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Wheel Spacers

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Dauphinee, Apr 28, 2013.

  1. Dauphinee
    Joined: May 15, 2011
    Posts: 79

    from New York

    Wheel spacers.

    Are they a good idea or bad idea?

    Pros and cons.

    I just picked up some rims and would have to space them out or sell them again and try again..
  2. bb55hrt
    Joined: Sep 9, 2007
    Posts: 91

    from Michigan

    How thick? I've run them on my all jeeps before and currently running them my daily driver wrangler. They've all were 1.25" thick and made from billet aluminum. I wouldn't recommend the cheap cast aluminum ones from the autoparts store
  3. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 18,527


    I have steel ones on my daily driver, at 3/8".

    Had ones about 3", on all 4-corners, made of billet aluminum on my Porsche, saw over 200, and alarming corner speeds on road courses.

    Never a single issue. Buy good quality ones, check torque often, and you will be fine.
  4. KIRK
    Joined: Nov 17, 2005
    Posts: 384


    I have been running a pair of 1.25" spacers on the back of of my 31 for 5 years with no trouble. I don't do any burn outs or racing but do get on it now and again. I think they are OK as long as you don't expect too much,

  5. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 18,527


    Is 227mph too much?
  6. waldo53
    Joined: Jan 26, 2010
    Posts: 863

    from ID

    I've got a pair on the front of my p.u. They are made out of 6061-T6 aluminum, grade 8 studs. 3 years, no problems at all.

    You're going to pay in the neighborhood of $100 for a good pair. You can get them from Amazon.
  7. I have used them without any problems. HRP
  8. black 62
    Joined: Jul 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,895

    black 62
    from arkansas

    if i get a set 3 1/2 inches thick will my car run 250 ?
  9. Speed~On
    Joined: Apr 28, 2011
    Posts: 1,393


    I used them on the rear of a car. One side was 1/4" thick, the other side was 1/2" thick. They were billet aluminum, no problems.

    A lot of race cars (stock cars) use them as well as off roaders. You know those guys have 2 speeds. Stopped and foot to the floor. They don't seem to have problems with them.
  10. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 18,527


    If you send it to me, when you get it back it will.
  11. Dauphinee
    Joined: May 15, 2011
    Posts: 79

    from New York

    With a stock flathead 6 in a 49 f1 if you take my 50 x 5 I can get the 250,,
  12. Ned Ludd
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 4,267

    Ned Ludd

    I'd say it depends on what they do to the wheel configuration, especially at the front. If the spacers bring the scrub radius back to something reasonable I'd say you'd be fine.

    There is a fashion among local tow-truck operators to run huge wheel spacers that cause the wheels to sit almost entirely outside the bodywork. Nobody knows why this should be: perhaps they like the look of a horny tom-cat it imparts from behind. I can't help thinking, however, that it must play havoc with the steering, not to mention the life expectancy of front wheel-bearings.
  13. Weasel
    Joined: Dec 30, 2007
    Posts: 6,693


    ^^^what he says on wide spacers and wheel bearings and beware some of the 'Hecho in China' wheelspacer adapters have metric threads 12mm x 1.5mm pitch which are really close to a 1/2"-20 but if you use 1/2"-20 nuts they do not torque down fully and rock on the thread slightly - they just feel a little loose. So you have to use the nuts that came with them on to bolt the wheel on - do not use your fancy schmancy chromed Imperial thread nuts on these. For example, shank type lug nuts that you should use on certain aluminum wheels - Halibrands for example - cannot be used on these adapters unless you want to risk your wheel overtaking you at speed....
  14. flopalotofit
    Joined: Apr 1, 2010
    Posts: 130


    Most big Tire shops wont touch anything with liabilitys. must be a reason why somewhere...
  15. badshifter
    Joined: Apr 28, 2006
    Posts: 3,345


    You can't get "hella flush" without spacers.
    Reason enough to run them.
  16. EliteS&C
    Joined: Feb 3, 2013
    Posts: 112


    The old style cast spacers were junk. Now they have billet aluminum spacers that are great & as strong as any billet wheel. I've run them on several builds (all under 2") & never had a problem. As mentioned above, buy good quality, no foreign stuff, check torque on spacers & wheels now & then. You'll be fine.
  17. I have to throw in a negative comment about them. Or at least a caveat. I would advise against using them with wire wheels. My daughter had a set on her Corvette with wire wheels and I was told by someone, I don't remember who, that they would cause them to shear off the lug bolts. I scoffed at the idea because I didn't see how that could happen if put on properly. So I made sure they fit right and were tight. A couple of years later she was on an on ramp about to accelerate when she said the car started wobbling and bumping. Lucky she was only going about 25 because the car just fell down. The right rear lug bolts all sheared off and the car sat down on the wheel. I don't know why it happened, maybe she didn't have them tight enough, but I was advised not to use them with wires and after that, she sold the wires and the spacers. So, for what its worth.....
  18. Can you clear up your caveats .
    Were these spacers that require longer studs that just slip over and make a wheel sandwich?
    Were these the kind that have their own studs and recessed holes that bolt to short studs in the hub and then the wheels bolt to them?

    Steel, billet ,or cast ?
  19. Joe's 32 Ford Sedan
    Joined: May 15, 2010
    Posts: 38

    Joe's 32 Ford Sedan

    I use them all the time with no problem. Make sure they 6061 billet with studs in them and bolt to the original axle studs. I've used 1" to 2" all the time,just check the torque on them from time to time. If you change wheels and can't the right back spacing the spacer will save you.
  20. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 7,180


    I've got 3 1/2" ones on the rear of my '76 Dually GMC. Commercial chassis with the narrow rear end, much less hassle than swapping a rear end, and cheaper. Chains in the winter, plowing, hauling 2 tons of pellets for the pellet stoves, towing trailers, all good for 2 years now.
  21. krylon32
    Joined: Jan 29, 2006
    Posts: 7,427

    Alliance Vendor
    from Nebraska

    I've used several different wheel spacers over the years with no problems. I get them from a company called Gonzales Enterprises? in LA. They will make you just about anything you want. All from machined billet aluminum. Very high quality.
  22. Mike VV
    Joined: Sep 28, 2010
    Posts: 2,413

    Mike VV
    from SoCal

    Oh I've read everything...
    Cast, forged, billet, paper...!?!?!?

    The spacer "material" has little if any to do with the systems strength...!

    A coupla things happen with normal spacers -
    1. The wheel looses it's "centering" device. That is, it's now free to roam on whatever centerline it wants. It's not held in place by the hub/axle any longer.

    2. The spacer material, as long as it's solid has very little effect. Obviously, the more soild the better, but if done correctly, cast spacers can work just fine. Just don't use glass..!

    3. The lug studs now hold ALL of the cars weight AND control all of the cornering forces. With a properly fitted wheel, the front hub/rear axle controls "most" of these loads.

    As one poster said about his Corvette wheels and one falling off....the biggest problem is with stud flex. This means, at some point...they WILL break...!
    It's just nature...or a better word Physics. With unsupported (spacers), long, unsupported studs, the weight of the car, the cornering forces put on the tires-wheels-lug studs, the flexable part of this the studs.

    Take a piece of sheet metal...bend it back and forth...keep going...what will eventually will break...!
    Think about it...the sheet is unsupported.....JUST like the wheel studs..! The better the material, the longer they will last...but with enough cycles and load...they WILL break.

    Properly done, they can be fine, but these monster spacers...(to me), anything over about .500" is asking for problems.

    Your car, your life...!


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