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Technical Widening wire wheels

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by sdroadster, Feb 7, 2020.

  1. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 329


    tub 001.JPG I recently brought home the remains of a 29 Phaeton. I'm in mock up now, and have installed a 40 rear end that measures 59 1/2 inches flange to flange. The Model A rear end measured 57 inches. I had envisioned using 35 Ford wire wheels, but they are 4 inches wide. They look fine for the front, but appear skinny and too far away from the body in the rear. I would like to add and inch or so to the inside of the rears to better accept 700-16 Firestones, and close up the gap. Does anyone know of a person that bands wheels to increase their width? Here's a picture from the rear of the car. Thanks View attachment 4569909
  2. krylon32
    Joined: Jan 29, 2006
    Posts: 6,660

    Alliance Vendor
    from Nebraska

    I used Danny at Bruce's Rod Shop in Texas to widen my 32 wires on the inside 2 inches. I had them do the complete job which included finishing the welds. Not cheap but nice.
  3. Pico Wheel Service ( comes to mind. I believe I have good things about them but will leave it to you to research them as it has been many many years. At least they are in the same time zone as you.

    Charlie Stephens
  4. clem
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 3,000


    Any qualified welder, mechanical engineer type with a few clues.....
    That’s what I did, and I also widened them inwards, so that the hubcaps protrude the same amount front and rear.
    Widening them outward looks hideous to me, and the hubcaps disappear, but that is how most people do it so it must be ok..........

  5. HuffDaddy
    Joined: Apr 27, 2008
    Posts: 441


    I had a set of '35 wires widened at Weld Craft Wheels in Livonia Michigan.
  6. ratreo
    Joined: Jan 24, 2010
    Posts: 26

    from Preston,Wa

    “Does anyone know of a person that bands wheels to increase their width?”

    I’d suggest that you try calling
    “Rallyamerica”. (559) 322-2128

    They created a pair of 7 1/2” wide “Bubb“ 1935 Ford 32 spoke wire wheels for me. Be forewarned, it was expensive.

    Part of the fun was it took 6 rims to make the two that I ended up with. They load a rim into a engine lathe. Then using a part-off blade/cutoff tool they carefully cut off the outer rim width leaving the center section that contains the spokes along with the inner rim section. They cut a “weld prep” chamfer onto the remaining spoke section. They pull the wheel from the chuck, turn it around (clamping onto the center spoke
    section) and cut off the remaining inner rim width. Once again they cut the weld prep. This leaves the center (spoke) section intact.

    Now they take another complete rim and cut off the outer wheel lip/rim edge leaving as much material as possible. They weld prep the outer rim “blank”and throw away the rest of this wheel.

    Again they chuck up another wheel and cut off the inner wheel lip/rim leaving as much material as possible. Once again they toss the remaining pieces

    Now they fixture the three sections together checking that everything “dials in” in each axis and tack weld it together. Once again they check roundness and runout, if it looks good they finish weld it together. If there’s an issue they will address it till everything is ok.

    Once welded they check that the wheel runs true and will potentially clean up the exposed weld joints. They may leave the welds alone on the inner (tube) side choosing not to weaken the weld by cutting it down.
    All of this work is for (one) complete wheel. Now you go back and start all over again...

    I started with (6) excellent rims so that I knew that the final parts would be the best product that I could get. I hated throwing away good pieces but that’s what it took to get the rim width that I wanted.

    Would I do it again? Nope, what a pain in the ass (and a lot of money)
  7. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 839


    Check with True Spoke wheels for new made.They look a lot like Ford wheels,and you can have them made to your specs.As always not cheap at about 350 bucks per wheel,but hey that car isnt going to be cheap to build.
  8. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 4,193

    sloppy jalopies

    Got these, made by "vintage , vintique ?" bent spoke wires this fall...
    they use the same spoked rims and weld in the bolt pattern you ordered...
    15" x 4.9" and 15" x 8" not what you want but they are making them...
    . green wheels 4.JPG green wheels 5.JPG
  9. Eric Vaughn in the San Gabriel valley. Sorry, I don't have a number. So-Cal speed shop may have a number.
  10. ekimneirbo
    Joined: Apr 29, 2017
    Posts: 1,469

    from Brooks Ky

    I have to wonder if a little creative measuring/machining in the areas pointed out by the arrows wouldn't allow for the complete installation into a larger (16/17/18") rim that was also wider. Getting a big/little look with wires and saving some money in the process. Might even leave the welds exposed for a homemade look rather than trying to conceal them. Don't know if it would work since I don't have any wire wheels to measure.

    green wheels 4.JPG
  11. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 329


    I met a restorer who said he had a Phaeton that wasn't worth fixing. It was cheap, and it had paperwork. I'm afraid I will never out grow hot rods... tub 002.JPG
    doliak, RMR&C, 34 GAZ and 2 others like this.
  12. hotcoupe
    Joined: Oct 3, 2007
    Posts: 486


    Maybe use a late '32 rear end (57") and a pair of 4 1/2" KH wheels.
  13. oj
    Joined: Jul 27, 2008
    Posts: 6,247


    Don't even think about Stockton Wheel in California.
  14. 3banjos
    Joined: May 24, 2008
    Posts: 471

    from NZ

    What spring have you got resting in there, out of interest.
  15. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 329


    The rear spring came from 100% Matt a vendor here on HAMB.
  16. Those are nice looking body pieces for a car that isn't worth fixing. Sure won't find anything like that around here!
  17. doliak
    Joined: Nov 14, 2007
    Posts: 166


    Ya that sure looks like a tough fix I can come on out and take that scrap off your hands if you need the space haha

    Sent from my SM-G935V using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  18. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 329


    I'm 73 years old, and have never outgrown Hot Rodding. I saw this add on Craigslist and decided to call. The seller was a very nice man, who was technically over his head. He asked me several times if I was sure about this purchase. He said "you know this is almost not worth saving, it's so much work, and they make reproduction bodies"
    A car like this Phaeton is a blank canvas. Anything you do to it is an improvement.. Here' a picture of the other end of the car. I disguised a Mercruiser motor, and installed an early drive line, with other vintage stuff . tub 003.JPG
    hfh, doliak and RMR&C like this.
  19. doliak
    Joined: Nov 14, 2007
    Posts: 166


    That's a bitchin tub you've got going I dig it alot!

    Sent from my SM-G935V using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  20. fiftyv8
    Joined: Mar 11, 2007
    Posts: 5,120

    from CO & WA

    A guy called Jason, I think was his name from Bear Metal Kustoms in Morro Bay CA used to do wheels and had a hot rod shop as well.
    He seemed to produce good quality work and was likeable enough.
    Maybe worth checking him out

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