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Cleaning wheels

Bob? wrote:
>> what do you reccommend for the 'alloy' speedlines on the coupe quattro? 
>> The previous owner really neglected them, and the clearcloat is coming 
>> off in sheets.  Can I bead blast them? Will it still look OK? I would 
>> prefer not sending them out to be done, but I certainly could...
>> Never bead blasted a mag before... then clear coat again?  mx
Joff replied:
>Bead blasting is bad news for your alloys, it just doesn't do them any 
>good. I know in Britain there are several companies which take your 
>wheels, dip them in some chemical bath which strips the paint without 
>damaging the wheel, then repaint them properly. If there are any defects 

I've been investigating this myself since the clearcoat is also peeling on the
Gotti wheels I have on the Porsche.  Do *NOT* use any chemicals on alloy 
wheels (even certain wheel cleaners are suspect).  From what I understand, 
alum is slightly porous and strong chemicals will leach the aluminium.  
Notice how difficult it is to remove pitted brake dust.  From talking to 
several people who've done this before, bead blasting is fine using plastic 
bead.  The Wheel Collision Center in Bath, PA can refinish wheels to new 
condition.  I've seen their work but it's expensive at $75-$100 per wheel.  
I'm still looking for a good home-brew solution.

Steve Jagernauth	               	'87 951 Pearl Black 
AT&T BCS			  	'87 Audi 5K CST Burgundy (Mahogany?)
Bridgewater, NJ