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· Royal Floor Sweeper
4,338 Posts
If you are doing it yourself, get a good, hard paint. A wheel paint or farm vehicle paint will stand up OK. General spray paint is probably not the best, as the wheels take a serious beating.

Have a professional paint shop paint them, as they know the right prep, have the right tool and materials, plus have the best paint and know how to best apply it.

Get them sandblasted, then powdercoated. That will be the most durable finish.

Now those are in the order of cheapest to most expensive.
For my Miata, I did all three. I spray painted some wheels yellow with decent spray paint. It held up "ok," but didn't adhere as well as I originally hopes. I had a set painted next, for cheap. That held up better. I had some nice powdercoated yellow wheel, but they were 14" and I couldn't get the tires I wanted in the right size. I currently run some factory-powdercoated black Chapperal (mini-lite style) wheels with a polished lip on the Miata. That was over a 10 year period.

I am going to paint my steelies soon. The factory paint is aging rather fast in direct sunlight. I am presently planning to spraypaint them with either wheel paint or farm-equipment paint, and may "two-tone" them. I'm going to use the crappy rim (a mis-match) -that I got from ebay and had to later replace- as a paint test.
Now, to decide the color scheme . . .
(I am thinking of basing it on the two-tone scheme used on very old VW Beetles and Buses/Transporters/Kombis.)
If I was painting nice alloys, I would have them powdercoated.
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