '04 330i ZHP | '11 E82 135i | '08 E90 328xi | 07 E91 328xi SportWagon

    Quote Originally Posted by danewilson77 View Post
    If I wore panties, I'd be dropping them right now.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Valparaiso, IN
    Posts
    3,591
    I'm no painting pro, but I'm gonna guess you'd want to do the inside first so that any accidental overspray from doing the inside will be covered by the paint on the outside. Just throwing that out there.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


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