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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would like for someone with experience in restoring the outer rim of 240Z steering wheels to give me some information on the how to's and the processes and materials involved. These steering wheels are not wood and are made of some type of hard resinous material. Good information would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Alex R.
 

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I've used a buffing wheel

and polishing compound to clean up wheels before. It's amazing how many people think the Japanese used exotic hardwood (mahogany & teak are the two claims I've heard) for these wheels. Once they develop cracks you're pretty much done, but if the problem is just a loss of shine, then buff away. It won't end up looking like-new perfect, but it does clean up pretty well.
Q
 

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Re: I've used a buffing wheel

Summarizing an outstanding article in Sport Z magazine:

After removing wheel, wipe down with wax and grease remover to remove as much of the finger grease imbedded into the rim and spokes as possible.

Immerse in a tub of warm soapy water and using a scotch pad, scrub to remove dirt and other nasty stuff on rim. Take care not to over scrub as you don't want to lose all the patina on the rim. If the original varnish is still on, it will more than likely start peeling off. Remove as much as possible since it won't allow another coating to adhere properly.

The water will turn a dark reddish brown color, wash again and you should have almost no color in the water. Rim at this point should be down to the nice mahogany red color or slightly darker. You should decide how much of the dark color you wish to retain. When wet you will get an idea of what the finished rim will look like. When it dries it will appear to change colors, and become lighter. This is ok.

Finish center spokes as you would any other metal. They recommend you sand / prime / finish. I stripped mine using a scotch pad on an air die grinder and smoothed the metal in one step. I finished it with about a 380-400 wet/dry sand paper to give me just enough tooth to have the paint adhere. Then, since I knew I would be refinishing it again later, I used Rust-Oleum Satin Black directly on the metal. I sprayed and allowed the wheel to sun-bake between successive coats. I put on about 6 coats all together and allowed to sun-bake for most of a day.

Then I masked the center and using some clear paint from my model R/C boats which is fuel and water proof, began laying coats. I put about 6-8 coats on the rim doing a light scuff sand between coats with a green scotch pad.

The Sport Z magazine does the rim first and the spokes later, but the only difference is what you have to mask.

You might check their web site www.sportzmagazine.com
I believe they do have past issue copies that you can purchase, and they have a couple of EXCELLENT articles. The fuel tank vent hose issue alone is worth the subscription, let alone the steering wheel article.
 

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Re: I've used a buffing wheel

I agree with escanlen, get the sport z magazine . After reading just that article I subscribed to the magazine . I refinished my wheel like they recommended and it looks as good as new , no kidding . Gary Portland Or
 
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