Once I get the wheels bead blasted, is there a procedure to smooth out the pits?
I'm happy to paint the wheels instead of powder coating, so if a product and procedure is available to smooth out the pits, that's what I think I'll want to do.
Lastly, at least for this post, is it better to mount the tubes and tires before painting the final top coat?
After painting without tires on, put two layers of tape around inside of the bead and then mount tires. Take tape off before inflating tires. Don.
About smoothing the pits in the wire wheels - you can use the same material you use before painting the body, like bondo or filler primer that is sanded and reapplied in several steps - it takes a lot of work to get pitted metal smooth..
(Message edited by Roger K on May 11, 2015)
Bill, as Roger points out, the pitting needs to be filled and sanded before painting. It is a pain.
I no longer fit 21"tyres to rims. Your local tyre dealer's machine is capable of holding 21"rims, it will allow fitting of the tyres with no metal to metal contact and no scratching at all. My fitter even puts a bit of masking tape on the three jaws which grip the rim. Perfect job at a really good rate.
Hope this helps.
Allan from down under.
I would prime with PPG dp40LF epoxy primer and then fill with Mar-Hyde ultimate2k primer like 3 coats then spray a dark primer very light as a finder coat. Sand with 180 grit wet until the finder coat is gone. Lots of work but worth the effort if you want then nice.
Over the years, I have painted many wheels, both wood and wire. I have 5 wheel turners using BBQ spit motors to keep each wheels turning until the paint dry's.
Filling and sanding wire wheels is a tough job. It's all hand work. The sand paper wears the skin off your finger tips. The cost of filler, primer and final color paint is expensive. You waste a lot of paint spraying wire wheels..... much more than wood.
Suggest having them powder coated which hides numerous pits and surface imperfections. It is not easy sanding around the base of each spoke, hub, rim and each individual spoke. If not done correctly....you run the risk of paint not sticking and runs if the wheels are not kept turning. Difficult getting all areas coated with paint.
Powder coating saves a lot of work, less expensive and pain free. Less chance of chipping compared to paint. For deep pits, use J B weld or another epoxy filler that will take the baking temperature required for powder coat. The cost of powder coating wheels also includes sand blasting. I have spent over a $100.00 alone just having a set of wire wheels sand blasted.
If you have not had a set of wire wheels sand blasted, did the filling, priming, sanding and painted a set of wire wheel....go for it! You will never forget the work and cost involved.
Take them to Rick's Powder coating off of Democrat. He does nice work and will be cheaper than taking them elseware just for sandblasting. He is right near the train tracks. He offers about any color you want.
The powder coat way for wire wheels is great!
The coating process provide a thick coating, very tough, resists chips. Its just so nice.
Makes mounting the tires easy chore.
But hey, drop center rims are so much easier than clinchers
Plus colors are fun!
A big fan of powder coating!
Has anyone out there powder coated clincher rims? Like it or not?
Mine are powder coated on my Kamper , good choice as you can easily coat inside all the bead while you do the inside of the rim.
After 20 plus years one of the back wheels has lost its powder on the rim edge after a couple of high speed punctures resulting on the rim running on the tarmac, but it took more than two to do it.
Powder coating on clincher rims works great! It not only makes for a beautiful finish, but the finish is tough and scratch resistant. I also feel like it made for easier tire mounting of the 30" x 3.5" Universals.