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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everyone,

Like most people, I have standard 26mm, black wheel bolts on my 2001 330xi. The threads and conical portions of the bolts that contact the wheels are in fine condition, but the bolt heads nave some nicks that have partially rusted, so essentially they are completely functional, but a tad ugly. Rather than spending lots of money on new (and functionally unnecessary) bolts, I wanted to poll the community for some refinishing ideas.

First, how to deal with the finish on the existing bolts prior to making them look better: sand? wire brush? muratic acid? "rust remover" or the like? I would probably only treat the area above the cone, i.e. where the impact socket touches.

Second, how to make them look better. I've considered repainting, but I would think that would chip under standard impact removal (?). I've seen some mention plastidip. Is this more resistant to impact removal? I think powder coating is overkill and negates the point of not spending much $. The idea I haven't been able to find on the web anywhere is using a bluing solution. Something like Birchwood Casey Super Blue that is used to blacken metal during gun refinishing. Has anyone tried this or has reason to think this wouldn't work? Would I need to strip whatever coating is on there first?

Any other ideas or thoughts?

Thank you!
 

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They are cheap to buy on ebay,new threads,clean and shiney.Is it worth the bother of trying to refinish them?
 

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I just put mine thread side up in a chinese takeout container (the round plastic ones) and filled it to just cover the bolt heads with metal ready (muriatic acid based). Rinsed.
Drilled 20 holes in a box, dropped the bolts in, and sprayed them with a coat of etch primer and then Rustoleum black.
 

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First, how to deal with the finish on the existing bolts prior to making them look better: sand? wire brush? muratic acid? "rust remover" or the like? I would probably only treat the area above the cone, i.e. where the impact socket touches.
Not sure what kind of finish is on the lug bolts, but a "rust remover" solution might be capable of stripping all the finish off the bolts vs just the rust (again depending on what type of finish). I have an extra set of the original black finish axle shaft torx bolts and due to rust on some of the bolts I put them all in some Evapo-Rust for a day to clean them up. Unfortunately, when they came out the rust was gone but also the entire finish on all the bolts had changed colors and looked different.

I should leave the bolts outside to see if they now will rust easily, but I am pretty hesitant now to use Evapo-Rust again on a fastener with a finish.
 

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@JustJohn, how well does the rustoleum hold up to an impact wrench?
I don't really know. I don't use an impact wrench on my lug bolts...
Someone had painted mine silver, which I didn't like. The metal ready did not appear to remove the oxide coating and I had the etch primer and paint sitting around. I do think the tops will stay freshly black until I decide to replace them.
 

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For the truly anal (considering refinishing your lug bolts qualifies!) I would think they sell thin black pastic lug nut/bolt covers. I saw a car I can't recall with these little covers on them. They were thin soft plastic and held on with friction. Before messing about for a half day pulling wheels and such and finding out the paint chips off if you rotate tires properly, see if you can find some. Take 'em out of the box, and 4 minutes later you've got stylin' black covered lugnuts.
 

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Why would you feel the need to disparage answers to the OP's original question? It was for options, which include $36 for new lug bolts and we end with people not rotating their tires properly (on my three cars with staggered wheels), extolling the virtues of impact wrenches on aluminum wheels (there aren't any), and a general attitude problem?
 

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E46 '04 330Ci convertible 740K km
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Why would you feel the need to disparage answers to the OP's original question? It was for options, which include $36 for new lug bolts and we end with people not rotating their tires properly (on my three cars with staggered wheels), extolling the virtues of impact wrenches on aluminum wheels (there aren't any), and a general attitude problem?
Whom that post is addressed to?
 

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I always appreciate people stepping in when there is disrespect, but I too am puzzled. We didn't suggest impact wrenches, the OP himself brought up impact wrenches in his initial post. Nor does he mention he has staggered rims. Again, I personally appreciate it when people support proper decorum and such. If you've just had a bad day and regret the wording, say so and I think we've all been there. Overall if this were my question I'd be happy with the broad alternatives and responses. (shrugs).
 
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Maybe this is a bad day. The internet, election, and my age are really converging to compel me to shake my cane at people lately.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
As the OP, I'll chime in and say I appreciate all the different ideas! Keep 'em coming!
 

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Maybe this is a bad day. The internet, election, and my age are really converging to compel me to shake my cane at people lately.
And get off my lawn!!!

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
 
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