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  #1  
Old 11-02-2007, 10:05 PM
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Why do some w124 rims have a shine (not chrome) and some are flat finish?

Why are some rims on the W124 (in this case the wagon) look like this with a grooved shine:




and some look like this (same year/model, etc):

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  #2  
Old 11-03-2007, 12:59 AM
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Most MBZ alloy wheels have a plastic coating, which gives them a dull appearance. If the shiny alloy wheels don't have this coating, it would indicate that they have been stripped & polished. This is the correct way to have shiny wheels; chroming won't last very long.
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  #3  
Old 11-03-2007, 01:27 AM
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I've got the "shiny" wheels on my '95 E320 wagon. The face of the wheel is turned on a lathe then clear coated, giving a shine that's less than chrome but more than painted. The other wheel is painted silver. I see them on older 124s.
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  #4  
Old 11-03-2007, 04:16 AM
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The first one is from 94+ E320.... The second one should be from 92+ 400E or 500E
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  #5  
Old 11-03-2007, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeff-abalone View Post
The first one is from 94+ E320.... The second one should be from 92+ 400E or 500E
I thought maybe it was the 1995 rims, but that doesn't appear to be the case as I've been looking at these. The first picture I attached above is from a 1995 e320 wagon on ebay, and the second from a 1995 e320 cabriolet, also on ebay. I picked these two randomly just to get the picture, but I find that there seems to be no rhyme or reason as to which rims the car has. I like the shiny one's provided their in good condition, not like below when they start to peel. I had this same type of finish on a stock 1990 corvette rim years ago....

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  #6  
Old 11-03-2007, 10:00 AM
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The first wheel is from a later car. The finish is not clear coated, per se. It is clear anodized. M-B changed all the wheels to this finish sometime in the early to mid nineties. It doesn't hold up particlarly well and is hard to refinish. Not much seems to help, even applying wax. M-B may have reintroduced this finish now and then, but it is not predominate. The wheel must be polished or remachined before the anodizing can be redone. It is very hard to achieve the stock look on a refinish. FYI, anodizing is a chemical conversion process, not a paint.

The second wheel is the more common finish on M-B wheels. It is painted silver and clear coated. They still use it today, sometimes in combination with a machined lip (like the W210 E430 wheels or the W202 C43 wheels). It can be refinished by sanding or stripping the wheel and repainting. It holds up better, particularly if the wheels are kept clean and waxed often.

I would say the 1995 E320 Cab had the wheels refinished with paint; I am pretty sure the standard finish was the clear anodize.
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  #7  
Old 11-03-2007, 10:12 AM
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1994=painted silver, clear coated
1995=clear anodized

I owned a 1994 E320 wagon and currently own a 1995 E320 sedan...I looked into this issue when the insurance company was debating totalling my wagon or not (see my gallery). I have found some 1995 wheels that have been refinished by one owner down the line with the clear coat, but from the factory ALL 1995s had the clear anodized appearance.
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  #8  
Old 11-03-2007, 10:15 AM
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Excellent information and makes sense! Clears up why a lot of 95's have the duller finish- people probably didn't like when the clear one's got scratched up/peeled & had then re-done as a result.
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  #9  
Old 11-03-2007, 12:08 PM
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I don't know what clear anodized mean, but my understanding is that 1995 8 hole wheels are machined / polished alloy and then clear coated, which makes them shiney.

1994 and older 8 hole wheels are simply painted silver and clear coated.
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  #10  
Old 11-03-2007, 12:17 PM
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I have a '95 E320 wagon, mfgr. date Nov. 1995 and my wheels are anodized. It came that way from the factory. How do I know? The spare is the original tire (Tires carry a mfgr. date) and it's on the original rim which looks like all the other rims. Amazing, for a car of this age, the rims are not damaged at all!
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  #11  
Old 11-05-2007, 12:05 AM
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wheel color

I don't have the answer to this discussion, but it is just not true that all 1995 W124 cars came factory with anodized wheels. It is just not true that if you see a 1995 with silver/clear coat painted wheels that that finish was applied by some owner at some time. I have experience with six 1995 cars, they all came new with silver/clear coat painted wheels (including the spare), and I know that for a fact. It was not a special order either. Period.
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  #12  
Old 11-05-2007, 01:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ds190 View Post
I don't have the answer to this discussion, but it is just not true that all 1995 W124 cars came factory with anodized wheels. It is just not true that if you see a 1995 with silver/clear coat painted wheels that that finish was applied by some owner at some time. I have experience with six 1995 cars, they all came new with silver/clear coat painted wheels (including the spare), and I know that for a fact. It was not a special order either. Period.
Dave, as stated above all 1995 8 hole wheels are polished and clearcoated, not painted silver and clearcoated. This is why they typically look so bad. It may look like silver to you but it is not. Your six car experience is somehow fatally flawed - all six of them.
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  #13  
Old 11-05-2007, 11:12 AM
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My '95 wagon has the polished and clearcoated wheels, a friends '95 300D has painted wheels. Both cars have original finish wheels.
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  #14  
Old 11-05-2007, 12:56 PM
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My '95 E300D has original painted wheels. I bought a clear coated wheel to add to my spare for snow tires, and when I have my snows on, you still really have to look twice to see the difference between the painted and non-painted wheels.

Rgds,
Chris W.
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  #15  
Old 11-05-2007, 03:36 PM
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All of you with 1995 8 hole wheels who think they are painted silver are wrong.

What happens is the clear coat becomes cloudy / milky, given the appearance of failing silver paint.
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