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Old 12-02-2014, 02:16 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
1957 16' Bubble
Decatur , Georgia
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 15
Tire size for '57 Bubble

Have been reading up on all the various tire options out there. I think it's safe to say that a 225/75R15 D-rated tire is a common choice these days. What I don't know though is whether or not a tire that size will fit into the wheel well of a 16' Bubble. I know that smaller Bambis have limited wheel well capacity, but I don't know how true that is for Bubbles.

I read that some of the 16'-18' trailers originally used 6.70 x 15 sized tires, which more closely equates to a modern day 205/75R15, which is noticeably smaller than a 225/75R15. That makes me think that a 225/75 might have a problem fitting into the wheel well of the Bubble comfortably. Unfortunately, the 205/75R15 tires that I'm finding in stores locally are C-rated rather than D-rated...and I'm reading that C-rated tires should not be used for an Airstream. I could step up to a 215 which are more readily available in a d-rating, but if a 225 is a tight fit, not sure a 215 will be much better.

Does anyone know what the beefiest tire size is that will easily fit on a Bubble?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 12-05-2014, 11:02 AM   #2
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1966 26' Overlander
Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 5,788
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Since your question has gone unanswered and I assume the world of surviving Bubbles is rather limited, I will make a suggestion.

Take the trailer to a tire shop that handles the tire you would like to install. This assumes you are ready to install tires.


Regarding the load range, don't read too much into C or D load tire discussions if they are referring to trailers two and three times the size and weight of your trailer. That isn't a realistic comparision. You will want to match the tire's load capacity to the job to be done. So what is essential before you wip out that plastic is knowing the maximum total load of your trailer. My suggestion would be to size that total load number of your trailer to be 85% of the max tire load capacity. Then let that letter grade (C, D OR E) be what it will be.

So if the max load your trailer will ever get to is say 2000 pounds you are seeking a tire capacity of about 2400 pounds. Knowing the weight of the trailer over a scale will serve you. Add for gear, liquids and anything else you can think of if you run the trailer over the scale dry. I think you will find that a D rate tire will be far in excess of what is needed. Having too much tire can be as bad as having not enough. You want to be in that Goldilocks window of being just right for best performance.


1966 Mercury Park Lane 4 DR Breezeway 410 4V, C-6, 2.80 - Streamless.
1966 Lincoln 4 door Convertible 462 4V 1971 Ford LTD Convertible 429 4V Phoenix ~ Yeah it's hot however it's a dry heat!
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Old 12-08-2014, 11:33 AM   #3
1 Rivet Member
1957 16' Bubble
Decatur , Georgia
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 15
Thanks, Action. Ended up doing with Carlisle Radial Trail RH Trailer tires, 205/75R15...and I'm really glad I went with the thinner ones. The space between the hub and the outside of the wheel well on this Bubble was very tight. So tight that I actually had to take the grease cap back off of the hub to get the tire up into the wheel well, and even then it was a super tight squeeze! Glad I didn't take the 225 tires up there with me, not sure I would have gotten them in there!

I ended up going with the D rated tire, mostly because with the smaller tire size (205 vs 225), the load capacity is already diminished. So on a 205, bumping up to the d rating theoretically regains some of the lost capacity due to smaller tire size. May be over kill in the end, as the Bubble is so light, but the cost difference was nil and it's a bit more peace of mind.

Thanks again!
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