Sandblast Aluminum Wheels?

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  #1  
Old 08-01-09, 09:16 AM
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Location: Fort Pierce, FL
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Sandblast Aluminum Wheels?

Have an 89 Taurus sedan. The wheels are original, and aluminum. They came from the factory with some sort of clear coat, which as worn off over the years. The aluminum has become discolored and dull looking. They have sort of diamond openings all around, about 1 1/2" deep. Most of the surface area of the wheel is open space.(I wish you could post photos on the DIY forums)

I want to clean the wheels to as close to new as possible. I am looking at sandblasting as an option. I have a 60gal compressor. Anyone done something similar? I am also open to suggestions for an acid or chemical that would do the job. After cleaning, I suppose a protective clear coat would be a good idea. Any suggestions on that?
 
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  #2  
Old 08-01-09, 11:55 AM
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Look into soda blasting or glass bead blasting, same type of process as sand blasting, just a more gentle abrasive.
 
  #3  
Old 08-02-09, 05:46 AM
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Wire Twister, thanks for your suggestion. If I go the sandblast route, I will look into it.
 
  #4  
Old 08-10-09, 10:19 AM
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I've sandblasted the 16 year old aluminum rims on my winter car. The clear coat was peeling off and corrosion was setting in. Sandblasting left... well, a sansblast finish. I topcoated with some clear rustoleum paint.

The job was nothing to brag about. It looks better than before and will hold off corrosion for a bit.
 
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