Go Back   EcoModder Forum > EcoModding > DIY / How-to
Register Now
 Register Now
 

Reply  Post New Thread
 
Submit Tools LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 08-13-2011, 07:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Verdann's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Wa, USA
Posts: 27

Little Red wagon - '94 Geo Metro GE
90 day: 43.71 mpg (US)

Ruber Draco - '02 Kia Rio Sedan
90 day: 25.53 mpg (US)
Thanks: 2
Thanked 7 Times in 3 Posts
Making your own "smooth" wheel covers

OK so I got the inspiration for this from http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...vex-14958.html. And while I posted this there, I figured it warranted it's own post here as well. Hopefully this is step by step enough that anyone can follow and do this.

Parts:
Wheel Covers
Fiberglass resin
T-shirts x 4
Mixing Bucket
Acetone

Tools:
Mixing Stick
Paintbrush
Razor knife
Dikes

Ok, so I bought my wheel covers on ebay for a total of $15.

I went to Lowes and my local auto parts store for the needed Supplies. I got the Fiberglass Resin at the auto parts store for about $12. It was about $12 for the bucket, paintbrush, and acetone at Lowes.

Something I didn't take a picture of was the actual sanding of the wheel covers, but I took a 150 grit foam sanding block to rough up the surface a bit to help make sure the resin would stick. Here's a pic of the after. Also make sure to clean off the dust with a damp rag.

Instead of using t-shirts I had, I went to goodwill and bought 4 from their $.99 rack. Here is one of the ones that I got.

Make sure to not use shirts that you like because this is how they will end up

Ok, start by putting the wheel covers in the t-shirt facing the side with no printing on it. ( I say this because I don't think the resin will soak through the screen printing.)

Make sure to position it so that all the holes can be gathered easily into the center.

Ok, now install the tension ring

The next step is to carefully pull the shirt as tight as you can. Gotta be careful that you don't either tear the shirt or break the cover.

This next part is kinda difficult at first. Take all the loose t-shirt gather it up nice and tight and put either 1 or 2 zip ties around it depending on the length of your zip ties.

You want to get this pulled around the wheel cover as tight as you can this is what will help you get a nice smooth surface on the other side. I set it on a bucket to make it easier to work on at this point.

Ok, Now for the smelly part. Mix the resin according to the instructions on the can. My instructions were to mix approx 1/4 of the hardner with approx 1/4 of the can. Just make sure to follow your instructions and mix well. Also remember to work quickly.

Now time to apply. I started in the center and worked my way out. just keep going and spreading until the shirt is saturated and you can kind of see the wheel cover through it. Make sure to get the edges well.

When you finish with the one, set it aside and move on, keep doing this until you have finished all 4.

Allow the resin to set and cure for however long it says on the container. Mine said 2 hours, but due to lack of lighting working outside I let mine sit until the next day. Once it has cured remove the tension rings.

Next take a pair of scissors and work your way around the edge cutting off the shirt.

This is what you end up with after removing the shirt.

Now go around the edge with a razor knife and trim off anything that you couldn't cut through with the scissors.

For especially thick drips you may need to use a pair of dikes.

So the kinda muddy brown of the hardened resin is kinda ugly so I grabbed a can of black spray paint I had lying around.

This is probably a good project for practicing your spray paint technique if you need too. I just did multiple passes until it was solid black then moved on. Don't forget to get the edges otherwise you'll have black covers with white (brownish) edges.

All four of them painted and waiting to dry.

Ok, that's it. you are now the proud owner of (mostly) smooth hubcaps.

If you want them absolutely smooth you could do multiple layers so you can have enough to be sanded. I don't mind the bit of texture.

And here are the before and after pics of my car.

  Reply With Quote
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Verdann For This Useful Post:
deejaaa (08-12-2013), GalwayBogger (05-31-2013), mikeyjd (07-01-2013), Sykomor (10-15-2011), t vago (05-30-2013)
Alt Today
Popular topics

Other popular topics in this forum...

   
Old 08-13-2011, 07:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
mcrews's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 3,523

The Q Sold - '02 Infiniti Q45 Sport
90 day: 23.08 mpg (US)

blackie - '14 nissan altima sv
Thanks: 2,203
Thanked 659 Times in 474 Posts
nice!!!!
__________________
MetroMPG: "Get the MPG gauge - it turns driving into a fuel & money saving game."

ECO MODS PERFORMED:
First: ScangaugeII
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...eii-23306.html

Second: Grille Block
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...e-10912-2.html

Third: Full underbelly pan
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...q45-11402.html

Fourth: rear skirts and 30.4mpg on trip!
http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...tml#post247938
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2011, 07:35 PM   #3 (permalink)
recently enlightened...
 
Jean-Seb's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 55
Thanks: 12
Thanked 12 Times in 7 Posts
Perfect ! Well done.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2011, 08:28 AM   #4 (permalink)
Mechanical engineer
 
Vekke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Kitee (Finland)
Posts: 981

Siitin - '98 Seat Cordoba Vario
90 day: 58.56 mpg (US)

VW Lupo 3L --> 2L - '00 VolksWagen Lupo 3L
Diesel
90 day: 104.94 mpg (US)

A8 luxury fuel sipper - '97 Audi A8 1.2 TDI 6 speed manual
90 day: 64.64 mpg (US)

Audi A4B6 Avant Niistäjä - '02 Audi A4b6 1.9tdi 96kW 3L
90 day: 54.57 mpg (US)

Tourekki - '04 VW Touareg 2.5TDI R5 6 speed manual
90 day: 32.98 mpg (US)

A2 1.4TDI - '03 Audi A2 1.4 TDI
90 day: 45.68 mpg (US)
Thanks: 171
Thanked 502 Times in 217 Posts
I would suggest to try out how it forms out if you dry them out, up side down. That way the cloth wont touch the original cover and you should be able to get even smoother surface . Correct tension to the cloth is the key to the smoothest covers.
__________________


https://www.linkedin.com/in/vesatiainen/

Vesa Tiainen innovation engineer and automotive enthusiast
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2011, 10:02 PM   #5 (permalink)
Red Light Avoider
 
pletby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Posts: 296

My Civic - '00 Honda Civic DX
Team Honda
90 day: 46 mpg (US)
Thanks: 114
Thanked 47 Times in 34 Posts
Neato! Reminds me of silk and dope covering of model airplanes.
__________________


  Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2011, 11:03 AM   #6 (permalink)
Muscle Car Modder
 
Floordford's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Nashville
Posts: 117

QuikSilver - '00 Ford Mustang GT
90 day: 24.7 mpg (US)
Thanks: 4
Thanked 7 Times in 6 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vekke View Post
I would suggest to try out how it forms out if you dry them out, up side down. That way the cloth wont touch the original cover and you should be able to get even smoother surface . Correct tension to the cloth is the key to the smoothest covers.
My thought was using a different hub cap that doesnt have those peaks. But i doubt you'd see much more gain than from how he did it.

Good work. I hope they stick and don't fling off after some time in the sun. Possibly secure them with tiny screws for extra insurance. Just a thought.
__________________
2000 Mustang GT
273hp/ 309ft.lbs.
Cd 0.36 Im working on it
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-21-2011, 03:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Wells, Maine
Posts: 50
Thanks: 1
Thanked 9 Times in 8 Posts
Nice! If you check out the "kinda convex" thread on this, I just posted a few pictures of my Saturn OEM wheel covers that I did this trick on, only with a different approach. I made a plywood frame to stretch the cloth over, stapled it, put the resin to it, then placed it over the cover. This worked out very well for me (did two so far, the third one is curing right now), kept the material tight with a nice convex shape and little, if any sagging.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2011, 04:54 AM   #8 (permalink)
Mechanical engineer
 
Vekke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Kitee (Finland)
Posts: 981

Siitin - '98 Seat Cordoba Vario
90 day: 58.56 mpg (US)

VW Lupo 3L --> 2L - '00 VolksWagen Lupo 3L
Diesel
90 day: 104.94 mpg (US)

A8 luxury fuel sipper - '97 Audi A8 1.2 TDI 6 speed manual
90 day: 64.64 mpg (US)

Audi A4B6 Avant Niistäjä - '02 Audi A4b6 1.9tdi 96kW 3L
90 day: 54.57 mpg (US)

Tourekki - '04 VW Touareg 2.5TDI R5 6 speed manual
90 day: 32.98 mpg (US)

A2 1.4TDI - '03 Audi A2 1.4 TDI
90 day: 45.68 mpg (US)
Thanks: 171
Thanked 502 Times in 217 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Floordford View Post
My thought was using a different hub cap that doesnt have those peaks. But i doubt you'd see much more gain than from how he did it.

Good work. I hope they stick and don't fling off after some time in the sun. Possibly secure them with tiny screws for extra insurance. Just a thought.
Yes no more fuel effiency gains but just little bit smoother looks. Anyway very nice covers already.
__________________


https://www.linkedin.com/in/vesatiainen/

Vesa Tiainen innovation engineer and automotive enthusiast
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2011, 12:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Philippines
Posts: 1
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Is it ok to drive your car with the cover attach or do I need to remove the cover if I use my car?
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-2011, 12:56 AM   #10 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Verdann's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Wa, USA
Posts: 27

Little Red wagon - '94 Geo Metro GE
90 day: 43.71 mpg (US)

Ruber Draco - '02 Kia Rio Sedan
90 day: 25.53 mpg (US)
Thanks: 2
Thanked 7 Times in 3 Posts
They haven't come off yet. I curbed one and had to repaint it. Also had to superglue part of one back on after I took the whole cover off to do some car repairs.

  Reply With Quote
Reply  Post New Thread


Thread Tools




Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
All content copyright EcoModder.com