This is a copy of an article published in the 2016 Jan/Feb issue of Lawn & Garden Tractor magazine. I’ve repeated the article here but would recommend you subscribe to the magazine.
I saw an episode of American Restorations where they gave a “helpful hint” for refurbishing rusted chrome. They suggested that you just rub the part with aluminum foil until the rust was gone. I tired that and it worked pretty well. I’ve posted pictures of my progress here. It represents between 30 and 45 minutes of work. (There were some breaks since it requires some hard rubbing to get that rust off.) The last picture is a little deceptive. If you look closely at the finished (waxed) hub cap, there are several dull spots left by the rust. In the last picture the hub cap has been waxed and in the next to the last picture, it’s just as I finished it with the aluminum foil. The next to last picture is probably a better representation of what the hub cap looks like. ( I also discovered you can’t get a picture of a chrome hub cap without your reflection in the picture!!)