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Fun 181
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Joined: October 20, 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 9:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yarkle wrote:
Ok, so just to clarify, If i find a wheel stamped 5JKX14 It will fit the thing? even if its from an splitty?


From the information that I have found online, it should...

Fun 181 wrote:

"What is the stock wheel code for a Thing?"... 5JK x 14
(found near the hubcap clips on the outside of the wheel)


Disclaimer: It couldn't hurt to double-check me though. Laughing
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locky
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 12, 2009 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I finally decided on a wheel, that I hope will work. After much reading and some help from a few of the people here on the samba.
I ordered a set of Cragar 342 series. 15x7, 5 on 4 1/2, 4 1/2 backspace. Pretty basic steel wheel. Black with the red and blue pinstriping around the outside.They will fit on my AC Industries disc conversion all around. Think I will go with the General Grabber AT. 205/75/15. Thanks to Captain and Fun for there expertise.
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Yarkle Premium Member
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, i just picked up a 5JKx14 rim, and its not the same.

Same size, same bolt pattern, but the "offset?" is a little different. Im not sure what offset means, I think Im using it properly, but the difference is in the depth/space of the ring that the tire goes on relative to the survace the bolts go into .

However, I then found a rim from a thing (i just needed a spare) and it was stamped 5JKx14 as well...however, there was a code just about opposite the 5jkx14, that said ET 3 25. When I brought that one home, i matched it to the ones on mine, and it is exactly the same...both have the ET 3 25 code, and the 5JKx14.

So maybe rims are thign specific, if you want a matched set, but maybe the others will do.
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Captain Spalding
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never noticed the ET description on my wheels. Thanks for pointing that out, Yarkle. I checked my wheels, and they read ET 32.5. That means that the wheel's mounting surface is 32.5mm outboard of the centerline of the wheel.

Here's a drawing to 'splain it.

Click on this image to open it in a new window where it will be bigger and more legible.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.
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Fun 181
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 10:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spalding, you're a mad man! I love it.
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LRH
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pierre G wrote:
OK, here's some dayshots of the new tires :

before changing the front tires
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Looks very close to the front fender, too close.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Looks better, but the car was not on a straight floor. Like this, it would have fit.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Back from the shop with the new tires : Michelin Agilis 185R15C. This time, no more rubbing issues. Cool

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Overall look is not too bad...

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

One day, I'll go back to this... Razz

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

This angle shows the difference in width between rear and front tires.

I kinda get used to the new look and sort of like it. I'm happy that I finally have my new wheels on the Thing. They were sitting since 1 1/2 year and I couldn't wait anymore...

Hope all this will help other Thing fellows in their future choice for wheels/tires. That's what this sticky is for... Wink


----------------------------------------------------------------------

PierreG;
The Thing looks very nice. As for the wheel/tire combo I think the only problem is that the wheels are -0 to perhaps -12MM offset, when they should have been a more + offset. The wheels look to have a lot of dish for a 6" wheel. These wheels may have been more for a rail/dune buggy where the extra width from a negative offset is desired for it's look and wider track. But all's well that ends well; the slightly smaller front tires solved the problem, and look good. Good luck........
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LRH
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2009 9:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have just ordered 5 new 15 x 5.5 steel wheels for My Thing to get rid of the PO's 1955 Thunderbird authentic wire wheels, and the spacer nightmare that went along with them. I was going to try 215-75/15's all the way around with street tread front, and off road rear. After going to My FIL's tire store and mounting up a few tires yesterday I decided to use 205's front vs the 215's. My question is this; a few have had contact problems with 205's and more with the 215's and up, but it almost always seem to be front only. Since the tires will not be used in a tire rotation maintenance program they will not be moved F to R, so I am considering going up a size (or two) in the rear to better handle ruts/ditches on my properties. Does anyone who has had tire contact issues at rear ( with stock body/suspension, correct, or close to correct wheel offset ) recall any details? I think other than drive train ratios for stock engines, the rear tire size is a non issue, but I would like to hear other options/opinions.

EDIT: the wheels I will be using will be the steel 15 x5.5 with ~3.75 backspace which gives an ET of +25mm. Thanks
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JonnyBSox
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 5:51 am    Post subject: Centerlines... Reply with quote

Ok....i am purchasing centerlines. I am going with 15x4 in the front and 15x6 in the back. Do i need to be careful on the backspace with a tire that narrow in the front? Can i go with a 15x5 with a specific backspace?
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Captain Spalding
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:15 am    Post subject: Re: Centerlines... Reply with quote

JonnyBSox wrote:
Ok....i am purchasing centerlines. I am going with 15x4 in the front and 15x6 in the back. Do i need to be careful on the backspace with a tire that narrow in the front? Can i go with a 15x5 with a specific backspace?
To answer your question I need the size of the tire and the backspace or offset of the wheel.
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JonnyBSox
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:35 am    Post subject: centerlines Reply with quote

i havnt purchased either yet.....i am doing a 2 inch spindle raise in front. wondering if i need a specific backspace centerline or am i good with the normal four inch in front. will be turning the rear torsions and using 15x6 in the back.... thanx capt
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Captain Spalding
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:10 am    Post subject: Re: centerlines Reply with quote

JonnyBSox wrote:
i havnt purchased either yet.....i am doing a 2 inch spindle raise in front. wondering if i need a specific backspace centerline or am i good with the normal four inch in front. will be turning the rear torsions and using 15x6 in the back.... thanx capt

When you say "normal 4 inch in front" are you referring to the backspace or the wheel width? The normal wheel width is 5 inches and the normal backspace is 4 3/8". When you say Centerlines you mean these, right?

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


If so, here's what I'm seeing available:
15x4, 2" backspace.
15x5, 3 3/8"
15x6, 4 3/8

15x4 with the 2" backspace. The offset will move the rim outboard 2 3/8" and the narrower wheel will move the outboard edge of the rim inboard by a half inch. Net change: 1 7/8" more outboard than stock. You're going to need a really skinny tire to make that work. Fuggedaboutit.

15x5 with 3 3/8" backspace. The width of the rim is the same as stock, and the change in backspace will move the wheel outboard 1 inch. Plan on a tire no wider than 195mm.

15x6, 4 3/8" backspace. Unless you're running a really skinny tire on the front, this will give you the most lattitude for tire choice. Depending on the profile of the tire you could go as wide as 215 on this rim.

Hope that helps.
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JonnyBSox
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 5:16 am    Post subject: Just what i needed... Reply with quote

Thanks Capt, looks like 15x5 in front and 15x6 in back. That was exactly the answer i was looking for. Thanks again
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Chad1376
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 4:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LRH wrote:
I have just ordered 5 new 15 x 5.5 steel wheels for My Thing to get rid of the PO's 1955 Thunderbird authentic wire wheels, and the spacer nightmare that went along with them. I was going to try 215-75/15's all the way around with street tread front, and off road rear. After going to My FIL's tire store and mounting up a few tires yesterday I decided to use 205's front vs the 215's. My question is this; a few have had contact problems with 205's and more with the 215's and up, but it almost always seem to be front only. Since the tires will not be used in a tire rotation maintenance program they will not be moved F to R, so I am considering going up a size (or two) in the rear to better handle ruts/ditches on my properties. Does anyone who has had tire contact issues at rear ( with stock body/suspension, correct, or close to correct wheel offset ) recall any details? I think other than drive train ratios for stock engines, the rear tire size is a non issue, but I would like to hear other options/opinions.

EDIT: the wheels I will be using will be the steel 15 x5.5 with ~3.75 backspace which gives an ET of +25mm. Thanks


One thing you might want to look at in the rear is limiting the travel at full jounce, to prevent tire damage if you hit a hard bump. I cycled the rear suspension with the torsion bars removed and fabbed a "hard" bump stop. I don't think anything bigger than 215's is do-able, unless you have some combination of wider fenders, a body lift and perhaps short style torsion bars/spring plates.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


215-75/15's can be made to work in the front, but will absolutely require sheet metal modifications, including the headlight buckets. Again, I cycled the front suspension/steering and trimmed where rubbing was an issue. Certainly not a mod for anyone who wants to keep the bodywork stock.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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Pierre G
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 2:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LRH wrote:


PierreG;
The Thing looks very nice.
These wheels may have been more for a rail/dune buggy where the extra width from a negative offset is desired for it's look and wider track.


Thanks. Yeah, those wheels are not Thing designed, more like dune buggy, baja bug or modified Thing with wider fenders...
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1976 181/Thing (daily driver), 1967 fastback, 1973 squareback, 1964 microbus, 1967 Double Cab, 1969 westfalia (currently under resto), 1972 westfalia, 1978 westfalia, 1972 LM1C dune buggy, 1974 jean's bug, 1974 1303 (super beetle, currently under reassembly after new paint) + 2 semi wrecks 181 (1971 and 1972)...
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 2:45 am    Post subject: Re: Just what i needed... Reply with quote

JonnyBSox wrote:
Thanks Capt, looks like 15x5 in front and 15x6 in back. That was exactly the answer i was looking for. Thanks again


That's my next wheels choice... Cool In fact, it was my first choice, but too expensive at the time... Crying or Very sad Maybe in a couple o' years... Centerlines on a Thing is a great classic.
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1976 181/Thing (daily driver), 1967 fastback, 1973 squareback, 1964 microbus, 1967 Double Cab, 1969 westfalia (currently under resto), 1972 westfalia, 1978 westfalia, 1972 LM1C dune buggy, 1974 jean's bug, 1974 1303 (super beetle, currently under reassembly after new paint) + 2 semi wrecks 181 (1971 and 1972)...
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JonnyBSox
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 9:00 am    Post subject: 15x7"s Reply with quote

Any thought on 15x7 all around?
How bout 15x6 in front and 15x7 in rear? any trouble with either of those combos? I will be 2" higher then stock with brand new shocks....prob gas adjust based on what i have been reading on this forum. Thanks again Kman, Chad, Silver, Spalding....and all the others.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:15 am    Post subject: Re: 15x7"s Reply with quote

JonnyBSox wrote:
Any thought on 15x7 all around?
How bout 15x6 in front and 15x7 in rear? any trouble with either of those combos? I will be 2" higher then stock with brand new shocks....prob gas adjust based on what i have been reading on this forum. Thanks again Kman, Chad, Silver, Spalding....and all the others.

We're still talking about centerlines, right? The 15x7s that I'm finding have a 4 3/8 backspace. That's the same as the stock wheel. The result is that the extra two inches in width will all be outboard. No good. With 215s you're pushing your luck with the 15x5 and 15x6 as it is.

You're suspension lift does nothing to mitigate the issue. If the tires protrude out from under the lip of the fender, the tires will one day hit the fender. With the suspension lift, it just means the suspension has to compress further before the tire and fender meet. You can modify bump stops to prevent the tire from hitting the fender, but what a shame to lose that extra articulation. Better, I think, to pick a tire/wheel combo that keeps the tire inside the fender.

May I ask, why the press for the wider wheel? Would the look or function of a 15x7 centerline be appreciably different than the 15x6?
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 6:26 pm    Post subject: 15x6??? Reply with quote

So am i reading this right? 15x6 is the best rim for all four wheels? or should i have 15x5 in the front?
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:41 pm    Post subject: Re: 15x6??? Reply with quote

JonnyBSox wrote:
So am i reading this right? 15x6 is the best rim for all four wheels? or should i have 15x5 in the front?


Yes. 15x6. Look for a P.M.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 18, 2009 8:34 pm    Post subject: Re: 15x6??? Reply with quote

JonnyBSox wrote:
So am i reading this right? 15x6 is the best rim for all four wheels? or should i have 15x5 in the front?


I would say it depends on the tire...but like Captain' said : yes. I have 15X6 front and with smaller tires it finally fit. I remember you said you're raising the car a bit...? So it should fit easy.
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