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I have what I think are factory aluminum wheels on my Z. I think they are factory since the 74.0 I have now and a previous 70 both have them. They are aluminum and have a mesh on the center section. My question is this...I plan on spending a large amount of time this weekend cleaning off the oxidation from them and polishing them. I bought some Mother's aluminum cleaner/polish and am wondering if there is any way other than continually reapplying it to keep my wheels clean. Any advice ??? And does anyone know if these were factory wheels or just so popular in the 70's that I happened to get two cars with them ??
 

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elbow grease! The best way to clean wheels is . .

> I have what I think are factory aluminum
> wheels on my Z. My question is
> this...I plan on spending a large amount of
> time this weekend cleaning off the oxidation
> from them and polishing them. I bought some
> Mother's aluminum cleaner/polish
> and am wondering if there is any way other
> than continually reapplying it to keep my
> wheels clean. Any advice

I wouldn't try to clear coat your wheels. A clear coat will chip and the aluminum will oxidize at those spots and cleaning them is a royal pain in the @$$! Just polish the wheels really well and keep them polished. They oxidize less this way and taking off light oxidation is MUCH easier than the heavy oxidation you're about to tackle.

Having just refurbished a set of aluminum wheels myself, my advice is a multistep process. First, knock down any dings and deep scratches with 320 grit sand paper. Then use progressively finer paper (400, 600, 800 grit) to get out any sanding marks from the grittier papers. It actually doesn't take as long as you might think. Really spend some time with the 600/800 grit paper as this will result in a smoother surface to polish. The last step before using the mothers polish is to use four ought steel wool (0000-super fine) to buff up the rim. Then when you polish, you'll get a really nice, smooth satiny look. To get a chrome shine, you'll have to use a pnuematic die grinder and felt buffing wheels with the mothers polish. The grinder will spin fast enough that it breaks the polishing agents into progressively finer particles and this is how you get such mirror-like results. I did this to a set of wheels I got for $100 and they look brand new.

Good luck
 

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Re: elbow grease! The best way to clean wheels is

I used to polish up alluminum wheels for a tow service, I used a heavy duty aluminium polish and a shop cloth. to keep them shiny, I used a little turtle wax and rubed it in by hand...kept them up pretty nice. I do the same for my stock rims on my 82. I havent touched them for over a year, and they still shine quite a bit..need to go back out there though

Hope this helps
Joe

> I wouldn't try to clear coat your wheels. A
> clear coat will chip and the aluminum will
> oxidize at those spots and cleaning them is
> a royal pain in the @$$! Just polish the
> wheels really well and keep them polished.
> They oxidize less this way and taking off
> light oxidation is MUCH easier than the
> heavy oxidation you're about to tackle.

> Having just refurbished a set of aluminum
> wheels myself, my advice is a multistep
> process. First, knock down any dings and
> deep scratches with 320 grit sand paper.
> Then use progressively finer paper (400,
> 600, 800 grit) to get out any sanding marks
> from the grittier papers. It actually
> doesn't take as long as you might think.
> Really spend some time with the 600/800 grit
> paper as this will result in a smoother
> surface to polish. The last step before
> using the mothers polish is to use four
> ought steel wool (0000-super fine) to buff
> up the rim. Then when you polish, you'll get
> a really nice, smooth satiny look. To get a
> chrome shine, you'll have to use a pnuematic
> die grinder and felt buffing wheels with the
> mothers polish. The grinder will spin fast
> enough that it breaks the polishing agents
> into progressively finer particles and this
> is how you get such mirror-like results. I
> did this to a set of wheels I got for $100
> and they look brand new.

> Good luck
 
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