Steel Wheel Plating
Processing chrome the old fashioned way
Table Of Contents (Click Below To Get Started)
1. How We Chrome Plate A Steel Wheel
2. Steel Wheel Plating Done Wrong
3. Custom Paint Steel Wheels
4. Steel Wheel Customization
5. What Results Can I Expect?
6. Fusion Coating On Steel Wheels
7. How Do I Know If My Wheels Are Steel Or Alloy?
8. How Do I Get Started? Step By Step Instructions On How To Send Your Wheels/Parts To Us
How we chrome plate a steel wheel
During the original manufacturing process of most steel wheels, the center section and the outer barrels were prepared and plated separately and then welded together. This ensured that there was complete chrome coverage across the front of the wheel.
In order to re-chrome plate a steel wheel correctly, the wheel needs to be separated by removing the center section from the outer barrel. At this point, we can remove the old plating, polish, and re-chrome plate both individual pieces to ensure complete coverage on the visible portion of the wheel, which consists of the front side only. Upon completion of the plating, we will reposition the center section into the outer barrel and weld the two pieces back together. This is the same method that the original manufacturer performed during the initial assembly of the wheel. This is what we consider processing as two pieces. We also can process as a one piece, but the results will be much different. Please click here to view one piece.
STEEL WHEEL PLATING DONE WRONG 🙁
This is how a wheel will process, as a one piece. See how it looks if it is not disassembled and processed as individual pieces. See the discoloration in the seam where the center and the outer meet. This area can be painted to help minimize discoloration.
CUSTOM PAINT STEEL WHEELS
We can custom paint your newly rechromed steel wheels. Please contact us for information on this process.
STEEL WHEEL CUSTOMIZATION
Unlike many wheel shops, or chrome plating shops, we have the ability to give your wheels a truly custom and unique look. From custom painting on top of chrome to body matching, to fusion coating, the sky is the limit when it comes to customization!
Please note that custom painting, especially on top of chrome, is a very custom job and only recommended for show vehicles. As such we cannot warrant the painting for any amount of time. See Specialty Finishes Gallery for more examples of what can be done
What results can I expect?
Due to the differences in composition, steel wheels may not be chrome plated as easily as aluminum wheels. Steel is a thinner and much denser material than aluminum. Therefore, we cannot always polish out imperfections during the preparation process prior to the chrome plating. In conclusion, when we rechrome a wheel, the rechroming process adds only a cosmetic finish. We do not re-fabricate, recondition, restructure, or otherwise restore the base metal of the wheels. All of our rechroming is done on a best-effort basis. Even though we are the industry quality leader, it is difficult for us to guarantee perfect results. The finished results will depend on many factors, including but not limited to the age, the condition, and the general suitability of the wheels as we received them. Keep in mind that the chrome plating will be new, however customers’ expectations of a rechromed wheel can be unrealistic since the chrome plating reflects any and all imperfections in the base material of the wheel. See photos of Porsche wheels before and after where corrosion is slightly visible on the finished product.
HOW DO I KNOW IF MY WHEELS ARE STEEL OR ALLOY?
Steel wheels are found on many older foreign (e.g. Austin Healey, Porsche) and domestic vehicles (e.g. American muscle cars such as Buicks, Chevys, Fords, Pontiacs , etc.) prior to the mid-1980s. Unlike aluminum alloy wheels, steel wheels are magnetic and can be checked to verify they are so by using a magnet.