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Old 08-28-2016, 08:16 AM   #1
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Sport Design Wheels need love

Forgot to attach image so I've deleted message and reposting it below


Last edited by Cbonilla; 08-28-2016 at 08:18 AM.
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Old 08-28-2016, 08:19 AM   #2
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I have a 2003 986S with 100k miles and the sport design wheels. Wheels are a royal pain to keep clean, and over the years the wheels have aged. I had the car detailed last year and the guy did what seemed like a great job. But being a multi-part wheel there was a problem. He had to use a very strong (acidic?) cleaner to get the grime off the wheels and failed to get all of it rinsed off. The next day I went out to the car and on each wheel the finish was peeling at the 6 o'clock position on every wheel. My guess is that there was enough residual cleaner that seeped out over night and ate the finish

I know I can get the wheels refinished but these are the multi-part wheels that (I believe) should be disassembled so that liquids are not trapped behind the seam where the two parts are joined togehter

The car is 13 years old so I suspect that a full refinish is not worth it.

So I am considering the following. The perimeter sections are where the finish is worst. I would mask off the perimeter and sand them. But my question is on how I refinish these sections I sanded. Is the finish just a clear coat? Could I do an adequate job with a rattle can? I'm not willing to disassemble the wheels

Thoughts?
Anybody ever done this?
What does a full refinish cost?
Anybody have a positive experience with a wheel shop in DC area?
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Old 08-28-2016, 08:22 AM   #3
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Sounds like a job for Plasti-Derp!

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Old 08-28-2016, 10:38 AM   #4
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Wow - it's too bad your detailing guy didn't use a safe wheel cleaner. There are paint-safe wheel cleaning options available now (they typically change color to dark red) that are nearly as effective as the acidic type.

That looks like pitted raw aluminum to me, so it will need to have all the oxides removed, primered, and then resprayed to restore. Honestly, there are professional wheel refinishing outfits out there that do this all day. I'd ask them for a quote to do it.

I think the best result would be from disassembling the multi-parts, to clean and restore primered finish in between the crevices, but a reputable professional wheel refinisher would know whether they can get away with somehow skipping that. (My concern if skipping that would be that the corrosion spreads laterally and bubbles or peels away the newly applied finish.)

I also really hope the detailer who applied the acidic wheel cleaner did so with the wheels removed from the car, or else you may find that the the amodized finish on your brake calipers, and zinc finish on your brake rotors and hubs may have also been similarly degraded.

If the detailing guy is still in business, maybe restoring the finish to undo the damage he caused should be his responsibility?

This thread is a useful cautionary tale for the rest of seeking to maintain our Boxsters - so thanks so much for sharing!
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Last edited by jakeru; 08-28-2016 at 10:41 AM.
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Old 08-28-2016, 11:02 AM   #5
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I've got the Sport Designs on my 996 and they were also looking a little tired. They had a lot of curb rash and the centers were kinda nicked up. I also wanted to do a color change. Without dismounting the tires, I separated the centers from the barrels. On the barrels, I was able to use a file & sandpaper to knock down & smooth out some pretty bad curb rash. I used a paint stripper and steel wool to remove all of the painted finish, then I polished to a shine (lots of elbow grease). So far, I've just used polish to keep the rims clean, and it works OK. I've heard of a product called Sharkhide that I'm going to try.
For the centers, I took them to a local powdercoating place. They charged me $320 to strip and coat all four centers, and they turned out beautiful. money well spent. Separating the centers from the barrels was just a matter of getting the correct bit and pulling each bolt. Assembly was just as easy, and I applied a little blue loctite for insurance.
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Old 08-28-2016, 12:04 PM   #6
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BBS made those wheels, BBS had a program to repair the wheels in Atlanta & supply replacement outer rim trim parts which are Stainless steel.

Shine seal is great for cleaning & sealing bare metal.
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Old 08-28-2016, 12:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cbonilla View Post
I have a 2003 986S with 100k miles and the sport design wheels. Wheels are a royal pain to keep clean, and over the years the wheels have aged. I had the car detailed last year and the guy did what seemed like a great job. But being a multi-part wheel there was a problem. He had to use a very strong (acidic?) cleaner to get the grime off the wheels and failed to get all of it rinsed off. The next day I went out to the car and on each wheel the finish was peeling at the 6 o'clock position on every wheel. My guess is that there was enough residual cleaner that seeped out over night and ate the finish

I know I can get the wheels refinished but these are the multi-part wheels that (I believe) should be disassembled so that liquids are not trapped behind the seam where the two parts are joined togehter

The car is 13 years old so I suspect that a full refinish is not worth it.

So I am considering the following. The perimeter sections are where the finish is worst. I would mask off the perimeter and sand them. But my question is on how I refinish these sections I sanded. Is the finish just a clear coat? Could I do an adequate job with a rattle can? I'm not willing to disassemble the wheels

Thoughts?
Anybody ever done this?
What does a full refinish cost?
Anybody have a positive experience with a wheel shop in DC area?
I would have the SS rim bands polished 1st to remove the staining.
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Old 08-29-2016, 12:16 AM   #8
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Hello,

that is aluminium corrosion below the clear coat. Because these rims are multipart you have to unscrew / remove the center part. Than you can sand down the outer part of the rim or you can use other methods to remove the paint and corrosion – for example glass bead blasting. Than you have to prepare for a new clear coat or you can polish the aluminium. Personally i prefer paint on aluminium rims, because if you polish or glossy densify it you permanently have to repolish. Use new bolts and new sealing when putting the rims together.

Regards, Markus
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Old 08-29-2016, 04:09 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the advice. To respond to a few points:

No recourse with the detailer. He's an independent (he details cars for the local Ferrari dealer) but there are no assets to go after

The consensus seems to be that I have to bite the bullet and take the wheels apart. Sigh.

Anyone have experience getting wheels refinished in the DC area?

Thanks again, Carlos
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Old 08-29-2016, 06:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryanjboutin View Post
Sounds like a job for Plasti-Derp!

Plasti Dip and other peel products are crap-tier customization mods. Don't use them unless you are ok with the product eventually peeling off on it's own after awhile.
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Old 08-29-2016, 06:49 PM   #11
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Here is what you should do...

1) Do not worry about taking the rims apart. Keep them together, as you will not see an advantage to taking them apart. In fact, you may find that they never go back together again as well as when the factory put them together. So leave them alone.

2) Take rims to a sandblaster who will use the "finest" method of removing ALL of the clear coat...this means not using coarse aluminum oxide...needs to be finer, like soda blasting so as not to roughen-up the aluminum too much.

3) Take them to a reputable powder coating company, and have them powder-coated in whatever color you want.

4) Thank me later.
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Old 08-29-2016, 07:45 PM   #12
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I had the same wheels on my 996 but with more damage (scuffed outer rim like yours but also a small bend in the rim on the inside).

Had it professionally repaired to like new for $150 including pick-up and delivery to my house.
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Old 09-03-2016, 02:28 PM   #13
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A few closing thoughts

I agree, plastic dip is a non starter

My view is that any refinishing needs to have the wheels taken apart. There is no other way I see to clean up the corrosion. And in my view the wheels, being two-piece, allow water to weep out. Since I live in a freezing climate I don't think it would be smart to trap water between the two wheel parts. And painting them will paint over the screw heads and I don't even do that at home with light switches.

As of now my plan is to disassemble the wheels. I'll start with two of them and re-evaluate.

With the tires still mounted. I will Remove the wheel bolts, separate the centers and use wet dry sandpaper to clean up the corrosion on the rims, leaving the centers as is - I can live with their condition

At the end I will either paint them or simply clear coat them. Does anyone know if they were painted from the factory?

Last edited by Cbonilla; 09-03-2016 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 09-03-2016, 07:36 PM   #14
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My rims look like they are just clear coated. The center part is painted. Personally, I would do like you are suggesting, clean up the corrosion, then clear coat, and put them back together. Good luck
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Old 09-04-2016, 08:54 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cbonilla View Post
A few closing thoughts

I agree, plastic dip is a non starter

My view is that any refinishing needs to have the wheels taken apart. There is no other way I see to clean up the corrosion. And in my view the wheels, being two-piece, allow water to weep out. Since I live in a freezing climate I don't think it would be smart to trap water between the two wheel parts. And painting them will paint over the screw heads and I don't even do that at home with light switches.

As of now my plan is to disassemble the wheels. I'll start with two of them and re-evaluate.

With the tires still mounted. I will Remove the wheel bolts, separate the centers and use wet dry sandpaper to clean up the corrosion on the rims, leaving the centers as is - I can live with their condition

At the end I will either paint them or simply clear coat them. Does anyone know if they were painted from the factory?
recommend you contact BBS to see if the bolts & nuts are reuseable &/or obtainable, & torque spec.
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Old 09-05-2016, 04:31 AM   #16
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On renntech there is a PDF of the process. The writer contacted BBS with questions. He was not told that the titanium bolts were single use. The excellent and illustrated PDF can be found at

Split Rim Wheel Refurbish Sport Design Style - 986 Series (Boxster, Boxster S) - RennTech.org Community

He also provides the name of the recommended loctite and primer, and torque specs

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