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Old 05-25-2015, 12:04 PM   #1
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Alcoa Wheels

Does anyone have an effective procedure to remove the oxidation and heavier pitting / gunk on the non dura-brite Alcoa wheels?

The regular polishing compounds only go so far.
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Old 05-25-2015, 12:54 PM   #2
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Mario,
I have used Mothers Aluminum polish with the mandrel / sponge type polishing tools also from Mothers. The tool goes in your drill and does a pretty good job with the polish. An even better polishing liquid I found is the Wicked Metal Polishing. To remove pitting though, I think you will need to have that done at a truck detailing shop. I have taken wheels from my trailer or our semis to the Freightliner Detail Shop in Omaha, NE. My 15" trailer wheels were about $35 each a couple years ago. To remove clearcoat and polish 4 wheels 2 years ago was $270.

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Old 05-25-2015, 04:40 PM   #3
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I've found that the non-Dura Bright wheels, it's best to polish after each trip. Just trying to get water spots off is a career.
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Old 05-25-2015, 07:30 PM   #4
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To remove small pits and heavy brake dust build-up I use the finest grade Scotch-Brite pad. It's equivalent to 0000 steel wool. It does make the surface dull but clean. Then I polish them using a polishing compound and the Mothers foam tools in a cordless drill.

It's a real chore so I only due it once or twice a year. I've been thinking one of these times I'll just leave the wheels dull from the first step using the Scotch-Brite pad.


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Old 05-26-2015, 12:00 AM   #5
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I appreciate my dura-brite Alcoa wheels. bare aluminum wheel is such a chore.
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Old 05-26-2015, 10:04 PM   #6
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Would wheel covers prevent this headache? I'm soooooo tired of hearing about my ugly rims!!!!

Once these are clean and shinny AGAIN, it there something to keep them that way?

And... why did Alcoa make and Airstream use such an inferior product? I never had this issue with any of my car rims (stock or after market).
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Old 05-27-2015, 12:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X New Yorker View Post
Would wheel covers prevent this headache? I'm soooooo tired of hearing about my ugly rims!!!!

Once these are clean and shinny AGAIN, it there something to keep them that way?

And... why did Alcoa make and Airstream use such an inferior product? I never had this issue with any of my car rims (stock or after market).
I thought AS started using the Dura-Bright wheels in 2013. If so, they're supposed to just need washing. But it sounds like yours aren't.

I'll bet none of your previous aluminum wheels were bare. IOW, they were clear-coated which can be problematic in its own right. Brake dust can ruin it and wheel weights will break the clear-coat down and then oxidation sets in. Ugly. Nice thing about the new flange-less wheels, no weights on the outside.
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Old 05-27-2015, 06:31 AM   #8
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I'm primarily a trailer guy, and not that familiar with the Sprinter chassis. That said, this sounds like an issue we had years ago, when semi-metallic pads first came into common use. Is there a ceramic pad available for these motor homes? It would greatly reduce brake dust and pitting.
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Old 06-02-2015, 07:02 PM   #9
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This has worked best for me. But it doesn't last forever. It seems they still oxidize over time.


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Old 06-02-2015, 09:56 PM   #10
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Short of clear coating, bare aluminum is hard to protect since it's a relatively active material. So I've found it best to just polish after each trip. And clear coat has its own set of problems.
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