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Motorcycle Wheel Finishing

CalChrome Chromed Motorcycle Wheels

Motorcycle Wheel Finishing Quick Info

Wheel pricing: Pricing starts at $225 and varies with wheel sizing
Turn Around Time: est. 15-20 business days

We offer our show-quality wheel plating services to the motorcycle industry such as Performance Machine, West Coast Choppers, Mid-West Choppers, etc. Harley's, Sport bikes, and Billet aftermarket, we have just about done them all. Please note that very few exchanges are available because we primarily process your wheels to ensure that the chromes you receive fit exactly and correctly. Due to the intricacy of these wheels, the process time is approximately 15 to 20 days, depending on work done. During winter and spring seasons processing times may take longer due to the high volumes of wheels we receive during these times.

Motorcycle Wheel Chrome Plating Pricing

Due to the many types of sizes, designs and base material used on motorcycles, please call for a custom quotation, and have available photographs if requested. Pricing starts at $225 and varies with wheel sizing.


Payment is required prior to any work being performed. Payment for chrome work is accepted via Personal / Company check, PayPal, Visa / Mastercard or Money Order. You may send payment along with the wheels attached to the Customer Instruction Sheet. This will help expedite processing time. If you are unsure of the work to be performed, we can upon receiving your wheels, send you an estimate once we have determined what work needs to be performed.

Harley Multi-Spoke chrome wheel (Diamond)

Harley Multi-Spoke
(Diamond)

Harley Fatboy chrome wheel

Harley Fatboy

Harley Deuce chrome wheel

Harley Deuce

Harley Multi-Spoke chrome wheel

Harley Multi-Spoke

Sport Bike 5 Spoke chrome wheel

Sport Bike 5 Spoke

Billet 1 Piece chrome wheel

Billet 1 Piece

Sport Bike 3 Spoke chrome wheel

Sport Bike 3 Spokey

Sport Bike 1 Piece chrome wheel

Sport Bike 1 Piece

Rechrome Motorcycle Wheels

Please Note: Previously chrome plated parts require being chrome stripped before being rechromed. (Chrome Strip processing time is 3 to 10 business days.) Rechroming a wheel does not guarantee a perfect wheel. Corrosion can cause pitting which may show through the new chrome. We will rechrome the wheel with the best effort to make the wheel look as good as possible.

Please read the rechrome section of the website here.

The cost to chrome strip a Motorcycle wheel starts at $100 per wheel. If your wheel is a Billet wheel and has Billet hubs, chrome strip pricing starts at $50 per hub. This removal chrome pricing is a guide line only, please contact us for your personalized quote. The total cost of a rechrome motorcycle wheel includes the chrome plating costs and the chrome strip charges added together.

A concern about chrome stripping a previously chromed motorcycle wheel is the bearing holes, metal races or anything steel attached to the wheel. Part of the chrome strip process is to place the wheel into Nitric acid. We can plug the bearing holes with rubber plugs to help prevent acid from entering. However, there is no guarantee that the plugs will not leak.

How do I Send My Motorcycle Wheels

Please remove all seals, bearings, races, gaskets, tires, valve stems, etc. from the wheels before freighting.

Before beginning, please determine which type of motorcycle wheel you have. For example, a Harley Fatboy, Harley Deuce, Honda Vulcan, and Suzuki GSX-R are all examples of one-piece motorcycle wheels. If the wheel is a custom billet wheel, it may actually be composed of multiple pieces. For example, there may be hubs bolted onto the wheel. These pieces need to be separated and plated individually, which will add an additional plating cost. Contact us, Call for more info or Chat with us now for an accurate quote.

Secondly, please have the tire and all other hardware removed from the wheel, such as wheel bearing assemblies, bearing races, brake rotors, etc. . Bearing assemblies need to be removed professionally by the use of a bearing puller. Using a hammer to remove the bearing can cause warping or distortion of the bearing hole. This will lead to problems when re-assembling the wheels.


What if my wheels are magnesium? Can you chrome plate them?

Some motorcycle wheels have magnesium content as part of the mixture of the alloy makeup of the wheel. This magnesium content prevents us from being able to paint strip and or chrome plate the wheels. How do I know if my wheels have magnesium content? Most aluminum cast alloy motorcycle wheels with the tire and the bearings removed, usually weigh more than 10 lbs. Where as magnesium content in the alloy wheels will weigh normally less than 10 lbs and we have seen wheels as light as 7 lbs. This is a good indicator of which wheel composition you have. Magnesium content wheels, when heat is applied to can combust (catch on fire), which makes them not a candidate for normal chemical paint removal and chrome electroplating. Although minimal amount of heat is used to remove paint and electroplate, caution has to be taken to avoid catastrophic problems. See photo below, if this symbol (Mg) appears on the wheel, this indicates that there is magnesium content in the alloy make up of the wheel. Please contact us if you think your wheels are magnesium.



Magnesium symbol

This wheel indicates the presence of magnesium in a wheel

Questions Regarding Bearing Holes

Customers routinely ask "What about the bearings? Should I leave them in? Should I take them out?" Please remove all bearings, and races if applicable prior to shipping wheels for plating. This procedure is best performed by a professional shop which has the proper tools to remove and re-install the bearings.

We use specially made high-density rubber plugs to assist in preventing plating build-up in the bearing hole. The following images illustrate how the rubber plugs work, and the final image shows a fully chrome plated wheel, with a clean bearing hole.

Bearing Plug example 1
Bearing Plug example 2
Bearing Plug shown in place
Bearing Plug shown removed after chrome plating


What if my wheel upon completion, has plating inside the bearing hole?

Every effort is made to reduce plating that may get past the plugs in the bearing area of the wheels. But sometimes there can be a small build up that needs to be addressed. Since we do not have the bearings, we will leave any build up in the hole so that the end user/ technician can remove the excess during the bearing reinstallation. This can be accomplished as simple as freezing the bearing assembly and heating the wheel to allow enough clearance to reinstall the bearing or the extra plating will have to removed manually little by little to allow clearance for installation. Or manually remove some of the plating to gain the clearances needed. Some shops have recommended using emery cloth or sand paper by hand to slowly remove enough plating for the bearing clearance. Other shops have suggested and have used a wheel cylinder brake hone tool to provide for the clearancing. If the bearing holes are loose, you will need to peen, stake or knurl the bearing holes and/or use 3M Scotch-Weld Retaining Compound for bearings and sleeves. Many motorcycle wheel bearings are one-time use only. For example, Harley-Davidson recommends to not reinstall old bearings.

California Chrome Wheel Inc. is not responsible for motorcycle wheel bearing clearances and fitments

Since we do not remove or install wheel bearings, there have been incidents where customers have claimed that the bearing hole size has changed, only to find out that the wrong bearing was trying to be installed into the wrong wheel. Please double check the correct bearings are being utilized for your wheel. Please make sure a professional shop or technician performs the bearing removal and reinstallation. Some customers have attempted to remove the bearings on their own by forcing the bearings out through manual force and have damaged the wheel in doing so. Resulting in an uneven and distorted area making the new bearing placement not possible. We have no way of knowing how the bearings will be removed and reinstalled. Therefore again, we cannot be held accountable for the final fitment. Contact us for assistance and questions about bearings

Black Chrome and Other Finishes

Black Finishes Fusion Coat Black Chrome Chrome

Besides our Electroplated Chrome Service, shown above are two custom Harley Davidson Wheels in our Black Chrome Hybrid Finish. Please contact us for more information about this specialty finish.

Completed Customer Examples

Customer example 1 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels

 

Customer example 2 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels
Customer example 3 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels
Customer example 4 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels
Customer example 5 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels
Customer example 6 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels
Customer example 7 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels
Customer example 8 of Chrome Motorcycle Wheels
 

Completed customer Harley Davidson Fatboy Chrome Wheels
More completed customer Harley Davidson Fatboy Chrome Wheels Customer completed Harley Davidson Fatboy Chrome Wheels

2008 Harley-Davidson FLSTF Fat Boy "Bullet Hole" wheels in bright chrome.

Three piece chrome plated motorcycle wheel Assembled three piece chrome plated motorcycle wheel
Completed customers chrome plated motorcycle wheels  example 1 Completed customers chrome plated motorcycle wheels example 2
Completed customers chrome plated motorcycle wheels  example 3 Completed customers chrome plated motorcycle wheels  example 4

Various sport bike wheels in bright chrome.

2006 Honda Gold Wing
182006 Honda Gold Wing
18" Swept 5 Spoke
Buell 17Buell 17" Swept 3 Spoke
 
Chrome Plated Multi-Piece Motorcycle Wheel example 1 Chrome Plated Multi-Piece Motorcycle Wheel example 2

Chrome Plated Multi-Piece Motorcycle Wheel (above)

CalChrome chrome plated Motorcycle Wheels
Multiple customer chrome plated Motorcycle Wheels shown picture 1 Multiple customer chrome plated Motorcycle Wheels shown picture 2
CalChrome plated wheels on a Sport Bike Completed chrome wheels on a sport bike
Shown is Harley Davidson Fatboy chrome wheels before and after

Before and After

Motorcycle Wheels, Parts and Wheels Disclaimer


All parts sent in for custom finish processing must be completely disassembled and checked for proper clearance for added material before shipping. California Chrome Wheel Inc. recommends that disassembly, tire and bearing removal, checking and machine work for proper clearance and assembly, bearing installation and tire mounting, etc. be completed by a professional automotive, motorcycle or machine shop.

Please completely disassemble and remove all gaskets, seals, bearings, races, bolts, brackets, valve stems, tires, etc. from the parts and wheels before freighting. Parts that are sent to us that require disassembly or machine work may be returned to the customer with no work done. Please do not send any parts that are not getting custom finish work done. Do not take the chance of parts getting damaged or lost if no work is being done to the parts.

California Chrome Wheel Inc. is not responsible for the bearing hole clearances, disassembly, checking and machining of clearances for added material for the bearings, brake components, hubs, or other clearances and assembly of the completed part. Your machine shop or installer will need to check and adjust the clearances for the bearings. If the bearings fit tight, you may need to remove material or freeze the bearings to contract and warm the wheel to expand to help with installation. If bearing fit loose, peening, staking or knurling may be needed and or a retaining compound for sleeves and bearings may be needed.

Please note that chrome plating or rechroming a wheel does not guarantee a perfect wheel. Your wheels may appear to be in good condition but may have porosity in the wheel casting which can’t be seen until the finish has been removed or are just below the surface which may be exposed during processing. These casting flaws from porosity in the aluminum alloy base metal if large enough, may not be filled in during the chrome processing and may show through the new chrome as a pit. This porosity or pits are a defect or damage to the base metal of the wheel casting and not due to the chrome plating. Chrome plating and rechrome plating is completed on a best effort basis. We will do the best we can to make the wheels look as good as possible. We process thousands of wheels every year with excellent results.

We recommend wheels with porosity or pitting be bead blasted to help reduce some of the smaller pits and give the wheel a more uniform look. The bead blast cost if needed is $35.00 per wheel. We cannot get the large buffing wheel into every location on the wheel so some of the work will need to be polished with hand tools. Polishing swirl marks may be visible in areas difficult to access and may vary due to wheel size and design. If you would like an approximate price quote on a part, please e-mail pictures of the parts along with the dimensions of length, width and height and the type of material the part is made of such as steel, stainless steel, die cast pot metal, aluminum, etc. so we can properly quote you.

Due to the nature of telephone and e-mail estimates, all prices quoted may vary when the part arrives here at California Chrome Wheel Inc. and the parts are inspected to determine what work needs to be performed. Not all parts are suitable for custom finishing. The customer is responsible for all shipping costs whether no work is done, any portion of work or all work is completed.

Local customers can drop off and pick up to save freight costs. Los Angeles sales tax is 9.5%. No sales tax if shipped outside of California. All prices quoted are in US Dollars.

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