1967-1968 Plexi Hubcap Center Restoration / How do you repaint red?

Anybody have some tips on what the best process is to repaint these wire wheel cover centers? I have scratched off most of the old red paint with a screw driver. If anyone has these or the plain black ones I need several sets.


I can tell you what I did to a set of caps, you will need a can of Testors 1605 transparent candy apple red spray paint and a box of Smores pop tarts.
You can eat the smores, but save the chrome package they are in. The caps must be void of all old red paint like the center one in picture above, leave the Mercury head alone, once you have clean caps, spray several coats of Testors paint until uniform color, now open up the smores pack and use the inside that is all chrome and cut a piece to cover the paint, with these caps you will have to back the chrome up with a piece of cork or some type of water resistant material wedged in to hold the chrome against the paint.

The caps I did had a metal ring with teeth that held the cap to the wheel and under the metal ring was a cork backer. I removed the ring ,the cork, old paint, re-sprayed, installed chrome, cork and fastened the ring… They look like NOS when finished .
Sounds like a lot of work, but the only hard part is getting the old paint off and some way to hold the chrome to the painted surface.

Don - Are you looking for centers that still have good red, or will any condition do?

Thanks for replying! Yes, any crack free centers will do as I have about 20 caps that came with a ford crest / blue back ground and want to convert them to Mercury. The pop tarts is something I would not have come up with, good one! My chrome portions pass so I think I will forgo the pop tart package glue in idea this time but with your permission I would like to paste your resto tips onto our website in the hubcap section. How did you remove the red paint? The majority came off easily with a little screw driver but I am reticent to apply much pressure to remove the rest as I do not want to scratch the plastic. I do not want to use chemicals as it could distort the chrome on the merc man head. Electric pencil eraser?

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Only Smores Pop Tarts will work?

Don, you have my permission, I used a Dremel and a cotton buff using chrome cleaner to remove red paint. The reason I used the pop tart wrapper is because that is the most flexible and most chrome like that I could find, you must back up the transparent red with chrome foil to get that original look, chrome paint won’t do it. Almost forgot, you let the paint dry before using chrome foil.

So on the caps where the chrome is bad just use silver paint and know it will never look as good?

That is correct!

I thought I had a whole bunch of these, but only find two … one of which appears to be my failed attempt at restoring the red.

Not sure they’re worth the cost of postage, but they’re yours if you want them, Don.

Sweet! I would be happy to give $25 in in-store credit! Anyone else have some? I really need the black version more than the red version. From what I can tell all 67’s had black and 68-9 could go either way. From what I can tell the full merc line used the red center and the black center was only Cougar. It also seems that if you were to get them over the counter from Mercury you would have usually got red centers. This is just what I perceive to be what happened, if anyone has better information please share.


Wow! I wonder what other trash I have that I can cash in…

Seriously, though, I’d be happy with a WCCC hat (old one is getting a little worn out).

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