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-   -   Refinished Style 71s (Polished Lip) DIY Lots of Photos (http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=990658)

steveintheburgh 06-04-2013 10:06 PM

Refinished Style 71s (Polished Lip) DIY Lots of Photos
Finally completed this project.
Paid $100.00 for the set - all 4 were pretty rough, 2 were rashed all the way around.
Maybe $50.00 in supplies including wax and polish for future use.
Plan on 4 hours per wheel

8mm Triple Square Socket - don't skimp on this...the screws are really tight and you don't need any stripping going on.
Socket Wrench (I used a breaker bar too)
Rubber Mallet
Fine File
Cloth wheel w/ drill attachment for polishing

Simple Green or equivalent
Klean-Strip Peeler Basecoat and Clearcoat Remover
Sandpaper (I used 40 and 80 grit paper, Medium/Fine/Extra-Fine Sanding Blocks, then 1000, 1500, 2000 Grit Paper)
Polishing Compound (I used generic white)
Clay bar for the centers
Hand polish (Mothers Billet worked great)
Wheel wax or sealant

Here's what I started with....Pitted. Rashed, etc. etc.

Soaked the lips in WD40 overnight then started loosening the screws. Took an 8MM Triple square Bit and a breaker-bar because they were so tight. THESE SCREWS WIL BREAK SO TAKE YOUR TIME. Used a rubber mallet to seperate the center from the hoop.

Soaked and scrubbed both pieces (and the screws, actually) in simple green.

The centers turned out to be in decent shape. Clay bar, KLASSE, Poor Boys Sealant and Wheel Wax got me this result - I'd say a 8.5 out of 10

I went through the process of spraying the Klean-Strip, letting it sit for 5-10 min then scraping - 2 or 3 times. You're going to be sanding everything down so don't worry about scraping too much.

Filed down the rash to as smooth as possible w/ the file. (Thankfully a file did the trick, no fill required)

Start wet sanding. Get everything as consistent as possible before going to the next step. Use the 40 to get rid of ALL the discoloration from pitting or damage before moving on.

Here's after 40 grit

This is after 2000 grit

Polish: I used a few drill mounted polish wheels and basic white paste. 3 big pieces of advice. 1. Tape up the nut holding the wheel to the bit. The wheel slipped a few times on me and nicked the rim which called for re-doing that section. 2. Rake your wheel often. That gets rid of the metal shavings and old polish. 3. A little polish goes a long way. If you end up w/ black junk on the rim, you're using too much.

Here's after polish. I took them to a solid shine. I'm sure I could have gotten to a mirror finish w/ the right compounds. I opted not to, mainly because this is my daily driver and maintaining a mirror finish seems a bit much.

Used Mothers Billet by hand, Poor Boys Sealant and Wheel Wax before I put them back together.

I decided to not clearcoat as any flaking, rash etc would = redoing the entire wheel from step one. I'll be maintaining w/ hand polish and wax.

Reassembly: I'm too cool for a torque wrench so I went 1/4 past wrench tight w a breaker bar. Do so at your own risk.


$100.00 for 4 rough wheels
$50.00 in supplies
$120.00 for slightly used tires off of CL (I know-risky)
$60.00 to mount and balance

$330.00 plus maybe 4 hours per wheel for 8/10 summer set.

YOnpds 06-04-2013 11:59 PM

Very nice! Good job.

filipinoise 06-05-2013 12:45 AM

These Style 71's turned out great! Huge improvement from when you first picked them up. Good work.

BlaccDiamonds 06-05-2013 09:09 AM

Very nice! :thumbsup:
I have a set also and was iffy about the center star being able to remove or not. I have refinished wheels before and I know the long process involved, but the end results always make me smile.:)

Question? Do you know the exact torque specs for the bolts? My last set of rims stated @ 12 pounds, but i also found that a few extra clicks after the torque bar sets makes me feel more comfortable.

I might even take them apart and have them re-barreled...for extra width since these are the only set I have now that's decent...hmmm:D

BlaccDiamonds 06-05-2013 09:11 AM

Another question! Where did you get the BMW logo for the calipers from? I like that!:thumbup:

VMRWheels 06-05-2013 11:12 AM

Excellent work, those wheels look brand new!

indoafro 06-08-2013 09:24 PM

Refinished Style 71s (Polished Lip) DIY Lots of Photos
great diy!!!

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Riverbmr3 06-08-2013 09:48 PM

nice job

jonel1225 06-11-2013 08:49 AM

great diy! i was wondering what you would have had used to fill them with if needed?

Redline 06-17-2013 12:01 PM

I'd say 15-25 lb's are normal for this kind of wheel. I'm going to do 15 lb with blue loctite and see how that goes then go to 18 lb.

Tighten in a rotating 5 bolt star pattern.

steveintheburgh 06-17-2013 12:12 PM

@ Jonel1225 I probably would have filled per this DIY.
This wouldve Required a paint job though.

Tons of options on ebay
Here's an example.
I painted the Calipers black, the Retainer Clips Silver then went w a simple decal on the all 4. I believe the rears took a smaller decal.

jonel1225 06-17-2013 08:26 PM

Refinished Style 71s (Polished Lip) DIY Lots of Photos

Originally Posted by steveintheburgh (Post 15508464)
@ Jonel1225 I probably would have filled per this DIY.
This wouldve Required a paint job though.

Great thank you!

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e46JAB 06-17-2013 08:56 PM

Great job! Some of my favorite OE wheels.

EthirD 10-07-2013 06:04 PM

Old thread bump and newb question: would using the stripper on a wheel with the tire mounted cause issues for the tire? I have a 135 with serious paint peelage that needs stripped and repainted. I know I can mask the tire for paint, but wouldn't want to eat it alive.

z3pilot99 11-12-2016 04:45 AM

Another old thread bump. But, how did the polished aluminum hold up without clearcoat? Did it oxidize or start to turn in any way? Getting ready to do this and would like to find out if you would do anything different. Does the removal of aluminum cause any wheel/tire balance issues?

steveintheburgh 11-12-2016 10:03 AM

3 -4 years later the polished aluminum has held up great. Once every 6 months or so I hand polish w Mothers Billet then 2 coats of Wheel Wax (polished portion only).

Mind you I'm in Nashville so Snow and Salt is very minimal. More frequent polishing would be needed if you run these all winer up north. (I had separate 17s for winter when I was in Pittsburgh)

Regarding balancing...relatively speaking you are removing a very small amount of material. They balance out fine each time I've had new tires mounted.

As the post says this gets you to a 8-9 on a quality scale. Not perfect by any means.

BKMrSteel 11-12-2016 11:29 AM

Refinished Style 71s (Polished Lip) DIY Lots of Photos
I polished the lips on some M3 18"S because of threads like this. Mine came out perfect for a DD or street car. I love it, most people don't realize what they are even.

Instead of stripping the paint from the lip, you can spin it on the car and use a hard smooth edge of the paint scraper. Just don't catch an edge and gouge the surface. Makes short work of the lip, maybe 30-60 minutes from start to finish.

steveintheburgh 11-14-2016 06:47 PM

I should add that since refinishing I've lightly rashed 2 of the wheels.
Not adding Clear was a big plus as I was able to sand and polish the damaged section only - ultimately blended in w/ the rest of the wheel

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