Airbrush Car Rims???



Hello, has anyone here ever painted rims? I want to airbrush the rims on my car a mint green color but not sure what paint to use. They are aluminum alloy and I read in another thread that wicked is good but I would have to spray 2k clear over it. I don't have the equipment to use the clear coat or the money to get them powder coated. I chose the airbrush route because I can't find the color I want in a rattle can. Is there another way to go about doing this? Any input would help thank you.
For starters I don't thing an airbrush is a good tool to paint rims with. Rather get a small spraygun. And to clear it you can get 2K clear in a can.
For starters I don't thing an airbrush is a good tool to paint rims with. Rather get a small spraygun. And to clear it you can get 2K clear in a can.

Agreed. If you're just going for a solid color, you're not going to enjoy trying to get it done with an airbrush. Even a simple touch up gun from the bargain section will serve you better. You can still use the airbrush paint, if you like that color, but you want something that will lay a bigger pattern than an airbrush.
You will want them very clean. Then prime red with a self etching primer. Next your airbrush paint, yes with a cheap spray gun, check harbor freight. If you go to or coast airbrush .dom, both sites offer 2k clear in a spray can. It's about $22/can plush shipping. Hh is will give the most durable results.

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even when done right, painting rims can be a bit risky. Durability can be an issue, as can adhesion. Rims aren't exactly a paint-friendly environment, with the brake dust, rocks and pebbles, curbs, brake heat, etc.

If you're going to do them at all, you might as well do them right, which won't be all that cheap.

You'd definitely need at least a mini-gun and a compressor big enough to run it. Here's a very simple run down of the steps I'd take-
1-clean the bejeezuz out of the wheels until there is NO grease, grime, dirt, scale, or anything. The WHOLE rim, front and back, and in every corner and crevice. If you don't do this, the paint job is doomed from the start.
2-scuff sand all areas to be painted. I would probably go with 220g on a D/A sander. Possibly 120g. After everything is very well scuffed, clean everything again. And again. And probably one more time for good measure. (be sure to use a pre-paint wax and grease remover)
3-Next, priming- I would go with an epoxy primer, but you can use a self-etch primer then a urethane primer-surfacer. Either way, follow the tech sheet to the letter. Then guide-coat and block sand everything with the recommended grit sandpaper (usually 400 or 600 wet). Use sanding blocks, NOT your fingers. Yes, it's harder, but there's a reason for it.
4-If you sanded through the primer at all, re-prime and repeat step 3.
5-At this point, it's ideal to use a 2k sealer, but you can get away without one if you REALLY have to. Same as priming, follow the tech sheet exactly.
6- Now you can finally paint. Wicked will work just fine. I'd use a mini-gun, though, not an airbrush. Airbrushes are just the wrong tool for that particular job. It will take forever, and could come out uneven and patchy.
7-Clear coat. Use a 2k urethane clear. A scratch-resistant clear would probably be a wise investment here, as well.
8-color sand and buff
9-rock your new rims
Thank you everyone for all your input it's greatly appreciated. I'm definitely going to get a mini gun and follow all 9 of your steps HCP! I've spray painted rims before and never had any problems with durability but the quality will be much greater now thanks to all of you.