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Old 05-27-2008, 02:20 PM   #1
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Question Split Rims- Friend or Foe?

I recently purchased a partially restored 1965 Overlander 26", and, it has split rims! They appear to be in good condition with good tread and sidewalls on the tires. We are planning a trip this summer of about 3000 miles (round-trip), and I have heard quite an array of opinions on the split rims. So, I am here, requesting help from the Forum Gods... "Speak to me all knowing ones"
Thanks ahead of time...
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Old 05-27-2008, 02:43 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forums.
I would get rid of the split rims. They can be very dangerous and most tire shops will not work on them.

As far as the tires go, check the date code on the tires and if they are more then 3 years old, I would replace them as well.
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Old 05-27-2008, 04:16 PM   #3
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Split rim wheels are usefull if you intend to repair the tires on the road yourself. They require tube tires . They require proper handling to be serviced with any degree of safety. If you do not intend to repair tires on the road yourself, then ditch the spilit rims because many tire shops will not or cannot work with them through lack of trained personnel and equipment. They were the standard once, but vanished with the advent of tubless tires. I use them on my International because I do offroad/backkroad work and find it convenient to repair the tube rather than trying to carry a couple of tires on the rim as spares. The main objection to split rims is that, if the rim is not seated correctly it can get loose during inflation and cause mayhem. They are not the rim for the inattentive!
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Old 05-27-2008, 05:22 PM   #4
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If you do decide to keep the split rims so you can repair your tires yourself, get at least two heavy chains with screw-together links to join the chain together around the tire/rim assembly. When you inflate the tire, make sure the chains are around them. If the rim comes apart, at least the chains will keep it (hopefully) from tearing someone's head off.
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Old 05-27-2008, 06:35 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input!

Are they dangerous to drive on, or just to change?
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Old 05-27-2008, 06:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HansenClan
Are they dangerous to drive on, or just to change?
They are only specifically dangerous when inflating a completely deflated tire.
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:02 PM   #7
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Thanks for the input!

My plan has been to carry one "new" spare, with crossed fingers and a bit of luck. If we need to use the spare, then off come the split rims and on go all new wheels and tires at the nearest tire shop. I am not going to attempt/learn about (even being very mechanically inclined) split rims the hard way... Any thoughts on this plan?
It is awesome to have these forums available!
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:05 PM   #8
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Your trailer will take 15"x6" (or 7") 6 lug, 5 1/2" bolt pattern, zero offset, 2600 pound wheels.
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:19 PM   #9
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Check the age of the tires you have mounted now. If the tires are old, you may want to accelerate your plan.
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:21 PM   #10
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Thumbs up Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63
Your trailer will take 15"x6" (or 7") 6 lug, 5 1/2" bolt pattern, zero offset, 2600 pound wheels.
That was my next question...
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HansenClan
That was my next question...
We have ESPN...
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:46 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63
If you do decide to keep the split rims so you can repair your tires yourself, get at least two heavy chains with screw-together links to join the chain together around the tire/rim assembly. When you inflate the tire, make sure the chains are around them. If the rim comes apart, at least the chains will keep it (hopefully) from tearing someone's head off.
This is NOT a joke. I've seen MANY serious injuries from split rims demounting upon pressurization, sometimes literally tearing arms off people, sometimes causing fatalities from rim / cranial impacts. Almost any place I know that will work on them is required (OSHA, I suppose) to inflate them inside a retaining cage intended to keep the rim from going interplanetary if it disengages. Rid yourself of them just as soon as you can if you are not very experienced with them and/or unless you do want to do backcountry work and you want to become very experienced with them. But you only will get one mistake.
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Old 10-17-2008, 07:24 PM   #13
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Split rims were only used on very stiff, truck tires. So stiff it was next to impossible to force them over the rim.

Today's radial tires are no where near this stiff. You do not need split rims, get new rims. You might keep the split rims for a museum piece but not for regular use.

Besides split rims cannot be used without tubes, and tubes are something you don't want at today's hiway speeds. They retain too much heat making the tire more likely to blow.
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Old 10-17-2008, 11:20 PM   #14
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I would not wait until there is trouble on the road. At that point, you may not be able to easily buy the proper wheels. Change them before you hit the road.

Go to good new wheels with tubeless tires. That will avoid tube/heat problems as well as split rim problems. You really don't need any of that on the road.
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Old 10-18-2008, 08:08 AM   #15
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I second everyone's comments. I had the original split rims on my '68 Streamline, and trying to find a tire shop that knew how to mount the new tires on them was very difficult. The only reason I kept them was because I didn't have the money to get new wheels at the time.

If the tires are properly mounted, the split rims shouldn't be a problem, but I don't like to mess with shouldn'ts. That's when Murphy likes to show up.
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Old 10-18-2008, 08:42 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by StingrayL82 View Post
If the tires are properly mounted, the split rims shouldn't be a problem, but I don't like to mess with shouldn'ts. That's when Murphy likes to show up.

Split rims have not been manufactured for passenger, light truck or trailer use in many years. In addition to correct assembly of split rims the factor of rust and wear on the retaining ring becomes a huge issue in safety. Given that those rims are 43 years old and likley they have been sitting unused for some time in the restoration process, I would be replacing the rims and tires.

Since this is a 5 month old thread, hopefully you have already done this.

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