Wheel finishing

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Mark.Ogden
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Wheel finishing

Postby Mark.Ogden » Mon May 25, 2015 12:18 pm

Progress on resto of my VB continues apace, and attention turns to the wheel rims. Thinking about stripping the paint off the wheel rims - all black at present - as I prefer the more traditional look. Frame will go to the powder coaters shortly so he could strip the wheels back at least.

However, I would be interedted to know what would remain and how they would look after removing the paint - by bead blasting perhaps?

Clearly I would desire a smooth finish and something that could perhaps be polished up a little further - but I am very mindful of spoiling the rims if I go down this route.

Thoughts welcome........

Cheers

Mark

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paul.jameson
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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby paul.jameson » Tue May 26, 2015 8:59 pm

Try having them blasted and see what they are like. If they are badly pitted, you won't get a good finish but you would probably need to replace them anyway if they are that bad. The spokes might be more of a problem for corrosion though - or are you replacing them?
Paul Jameson
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Mark.Ogden
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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby Mark.Ogden » Thu May 28, 2015 10:31 am

Paul

Once blasted there is no going back. Prefer to understand what I may expect beforehand. The current painted rims are a pretty good finish, just that I prefer the more traditional look of bare metal - which if the rims are alloy, I could polish up. However, another issue is that bare metal will not be protected, so perhaps I am just shooting myself in the foot and need new - presumably chromed - rims if I wish to go down that route.

Cheers

Mark

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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby john.mitchell » Thu May 28, 2015 11:39 am

Not clear what you are trying to do here, Mark. Sounds as if you wish to rechrome them. I have been told by a wheelbuilder that the fierce polishing which is necessary to do this wears the protruding nipple holes disproportionally and risks having spokes pull through these holes.
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john.nash
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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby john.nash » Thu May 28, 2015 2:50 pm

Stainless ? Polishes up nice and never rust ?
To be fair, if you are replacing spokes (with stainless again ? )then now is the time to replace the rim.

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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby simon.holyfield » Thu May 28, 2015 3:49 pm

I've restored two bikes using the original rims, re-chromed, mainly because the rims were in very good shape and I couldn't bring myself to discard something that had been with the bike for the last 60 years. However...

The main issue is that once the inside of the bead is rusty, you can't do anything about it other then run something like waxoyl inside it. My Bantam always has rust stains on the tyres from the rusty beads. Secondly, you run the risk of a poor plating job - reduced if you have a plater you know and trust, but you are going to pay something upwards of £85 per rim to get it polished and plated, and the decision is made more significant if you are going to paint and line the rims too, because there is more money going down the pipe if the rims are not up to scratch.

Its a hard one. My Huntmaster, which is still in pieces, has worn chrome on the wheels but they are greasy & there is no corrosion; they are probably going to stay like that because the bike is likely to be used more frequently than the others & I'm not very good at cleaning them - or I may replace them with stainless.

I'm longing to find a restoration project which has missing rims, so I don't have to make agonising decisions!
cheers

Simes

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Mark.Ogden
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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby Mark.Ogden » Mon Jun 01, 2015 10:54 am

Chaps

I don't honestly know what metal the painted rims are made from...I am assuming some sort of high nickel content steel - but surely not stainless or chromed, otherwise why paint it? I should add that all the rim is painted, not just the centre section, and it looks original.

My thinking was to bead blast it, polish the bare metal up - as you would with alloy covers using polishing mops and cutting compound, then protect it in some way - lacquer or similar, but I am becoming more convinced by not doing anything at all.

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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby pappleton » Tue Jun 02, 2015 4:11 pm

You will not be able to keep bare steel from rusting, ever. From what you say the rims are in good shape now, abet painted black. They could well have been supplied that way from new, depending on the model. If you want to change to chrome or stainless, reckon on £250 per wheel. Are you thinking about painting and lining the centres? Then there are tyres to consider..
Paul Appleton '53 VH plunger, '53 VHA rigid - in many boxes, '58 H.D. pan/shovel rigid

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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby Simon.Gardiner » Wed Jun 03, 2015 11:41 pm

Maybe have a chat with the powder-coater and see what the options are for something very shiny silver (or even shiny grey, which can look very similar to aluminium)?

Or paint 'em with aluminium paint and then lacquer - might not be very tyre-lever resistant though.

Or again black wheels can look very nice as well when not rusty :D
'55 Huntmaster, '56 VH, ' 51 VH, '80 R100RT, '00 Sprint ST (but all those Ariel parts can only make one running bike...)

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Re: Wheel finishing

Postby Keith.owen » Thu Jun 04, 2015 9:21 am

Hi,
Didn't the VB have black rims, at some times during it's product lifespan?

On the subject of rims, I put stainless rims with stainless spokes and the cost was around the £250 mark per wheel. Also had the hubs powder coated. It is nice to know that they should last, especially given the cost of plating these days!

Keith
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