How2

Here is where you can find out how to do some different things to your ride. Things like Repainting your rims, putting on decals, changing out bulbs, even something as small as blacking out your tail lights (gotcha there). But here is how I have done some of the things to Project GSRT, aka Sattie. Now you may figure out another way to do it and that's great, this is how I did, or did them, you get the point...Soon I will be updating the How2 section to include photo galleries. This way you can see larger sizes of the photos when you're doing your own How2.

How2 Number 1: How To Repaint Rims:

This was my first real How2 Project! You too can follow this How2 even if you are just going to Repaint or Repair one rim. This project can take you up to six hours or even one full day depending on how many rims you are going to work on AND if you need to do ALL the steps that I had to. The total budget for this project was about $60 dollars. Again, this will depend on what you already have in your garage and what you are trying to do.

These are the Katana Concept 6 rims that have been discontinued a loooong time ago. I liked them because they were not the basic flat faced 5 or 7 spoked rims that were out back then (yes I said back then!) So, what's the next best thing to do other than getting new rims or having them powdercoated...Repaint them! We all know that powdercoating is best but for the price of the entire project, you might be able to get on wheel powdercoated. If you follow these simple steps, you can make your rims like new again.

Here, I am totally changing the color on all 4 rims, from white to silver. The same process is applied, with a little variation in steps, if you are staying with the same color.

*****PLEASE MAKE SURE TO READ THE DISCLAIMER AT THE END OF THIS HOW2 *****

1. Rims Before: Here is a picture of the rims when they were white. Actually, this is a pic of the wheels after I cleaned them thoroughly. I got them as a gift and they had been sitting in someone's backyard for a while and had some kind of tar/grime on them. I used Simple Green and a scrub brush to clean them off...that took about an hour for all for wheels. Otherwise, you will only need to clean them with dish soap and water to get any wax or coating off that may have been on there. Now that the wheels are all cleaned up, you can see that they have a bit of curb rash on them. This will need to be fixed before you start painting. The key to that will be something that you probably already have in your garage.

2. Up-Close of Damaged Wheel: Here is the close up of the wheel that needs to be repaired. Lucky for me, the scratches were not that deep. I will use 320 grit sandpaper and follow up with 1500 grit just to smooth it out. Sidenote: Depending on how bad your curb rash is, you may need to start with a little rougher sandpaper. If you realize that you need to keep getting lower and lower in number, the sandpaper may not be enough and this is where you decide on if this technique is right for your wheels.

3. Rim Ready for Sanding: First I sanded the rim with 320 grit sandpaper and then followed up with 1500. This was to smooth out where the scratches were and it will make a nicer surface for the spot putty. You will also notice that there are still some traces of the scratches but the spot putty will take care of that later on. Sidenote: Usually you will want to have a scuffed surface when you are painting, which is right BUT the fact that you are not yet painting is why you do not want to leave tha curb rash area scuffed or rough.

4. Rim with Spot Putty: With your latex gloves on, appply the spot putty, as thin as possible over the top of the areas/scratches that need to be filled in. You will probably have to do a couple layers making sure each layer dries in betweer. DO NOT cake this stuff on!!! If you do, it will crack on you and you will have to start all over again...ASK ME HOW I KNOW? Sidenote: Really, do not cake this stuff on! Eventhough you will sand this down in the next step, you still will have the chance, more likely than not, of the spot putty cracking. Also, I eventually used my finger without gloves on to spread the spot putty on BUT I do not recommend doing this as spot putty is a chemical and may or may not irritate your skin!

5. Rim After Sanding Spot Putty: The final coating of spot putty has dried and the repair area has been sanded with 320 grit and then 1500 grit. This was perfect for what I was doing. Again, you may figure out 400 works then 2000 but for what I did, this was right on the money. Also, you may or may not wet sand. I dry sanded my work so I could see what was going on as I needed to layer on the spot putty. Plus at the time, I was doing this in my basement...yes basement. I hadn't moved into my new house where I have a garage and driveway now. Let's move on to Step 5a...

5a. YOU MUST FOLLOW THIS STEP IF YOU WANT YOUR PAINT TO STICK TO THE WHEEL PROPERLY: You must Sand/Scuff the ENTIRE rim with 320 grit sandpaper or a Red Scuff pad!!!! Scuff the paint until it looks dull to the eye, or eyes unless you are a pirate. This is so the paint will stick to the wheel. If you just repair the wheel and then spray them, they will look okay at first and then in an instant look a hot mess. I learned this prior to doing these wheels so I already knew this. Once you have sanded/scuffed the wheels(s), make sure you clean them thoroughly to remove any dust that may be left over. A bucket of semi-soapy dishwater is good enough. Sidenote: I wouldn't use carwash for this step because some carwash solutions actually have wax already mixed in. Not a good combo if you're painting.

6. Applying the Primer: The wheels are now COMPLETELY sanded and have been cleaned again. Shake the can of primer for 1 REAL minute, not the 10 seconds you are used to...1 REAL minute. Next place the Spray Can Attachment on top of the can. Because I used spray paint alot, I will apply 2 medium coats of Krylon Primer. You can do 3-4 light coats as you may not be familiar with it. Make sure that you shake the can throughout the process. This keeps the consistency and color even. Again, make sure that you let the coats dry in between. If you don't, you will see little clumps here and there as well as some runs. Also, continue to make sure these are on a flat surface. DO NOT have the wheels sitting up! Flat surface is best. Sidenote: A couple things, by now, there may also be some primer for wheels, if not, what I suggested works fine. Another tip is that while you are waiting for the coats to dry, if you notice that one can is low, start shaking the other can so that you can get started with the next one. Don't wait until it's empty then have to shake another can up. Lastly, you may not need the Spray Can Attachment. They have improved upon the nozzles on the spray cans to spray alot better.

7. Applying the Color Coat: Now that the primer is dry, I will be applying the Dupli-Color High Performance Wheel coating in Silver. This time I sprayed 3 medium coats (again because I am familiar with spraypaint), waiting 10 to 15 minutes between each coat. Once each wheel is evenly coated, allow to dry to the touch. Sidenote: Couple more things: Because I was changing the entire color all together on the wheel, I also had to paint the inside. Why, because you can see through the wheel and how jacked would that look if the face of the wheel was grey and the inside was white. Now if I was trying something else, yeah, but that's another project. Now, if you are just touching up a wheel and staying the same color, you will not need to do the inside of the wheel...unless you want to.

8. Clear Coat Application: Now that the 2 coats of primer and 3 coats of color have completely dried, I will apply the clearcoat. THIS HAS TO BE DONE WITHIN 15 MINUTES OF THE FINAL COLOR COAT. The can says you have up until 1 hour...don't buy it. With as hot as it was, 15 minutes might have been too long. You can apply several thin coats to build up a nice clear coat on your wheels which should only take you about a half an hour. After the "1 hour" you will have to wait 7 days to apply more. This is also junk as if you just spray clear coat over something, you will FOR SURE get orange peel or a bumpy, patchy surface. You would have to wetsand the clear coat and then respray the clear coat again. But that's too much...just do it now the right way. Sidenote: Your wheels will actually have a nice shine to them after you apply the color coat...don't be fooled by this and think you can just slap them on the car. You will not have ANY protection from some of the minor road hazards AND they will be scratched easily.

9. Done, Part 1: This is a close up of the wheel where I repaired the damage. Can you tell where I fixed the damage? No? Good! That is how the end result is supposed to to turn out...like it was never repaired in the first place. Can you believe that these were once white? Neither can I.

10. Done Part 2: The centercaps have been placed back on the rims and here they are/were on Project GSRT right after they were done AND after a 3 hour detail job. Sidenote: I actually still have those wheels in my garage...statcked up waiting for me to do something with them. I'm thinking of removing the tires, touching up the wheels again and selling them. I have some old skool Konig Elans I want bring back, hmm. (Update: I have actually sold these wheels this past summer).

Materials: Sandpaper (320,1500), Bondo(R) Glazing and Spot Putty(or your preference), Krylon Primer(2-3 cans), Dupli-Color High Performance Wheel Coating in Silver(3 cans), Dupli-Color High Performance Wheel Coating Clear Coat(3 cans), Latex gloves, painter's tarp, Basic dust mask or mask style respirator(disposeable), sponges/cleaning cloths, Simple Green(R) cleaning solution, liquid soap, water and TIME.

 

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How2 Number 2: Coming Soon

 

 

 

 

 

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