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I am curious if anyone has painted or polished their rims... I was looking at doing the polish, but i think they are alum, correct me if i am wrong. I understand that if i do polish them i will need to clear coat them to keep from tarnish and easy pitting from corrosion, any ideas?

I also was looking at painting them. As i will soon be doing a paint job in marron metal flake, i was thinking black power coat. any input?
 

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Hizzo3 said:
I am curious if anyone has painted or polished their rims... I was looking at doing the polish, but i think they are alum, correct me if i am wrong. I understand that if i do polish them i will need to clear coat them to keep from tarnish and easy pitting from corrosion, any ideas?

I also was looking at painting them. As i will soon be doing a paint job in marron metal flake, i was thinking black power coat. any input?
i have an 87 and my wheels are getting a bit tarnished and i was thinking what i want to do with mine aswell. my bike is black with gold accents so i was think of painting black or repainting silver and clear coating them.IMHO polishing seems to be alot of work just to have the possibility of them getting tarnished again.:D
 

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Discussion Starter #3
from what i read on polishing aluminum, i should be able to get a good shine in a weekend or so, starting from a 600 grit wet all they way to jewlers rouge. since it is so soft it shouldnt take too long to shine up. i've done cpu coolers with a dremel tool and some fine grit wet/dry b4 and it took less then an hour (had to make sure it was flat) to get from brushed to polished in copper and copper is harder. but then again there is alot to polish. i like the silver paint idea, just dont like the forged pits that are already in the wheel.
when i first got my bike i had to take soap and a toothbrush to get in all the lil divits.
 

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BatMan said:
i have an 87 and my wheels are getting a bit tarnished and i was thinking what i want to do with mine aswell. my bike is black with gold accents so i was think of painting black or repainting silver and clear coating them.IMHO polishing seems to be alot of work just to have the possibility of them getting tarnished again.:D

DON'T CLEAR COAT YOUR WHEELS!!!!!!!!
 

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750 FREAK said:
DON'T CLEAR COAT YOUR WHEELS!!!!!!!!
well they already have a clear coat on them to my understanding, cause aluminum polish (mothers mag polish) doesnt work at all..... strip polish and recoat?
 

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Hizzo3 said:
well they already have a clear coat on them to my understanding, cause aluminum polish (mothers mag polish) doesnt work at all..... strip polish and recoat?

Stip the clear coat and then polish. Use a cotton ball and put some polish on it. Rub on an area and if the cotton ball turns black, then the polish is working. Then let sit for a minute and then buff off.


'86 Vn 750
 

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to my knowledge they already have a clearcoat on them.......the aluminum polish wont work. when u got your rims clearcoated, you did tell them to strip them first right? otherwise they just assume that they are bare metal and did a clearcoat on it. that would have some bad reactions
 

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Painting rims

As an aircraft painter I would advise against stripping and repainting the rims. Improperly applied paint can be worse than just stripping and polishing. A chromated primer should be used on alum. and the alum. should have a phosphoric acid treatment prior to priming. This should be followed with any good brand of polyureathane paint. Improper prep will only lead to paint peeling off the rims. If you are getting a shop to do the rims get a good guarantee. If cost in your area is not prohibitive check on anodizing the rims.
 

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ohhh i was reading up how to anodize alum. yourself...doesnt seem too hard.... and you can do up to a type 2. i wonder if you can just put silicone where u dont want it to go (i.e. wheel bearing hole). Any ideas how to do the drive shaft to wheel housing (i wanted to call it differential....but i know at least that much :) )
 

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The wheels are not painted, they are anodized. The whole rim is alum. and the small bridge on the spokes are alum., The rest is anodized.
 

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My front wheel was badly pitted and stained. The polished surfaces were the worst while the natural aluminum finish area was not too bad.

I used a right angle grinder with a 4.5 inch abrasive pad (Walter brand). I used coarse, med, and fine and got a very good finish on the outside edge and the inside polished, and highlight rib area. I used 220 grade sand paper on the center natural areas and they cleaned up well.

For a first timer, the results are amazing. I went from embarrassed to proud of the wheel.
 

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Didn't want the route of constant polishing the alum rims to smile for one to two days then notice the glitter fade in three. I'm getting too old for the time spent on rubbing and my fingers are complaining for the long term. I went for the chroming. It's done and it's looks great. You need to get a chromer that is experienced in motorcycle rims though, can be desasterious. The chromer needs to grind down the rough areas on the rims so it's all smooth. It costs more for that additional work. I'm still not sure if my chroming job is the cause of the new problems. I also had my lower forks chromed. I have problems lining up my left caliper. Have a clearance problem between the fork mounting posts and the caliper bracket. It worked with an added spacer on the nut side to open up the forks more. I don't know why I have this problem, and not before the chroming. Chrome build up on the posts? That would be over 1/8" , I don't think so. To try to correct this problem, I drove with the front brakes disabled and only used the back brakes. I think I created another problem, 4 miles into the trip I noticed when I applied even pressure to the brake peddle the back brakes pulsated like I had a warped drum. Like the shoes grabbed tight then eased off repeatedly with even pressure on the pedal. It was fine in the beginning, I can only think that the 100% use of the back brake effected some how. Any clues by anyone?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
you may want to repost under a new thread.... honestly i dont know on that one. btw u got pics of the chromed rims
 

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Hmmm. Yes, I am new to this site and not handy in the sewing dept in directing my questions. It's actually my room mates bike and both she and I took on this project. I got on this site for answers, for her problems since I at best can describe them. For the few hours I visited this site I enjoyed peoples reactions and their comments that my room mate is missing out. I think it's time she needs to jump in and get involved. I am more mechanicly inclined and push her into doing most of it so she can "know" her bike. I also have a bike. It's not a vulcan but I need to transform it, it's pure stock and compaired to her newly transformed vulcan my bike looks like a shriner bike. I would love to show you pics but again it's not my bike. I will tell her about this site and hopefully pictures will show up soon. Not sure where she should post them yet.
 

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Well, this may be a silly question, but I gotta ask, just to be sure...
Are you sure you have the calipers on the proper sides ?
I don't know if they're interchangable or not, but something to look at.

No doubt the chrome could cause proper fitment problems.

So, are you saying that if the caliper is bolted to the fork, it wont line up with the rotor ?

Are you sure you have the 2 collars in the proper location ?
You can check from the parts list at Ron Ayers.

Hope ya get it figured out. It's not a good idea to use just the rear brakes.
They only produce about 30% of the braking power.

As far as where to add pictures, go HERE, and make an album to put them in.
 

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Yes, the calipers are not interchangeable, definite left and right. I thoroughly checked the parts in manuals for sequence and accountability. Spacers and collars are in right location. Had it rechecked by motor/mech (just another set of eyes). Everything is in it's place and in order. There was a clearance issue. When you put the left caliper on, it's tight on the rotor, and the bracket on the caliper that bolts to the fork mounts accually scrapes the rotor so there wasn't enough room. It's a mystery. Only thing changed is chroming of the lower forks. It's hard to believe it's the chroming. But we don't regret it, it looks beautiful. The calipers are put on now and there is a little bit more drag than normal. But without that added 1/8 washer, it would be a noway. So if you chrome the lower forks and get stuck, add the washer. Thanks for your thoughts. Linda
 

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Please post a picture in the gallery!
 
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