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Leewolf 11-07-2003 12:57 PM

SL Wheels, MAHLE
I recently got a 1980 500 SLC Euro. It had a set of MAHLE wheels. These are aluminum and made to look like spokes. They are 15 inch by 7 in. MAHLE is a large german aftermarket engine parts manufacturer. They do not appear to any longer be in the "wheels" business. I am trying to find out three things:
1. Is there any market for these wheels
2. Can these aluminum wheels be chromed. and what might be an approximate cost.
3. Can the wheels be "bead" blasted to a chrome like finish and at what approximate cost.
Any help would be appreciated. Thanks, Lee

kip Foss 11-08-2003 09:53 AM

Answer to no. 2 is no. They can be polished but not chromed.
Answer to no. 3 is no. They can be bead blasted but all you will end up with is dull aluminum.

If you want wheels with a chrome like shine you can either buy chrome ones or polish the crap out of the Al. ones. If you do polish the Al. ones you will either have to coat them in a sealer or keep the waxed frequently to prevent them from oxidizing back to a dull finish. Still, what else did you have planned for every Saturday for as long as you won the car?

Leewolf 11-08-2003 11:05 AM

:D kip; Thanks for the info. You confirmed what I thought was probably the case with aluminum. Someone had told me about the bead blasting process but having a chemistry background I wondered how the oxidation problem would be solved. To the best of my knowledge aluminum can not be made to act like stainless steel. Thanks again. Lee

Steve Gutman 11-11-2003 02:08 PM

Paint 'em
Use aluminium paint. I have had turned wheels re-turned and it is okay at best. Just mask and paint, they will look great. I did it to some "bundt Cake" rims and they look fine.

bobw 11-13-2003 04:01 AM

If you want good appearance, low maintenance (other than cleaning) and durability, have them bead blasted then powder coated. In the UK it costs the equivalent of about $35 per wheel to have the wheel chemically stripped, beadblasted, any kerbing damage removed by trimming on a lathe and then epoxy-polyester powder coated. I had the 18" rims on my BMW done and they look great. The 380SL's next. A coat of good quality wax helps make them easier to keep clean.

1983 380SL
1991 BMW 735iSE

Steve Gutman 11-13-2003 09:41 AM

Good Pricing Bob
Wow! $35 is a great price. In the US, a company in the Chicago area (Wheels America) will strip, turn on a lathe, paint and clearcoat, whatever is necessary, for $110 Each. They do a nice job.

I don't think they powder coat.

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