As the wheels were in such poor cosmetic condition when we bought the car I knew that they would have to be done properly at some time; even though I had improved them somewhat just after we had had it running. Two of the tyres were really bad and leaked air over a week or two so the usual lacquer blistering must have found its way between the tyre and rim. No problem, as we would be replacing the tyres anyway. When we finally got many of the other jobs completed I took two of the wheels along to Brian and Richard for them to remove the scrap tyres. I spent many hours with various paint strippers and abrasive brushes in an attempt to remove the original finish. I was still not very happy with the result as these cross spoke wheels have many tiny inaccessible corners.
A good friend recommended someone who might be able to vapour blast them to save a bit of time, however when we took them over, he didn't think that his blasting medium would cope very well and suggested sending them for chemical dipping.
Although I had sent the wheels away with a fairly good polish on the rims, they came back from the dippers having been sandblasted with coarse grit too! I will say that they have made a fantastic job with not one trace of paint, lacquer or corrosion on any of them but it meant another few weeks of mind-numbing careful hand polishing to get back to a good finish.
I used various grades of Garryflex (Loyblox) to get the bulk of the material away, followed by progressively finer grit wet and dry, prior to the usual Solvol polishing. It was then time for applying a couple of good coats of Bondaprimer to the inside to prevent the brake dust attacking the surface.
I then applied a coat of silver smoothrite to the outer bead where the tyre sits so there was no bare metal or red primer showing.
This was followed by careful masking and spraying with acid etch primer followed by the colour coats and clear lacquer.
New Bridgestone Touranzas, new metal valves and button headed stainless allen screws instead of the finger ripping alloy dummy torx bolts. The MG centre badge was refurbished with a little touch up of Japlac maroon which I happened to have and a few coats of the Rustins plastic coating left over from the door cappings.
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