How to Remove Chrome from Wheels: A Step-by-Step Guide(machining jig Ted)

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Chrome wheels are known for their shiny and polished appearance, often adding a touch of elegance and style to any vehicle. However, there may come a time when you want to change the look or opt for a different finish on your wheels. The process of removing chrome from wheels can be daunting, especially if you are unsure where to start. In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to remove chrome from wheels using CNC.

CNC stands for Computer Numerical Control, which is a manufacturing technology that utilizes computer software to control and automate machinery. While it might not seem directly related to removing chrome from wheels, CNC plays an essential role in the production of wheel finishes such as powder coating or painting, which would require the removal of the existing chrome layer. Let's delve into the specifics of how CNC can help in transforming your wheels.

Why Remove Chrome from Wheels?

Before we proceed with the step-by-step guide, let us discuss why someone might want to remove chrome from their wheels in the first place. There could be various reasons behind this decision, including:

1. Change in Style: Over time, personal preferences may evolve, leading to a desire for a different look or finish on the wheels. Removing chrome allows for customization options like matte black, gunmetal grey, or the application of custom graphics.

2. Damaged Chrome: Chrome plating can degrade over time due to exposure to elements such as salt, road debris, or harsh weather conditions. This deterioration can result in a cloudy or pitted appearance, making the wheels less aesthetically pleasing.

3. Easy Maintenance: Chrome wheels require regular cleaning and maintenance to maintain their shine. Some car owners prefer finishes that are easier to clean and maintain, leading them to remove the chrome layer.

Tools and Materials Needed

To successfully remove chrome from your wheels, you will need the following tools and materials:

- Gloves

- Safety goggles

- Respirator mask

- Protective clothing (e.g., long sleeves, pants)

- Chemical stripper or chrome removal product

- Plastic scraper

- Wire brush

- Sandpaper (grit ranging from 120 to 600)

- Water hose or pressure washer

Now that we have covered the basics let's move on to the step-by-step guide on removing chrome from wheels using CNC.

Step 1: Prepare the Work Area

Begin by setting up a well-ventilated work area. Removing chrome can release toxic fumes, so ensure you are in an open space or a garage with proper ventilation. Wear your protective clothing, including gloves, safety goggles, and a respirator mask, to shield yourself from any potential harm.

Step 2: Apply Chrome Removal Product

Using a chemical stripper specially designed for removing chrome, apply the product evenly over the entire surface of the wheel. Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer as different products might have specific wait times before proceeding to the next step.

Step 3: Scrape off the Chrome Layer

Once the waiting time specified by the manufacturer has elapsed, use a plastic scraper to gently scrape off the chrome layer. Try to remove as much chrome as possible without damaging the underlying metal. Be patient during this process, as rushing may lead to unintentional scratches or gouges.

Step 4: Remove Remaining Residue

After scraping off the majority of the chrome, there might still be some residue left on the wheel surface. Use a wire brush to scrub away the remaining chrome particles. Be careful not to exert excessive force, as it could damage the wheel material.

Step 5: Smooth the Surface

To achieve a smooth finish, sand the wheel surface using gradually finer grits of sandpaper. Start with 120-grit sandpaper and work your way up to 600-grit. Ensure that the surface is evenly sanded to remove any imperfections or remaining chrome traces. Periodically rinse the wheel with water to keep it wet during the sanding process.

Step 6: Clean and Dry

After thoroughly sanding the wheel, clean it with a mild detergent and water solution to remove any dust, debris, or chemicals from previous steps. Rinse the wheel until the water runs clear, ensuring all residues are completely removed. Let the wheel dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Step 7: Apply Desired Finish Using CNC

Here comes the role of CNC in the transformation of your wheels. After removing the chrome layer and preparing the wheel surface, you can utilize CNC technology to apply custom finishes. Whether you wish for powder coating, painting, or even engraving intricate designs, CNC machines provide accurate control over various techniques to create stunning results.


Removing chrome from wheels might initially sound like a challenging task, but by following this step-by-step guide and embracing the capabilities of CNC technology, you can successfully give your wheels a whole new look. Always prioritize safety measures when working with chemicals and follow the instructions provided by the manufacturers of the chrome removal product. With careful execution, you can achieve the desired finish and personalize your vehicle's aesthetics with confidence. CNC Milling CNC Machining