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Old 09-02-2007, 11:37 AM   #1
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Wheel Sizes and Specs

At this point I'm sure I'll go with the 35" BFG AT KO's. They should be more than adequate for our adventures the next couple years, till the kids are a little bigger.

I'm still trying to figure out what wheels to get. As far as looks something basic black, sharp but not fancy, is all I want. Tough as nails would be good. When I was young and had a 4x4 you wanted steel rims because steel had more flex. The thinking was aluminum would crack where steel wouldn't. I realize the lighter weight of aluminum has a lot of benefits for handling and ride quality, etc. Is there any strong reasons for going one way or the other? Has any of the thinking changed?

One thing I don't get is the difference between "offset" and "back spacing" in the wheel specs. They seem to mean mostly the same thing to me. I know I should be getting 0 offset wheels, according to Jonathan at SMB Fresno. But how would each spec affect the handling/function/performace of the wheels/van?
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Old 09-02-2007, 01:52 PM   #2
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When you're talking about possibly having to remove 8 lugs in the back-wild, I'd definitly go with steelies- I've seen enough aluminum rims seized with lug bolts to never want to go there. There was one on a Grand Cherokee that I tore down which I wound up leaving on the axle I pulled- the guy later took a hole saw just to get the tire off the axle so the tire and axle could be salvaged.

Less backspacing means your rims stick out more, the main result being at full lock (turned all the way) you won't hit control arms/springs and when your tire goes up into the wheel well it is more likely to hit the fender. Turning radius, stability, and looks are all affected, but none of that matters if you're tearing up your tires with too much or too little.

One possible reason to go with more backspacing is if you get wider tires enough to start rubbing on the springs or not being able to lock fully.

Offset is based on the rim width, whereas backspacing is not. Zero offset means the mounting surface is in the center of the rim, which is different for a 7" wide rim than a 10" wide rim in terms of backspaceing (3.5" and 5") the result is the same as far as centering goes.

Clear as mud eh?
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Old 09-02-2007, 04:31 PM   #3
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It took a couple reads to work its way into my small brain, but that does make perfect sense once you say it. Thanks.

I've never had trouble with seizing on our other vehicles with aluminum wheels. But then I've never had aluminum wheels on a 4x4 either. Must be something to the greater forces and just banging around that causes the problem on 4x4s? I wonder if there's a way to fight the the problem, anti-seizure compound (or just some grease?), something. I was just looking at some aluminum wheels at Walker Evans Racing that were mentioned on the yahoo list. They sure are purty, don't seem like a bad option. They even come in a basic black.
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Old 09-03-2007, 10:11 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jage
More backspacing means your rims stick out more, the main result being at full lock (turned all the way) you won't hit control arms/springs and when your tire goes up into the wheel well it is more likely to hit the fender.
I can't agree with this part of your explanation. Everything else is good.

More backspacing means more of the wheel is 'back' of the mounting surface. I.E. more backspacing means the wheel sticks out less. An 8 inch wide rim with 5 inches of backspacing will tuck into the wheel well 2 inches more than an 8 inch rim with 3 inches of backspacing.

Most aftermarket rims have less backspacing and frequently have issues with hitting body parts at full lock. And, if you add more backspacing you may wind up hitting suspension parts.

Mike
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Old 09-03-2007, 03:50 PM   #5
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Yup... went back and changed "more" to "less" so future readers won't be misled. Thanks!
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