RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 06-11-2004, 08:35 PM   #1
3 Rivet Member
 
59er's Avatar
 
1959 18' "Footer"
1964 26' Overlander
birmingham , Alabama
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 127
Images: 26
14.5 rims...how wide?

Does anyone know how wide the stock steel rims on my 59 traveller are?

It currently has 8x14.5 tires on it, and I have a set of 7x14.5's that I'd like to use (as they are new). I seem to recall reading that they came with 6 or 6.5" wide rims but can't find anything to back that up...

Most 8x14.5's I've located locally have an OD of 28+ inches, and I need something in the 26.5 range like the 7's I mentioned...

Any thought or suggestions?

Thanks.
59er is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2004, 08:50 PM   #2
Site Team
 
, Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 7,586
Images: 59
I have 7-14.5 Kumho tires mounted on original rims that appear to be 6" wide.
That's measured inside, where the bead sits. If I measure the overall outside, including the lip, it's about 7" wide.
markdoane is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 11:26 AM   #3
Rivet Master
Airstream Dealer
 
Inland RV Center, In's Avatar
 
Corona , California
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 16,497
Images: 1
Traveller.

Airstream "NEVER" used 14.5 wheels.

Someone, many years ago, looked for "bargain" wheels, didn't consider safety, so they bought used "mobile home" wheels, which are 14.5 inch.

Mobile home wheels are made for a very short mileage life span.

That "incorrect" size has been perpetuated ever since.

The correct wheel size is 15 x 6, with 6 lugs on a 5 1/2 inch bolt circle.

Andy

__________________
Andy Rogozinski
Inland RV Center
Corona, CA
Inland RV Center, In is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 12:09 PM   #4
Site Team
 
, Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 7,586
Images: 59
Well, Andy, I guess if you say so it must be true.

I have all the receipts since this trailer was delivered from the factory in 1959, and my wife's family kept meticulous records.

I guess either the dealer switched them out before delivery (?), or the tire dealer put 14.5" tires in 15" rims.
markdoane is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 12:14 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
RichardT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 932
I have had no less than 4 1959 and 1960 Airstream trailers that had 14.5 inch steel wheels that were not Mobile home wheels.
I find it odd that all these particular trailer of this year range had those wheels.
Also I have seen alot of questions about this size and almost always it is on a 59 or 60 model.
Isnt it possable that Airstream got a deal those years on some 14.5 rims and went with it?
Perhaps this was a common size available in those years to replace split rims?
what was the last year of split rims?
RichardT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 12:46 PM   #6
Rivet Master
Airstream Dealer
 
Inland RV Center, In's Avatar
 
Corona , California
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 16,497
Images: 1
Unfortunately, there is no information available from the Airstream archives that bear out the 14 1/2 wheels.

However, it's really besides the point.

15 inch wheels are much easier to find as well as 15 inch tires.

A smaller cost is usually true when something is available in abundance instead of a rarity.

I believe, like for like, that is true in the case of the wheels and tires.

Also, not that it matters that much, but a 15 inch wheel turns less times per mile, (three percent) than a 14 1/2 wheel and their associated proper size tire. Therefore that would mean a cooler operating tire at a given speed.

At today's highway speeds, anything helps.

Andy
__________________
Andy Rogozinski
Inland RV Center
Corona, CA
Inland RV Center, In is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 01:39 PM   #7
Site Team
 
, Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 7,586
Images: 59
I'm planning to replace my 14.5s with 15" wheels as soon as I get everything back together, but it sounds like Traveller has a set of tires he wants to make use of.
markdoane is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 02:54 PM   #8
Rivet Master
Airstream Dealer
 
Inland RV Center, In's Avatar
 
Corona , California
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 16,497
Images: 1
Don.

There is another fringe benefit to using 15" wheels.

If your out there some where in Airstreamland, it's much easier by far to find a 15" wheel than a 14 1/2 inch wheel.

Andy
__________________
Andy Rogozinski
Inland RV Center
Corona, CA
Inland RV Center, In is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 03:40 PM   #9
3 Rivet Member
 
59er's Avatar
 
1959 18' "Footer"
1964 26' Overlander
birmingham , Alabama
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 127
Images: 26
Interesting debate...

Markdoane guessed correctly. I've got two very nearly new 7x14.5's that I was planning to use primarily to get it home (just purchased!).

I agree Andy. I would not want to go through any of this 'out on the road'. I plan on switching to 15's as part of the resto.

While I'm thinking about it; I wanted to ask Andy about the '59 (leaf-spring?) axle. Is it a general practice to replace the axle just because its nearly 50 yrs old or is it safe to use if maintained and service properly?

(if I need to start another thread, please let me know)

Thanks.
59er is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2004, 04:06 PM   #10
Rivet Master
Airstream Dealer
 
Inland RV Center, In's Avatar
 
Corona , California
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 16,497
Images: 1
Thumbs up

Traveller.

An axle such as you have, "IF" proper serviced, and used, has an almost unlimited life.

However, the old leaf spring axles as well as the 1961, 1962 and 63 axles, all had small bearings, therefore small spindles. Unfortunately, many of the spindles have failed, due to metal fatigue, as reported by Henschen.

That being the case, there are several things that an owner can do.

1. Change the original spring type axle out with a new type that has larger spindles.

2. Upgrade the trailer with a Henschen axle. This is not hard to do. Several owners have already completed that task.

3. Be extremely careful that the "entire" running gear be properly balanced, so as to not aggravate the condition of the old type small spindles.

4. Make sure you take care of the preacher, on a regular basis.

Andy
__________________
Andy Rogozinski
Inland RV Center
Corona, CA
Inland RV Center, In is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-15-2004, 10:15 AM   #11
3 Rivet Member
 
59er's Avatar
 
1959 18' "Footer"
1964 26' Overlander
birmingham , Alabama
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 127
Images: 26
In trying to anticipate the unknown, when I go to pick up the A/S, I'm planning on having a shop (there) mount the newer 7x14.5's onto the existing A/S rims. My (probably dumb?) question is; is it the tires or the rims that determine whether I have to use tubes or tubeless? the newer tires are tubeless and I'd prefer to go that route if possible.

Thanks.
59er is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2006, 06:55 PM   #12
2 Rivet Member
 
1959newbie's Avatar
 
1959 26' Overlander
Hill Country , Texas
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 96
This issue came up for me today. I, too, have a 1959 model, appears not to have been altered in any other way, has two 14.5" wheels with 6 lugs on a 5.5" bolt circle, mounted with 8-14.5 LT load range F tires.

The tires need to be replaced, local trailer place is recommending also changing rims out to 14" or 15". They say that 14.5" tires are often hard to find, especially in remote areas where I am likely to be. I have confirmed by calling around several places that a 14.5" might take me a day or two to get, whereas 15" replacements are in stock everywhere I called.

So I'm thinking they're giving me good advice. Are black-painted steel wheels the appropriate original equipment style for my Overlander? And are "baby moons" available for 15" rims?
1959newbie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2006, 08:16 PM   #13
Site Team
 
, Minnesota
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 7,586
Images: 59
newbie,

Definitely go to the 15" wheels, but you should also switch to radial tires. If you want to stay with bias tires, you might find that the wheel well is too short.

The wheel well on my '59 is 30" long and will not accomodate a 7.00-15 bias tire. It will fit a ST225-75R15 (like a Goodyear Marathon) ok. In 1960 the wheel wells were made 32" long.
markdoane is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2006, 09:02 PM   #14
My Grandparents Airstream
 
Andrew Selking's Avatar
 
2007 28' Safari SE
Hillsboro , Texas
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 174
Images: 18
Send a message via AIM to Andrew Selking
Yes Airstream did use 14.5 rims in 1959. Fred has had a item on this in the Vintage news letter about the trailers made back then . I have them on mine and just bought some new tires last year. you can still find them at a good farm and truck tire dealer they are use today on some lowboy trailers and farm implements. the ride is a little harded but the ones I have are 10 ply and will never blow out like all of the radials do. My grandfather ran one set for over twenty years before replacing > I would not do that but the will last much longer than radials Just my two cents.
__________________
Andrew Selking
WBCCI #6062
International 3rd Vice President

"Airstream the Best trailer ever built."
Andrew Selking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2006, 11:42 PM   #15
Rivet Master
 
1960 24' Tradewind
santa barbara , California
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,352
Hello Andy ,

Why would henschen know anything about spindle failures on leaf spring axles,which they did not make as far as i know? I have not read anything about any spindle failure except on the infamous 65 caravel 5 lug .not one post by anyone .Definatly not a leaf spring axle .The 5200lb hadco in my 60 tradewind has large spindles an bearings with 12" brakes ,although you didnt say 1960 so you must mean torsion axles .

Scott
scottanlily is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2006, 11:07 AM   #16
Rivet Master
 
47WeeWind's Avatar
 
1948 16' Wee Wind
1953 21' Flying Cloud
Denver , Colorado
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,169
Images: 20
Some tire size history

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
Traveller. Airstream "NEVER" used 14.5 wheels. Someone, many years ago, looked for "bargain" wheels, didn't consider safety, so they bought used "mobile home" wheels, which are 14.5 inch. Mobile home wheels are made for a very short mileage life span. That "incorrect" size has been perpetuated ever since. The correct wheel size is 15 x 6, with 6 lugs on a 5 1/2 inch bolt circle. Andy
Inland Andy's above stament is incorrect, which might be why he put "never" in quotation marks. Airstream used 14.5 inch diameter truck wheels and 700-14.5 tubeless tires in the 1958 model year, which begin the Fall 1957 and continued through Fall 1958 and perhaps later. The 18' Globe Trotter, 22' Flying Cloud and 30' tandem axle Sovereign all used 8 ply 14.5" diameter tubeless tires and turck wheels from the factory. The 26' Overlander used 10 ply 14.5" tubeless tires when it came with the standard single axle, but used 8 ply tubeless tires when ordered with the optional extra cost tandem axle. This information is plainly stated on all of Airstream's Ohio plant sales flyers for 1958. The California plant sales flyers are more vague, just specifying the number of plys without listing the tire and wheel diameter, but the ply specifications are 10 plys for single axle trailers and 8 plys for tandem axle trailers, consistent with ply specifications for the 14.5" tubeless type tires expressly used in Ohio.

The lower sidewall of a tubeless tire has a different profile than that of a tube type tire and requires a different wheel with a different shaped flange. A tubeless tire cannot safely be mounted on a tube type wheel, especially one having a different diameter. So to prevent mismatching, in the late 50s tubeless tires were made in "half inch" diameter sizes (14.5", 17.5", etc.) while tube type tires continued to be made in whole inch diameter sizes (14", 15"). Once tubeless tires and wheels became the common standard, they too became available in whole inch diameter sizes (14", 15", 16"), as today.

Either their experience with the relatively new "half inch" diameter tubeless tires on trailers was unsatisfactory during 1957-59, or perhaps trailer owners had a very dfficult time finding replacement 14.5" diameter tubeless tires in the rurual and remote areas they traveled, such as Africa. Tube type tires could be repaired worldwide, while tubeless tires were then just an emerging technology and required newer special equipment for repairs. Whatever the reason, by the 1960 model year Airstream returned to 6 ply or 8 ply 700-15 inch tube type tires for all trailers.
__________________
Fred Coldwell, WBCCI #1510, AIR #2675
Denver, Colorado - WBCCI Unit 24
Airstream Life "Old Aluminum"
Airstream Life
"From the Archives"
47WeeWind is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2006, 11:16 AM   #17
Site Team
 
azflycaster's Avatar

 
2002 25' Safari
Dewey , Arizona
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 14,179
Images: 62
Blog Entries: 1
Fred is the VAC Historian for a reason.
I always enjoy Fred's posts.
__________________

Richard

Wally Byam Airstream Club 7513
azflycaster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2006, 11:54 PM   #18
2 Rivet Member
 
1959newbie's Avatar
 
1959 26' Overlander
Hill Country , Texas
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 96
Thanks to everyone who replied, especially Fred for that amazing info!

So, if you were trying to maintain appropriate vintage look but reduce likelihood of getting stranded, would you get black steel 15" rims?
__________________
Lynne
1959newbie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2006, 01:38 AM   #19
Rivet Master
 
1960 24' Tradewind
santa barbara , California
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,352
Hey 47weewind ,

That completely answers the question in excellent detail .My 60 trdwnd had 700-15 s with splits ,had a flat on the way home with it from nebraska to ca. bummer ,splits in the trash and new tires and wheels on the trailer .


Scott
scottanlily is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-02-2006, 03:21 PM   #20
Moderator dude
 
Action's Avatar

 
1966 26' Overlander
Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 6,740
Images: 13
Lynne,

My overlander has black steel tubeless rims and I found a set of baby moons to make the look. The rims had the tabs near the center of the wheel that hold the moons on. And the moons came from an old Silver Streak trailer in a RV wrecking yard.

I do not believe my rims to be OEM. However they are close enough and make the look of my mid-60's trailer.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Action
__________________
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!
Action is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Rims Alex Wheels, Hubs & Bearings 7 05-17-2004 08:15 PM
Keeping Tires & Rims? Tinsel Loaf Tires 4 11-08-2003 05:23 PM
Rims For a 1992 34' Excella NEW2AS Wheels, Hubs & Bearings 1 04-07-2003 04:53 PM
Mags Or New Rims?? Charcigar Wheels, Hubs & Bearings 10 08-01-2002 06:09 PM


Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:21 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.