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I am interested in upgrading the look of my wheels, but I don't have the budget for brand new wheels. Since my car is black, I'd really like black rims, so I was thinking of "blacking them out" (the stock rims)

What would be the best way to do this? Can I do it myself? Or should I hire a professional?
 

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If you have to ask that question.... you should be taking it to a professional.

Its not just normal paint, wheels get very very hot from the brakes and from the road... need to get it done right.
 

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I agree with rdlviper. If you have to ask its better to take it to a professional and get it powder coated instead of painted. However if you still need to do it yourself here are the proper steps if you really want to do it properly.

First heres the items you'll need 400 grit sandpaper, spray paint, acetone and painters tape.

as for the spray paint theres 3 different ones i would recommend. i used all 3 on different projects and all came out acceptable.

1. wheel spray paint - There's one specifically made for rims. They are easy to apply, takes a small amount of time to fully cure, and once fully cured brake dust doesnt stick to it too much. However if not prepped properly they can chip fairly easily. You will need a little clear coat to get a really glossy finish.

2. rust paint - Get ones in a spray bottle. They need to be applied in very thin coats. They also take very long to fully cure(24 hrs), only needs a few coats to completely cover the rim, and if done properly they will very rarely chip. You will need to add clear coat for the final coat if you want a glossy finish.

3. spray on tint - I'm talking about the ones you use for tinting your tailights. They take A LOT of coats to fully cover the rims. But they are very easy to apply, takes only a few minutes to fully cure, and if done properly will almost never chip. You will end up with a glossy finish.

Now choosing the paint is up to you. All three have their advantages and disadvantages.

Here's the steps.

1. Lightly sand the entire face of the rim with the sandpaper to promote adhesion with the paint. As long as it doesn't feel smooth to the touch than you're fine.

2. Clean the rim thoroughly with acetone and dry it off with a clean cloth.

3. Tape off the entire tire to prevent overspray on it.

4. Apply a very thin coat for your base coat. Then keep applying additional layers every 10 minutes. Each time apply a thicker coat than the last.

5. Apply a clear coat if you want a high gloss finish. Unless you used the spray tint. In which case you will not need a clear coat.

6. Allow it to dry properly. 1 hour for the spray tint, 2-3 hours for spray paint, and 24 hours for the rust paint.

7. Carefully and very slowly remove the painters tape.

8. Take pics and show us how it came out.
 

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Your best off not to do it with a spray can either. I have found spray can ends up with a nasty finish. If you could buy a good automotive paint then and spray it out of a pneumatic gun its come out much nicer. Or you could spend about $100 per wheel and have a wheel company do it for you.
 

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I have used spray paint and got really good results out of it. 9 out 10 times the reason why it ends up with a nasty finish is because of improper prep work. anything short of powder coating you can do on your own without having to pay a company a lot of money. If you end up doing it yourself you end up spending less than $50 for all four wheels compared to spending $100 per wheel. But at the same time paying someone to do it is less hassle on your end. So its all up to you which route you decide to take.
 

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Does anyone know the dimensions on the stock 16" wheels are on the cruze 2LT? I don't have enough money to buy 18"s or anything but 16"s are relatively cheap. What size rime would I need in order to use the stock tires?
 

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why do you want to ruin a perfectly nice stock wheel ?? I think painted oem wheels look awful. if anything spend some money and powder coat them.

you want black wheels I ll give you my steelies and some cash and you give me your oem alloys. Im dying to get my hands on a set.

I bought my cruze so new they couldn't even find alloys for my lt when i bought it
 

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i was thinking of spraying my rims gun metal (with a deep dish) my stock LTZ RS
 

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why do you want to ruin a perfectly nice stock wheel ?? I think painted oem wheels look awful. if anything spend some money and powder coat them.
Ditto! You just dropped 20 G's on a new car, step away from the spray paint! Take the wheels to a professional powder coater and DO IT RIGHT.
 

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spraying the cruze hubcaps will probably look just as bad as just the steelies but if your gunna do it u shud use a paint thats suited for higher temperatures and a clearcoat is a must, who knows they might come out lookin proper and ill be trying to do the same ;)
 

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Ditto! You just dropped 20 G's on a new car, step away from the spray paint! Take the wheels to a professional powder coater and DO IT RIGHT.
Imma be painting mine tomorrow..so guess I'll be guinea pig.this ain't my first time and I spend the most time on prep.picked up 3 cans of duplicolor flat black wheel paint and 1 can to lightly clear coat it.

And FYI powder coating isn't always the best option.the heat from the treating can weaken the wheel and cause it to bend easier.I'll post pics in a new thread when done tomorrow.

Edit: oh ya I got the 16" on a lt btw
 

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yeah im spraying my rims and calipers in a couple of days, and I will upload many pictures of how they look.
 

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should I match my color car or black them out?
Thanks for the help!
 

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should I match my color car or black them out?
Thanks for the help!
Why would you want to know what others think? It's your car, do what YOU like. I personally do not like black or color matched wheels, I like them to stand out a bit, but that's me. I might be "old school" but I like chrome or polished aluminum wheels.
 

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Want some advice ahead of time?save yourself from tons of wetsanding and get the strongest aircraft grade remover from autozone or csk and don't be stingy.that gm clearcoat on the wheels is no joke
 

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Imma be painting mine tomorrow..so guess I'll be guinea pig.this ain't my first time and I spend the most time on prep.picked up 3 cans of duplicolor flat black wheel paint and 1 can to lightly clear coat it.

And FYI powder coating isn't always the best option.the heat from the treating can weaken the wheel and cause it to bend easier.I'll post pics in a new thread when done tomorrow.

Edit: oh ya I got the 16" on a lt btw
Ya, let us know how you make out. I was considering getting mine refinished
 

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Ya, let us know how you make out. I was considering getting mine refinished
It came out pretty good for a rattle can job.had to do some wet sanding this morning then blasted a few layers of clear.the factory clear coat is a pita to get off tho.I'll pro just end up ordering a new set of wheels in a few months and keep these for backups.
 

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i like hearing what others have to see....Thanks for your "posotive" feedback lol


Why would you want to know what others think? It's your car, do what YOU like. I personally do not like black or color matched wheels, I like them to stand out a bit, but that's me. I might be "old school" but I like chrome or polished aluminum wheels.
 
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