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Old 02-28-2016, 06:03 PM   #1
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Wheel Sizing/Center Bore Tolerance

I'm now shopping for wheels to upgrade to 16 inch tires. While those Sendels sure look real sharp, I'm considering trying to maintain my Classics traditional look with steel spoke wheels. While I have not made up my mind yet, the only wheels that I can find that fit and are silver painted (versus white), have a center bore of 4.28". Three hundreds of an inch bigger than the OEM wheels. I would not think that would be an issue. Any thoughts out there?
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Old 02-28-2016, 06:34 PM   #2
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Steel will rust, steel are heavier, alumium is lighter, aluminum does not rust, tires will run cooler with alunium, you better see if a magnet sticks to your present wheels, I'll bet they are alumium....
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Old 02-28-2016, 06:52 PM   #3
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Steel will rust, steel are heavier, alumium is lighter, aluminum does not rust, tires will run cooler with alunium, you better see if a magnet sticks to your present wheels, I'll bet they are alumium....
My original wheels are steel. Only very minor superficial rust. Must have been a good factory paint job. Someone once posted the weight difference, and it was surprisingly small. I think the aluminum must be much beefier to equal the strength of the steel. Don't know about the tires running cooler. I guess in theory; the aluminum is a better conductor of heat. But there is so little contact area... anyone else have thoughts on this?
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Old 02-28-2016, 07:25 PM   #4
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Wheel Sizing/Center Bore Tolerance

I dont think that .03 is going to make much difference, that is like a coat of paint.

Steel wheels have been on my trailer for for about 44 years.... I think they came with the trailer new.

I painted them a couple years back, but they were not overly rusty or heavy.

When they need it, they can be repainted.

Beyond this, I don't think my wheels are hub piloted anyway.


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Old 02-28-2016, 07:29 PM   #5
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I don't know, I kind like not being trendy.

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Old 02-28-2016, 10:29 PM   #6
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I dont think that .03 is going to make much difference, that is like a coat of paint.

Steel wheels have been on my trailer for for about 44 years.... I think they came with the trailer new.

I painted them a couple years back, but they were not overly rusty or heavy.

When they need it, they can be repainted.

Beyond this, I don't think my wheels are hub piloted anyway.


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Yup, I like my original steel wheels too. But this forum has got me nervous enough about ST tires that I want to upgrade to 16" LT tires.

Thanks for the feedback.
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Old 02-28-2016, 11:36 PM   #7
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I ran a set of ST tires on my trailer for a while. I did not like how quickly they wore out so I replaced them with a set of 15" LT tires with 2040 lb weight ratings.

They wear much better.


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Old 02-29-2016, 06:33 AM   #8
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Correct size 16 inch steel wheels can be purchased from etrailer for about 70 dollars a piece.
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Old 02-29-2016, 08:30 AM   #9
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Correct size 16 inch steel wheels can be purchased from etrailer for about 70 dollars a piece.
But last time I checked they were only available in white, for a 4.25" center bore. I could paint them silver, but I think factory paint would be far more durable. To get them from the factory in silver, would mean accepting the 4.28" center bore.
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Old 02-29-2016, 11:40 AM   #10
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0.03" is close enough for occasional farm work (or maybe for use as a spare). But for extended highway travel, you want center holes on your wheels that fit snugly, as intended.

Remember, it's the all-important center hole that supports the weight of your trailer, not the lug nuts.

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Old 02-29-2016, 11:48 AM   #11
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Not all wheels are hub piloted. In fact a great many wheels are not, including my stock Airstream wheels.


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Old 02-29-2016, 11:58 AM   #12
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Beyond this, the stock hub piloted wheels I took a quick sample of just now allowed a .030 feeler gauge to easily pass into the gap between the hub and wheel. (2 for 2)

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Old 02-29-2016, 12:05 PM   #13
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[QUOTE=J. Morgan;1755677]I don't know, I kind like not being trendy.

That is a great look IMO.
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Old 02-29-2016, 01:27 PM   #14
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Lug nuts hold the wheel centered IMO. Air Stream SS hub caps are loose by at least 30 thou. and the wheel holds them in place after the nuts are tightened. Some of my automotive wheels need to be pounded on and off ( usually the front hub) and my truck wheels slip on an off easily so the lug nuts must be doing the whole job. That's why they are conical
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