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REMOVING PAINT FROM DRUMS


jframe
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Any good, SAFE ways to remove black paint from aluminum brake drums? Someone did this before I bought it, and it just looks like crap to me when I see it, since some of it is coming off. Thought some of y'all might have an idea of a spray or some sort of cleaner that won't harm the aluminum, but get that nasty paint off. Hoping to do it without removing the drum from the car.

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Aluminum should be impervious to lacquer thinner, which will remove the paint.  You can do it yourself but may be a rather messy job depending on how thick the paint has been applied.

 

Best would be to remove the front drums and have them media blasted to remove all traces of paint.  Glass beads, sodium bicarbonate, or walnut shells are used to strip the paint without damaging the underlying aluminum.  Any competent media blasting shop will know what to do, and it should not cost much to have 2 brake drums done.  Make sure they don't media blast the inside of the drum, as this is not necessary.   The result should be a bright natural aluminum finish that requires no further coating or treatment to be installed back on the car.

 

Removing the drums is easy.  Just take off the wheel and the drum should slide off the hub easily.  No big deal.

 

What I recently did was to refinish the rear drums on my '65.  The chrome Formula V wheels have 5 slots around the hub which reveal the drum bolted underneath.  The rear brake drums are cast iron so get covered in rusty scale.  This detracts from the car as this doesn't match the front aluminum drums that are visible behind the front wheel slots.  So, I removed my rear drums and had them sandblasted to clean off all the scale and rust.  Once I had a nice clean finish, i wiped them down in lacquer thinner and painted them with aluminum paint.  I think the car looks better with aluminum colored brake drums showing on all wheels, even if this wasn't how the factory delivered the cars.

 

Original rusty rear brake drum:

image.png.e6dda9883982af955635b891e0b27cd2.png

 

Drum with rust removed and painted with aluminum paint:

image.png.aeea495286ea25ae4d263af1f8a5fcd6.png

On the car!

image.png.1629b51740fe8e670ed5537a2f1f7773.png

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1 hour ago, jframe said:

Any good, SAFE ways to remove black paint from aluminum brake drums? Someone did this before I bought it, and it just looks like crap to me when I see it, since some of it is coming off. Thought some of y'all might have an idea of a spray or some sort of cleaner that won't harm the aluminum, but get that nasty paint off. Hoping to do it without removing the drum from the car.

  If your car was factory equipped with the chrome wheels the factory painted the brake drums black.

Tom mooney

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The front drums are riveted to the hub assembly. To remove the front drums on a 1st generation Riviera ( the ones I know) you have to remove the dust cover, the cotter pin, and the spindle nut.  Back off the shoes using a brake spoon and the drums should then slide off. The hub will still be riveted to the drum.  The race for the wheel bearings will then be exposed.  This is where a blaster need to take care not to score the bearing races.  I’ve been using citrus paint remover.  It’s not toxic and biodegradable. 

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1 hour ago, 1965rivgs said:

  If your car was factory equipped with the chrome wheels the factory painted the brake drums black.

Tom mooney

It originally had standard wheelcovers, based on a photo I have of it from the early Eighties.

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10 hours ago, jframe said:

It originally had standard wheelcovers, based on a photo I have of it from the early Eighties.

  This image originally appeared in a Motor Trend road test magazine article of the `64 Wildcat. I lifted it from their TV channel because the image is clearer than scanning the magazine photo.

Tom

1964 motor trend road test photo.jpg

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1 hour ago, 1965rivgs said:

  This image originally appeared in a Motor Trend road test magazine article of the `64 Wildcat. I lifted it from their TV channel because the image is clearer than scanning the magazine photo.

Tom

1964 motor trend road test photo.jpg

That's pretty cool. All these years being interested in these cars, I never knew that.

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