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How to Remove Wheels on 1:18 Scale Models

Be careful when removing the wheels of a die-cast model car.
automobile model image by Aleksandr Ugorenkov from Fotolia.com

If you collect 1:18 scale model cars, you may occasionally need to clean or repair them. This may require you to remove the wheels from your model. Removing the wheels from a model is simple to do, but it does require some patience. It is very easy to snap the axle, so being careful when removing the wheels is a must.

Screwed-in Wheels

Remove the center hubcap of the wheel by gently pulling it off. Sometimes the hubcap is glued on and might need to be more forcefully removed, while other models do not have hubcaps and the screw will be visible.

Unscrew the one screw that is holding the wheel in place with a Phillips screwdriver.

Turn the car upside down. Remove the one or two screws behind the wheel that are in between the spindle.

Snapped-in Wheels

Turn the car upside down.

Inspect the wheel to see if the wheel is snapped into the axle itself or held in by the rotor or another part.

Carefully pry the wheel off using a flat-head screwdriver. Do not bend the wheel or it will snap the axle. Try to use a point on the model as leverage to keep the wheel as straight as possible while prying it off.

Pry off any other parts that might be holding the wheel in place. For example, the wheel might not be snapped into the axle alone, and may need to be removed from other parts holding the wheel in place, such as a solid or split-end nub.

Place the wheels and other parts in a small container. This will ensure that you won't lose any of the parts while cleaning or repairing the model.

Things You'll Need:

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Small container


  • Wear protective glasses when removing wheels from model cars. Some parts may snap off and can cause eye injury.
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