Restoring Road Wheels

Exterior Body and Trim

  1. old yellow 78

    old yellow 78 Well-Known Member

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    I want to put a set of new tires on OY as I found that the Uniroyal Tiger Paws have developed cracking from age, although they still have lots of tread left. :( Anyway, I don't really like the white letter look that much, and I think I will go with a nice new set of blackwalls. I'm shooting for a very clean, restrained looking exterior. :cool: That's why I want to remove the adhesive black side moldings also. So, I want to restore the Road Wheels before I put the new tires on, and am wondering what paints to use. It looks like the outer rim and inner wheel was painted a gray color, and then the inner parts between the chrome "spokes" is, of course, black. My questions are: Was this black area gloss, or matte? What gray would most closely approximate the original? Also, would these templates I found on EB be useful, or a waste of money? Has anyone used them? o_O

    June 2015 008.jpg

    1967-76 Mopar Dodge Plymouth 14 & 15 Magnum 500 Wheel Paint Mask Stencil Kit Set | eBay

    s-l1600.jpg
     
  2. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

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  3. Oldiron440

    Oldiron440 Well-Known Member

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    I sandblast the wheels and give them a couple of cotes of epoxy primer, usually black, then paint the black with a semi gloss black. After it's cured a mask the black with 3M tape, I have done it both ways, mask the black like an overlay then cut the edge and paint the silver. The other way is to mask the black by pulling the edges with tape then apply the silver. Some wheels have a very defined edge between the silver and black witch makes it easier.
    Good luck
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2019
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  4. volare 77

    volare 77 Well-Known Member

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    If it were me I would use Krylon satin black or semi flat black and the mopar Rallye wheel paint for the silver. The gray looks funky to me.
     
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  5. old yellow 78

    old yellow 78 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I was surprised to find gray under the trim rings, I expected silver. All the wheels are the same, and according to the build sheet which I found in the rear seat springs, the wheels came with the car from the factory. It was a black '77 Volare Premier wagon in Oklahoma. I think I will go with the silver instead. Thanks for the advice guys. ;)
     
  6. volare 77

    volare 77 Well-Known Member

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    After some thinking.... I had a 76 Volare RR when I was a kid that came with those wheels. I honestly don`t remember them being gray. For some reason I thought they were black where yours are gray. My memory isn`t the best though. LOL
     
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  7. droptop

    droptop Well-Known Member

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    Aspen 500 nailed it on the paints. Eastwood is the best supplier for these paints. And don’t waste your money on the templates. Just take your time masking with good 3m tape.
     
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  8. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

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    I did have a set at one time that the backside was satin black. It appeared to be a factory applied paint. They came off a car in the scrapyard that was bone stock.
     
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  9. old yellow 78

    old yellow 78 Well-Known Member

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    I suspect that Chrysler didn't uniformly paint them from year to year, or maybe from factory to factory. So, I'm not going to worry about it, and just paint them either black or silver I guess. My neighbor is installing the new leaf springs right now, so when I get it back I will put the old original steel wheels back on while I work on the Road Wheels.
     
  10. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

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    Chances are, the road wheels weren't all made in the same factory or could have been sourced from more than one vendor and so, they all wouldn't necessarily be the same. Some are silver on the backside, some are black. I've also seen Rallye wheels that are silver on the back, others that are black. I wouldn't rule out that onlate '70's wheels, they started using whatever color since it's covered by the trim ring anyways. (maybe even gray). My opinion, a person should paint them the way they think looks best :)
     
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  11. old yellow 78

    old yellow 78 Well-Known Member

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    Good advice. ;)
     
  12. kkritsilas

    kkritsilas Well-Known Member

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    I think the factory wheel paint is not standard spray paint that you would get from a spray can. It seems to be very thick (or they sprayed on a lot of coats), and very, very tough. I am inclined to think epoxy paint of some type, just so that it can stand up to whatever is coming up from the road (sand, gravel, etc.) I have no idea if the Eastwood paint is made to stand up to this, but standard spray can paint (Krylon, Tremclad (, Rustoleum) won't, unless it is specifically a wheel paint. Even then, only trying it out will determine how long it will last.
     
  13. Oldiron440

    Oldiron440 Well-Known Member

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    Aerosol paint is junk for durability, it's very thin and in no way durable.
    I have painted the second kolor on wheels that were powder coated but I'm not a fan of powder coat.
    I'll repeat myself and say that the best process is sandblasting then epoxy primer ( there is your durability) then a kolor coat with urathane top coats.
    You can't beat this system I will last for years. When I paint wheels I use the process on the complete wheelie will look for some pictures but in the last 40+ years I have painted hundreds of wheels.
     
  14. old yellow 78

    old yellow 78 Well-Known Member

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    Well, the factors here that will come into play are: 1. time, 2. cost, 3. available equipment, and 4. how obsessive I want to get. I suspect that I will go the Eastwood aerosol route for paint. If they make it specifically for wheels, I suppose that Eastwood would have formulated it to be more durable than brand X hardware store paint. Also, it's not like OY is a daily driver that is going to see any harsh conditions. I'm undecided about the templates. They might make things easier, but then they might just be a pain. Probably worth the time to tape them myself using good tape.
     
  15. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

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    My car has a lot of various Eastwood paint under the hood, underneath, under the dash,,,,,,,,,,,and after 6 years of road use, it's all holding up pretty darn good. Chassis Black, Aluma-Blast, Spray Gray, Underhood Black, on and on. A few chips on the lower control arms, k-frame, rear axle, etc but overall, I'm happy. Granted, an epoxy type, 2 part paint sprayed with a gun would be better, I knew that but just like OY said, comes down to time, money, time of year the car was being built mostly (fall and winter, summer was reserved for body work and paint), intended useage, etc. Using an aerosol in a closed garage with the ceiling furnace running is one thing, using a spray gun with potentially more harmful paint (and probably more flammable) and way more overspray, not a good idea.
     
  16. Oldiron440

    Oldiron440 Well-Known Member

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    You have the furnace running?o_O lol
     
  17. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

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    Well,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,DUH! When it's 1 degree outside, you pretty much need to add heat from somewhere. In my case, it's a ceiling mounted natural gas Reznor.

    Could also be the furnace was running because it got scared and bolted, I suppose.:p
     
  18. Oldiron440

    Oldiron440 Well-Known Member

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    Maybe I should have said now.

    There I additives for urathane paint that will kick the paint, two coats in fifteen minutes at 60°. Thats drie enough to handle.....this works very well on parts not so much for body panels.
     
  19. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

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    I figured that's what you meant. :cool: Now is the opposite, the A/C is on out there today (humid and headed towards 90 degrees).
     
  20. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

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    I’ve only painted (almost) one set of the 14” road wheels and that was 30 years ago. My ’69 Road Runner came with them – but paint wasn’t that good of shape. I installed two layers of masking tape and taped up the stripes (wasn’t hard to do), had the five wheels bead blasted and applied primer to them. The tape was left in place for the primer and paint and was about to get them to a paint shop for final paint when went through my divorce (hence the car had to be sold to pay for …).

    Taping them is not that hard to do and can be done in a sitting position. If getting wheels blasted, having two layers of tape is not a bad idea – but might not be needed. I would think blasting the chrome (or whatever that shiny finish might be) would not be good on it.


    Chrysler got all their wheels from three different venders – which are shipped to assembly plant in crates. This is part of reason Chrysler didn’t paint wheels to match the car – because the wheels came pre-painted. Well, I think Chrysler did have paint to match wheels a couple of years (don’t think it was for any FMJ’s, though) – but I can see how it would be a big hassle at the plant. The wheels got installed close to the end of the line and paint is back close to the beginning of the line.
    The company Motor Wheels is who originally made the 14” Road Wheels for Chrysler. I believe (but no sure) the first few years used chrome for the outer edge portion and was called “14” Road Wheel – Chrome” or with trim ring was called “14” Road Wheel – w/trim ring” (or trim ring delete). Later on, it was just called “14” Road Wheel”.

    The paint used was a called a “drip paint” and is same process as how Chrysler painted their engine brackets, torsion bars and so forth. I recall seeing some YT videos about the process but not eager to look it up. The paint ends up being thick and a bit uneven (sometimes) which can cause a bit of a balance problem – but it was durable.

    Chrysler calls then 14” Road Wheels. I call them Magnum 500’s – but I don’t think Chrysler ever called them anything but road wheels. No matter the name, Chrysler did use three different paint schemes with them:
    Chrome outer wheel edge. ’67 and 68 (an option for later years)
    iu80RT37R9.jpg

    Painted Black wheel edge (and used trim rings or not). Not sure of years – but my ’69 RR was painted this way. I have seen some with trim ring delete
    Mag 500 Black.jpg

    Painted Gray (or Silver) wheel edge (and used trim rings). Most all of the newer versions of this wheel (maybe ’73 and up), used the gray paint and it made no sense to me to use two different color paints – but I suspect the gray might be a primer coat (maybe).
    Mag 500 Gray.jpg

    I do not recall seeing any of this style wheel that has any color center other than semi-gloss black.

    The 15” Road Wheel looked like this – so important to emphasize what size road wheel when talking about it.
    15x6 Road Wheel.jpg
    This style wheel was an option for the early M-bodies.
    It is odd these wheels were painted gray/silver in middle and black under the trim ring - which is opposite what the 14" road wheels were painted.
    iuP7D7986E.jpg

    Note: I don’t want to get into a debate about the gray / silver thing. I do not have an eye for colors and couldn’t tell you what the difference is between the two are.
    BudW
     
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