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Removing the emblem from Reatta wheel center caps


Ronnie

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Anyone removed the R emblem from Reatta wheel center caps before? If so how did you do it?

I have an extra set of abused Reatta center caps with good emblems in them. I would like to put the Reatta emblems in the center caps of the Mustang wheels I installed on my Reatta. Any ideas on how to go about doing that?

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Guest Kitskaboodle

I second your question! :(

I just removed around 8 of them.

Problem was that I had previosuly RTV'd them with GE Silicone.

I think it was too strong (I used too much of the stuff) because

I had a heck of a time to get them off! :(

Some say to use thin fishing line but for mine it didnt work all that well

given how much RTV I slopped on. :(

I ended up using one of those cheap box cutter knife's that have a long

blade in it and carefully worked my way under and around the caps.

Either way it ended up peeling off some of the reverse-painted gold on the back of the emblems

Kit

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I have an extra set of abused Reatta center caps with good emblems in them. I would like to put the Reatta emblems in the center caps of the Mustang wheels I installed on my Reatta. Any ideas on how to go about doing that?

Not sure how they would fit... The emblems won't lay flat, they are tapered (not sure I'm using the right word) and might not look right.

How are you planning to go about this?

I removed one before, and it just took a little prying, and some gentle but firm pressure from behind. This was with the factory adhesive.

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I don't really have a plan at this point. I was hoping the emblem has a flange around the outside that slightly larger than the emblem. If it does I might be able to cut an appropriate size hole in the Mustang (plastic) center cap and install the Reatta emblem from the back side, gluing it in place by the flange on the backside (if it has one)... I'm just thinking out loud right now.

I was hoping someone here could provide some information about the emblem and how it is mounted. A photo of an emblem that has been remove from the center cap would really be helpful. I don't want to destroy one of my emblems trying to figure out how they come out.

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Hokay... Here we go..

Picture #4 shows the slight flare the emblem has on the front side. The cap has an mirrored flare on it so that the cap will lay flush with it when secured in place.

As for removing it, you can slide a small screw drive in between the cap and the emblem, and pry. But I think your best bet will be to push from the large hold in the back (see picture #2), and the three holes of which you can only see half of.

don't use something sharp such as a screw driver, as that will probably damage something. try something blunt, like a worn down pencil.

Hope this helps.

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Edited by NCReatta (see edit history)
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From my experience almost nothing works especially prying the center off. When you do that almost always some of the silver reflective paint on the back of the center will stay with the glue. I have also tried the fish line with no success.

Where I have been completely successful is using my grinder or air cut off wheel and grinding away the aluminum on the back side. You can then remove the glue from the center without damaging the silvery paint.

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Guest Kitskaboodle

Prying (even carefully) with a screwdriver on the front of the center cap only leaves small lines/indentations around the lip/edge where the center cap sits.

Only time you can get away with this method is if the factory didnt put a whole lot of glue/adhesive on that particular center cap allowing it to come offf with minimal coaxing.

Seems that prying with any kind of tool brings only bad results most of the time. :(

Hmmm......I ws wondering if there was anything liquid such a Goo-Gone,

WD-40/penetrant, etc....that could be put on it and it would soak in and

help to release it?

Any ideas on this? Thanks, Kit

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Guest Mc_Reatta

Soaking with a solvent is a great idea. Besides Goo Gone and WD-40 try alcohol.

Use a heavy guitar pick as a prying tool, nothing metal. That's how electronic techs take all those plastic housings apart without leaving marks.

I would suggest after soaking with a solvent for a while, use a pick to apply upward pressure under the rim in a spot that yields the best penetration, and use an Xacto knife to carefully cut the at adhesive between the emblem and the cap.

Patience is your friend, it will take awhile, but with the right solvent, pressure and skill with the blade you should be able to remove it with little damage.

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Guest Greg Ross

Ronnie,

If you're demolishing the old center caps anyway;

I think the aluminum skin will peel off the plactic core pretty easily/ comparitively. Once removed you could simply go round the emblem with tin snips and leave the flange lip you were looking for. Mounting from behind though, you may not have the depth/ clearance back to the wheel studs?

Alternately, try a marine supplier for 3M 5200/ 4200 remover, it's formulated to soften/ disolve very agressive marine sealants.

Note in the image below, I simply set the emblem on the surface of the AR Center cap, carefully centered obviously. Let that sealant set up and then went around them with a trim bead. They look great, to me anyway!

Edited by Greg Ross
typo/ afterthought (see edit history)
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Guest WEB 38

can you use an adhesive remover from the back side, or alcohol to desolve the glue?or would that hurt the paint? Bill WEB 38

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Ronnie...... before you start, soak the hubcap in hot water, that softens the adhesive some and makes the emblem a little more flexible. The emblem is pretty strong, I have removed several and have never broken one.

I have some plastic pry tools that spread the load wider and do not damage the hubcap.

I made two from one 1 inch plastic scraper.

I always use silicone sealant to glue the emblems in place. The sealant never get hard and there is lots of vibration at the wheel, epoxy is too rigid, and will crack and you will loose the emblem.

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I got a chance to try removing the wheel cap emblem. I guess I got lucky. The first one I tried pushed right out with just applying pressure with my fingers from the back. However, I haven't figured out how to use the emblem on the Mustang wheel center cap as I had hoped. The Reatta emblem is so large that if I cut a hole for it as I had planned the hole would extend over into the holes where the lugs go. Oh well. That's the way it goes...

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I considered an '88 emblem but they are aprox. $100.00 each as it is a '88 only item. '89 - 91 are the larger size.

Ronnie, look up a LeSabre or Park Avenue on Autotrader.com to see the tri shield located behind the rear door. Or go to any used car lot to look at them.

I would send you a picture, but my wife's camera is broke.

They measure 2" across, have a silver outer edge,with a gray background for the trishields, and the trishields are colored.

I put those on my American Racing center caps [i just sanded down the small crown with my bench sander and used automotive double sided tape], as well as the steering wheel I am using in my black Reatta. If you remember it was the simulated leather wheel from a Chev. You might remember that picture.

They work well, look good and are cheap, so cheap that for the right guy they may just cost shipping.

Let me know what you think...

Edited by DAVES89 (see edit history)
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What is the center cap size you need, 2 1/8" push ins are common as dirt, I have ones from a Bonne that just say "ABS" in the center on the white car. 88 Hood and 'vert behind the seats both seem to be the same size. Wonder who the MFR was, might see about a run.

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Guest smith356

I changed the steering wheel in my 90 a couple of years ago. I found what I guess you would call lapel pins on e-bay. They're about 1 1/4" across and come with a small nail soldered onto the back. They may fit the Mustang wheel. I removed the nail and glued it to the horn pad, as the wheel came from a non-Reatta Buick. I still have one more around here somewhere if someone needs one. They're enamelled and look exact to OEM.

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What is the center cap size you need, 2 1/8" push ins are common as dirt, I have ones from a Bonne that just say "ABS" in the center on the white car. 88 Hood and 'vert behind the seats both seem to be the same size. Wonder who the MFR was, might see about a run.
I believe the 2-1/8 would be a good size. How do they "push in"? Do they snap into a hole? Anyone have photos?

I was hoping to get something with an R with orange background but I think the tri-shields look good too.

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Guest Mc_Reatta

Ronnie,

Enlilghten us on what type of adheasive that was used to hold the emblem on.

Do you think it was similar to a contact adheasive, a silicone, doublesided tape etc?

Might help someone else get their's off some day.

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I have the 6527C centers. Their supply varies but have seen the Buick trishield.

The "standard" GM push-in center fits into a 2" hole with a lip about 1/2" in for the teeth to catch (Fiero uses a smaller one for the GT wheels).

The Pontiac "crimp" style (e.g. the ones that just say "ABS" would be hard to change but ones like the SLS have a glued in 2 1/8" center that could be replaced if a replacement could be found.

If a Reatta center were found, I would like a dozen.

ps How big is the Mustang center ?

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... 88 Hood and 'vert behind the seats both seem to be the same size. Wonder who the MFR was, might see about a run.

It is also the same as the '88/'89 steering wheel emblem?

The hood emblem and the one in the rear filler panel of the convertible seem to be true cloisonne pieces. The big 3 1/4" emblems on the center caps are a cloisonne style, but are a different, and I suspect less expensive, construction.

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I have the 6527C centers. Their supply varies but have seen the Buick trishield.

The "standard" GM push-in center fits into a 2" hole with a lip about 1/2" in for the teeth to catch (Fiero uses a smaller one for the GT wheels).

The Pontiac "crimp" style (e.g. the ones that just say "ABS" would be hard to change but ones like the SLS have a glued in 2 1/8" center that could be replaced if a replacement could be found.

If a Reatta center were found, I would like a dozen.

ps How big is the Mustang center ?

Thanks for the photos. I believe that size and style of insert might work. The mustang center cap is ~6-3/4" in diameter. It has about 2-3/4" to work with in the center without getting too close to the lug holes. The cap is slightly raised in the center but I don't think it would be a problem. (See photo)

I will be doing a little leg work at the local junk yard soon to see what I can come up with.

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Ronnie,

Enlilghten us on what type of adheasive that was used to hold the emblem on.

Do you think it was similar to a contact adheasive, a silicone, doublesided tape etc?

Might help someone else get their's off some day.

I just removed another emblem from a center cap and this time I document how I did it. I will put it on ReattaOwner.com as a tutorial if others have good success removing the emblems this way.

As you can see in the the first photo it is only held in place with a small amount of silicone. Looks like they applied about a 1/8" bead around the R and then pressed it flat when it was assembled.

What I did to remove the emblem was press on the aluminum in the center with my thumbs, using firm pressure, while moving around and around, forcing the center aluminum under the emblem to bow out in the middle.

Once the aluminum part in the center is bowed out, you can press the emblem down on the edge on one side and it will rock up on the other side enough to grab it with your other hand and pull it off. (See photos to understand what I mean.)

This procedure did not hurt the center cap aluminum. Once the emblem is removed you can press the aluminum right back down flat to install another emblem if you want to.

If anyone else removes emblems this way successfully please let me know and I will post this procedure on ReattaOwner.com for future reference.

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Ronnie - I have a junk cap that I tried doing that with. Part of the foil stayed with the cap. (Probably should have tried the hot water trick that Barney suggested to soften the adhesive. What ever it is, Goo Gone doesn't work on it.)

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OK just to confuse thiings, the late (after about VIN 3000) 88 and 89 horn button is about 1 1/2" diameter, the pie plate center is 3 1/2". Only the 88 hood and converible back wall (left over 88s ?) insignea are the 2 1/8" size. Also there seems to be two different pie plates. Just another mystery.

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OK just to confuse thiings, the late (after about VIN 3000) 88 and 89 horn button is about 1 1/2" diameter, the pie plate center is 3 1/2". Only the 88 hood and converible back wall (left over 88s ?) insignea are the 2 1/8" size. Also there seems to be two different pie plates. Just another mystery.

I have also seen caps, some with black on the back, and some with grey. Anyone know what's up with that? :confused:

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Buick "slipstreamed" in a lot of changes particularly in 88. Deletion of suede, availability of sunroof, change in Teves return hose, gold enblem in horn button - and these are just the ones we know about.

TSBs tell a lot about technical changes (and I've lot track of the changes to the 440T4/4T60) but not so much about cosmetic. Hubcap material and hole diameter probably do not qualify for either.

As for the emblem glue I have seen a shiny epoxy like and a more spongy RTV like material used so probably removal depends on which.

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Guest steveskyhawk

Fenders on an 88 had a design flaw that was later fixed. The 88s tended to develop a crack about 6 inches back ot the top surface.

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