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  1. #1

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    Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Hi Everyone,

    I had my wheels powdercoated a basic semi-gloss black a couple years ago and overtime they have faded some. It looks like something I was cleaning them with might have etched or made them "chalky" looking. I could even see drips from cleaner on some of them.

    So to top it off last fall I got in an accident with the car and one of the wheels had to be refinished. Despite me calling ahead of time and asking if they could match the powdercoat it looks as if the wheel refinisher straight up painted the wheel not powdercoated it (this was my theory because the face was very glossy but the inside of the barrel looked untouched) and the gloss level was way off. I decided it wasn`t worth dealing with them to make it right so I took a pair of the wheels and brought them to my original powdercoater and had them stripped and recoated. Unfortunately like I was afraid even with the re-coat they do not match the old coating on the other pair. I have since moved far out of state so there isn`t the option of having him recoat the other pair to match so I`m trying to figure out if there`s something I can do to restore the finish of the older pair.

    So here`s my questions:

    Can you actually "polish" or wet sand powdercoat?

    Would something like a Mother`s Power Ball or Cone with some wax work in this case?

    Or would I be better off wet sanding with a high grit like 2000 or 3000 and then waxing?

    If I can wax it what kind of wax would you recommend?

    Lastly, what kind of tire and wheel cleaner would you recommend would be safe in the future?

    I was using Bleach White and Meguiars Hot Rims All Wheel and Tire Cleaner. Anything less harsh on Powdercoat but still effective that you`d recommend?

  2. #2
    Detailers Workshop The Driver's Avatar
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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    You can, it`s just tougher paint. Just because be careful with cleaning products and even some polishes, I have seen some powder clear react and stain.
    Rupes 21 MK II, Rupes 15 MK II, Rupes 21, Rupes LHR75e, Rupes Ibrid-L, Rupes LH18ENS, Flex PE-14-2, Dodo Juice V1, Dewalt 749X

  3. #3

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Griot’s iron remover works great on those, as far as protecting them, try PolishAngel super sprint. I would use Griot’s hand polish to bring back Shine.

  4. #4

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    My powdercoated wheels were always hard to correct, requiring a rather aggressive approach. But I sure would *NOT* wetsand them. I sorta doubt you`ll get them to match exactly, I`ve always had to have them all redone and/but once redone they simply stay nice forever.

    I just FK1000P mine and clean them with a pretty strong shampoo mix. Even though some of my cars are supposedly "bad with regard to brake dust", I seldom never need anything else to clean `em up (been so long I can barely recall what I used, probably Griot`s or P21s). I do clay/AIO/reLSP them maybe annually though.

  5. #5
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Sorry this had to happen to your wheels..

    For sure, something strong like Bleche White and Hot Rims hurt the finish, especially if left on too long, the wheels were hot, the sun was hot, and not rinsed off fast enough. That would explain the streaks in the paint...

    Most powder coaters recommend nothing but a weak soap mix and lots of water to rinse them completely, and then dried right away..

    If the powder coat process is to spray clean wheels, then bake them a certain amount of time to get the finish to level off, then I dont know if sanding would work either...

    All I have read is that it takes a lot of work to bring back the finish once damaged - if - it can be brought back..

    Good luck with this..
    Dan F

  6. #6

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Powdercoating seldom seems as indestructible/impervious to damage as the Conventional Wisdom might have ya think. And !oh man! does the quality differ from one shop/batch to another! I had the front stabilizer bar for the Crown Vic redone *three times* before it was good enough to install, and that`s after Addco powdercoated it initially. AND...I`d bet anything I`ll have it redone again by somebody better.

  7. #7

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Thanks everyone,

    I actually stumbled upon a "powdercoating polish" from Eastwood while researching this further:

    https://www.eastwood.com/powder-coating-polish.html

    I`m going to give that a shot and see how it goes.

    Going forward I`m going to be more careful about application time and rinse off for cleaner if this works.

    If I spend more time and effort I can probably get buy with just using soap on the wheels, my bigger concern is cleaning the tires and getting rid of browning.

    Can you guys recommend a tire cleaner that would be close to effective as Bleach White but more finish friendly? Likewise maybe a water based tire dressing that isn`t going to brown so easy?
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  8. #8
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Contradiction View Post
    Thanks everyone,

    I actually stumbled upon a "powdercoating polish" from Eastwood while researching this further:

    https://www.eastwood.com/powder-coating-polish.html

    I`m going to give that a shot and see how it goes.

    Going forward I`m going to be more careful about application time and rinse off for cleaner if this works.

    If I spend more time and effort I can probably get buy with just using soap on the wheels, my bigger concern is cleaning the tires and getting rid of browning.

    Can you guys recommend a tire cleaner that would be close to effective as Bleach White but more finish friendly? Likewise maybe a water based tire dressing that isn`t going to brown so easy?
    Great job, Contradiction !
    Eastwood is another of my favorite places for a lot of nice things.. Hope this product works out for your wheels..

    The best soap I have seen for getting tires clean again, is TufShine Tire Cleaner here - https://www.autopia-carcare.com/tuf-...l#.WtmE9y5zb3g
    If you end up trying this product, it may take a few times but you will see all that brown gunk rinsing off and then it will stop..
    Well, hopefully your Bleche White has not removed the black completely from the tires; its pretty strong stuff...

    I also have been using the TufShine Clear Coat Product on all my vehicles` tires for several years and that means I have very little work to do on them once they are coated a few times.. They stay really clean, and are evenly black, and require very little cleaning because this is a coating that actually works on tires...

    Nothing bad has ever happened to any of the tires over several years, and the coating keeps them a lot cleaner and there is no residual greasy, black stuff, that comes off and gets everywhere either...

    They also sell perfect, little orange sponge applicators for this product and I also love them for applying Coatings as well..

    Their tire brush is also really great and lasts quite a while.. Its the perfect size for tires and actually interior carpeting and mats...
    Dan F
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  9. #9

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    If normal approaches like the TuffShine Tire Cleaner don`t work, there`s always Griot`s Rubber Prep. But I`d only use that for the Big Initial Cleanup.

    LSP those wheels and they oughta clean up fine with just strong shampoo mix...mine always do despite having cars (brakepads) that other say are nasty in this regard.

    I`ll be interested to hear how the Eastwood Polish works...I buy a lot of stuff from them, but I`ve never liked any of their Polishes (though I never tried that one).
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  10. #10

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    I like TufShine tire cleaner to get rid of Browning.

    Stokdgs has good advice about TufShine.

    The only thing I would add is a bucket of clean water and a foam sponge.

    You can use that to get rid of any overspray residue left on your rims after you hose off your tires.

    I find that very useful.
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  11. #11

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stokdgs View Post
    Great job, Contradiction !
    Eastwood is another of my favorite places for a lot of nice things.. Hope this product works out for your wheels..

    The best soap I have seen for getting tires clean again, is TufShine Tire Cleaner here - https://www.autopia-carcare.com/tuf-...l#.WtmE9y5zb3g
    If you end up trying this product, it may take a few times but you will see all that brown gunk rinsing off and then it will stop..
    Well, hopefully your Bleche White has not removed the black completely from the tires; its pretty strong stuff...

    I also have been using the TufShine Clear Coat Product on all my vehicles` tires for several years and that means I have very little work to do on them once they are coated a few times.. They stay really clean, and are evenly black, and require very little cleaning because this is a coating that actually works on tires...

    Nothing bad has ever happened to any of the tires over several years, and the coating keeps them a lot cleaner and there is no residual greasy, black stuff, that comes off and gets everywhere either...

    They also sell perfect, little orange sponge applicators for this product and I also love them for applying Coatings as well..

    Their tire brush is also really great and lasts quite a while.. Its the perfect size for tires and actually interior carpeting and mats...
    Dan F

    Thanks Dan! I think I`m going to give that stuff a shot. I like the idea of the clearcoat too if it`s a long term application. Especially since I`m going to be buying brand new tires for the wheels I am trying to polish now. If that staves off the need for frequent dressing applications which will in turn prevent browning that sounds perfect. Frankly I don`t like super glossy tire shine anyway, so if I can get a good semi-gloss matte finish to them that would be perfect.

    I see they sell the cleaner, applicator sponge, and clearcoat as a kit through the Autopia store, do you think 6 oz. of this stuff is enough to cover a few coats on some 19" tires?
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  12. #12
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Contradiction View Post
    Thanks Dan! I think I`m going to give that stuff a shot. I like the idea of the clearcoat too if it`s a long term application. Especially since I`m going to be buying brand new tires for the wheels I am trying to polish now. If that staves off the need for frequent dressing applications which will in turn prevent browning that sounds perfect. Frankly I don`t like super glossy tire shine anyway, so if I can get a good semi-gloss matte finish to them that would be perfect.

    I see they sell the cleaner, applicator sponge, and clearcoat as a kit through the Autopia store, do you think 6 oz. of this stuff is enough to cover a few coats on some 19" tires?
    Contradiction --
    Glad to read you are moving forward with a great plan for your wheels and tires !
    Yes, the 6oz size of the Clearcoat should be fine..
    The Clearcoat is a white colored liquid, so be careful when you first put it on the excellent orange foam applicator pad, as it will want to run off the pad until it soaks in..
    I just put a little line on the applicator pad, and rub it into the pad with my finger, then a little more, until there is a little bit soaked in, and rub it on the tire..
    As you go around the tires, by the time you get to the last one, there may be enough of the Clearcoat so that you wont need to add anymore..

    If you let them dry, you can come back and add another coat if you wish, and for me, that is usually enough..
    I have read that the more coats you add in this manner, the darker and more glossy the tires get.. I don`t know that that looks like because I don`t want shiny tires either..

    When finished, just rinse out the orange pad with water, squeeze it a few times, and it will be ready to use next time.. I have a bunch of these orange foam pads and they work just perfect for many things..

    All I know is that this product actually stays on the tires, keeps them a nice uniform color, protects the rubber, and doesn`t crack, peel off, or come off on anything that touches the tires later.. The tires do not attract dirt, etc., and the subsequent cleanings are so much easier, the more you apply it..
    Sometimes, I don`t even re-apply it, and an easy wash is all they need.. See how it works for your needs, and go from there..
    Good Luck !
    DanF
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  13. #13

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Ugh, so Eastwood powdercoat polish was no miracle worker. They just have a bit more gloss now with the same staining.

    A couple of follow up questions before I consider re-coating them:

    I applied this by hand, is something like a Mother`s Mini Powerball polisher with a drill really going to do any better?

    Could it actually do "worse" and take off too much thickness of the powdercoat?

    I also thought about trying to test out wetsanding on an inconspicuous area. Would 3,000 grit and Meguiar`s Final Inspection Spray be relatively "safe"?

  14. #14

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    The Eastwood polish is non abrasive so it’s unlikely to do much for you. Probably get more cut out of a marine polish and or a metal polish. Depends how far you want to go but

    I would try something abrasive in a inconspicuous spot if there is one and see how it works


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  15. #15

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    Re: Can you "Polish" Powdercoat?

    Contradiction- AFAIK most of my wheels are powdercoated. I`ve made *very minimal* improvements by compounding/polishing starting with something like M105/M101, both by hand and machine. I`d try that before trying wetsanding.

    Without giving it a lot (sufficient?!?) thought, I`d *guess* that you can treat powdercoat like (very, very hard) paint and that thinning it won`t be as serious an issue with regard to compromising it. BUT that`s a genuine W-A guess and just because I`d risk it, *on a set I`d plan to have redone anyhow*, doesn`t mean that it`s a good idea
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