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topic 11239

Clear Coating Aluminum Wheels


I have an 83 Porsche 944. The clear coat on the stock "cookie cutter" wheels had deteriorated badly. So I stripped the bare aluminum with MEK / methyl ethyl ketone (not the anodized black paint), wet sanded a bit to clean up some of the factory roughness and buffed them out. Not to a mirror finish, but far better than unstripped. I didn't clearcoat the wheels after finishing and have to periodically clean and buff. Is there an "over-the-counter brand" of clear coat that will give me good, lasting results? And if so, how do I prepare the wheels for spraying?


Jeff Gee
- Simpsonville, South Carolina

February 18, 2011

Hi, Jeff.

Automotive clearcoat is "two component" or "two pack"; the body shop mixes the two components and quickly sprays before the coating catalyzes and hardens. "Single component" over the counter stuff dries rather than catalyzes, and just isn't as durable. If you plan on redoing it regularly it can be okay though. Good luck.


Ted Mooney,
Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Pine Beach, New Jersey


I have bare aluminum wheels on my v-rod. They are a bear to keep clean. I would like to clear coat them but not sure what would be the best process. Is there a tie coat primer you recommend?

James A. Neil
Auto Painter - Bossier City, Louisiana


Have you considered powder coating?

Chris Goad
- Doyline, Louisiana, USA

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