OK after 12+ hours on the Internet I found a replacement rim for my original split rims. My original split rim did just as its name implies, it split. Took out the shell skin, frame, wheel well, shell rib, and a section of the floor. This is the original motivation (with wife encouragement) to do a shell off restoration.
The original tire size was 15X5.5 with a bolt pattern of 6 on 5.5. with a 6 mm offset. This explained is the tire rim height from where the tire bead sits from top to the bottom is 15 inches, this can not be measured with the tire on! The 5.5 is the with of the rim inside to outside. This is important to get this measured; Tire Factory did not measure this for me and I got a 7 inch rim. (The guys at the tire shop did with out any fuss give me my money back, plus they tried for 2 weeks calling me every day to fine a suitable replacement). I had these tires on when I placed on the shell, when I tried to take off one of the tires it would not clear the axle. I had to shear a few more rivets from the skin to get the tire off, no way was I going to take that shell of again! (what is 5 rivets when I have 300 still to complete
). The 6 on 5.5 is the bolt pattern the 6 is the number of the bolts and the 5.5 it the diameter of a circle drawn through the center of the bolts. The 6 mm offset is the distance +/- from a point considered 0 on the rim. My understanding of this is limited; what I do understand is that depending on the application and the other dimensions of the rim this should be a standard value for the rim. If you have a modification of specialty application you can have a change in the offset to fit your application.
The replacement rims I found where available at Hobby Car at this link Wire wheels, Roadster, Thunderbird
. Probably the nicest, most helpful people I found, and with the greatest selection, during my search. I went with a smoothie like the one above with the baby moon caps. NO ONE makes the 5.5 inch width rim any more. The closest replacement I could find was a 5 inch width rim with all of the same other dimensions. The original 5.5's where a pain to get off the trailer so there 5 inch rims should be WAY easier. The load rating is at and above 1500
LBS each what I need for my 3000 LB axle. All of you split rim owners I encourage you to replace wheels before the enviable failure occurs. If you have had a difficult time trying to replace your oddball size rime/wheel try going the rout of finding a replacement at a retailer of wheels for mussel cars.
Here are a few links of sites I found:
American Racing: Official Manufacturer Website- custom, chrome, polished and painted wheels
Wheel Vintiques | Welcome
Early Wheel Company
(Semi retired, only omen Monday & Tuesday)
Rims, Tires, Tire and Wheel Packages - Chrome Wheels and Tires from Performance Plus Tire
(Not! the friendliest guys on the phone)
I hope this helps, I have completed the order and I will be receiving the rims here in 2 weeks.
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