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Old 01-16-2014, 09:19 AM   #1
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18" Wheels?

We have logged 70k miles in one year and it is time for new tires. I would like to swap the factory 16" wheels with 18" wheels and slightly larger tires for both look and performance. Does anyone have any experience with this? Who makes an 18" wheel that will fit the Sprinter dually?
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Old 01-16-2014, 05:13 PM   #2
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I would bet that Alcoa probably has a potential set. I went on their website and there are many offered models.
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Old 01-18-2014, 12:03 PM   #3
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While you are at it you will want to change the gear ratio in the rear end to compensate for the gear ratio change from the new wheels, have the springs and shocks changed and adjusted to compensate for the greater unsprung weight of the new tires and wheels, and have the speedometer recalibrated.
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Old 01-18-2014, 02:32 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by joemikeb View Post
While you are at it you will want to change the gear ratio in the rear end to compensate for the gear ratio change from the new wheels, have the springs and shocks changed and adjusted to compensate for the greater unsprung weight of the new tires and wheels, and have the speedometer recalibrated.
Also, your fenders are ideally sized for the tire you already have. If you go with larger tires, so may run into clearance problems.
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Old 01-18-2014, 02:51 PM   #5
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While you are at it you will want to change the gear ratio in the rear end to compensate for the gear ratio change from the new wheels, have the springs and shocks changed and adjusted to compensate for the greater unsprung weight of the new tires and wheels, and have the speedometer recalibrated.
Tires for the 18" wheels would be a lower profile allowing the overall diameter, width and gear ratio to be the same as the original 16" wheel/tire combination if desired.

The unsprung weight of the 18" combo would also be similar so suspension changes would not be necessary.

In most vehicles, especially trucks, wider tires can be fitted at the option of the owner (keeping the diameter about the same). This is called "plus sizing" and is very common.

Overall the upgrade to 18" would give some newer tire tech options, better stability and steering response, and would update the looks of the van.
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Old 01-18-2014, 03:53 PM   #6
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Lower profile tires will increase ride harshness. And larger wheels will weigh more.

But you are correct, larger wheels with lower profile tires and the correct offset should not cause any interference problems.
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Old 01-19-2014, 10:05 AM   #7
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Finding an 18" tire with the proper diameter (via lower profile) and a sufficient load rating and then finding a set of wheels with the right combination of width and offset to make them fit may be a problem.

Your stock 215/85/16 tires are about 30.4" in overall diameter. The closest I can figure in an 18" tire that is made in a size with a similar diameter is a 255/60/18 (its right at 30" tall). So your gearing, speedometer, etc. would be thrown off by less than 1% and should not be problematic. However, that tire is almost 2" wider in section width (the widest part of the sidewall) and it it is critical that the duals do not touch while absorbing impacts, cornering loads, etc. so the wheels would have to have more dish built into them to keep the tires apart AND the the 255/60/18 requires a wheel 7 to 9" wide (vs your stock 6" wide wheels) so the rear duals would be a custom set up and MUCH wider than stock. You would be literally reinventing the wheel (sorry!) trying to come up with an appropriate setup that would work. Putting custom wheels on sprinter is no problem on a 2500 with singles on the back, but on a dually you've got your work cut out for you. However, it would look cool!

BTW, going from a pair of 215's on the back to a pair of 255s would likely have a significant impact on fuel economy. Might help in a cross wind though.

Stock:
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires....omCompare1=yes
VS 18":
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires....=yes&tab=Specs
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:10 PM   #8
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One could always put fender flares on the back to cover the duals that stick out.
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:44 AM   #9
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I am going to guess you will not find any 18" dualled wheels to fit your Sprinter dually.

Please let us know what happened in your search, so we can pass that on to others.
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:51 AM   #10
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Very important to check load range for new wheels.info should be on the inside of the wheels. When I had my Interstate years ago the only custom wheels I could find all had a smaller load rating. I ended up buying some from MB, the same ones that were standard in later years. As an aside, my new wheels were scratched by the Dodge dealer up non install. A cash resolution followed. Also the new wheels needed dif lug nuts which were provided with the wheels. Jim
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Old 01-24-2014, 02:15 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by btouchstone View Post
We have logged 70k miles in one year and it is time for new tires. I would like to swap the factory 16" wheels with 18" wheels and slightly larger tires for both look and performance. Does anyone have any experience with this? Who makes an 18" wheel that will fit the Sprinter dually?
I just discovered that Forgiato Wheels Inc, in Sun Valley, CA makes 18 inch forged wheels used on the Bespoke Coachworks Custom Vans. There web site only shows the models for Sprinter 2500 vans but they may be able to make you a set for the 3500 Sprinters. Here is contact details.

Contact - Forgiato

Bespoke also indicates they use 18 inch tires that are 10 ply load rating E, which is what you need to Interstate.
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