Service Review: Curbed wheel repair


The wheels I purchased for the 2011 season were in the need of a little bit of TLC. There were blemishes on the painted faces, corrosion on the bolt heads, and rash on the lips.

Shortly after I started work on one wheel I found out that Work uses clear anodizing on their lips which meant I had to spend more time sanding at lower grits than I had hoped which made outsourcing the job an attractive alternative.

After some research I decided to go with local company Curbed because I had seen their work before in person on the company Scion and their name kept coming up when I asked locals who to consider.

After promising phone conversation with Mike Fu, the customer service representative at Curbed, we both agreed that a full refinish of my wheels would be best based on the photos I had emailed. Within two days of that conversation Mike was at my door picking up my wheels.

The wheels as I received them in typical weather worn condition
This was one of the worst wheels of the bunch before, note the blems on the face and the various scratches in the clear

Since Curbed uses automotive paint for all of their refinishing (instead of powder coating) it gave me the option of choosing Scion’s ‘Sizzling Crimson Mica’ paint code for my faces. While the faces were painted Mike also had the barrels painted flat black so that they all now matched.

During this time the bolts were also stripped of their original, now tarnished, coating and high polished along with the lips.

The wheels out in the sun after refinishing

When the wheels were nearing completion Mike came by to pick up my tires for mounting, soon after that my completed rims were delivered. The entire turn around time for the job from initial consultation to final delivery was just under four weeks and contacting Mike at any time to learn the status was a breeze.

The difference between my wheels before and after is night and day and overall I am very happy with the service I received from Curbed. Only one small portion of one of the more damaged lips retains any original damage.

Close up of the lips and bolt heads after polishing. That is dust you see on the lip

If you are looking to have any sort of work done to your wheels I would recommend contacting Curbed first to get a free consultation and estimate, you will find that his pricing is reasonable given the amount of labor that goes into refinishing wheels.

The pictures below further illustrate the transformation my wheels underwent.

Work Equip – Before Curbed

As you can see the clear anodizing was breaking down and the bolts were tarnished
Three out of four of my wheels looked like this with very dirty silver barrels
This was my one lone black barrel wheel
Between the black arrows is where I started experimenting with polishing techniques, and the red arrow is where I was tested the anodizing

Work Equip – After Curbed

The finished product inside my garage with some sunlight
This shot of a 9" wheel shows how much the Scion color varies depending on light
This shot shows just how reflective the high finish polish is
Outside in the sun, bright as ever. The wheels are also fairly dusty here
The inner barrel after refinishing
Close up, since I chose to keep the original hardware I have to live with some pitting
This part of the lip had the most damage with a significant curb impact and could not be fixed without distortion
My sole issue with entire job was that the labels were painted over instead of removed

While my wheels were getting refinished Aidan’s new Leon Harditt Bugels were also having some work done to them. The sides of his spokes showed some corrosion and embedded brake dust so the polished fronts where masked off and the sides were sanded down and refinished gloss black.

Leon Harditt Bugels – Before Curbed

In between Aidan's spokes had mild corrosion
One of the areas with brake dust deeply embedded
Masked for repaint

Leon Harditt Bugels – After Curbed

Faces removed and painted
These wheels have since been mounted

Contact Information:

Phone: 416-234-5110

Email: [email protected]


If you have any more questions about my experience with Curbed feel free to ask in the comments.


  1. i kinda like how thayve still got some patina gives em some soul (if wheels can have soul)

  2. Just got my car back from the body shop yesterday, camber arms go on Saturday and the calipers get a new set of paint. After that I just need my wheel locks to arrive (on route)

  3. Wow, it’s a night and day difference. Considering the cost, if it is effective, which it has proven to be. You can give new life to some pretty diminished looking wheels. :] Can’t wait to see them on your car Dave.

  4. […] Service Review: Curbed wheel repair Stance Is Everything – It's …After promising phone conversation with Mike Fu, the customer service representative at Curbed, we both agreed that a full refinish of my wheels would be best based on the photos I had emailed. Within two days of that conversation Mike … […]

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