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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Wheels and Tires Forum Sponsored by The Tire Rack > Alloy refurb/repair - any ideas on this one?!



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      02-03-2013, 11:09 AM   #1
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Question Alloy refurb/repair - any ideas on this one?!

Maybe a long shot, but wondered if anyone has any bright ideas for this?

I'm in the process of selling a set of alloys that I had on my previous car (Golf). 3 of the alloys are in great condition, however one is a little worse for wear.

Long story, but in short: unknowlingly I drove around for a couple of weeks with a rear brake pad that had delaminated thus leaving, I believe, the caliper piston making contact with the disc directly. (Yes it did sound bad and eventually I got it sorted but I hadn't realised it was quite that bad!) Anyway, as a result, I had hot metal fillings falling onto the inside of the alloy and the centrifugal force then keeping them there. That has resulted in nasty brown patches of what feels like essentially a layer of rust. It won't come off easily with a pressure washer but will come off if I approach it with a flatheaded scerwdriver. This is not ideal as I don't want to risk scratching the alloy coating underneath which would not help the look.

In an ideal world I'd love to get all the brown stuff off and get the alloy back to it's original state so I can get a half decent price for the set. Any bright ideas about how to attack this one?? I had though about an acid bath maybe? But then that would entail taking the tyre off which I'd like to avoid ideally.

Any thoughts appreciated.
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      02-06-2013, 02:14 AM   #2
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Have you tried any wheel cleaners? what about solvents?
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      02-10-2013, 01:29 PM   #3
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Have tried an alloy wheel cleaner and it wasn't strong enough. What kind of solvent would you recommend???
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      02-11-2013, 03:04 PM   #4
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Wow I've never seen anything quite like that before. Short of chemically stripping everything from the wheel I don't know if any regular wheel cleaners would work for you.
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      02-11-2013, 03:13 PM   #5
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A few suggestions

I hate the stuff normally, but wonder wheels is just about the strongest stuff you can buy and is a fairly strong acid. Use this coupled with a brass wire brush. Don't use a steel wire brush as it will seriously damage the paint and alloy, but a brass brush should be ok. Work in the direction of the wheel as opposed to across as any scratches that do develop will be less visible. Make sure you wear some eye protection as you will splash stuff everywhere.

It also might be worth getting some clutch/brake cleaner which is about 6 for a can.

You could also try oven cleaner, but this stuff is viscous and so you don't want it on the alloy for more than about 20 seconds.
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      02-11-2013, 05:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VMRWheels View Post
Wow I've never seen anything quite like that before. Short of chemically stripping everything from the wheel I don't know if any regular wheel cleaners would work for you.
Yeah it's pretty severe. I had thought about getting it refurbished but that would cost me more than the extra I'd get for it so not really sure if that would achieve anything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
A few suggestions

I hate the stuff normally, but wonder wheels is just about the strongest stuff you can buy and is a fairly strong acid. Use this coupled with a brass wire brush. Don't use a steel wire brush as it will seriously damage the paint and alloy, but a brass brush should be ok. Work in the direction of the wheel as opposed to across as any scratches that do develop will be less visible. Make sure you wear some eye protection as you will splash stuff everywhere.

It also might be worth getting some clutch/brake cleaner which is about 6 for a can.

You could also try oven cleaner, but this stuff is viscous and so you don't want it on the alloy for more than about 20 seconds.
Thanks a lot for those suggestions, much appreciated. Will try those and see how I get on.
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      02-11-2013, 06:15 PM   #7
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It's worth a try. Worst case scenario you need to refurbish one wheel. Best case you get top price for wheels
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