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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone

Recently purchased a 2002 Vert M3 with 90,000 on the odometer. Adult owned and very well maintained its whole life which has me confused about the condition of my OEM Chrome Shadow 18s.

I initially thought it was brake dust, but when the black splatters didn't come off I was 100% convinced it overspray from someone painting the calipers black.

Aftering posting on m3forum.net I was told my chrome shadow finish was "decaying" so the black "splatter" was actually the base coat revealing itself after the top coats were decaying.

After searching on all the bmw m3 forums and a general internet search, I have not seen anything that compares to my wheels. Yes I have seen some posts that argue the finish is not the best, but I have seen NO post that reflects what I am seeing now. If every m3 owner with the OEM 18s has this decaying finish issue, why aren't I seeing more information about it? More importantly, why doesn't anyone else's wheels have that splattered spray paint look?!

I am not convinced so I wanted to get more information. Thanks to all that help. Take a look at these photos and you tell me what you think is going here.







Heres a pic after I tried to strip the blackness thinking it was paint, didn't help at all:



Link to rest of photos: http://s210.photobucket.com/user/mightyhealthyy/library/BMW m3/BMW M3 Wheels?sort=3&page=1_a_
 

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The OEM 18s that came on my first E46 (which I still have for winter tires) are doing the same thing. It's the finish going bad.
 

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You will probably find the PO used some aggressive solvent to clean off the brake dust or had a pet dog or similar.
Originally there was a coat of clear on top of the black and silver. Looks like you sanded through all 3 layers and have aluminium showing through.
Its almost impossible to touch it up and if you get one wheel re-painted it will probably not match the others so you need to do all 4.
I'd stay with them as they are the best looking wheel for an E46 M3.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You will probably find the PO used some aggressive solvent to clean off the brake dust or had a pet dog or similar.
Originally there was a coat of clear on top of the black and silver. Looks like you sanded through all 3 layers and have aluminium showing through.
Its almost impossible to touch it up and if you get one wheel re-painted it will probably not match the others so you need to do all 4.
I'd stay with them as they are the best looking wheel for an E46 M3.
This is a great guess and I think you might be right about it. What do you mean by PET DOG?

And yes I used a paint stripper but ended up eating through the OEM finish and not overspray which I thought it was.

Thanks for your input.
 

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You will probably find the PO used some aggressive solvent to clean off the brake dust or had a pet dog or similar.
Originally there was a coat of clear on top of the black and silver. Looks like you sanded through all 3 layers and have aluminium showing through.
Its almost impossible to touch it up and if you get one wheel re-painted it will probably not match the others so you need to do all 4.
I'd stay with them as they are the best looking wheel for an E46 M3.
No clear, the wheels are a thick black base with hyper silver on top. The hyper silver is like a clear silver, and the black is what makes it pop. The integrity is fine, and you can get the faces refinished at any good wheel shop. Check out my build, I just refinished a set of these.

The hyper silver was crud IMHO, I ended up passing them to a friend with a strip tank and started on fresh aluminum. The hyper silver is soft, and easily effected by strong wheel cleaners, bug and tar removers, acetone.
 

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The hyper silver is soft, and easily effected by strong wheel cleaners, bug and tar removers, acetone.
Same on my OZ wheels, I used some wheel cleaner and it started eating a bit into the paint. It's not that bad but I'll have to get them repainted after winter
 

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Dude. We already told you what was wrong. How are you not convinced?

We explained how the wheels are coated. They were NOT properly cared for and they have failed. You stripped the coating off... What further proof do you need? Extend your search to M5 wheels, they are the same. Go look up used chrome shadow wheels on ebay. You completely ignored two people who gave you solid first hand experience.
 

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No clear, the wheels are a thick black base with hyper silver on top. The hyper silver is like a clear silver, and the black is what makes it pop. The integrity is fine, and you can get the faces refinished at any good wheel shop. Check out my build, I just refinished a set of these.

The hyper silver was crud IMHO, I ended up passing them to a friend with a strip tank and started on fresh aluminum. The hyper silver is soft, and easily effected by strong wheel cleaners, bug and tar removers, acetone.
These wheels are not hyper silver, they are chrome shadow. Hyper silver is a single color, chrome shadow is a two part system of black and then a light silver.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Dude. We already told you what was wrong. How are you not convinced?

We explained how the wheels are coated. They were NOT properly cared for and they have failed. You stripped the coating off... What further proof do you need? Extend your search to M5 wheels, they are the same. Go look up used chrome shadow wheels on ebay. You completely ignored two people who gave you solid first hand experience.
You couldn't explain to me why the decay looked like spray paint. Asking the forum revealed the possibility that maybe PO used an harsh brake cleaner. Glad I asked.
 

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Any chance you have a pic? I don't understand how decay can look like a splatter of a spray can.
Paint doesn't go on in an equal smooth layer. You have multiple layers of primer and two colors of paint that magnified have peaks and valleys in the coating. Each layer adds to those peaks and valleys, otherwise known as orange peel.

What you are seeing is the peaks of the silver worn off with the black under layer showing. You would see the same exact thing appear with your own eyes using a less aggressive solvent to strip the finish. This is a gradual process.

Harsh chemicals will strip in areas of concentration. Splatter will cause the same spotting.
 

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I have a set in my back yard off my 2002 with only 17,000 miles. When I first got the car the dealer lied and said it was a custom sparkle paint. I did a car show and I fellow BMW owner said it was break dust. Not as bad as yours that's why I always liked them. lol
 
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