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"cleaning up" old aluminum / magnesium & or aging new aluminum wheels

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Magnum Wheel Man, Jul 27, 2012.

  1. Magnum Wheel Man
    Joined: May 11, 2011
    Posts: 418

    Magnum Wheel Man

    I'm still bouncing back & forth on wheels I'll be running on my project truck... was originally thinking a set of Ansen Sprints... if the guy calls me back, I'll have scored a set of 15" X 10" sprints from the 60's... the wheels for the fronts are newer & polished...

    ... I'm thinking of media blasting the 2 sets, so they match... cleaning up the old set, & depolishing the newer set... I assume some of you guys have done both... is there a process that's worked well for you??? ( type or grit of media ??? )

    if I can't get a pair of 10" Sprints for a diecent price, I may pick up 4 new Mickey Thompson wheels, that they are blowing out super cheap ( look kinda similar to the sprints, but are fully polished ) my media blaster thinks I'd be crazy taking the polish off those, but I'm not after a street rod look, & if I can make them look older I'd prefer that, if I have to go that route... anyone else done that ??? I'd rather have the vintage Sprints, but since they quit making the 10" the prices on those have gone up, & I can buy a set of 4 new wheels cheaper than I can buy 2 - 10" sprints right now :confused:
  2. MrGasser
    Joined: Oct 24, 2001
    Posts: 1,751

    from DETROIT

    Submersing polished aluminum in muriatic acid, (for VERY short amounts of time), will cause the aluminum to turn a nice magnesium color...
  3. Magnum Wheel Man
    Joined: May 11, 2011
    Posts: 418

    Magnum Wheel Man

    I wonder If I could spray it on ( I have some commercial acid proof spray bottles )

    none of the sand blast guys up this morning, or isn't it advisable to media blast aluminum wheels ???
  4. I just recently went through something similar. I had a pair of polished ET Supers in 15x6 and a pair of unpolished 15x8.5s that I blasted in a buddy's blast cabinet. The media was garnet that was pretty old, but it did a great job knocking off the paint off of the 15x8.5s. I thought that it would rough-up the 15x6s to more resemble the surface finish of the rear wheels, but it really didn't. I painted all four wheels, and the fronts turned out beautiful. The rears look good, but a lot more of the casting irregularities showed through because they had never been polished. The wheels were painted a light charcoal with a lot of metallic, and that helped disguise the difference between the fronts and rears.

    Your Sprints might turn out a little different because they were pretty smooth from the factory, unlike the 5-spoke wheels, which were pretty rough.
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  5. Magnum Wheel Man
    Joined: May 11, 2011
    Posts: 418

    Magnum Wheel Man

    thanks for the reply... still waiting on that call on those 60's Sprints... I hate waiting
  6. Just make sure you aren't using ferrous based media or you will end up with rusty spots on your aluminum.
  7. Sage
    Joined: Apr 8, 2008
    Posts: 139


    A recent article in the August 2012 issue of Street Rodder talked of how Foose and Chris Andrews used Easy-Off oven cleaner to age parts of his deuce coupe. I tried it on some aluminum plate I had lying around and, with several applications using different spray patterns and thicknesses, it did give it a nice, aged patina look. Might be something worth investigating if you've got some aluminum to practice on.
  8. MO_JUNK
    Joined: Jan 22, 2006
    Posts: 574

    from Rolla, Mo.

    I have restored a number of the D200-s Americans and also ET-II's. The spokes on one set had been completely polished out. I had them media blasted and they came out really good. They had the "as cast" original look. Sam
  9. porknbeaner
    Joined: Sep 12, 2003
    Posts: 34,529


    I like the media blasted but Ansens are supposed to be polished.
    Egle brand mag wheel cleaner for uncoated wheels is muratic acid I believe. it is cheap, when you soak them good and follow the instructions they will leave a mildly rough surface and bleach them out white. if you then leave them alone just hosing them occaisionally when they are dirty they will assume a magnesuim of titanuim color.
  10. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 6,760

    Rusty O'Toole

    I have some old pickup truck aluminum wheels I wanted to use on a trailer. What is the best thing to strip off the peeling clear coat? I planned on trying to polish them but will probably end up painting them (they are pretty corroded in spots)
  11. gilby's garage
    Joined: Oct 12, 2011
    Posts: 383

    gilby's garage

    Don't laugh but try salt water! Every time i change the water in my salt water reef i dump it out back on stuff that i want to patina, works awesome on aluminum...
  12. greg32
    Joined: Jun 21, 2007
    Posts: 1,209

    from lemont,IL

    How about Dow 7 for that vintage mag look. Theres a metal finisher near chicago that does the process. PM me if ya want it.
  13. Magnum Wheel Man
    Joined: May 11, 2011
    Posts: 418

    Magnum Wheel Man

    Thanks for the replys guys... Does anyone have any pics of before & after Dow7 ???

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