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Thread: About Radial tyres on OEM rims...

  1. #1
    Silver Hawk Member studeclunker's Avatar
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    About Radial tyres on OEM rims...

    I've been looking for tyres for Bess. Looks like I won't be able to afford the WWW that I want. In hunting around I found this on the Diamond Back website:

    quote:
    <center>Wives tale or fact
    Are radial tires safe for my stock rims?</center>
    It is a common question for us to offer proof that Diamond back Classic radials can be installed tubeless on older rims. I do not know how I can offer physical proof, however, I can offer an opinion based on my 35 years of experience.

    The issue that needs to be discussed- can a radial tire be installed tubeless on an older rim, and will radial tires cause older rims to split? Let's look at our answers to these two questions.

    The first radials were imported to the US in the late 1960's by Sears. These tires were manufactured by Michelin. Because of the improvement in ride, handling and safety these radials became immensely popular. These tires were sold by the hundreds of thousands by Sears nationwide. Neither Sears or Michelin ever specified that these tires had to be mounted on different rimsthese tires were sold in numerous sizes for every make of American car and most were mounted tubeless.

    The first American company to build radial tires was BF Goodrich in the late 1960's. BF Goodrich spent millions on the development and advertising of modern radial tires. Again, BF Goodrich never said that radial tires had to be mounted on specialized rims. Radial tires were installed on the stock, OE, rims. Were there any problems? Not to my knowledge.

    Let's step back a few years to 1957. This was the first year of the tubeless tires developed and manufactured by BF Goodrich. These tires were built to work on existing rims. There were no rim modifications to accept their new tires.

    The point to be made is: throughout the development of the tubeless tire and the radial tire, there was no parallel development in rim technology.
    In my years in the tire industry, I have not seen a tubeless radial tire that has caused an original rim to split or malfunction.

    Bill Chapman
    President CEO
    I have not yet heard first hand experiance on this forum or anywhere else (save adverts wanting to sell new rims, and even there no first hand proof) proving that there's a problem. Yes, rust and age can cause a rim to fail. That rim would fail with a glas belted tyre as well. Still, this sounded interesting. If someone has proof perhaps they'd be kind enough to e-mail to this fellow.

    quote:
    mailto:wwtires@sccoast.net
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    Need a special Width Wide White Wall?

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    Sadly, eight hundred plus shipping for five tyres is a bit more than I can afford. But they sure are beautiful...[8D] But I can drool, I mean, DREAM, yeah, dream, can't I?[8D]

    Yeah, cool is just a bit out of my price range right now. I need front fenders, rear wheel wells, floors, upholstry, paint....


    Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
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    Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
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  2. #2
    President Member railway's Avatar
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    I always get a laugh at the idea that you can't use tubeless radial tire on an original rim. I was doing it back then, with no trouble, and some of the places I've been, there sure should of been.
    Ebon...

  3. #3
    President Member railway's Avatar
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    I always get a laugh at the idea that you can't use tubeless radial tire on an original rim. I was doing it back then, with no trouble, and some of the places I've been, there sure should of been.
    Ebon...

  4. #4
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    Well, he's talking about CORRECTLY FITTED radial tires. Find a set of radials that actually FIT Studebaker rims, and you'll be OK, I think.

    Put 215 or 205R15 tires on your typical '60s Lark rim, and you can expect to see the rim crack around the outermost perimeter of the plane of the bolt circle. I had it happen to me on a '63 Wagonaire.

    During the time frame referenced in that article, you could get radials that were basically the same size as your old bias tires, and you could also get fabric-belted radials. Nowadays, skinny, fabric-belted radials have gone the way of the dodo. If you buy the correct size radials from one of the vintage tire suppliers, and drive the car sensibly, you ought to be OK. If you buy whatevers's on sale at Happy Tire, and wind up with 205-70R15s on Lark rims, you can expect the trouble I had, especially if it's a daily driver. With older rims from maybe '57 and back, you might actually fare better.

    BTW, ALL Lark owners should check their rims frequently: the outermost perimeter of the plane which includes the bolt circle, and also look for cracks around the lug holes themselves. This is at least as great a risk as the potential for failure in the tapered axle ends, in my humble opinion. And the potential for disaster is equally great for both kinds of failures, too. Good news is, rims are cheap and easy to change.

    I believe at least part of the problem is that radials allow you to corner comfortably at greater speeds than were possible with bias tires; that means the rims have to resist greater cornering forces, and they eventually fail from repeated stress reversals. Oversize tires simply compound the problem by swinging more mass around. Compare the weight of a 215-75R15 with that of a 6.50X15 bias ply job.

    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

  5. #5
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    Well, he's talking about CORRECTLY FITTED radial tires. Find a set of radials that actually FIT Studebaker rims, and you'll be OK, I think.

    Put 215 or 205R15 tires on your typical '60s Lark rim, and you can expect to see the rim crack around the outermost perimeter of the plane of the bolt circle. I had it happen to me on a '63 Wagonaire.

    During the time frame referenced in that article, you could get radials that were basically the same size as your old bias tires, and you could also get fabric-belted radials. Nowadays, skinny, fabric-belted radials have gone the way of the dodo. If you buy the correct size radials from one of the vintage tire suppliers, and drive the car sensibly, you ought to be OK. If you buy whatevers's on sale at Happy Tire, and wind up with 205-70R15s on Lark rims, you can expect the trouble I had, especially if it's a daily driver. With older rims from maybe '57 and back, you might actually fare better.

    BTW, ALL Lark owners should check their rims frequently: the outermost perimeter of the plane which includes the bolt circle, and also look for cracks around the lug holes themselves. This is at least as great a risk as the potential for failure in the tapered axle ends, in my humble opinion. And the potential for disaster is equally great for both kinds of failures, too. Good news is, rims are cheap and easy to change.

    I believe at least part of the problem is that radials allow you to corner comfortably at greater speeds than were possible with bias tires; that means the rims have to resist greater cornering forces, and they eventually fail from repeated stress reversals. Oversize tires simply compound the problem by swinging more mass around. Compare the weight of a 215-75R15 with that of a 6.50X15 bias ply job.

    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

  6. #6
    Silver Hawk Member StudeDave57's Avatar
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    I ran some big radials on my daily driver's original rims for a long, long time. But then I learned that the size I was running (215/70-15) ought to be on something a little wider then what was stock on a '65 Cruiser. [B)] I never had any problems with the OEM rims mind you, but the way she gets driven, I thought it would be the smart thing to do. So I switched to a set of new 6" rims and feel much more confident in knowing that I'm actually getting good use of all that BFG rubber I paid BIG $$$ for!!! [^]
    Sweet Pea handles so much better now~ it's like night and day...


    StudeDave [8D]
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    San Diego, Ca


    '54 Commander 4dr 'Ruby'
    '57 Parkview (it's a 2dr wagon...) 'Betsy'
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  7. #7
    Silver Hawk Member StudeDave57's Avatar
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    I ran some big radials on my daily driver's original rims for a long, long time. But then I learned that the size I was running (215/70-15) ought to be on something a little wider then what was stock on a '65 Cruiser. [B)] I never had any problems with the OEM rims mind you, but the way she gets driven, I thought it would be the smart thing to do. So I switched to a set of new 6" rims and feel much more confident in knowing that I'm actually getting good use of all that BFG rubber I paid BIG $$$ for!!! [^]
    Sweet Pea handles so much better now~ it's like night and day...


    StudeDave [8D]
    V/P San Diego County SDC
    San Diego, Ca


    '54 Commander 4dr 'Ruby'
    '57 Parkview (it's a 2dr wagon...) 'Betsy'
    '57 Commander 2dr 'Baby'
    '57 Champion 2dr 'Jewel'
    '58 Packard sedan 'Cleo'
    '65 Cruiser 'Sweet Pea'

  8. #8
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    Hi,
    I have never had problems with radials on Stude rims.

    The 6 inch wide rims are fantastic, on Hawks and Avantis. On Larks, they have a habit of bouncing the tyres on the front fenders, so on a Lark I world be hesitant. My experience with Larks is 1963 or earlier versions, so I am not sure how thw 64's on up go.

    Studes definitely look better with those wider 15 inch rims.

    The genuine Stude rims can crack near the wheel nuts, but that can be more due to extreme service. In Australia Studebakers rared on the Bathurst 1000 mle race did have a habit of breaking rims, but not all of us drive to win the typical street rat race to work and back.

    Regards
    Greg

    Greg Diffen
    Australian Stude nut living in Warwick, United Kingdom

    1933 St Regis Brougham Model 56 Dutch delivered
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  9. #9
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    Hi,
    I have never had problems with radials on Stude rims.

    The 6 inch wide rims are fantastic, on Hawks and Avantis. On Larks, they have a habit of bouncing the tyres on the front fenders, so on a Lark I world be hesitant. My experience with Larks is 1963 or earlier versions, so I am not sure how thw 64's on up go.

    Studes definitely look better with those wider 15 inch rims.

    The genuine Stude rims can crack near the wheel nuts, but that can be more due to extreme service. In Australia Studebakers rared on the Bathurst 1000 mle race did have a habit of breaking rims, but not all of us drive to win the typical street rat race to work and back.

    Regards
    Greg

    Greg Diffen
    Australian Stude nut living in Warwick, United Kingdom

    1933 St Regis Brougham Model 56 Dutch delivered
    1937 Dicator sedan. Australian Body by TJ Richards
    1939 Packard Seven Passenger monster UK delivered
    1939 Commander Swiss Cabriolet by Lagenthal
    1988 Avanti Convertible

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    Uh, pardon my typos, but other than rust around the sealing edges; the only problem I've experienced when runnin' tubeless (rags or radials) on elderly [u]wheels</u> is leakage around the rivets. If you're runnin' tubeless on riveted [u]wheels</u>, I'd recomend usin' a little sealer (RTV, panel-bonding adheasive, whatever) around the rivets so ya won't have to go back in there a second time. What about Moon-Disks?? I run them tubeless as well, but ya can't expect not to come back to four flats if ya just drill 'em, screw 'em on, and walk away. I like to stud them flush from the back-side, and use Nyloc nuts rather than Tec-Screws, that come with the disks. Are there enough hot rodders here to warrant a tech-post on that subject? RR

    Faster than a rusting bullet... Gopher Grove, CA

  11. #11
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    Uh, pardon my typos, but other than rust around the sealing edges; the only problem I've experienced when runnin' tubeless (rags or radials) on elderly [u]wheels</u> is leakage around the rivets. If you're runnin' tubeless on riveted [u]wheels</u>, I'd recomend usin' a little sealer (RTV, panel-bonding adheasive, whatever) around the rivets so ya won't have to go back in there a second time. What about Moon-Disks?? I run them tubeless as well, but ya can't expect not to come back to four flats if ya just drill 'em, screw 'em on, and walk away. I like to stud them flush from the back-side, and use Nyloc nuts rather than Tec-Screws, that come with the disks. Are there enough hot rodders here to warrant a tech-post on that subject? RR

    Faster than a rusting bullet... Gopher Grove, CA

  12. #12
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    I don't know if this will help. But my 56 Parkview has Ford wheels and 205 75 15 they were on the car when I got it.


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  13. #13
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    I don't know if this will help. But my 56 Parkview has Ford wheels and 205 75 15 they were on the car when I got it.


    7G-Q1 49 2R12 10G-F5 56B-D4 56B-F2
    As soon as you find a product you like they will stop making it.

  14. #14
    Champion Member fred44's Avatar
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    Tire for Commander 54

    Hello,
    Can you tell me the recommanded radial tire size (cross plie size 7.10 x 15) for a Commander 54 ? Thank you for your reply.
    studebaker 1954 (2).jpg

  15. #15
    President Member thunderations's Avatar
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    Most common size used is 205 75R 15. Some use the 195's and some go bigger to 215's and 225's. If using a 70 series tire, the width becomes a problem scraping on the rear fenders and hitting suspension parts on the front. Wheel offset, when non-stock wheels are used cause rubbing in some instances too. Lots of posts on wheels and tires on the forum already. Just do a search on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by fred44 View Post
    Hello,
    Can you tell me the recommanded radial tire size (cross plie size 7.10 x 15) for a Commander 54 ? Thank you for your reply.
    studebaker 1954 (2).jpg
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  16. #16
    Silver Hawk Member bezhawk's Avatar
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    P 205- 75R 15 is as large as you would want to go, unless you have wider wheels. P 195 75R 15 would be better.
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    Great post Gord. I am in the middle of switching rims right now on my 60 Lark Convertible.
    Do you have a recommendation for a Vintage Tire supplier up here in Canada? I need wide whites.
    Thanks
    Rob
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  18. #18
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    Been running steel belted radials on my 63 Regal for over 20 years on original rims/wheels. No problems.
    Some tire companies (ie Coker for one) try to convince you to buy new wheels and tires. Much more profit
    that way...

  19. #19
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    the fat radials do look ugly bulging out of the skinny Stude rim...

  20. #20
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    Crown Vic Cop Car wheels with 225-60-16" tire have very, very minor rubbing issues on my '64 Daytona. I drive the car about 200 miles a year, no more than 10 miles from home. Pick Your Part Monday Madness Sale $7 each for a steel rim and tire fits the need. You just have to spend some time hunting for a decent set of four. For me it is a hobby, not drudgey. And, surely the Cop Car wheels can take whatever one throws at them (just use the Ford lug nuts).

    Anyway, I realize that is not for everyone but sometimes I'm baffled when a car will sit because the party doesn't have the funds for a mega hundred dollar purchase when there are other practical alternatives within their budget.
    '64 Lark Type, powered by '85 Corvette L-98 (carburetor), 700R4, - CASO to the Max.

  21. #21
    President Member Commander Eddie's Avatar
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    I have radials on both my truck and my sedan with original wheels and have had no trouble. I am pretty sure both have been sporting radials for quite a few years. I just had new tires put on the sedan and asked the tire shop to inspect the rims for cracks or other defects. All the rims were fine.
    Ed Sallia
    Dundee, OR

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  22. #22
    Silver Hawk Member StudeDave57's Avatar
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    Threads this old are always so much fun....

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  23. #23
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StudeDave57 View Post
    Threads this old are always so much fun....
    That's because they are still SO enTIREly relevant!

    Craig

  24. #24
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    In the early 70's Ford had a big problem with OE Firestone 500 tires failing. Kelsey-Hayes engineers questioned whether they could be drawn into the issue as Ford's wheel supplier. They ran a few tests with strain gauged wheels comparing the wheel stress and deflection between bias ply tires and radial tires. They were alarmed at the results. Based on these results, a specification and test protocol was formulated in conjunction with SAE establishing an industry standard. Material deflection can cause failure. There is a load deflection fatigue curve for materials. Under a critical point, the item lasts forever. Deflected beyond the critical point, there is a finite life span. With every revolution a wheel flexes. Not every revolution is a maximum event. Our original wheels were designed with enough safety margin that failure would never occur. Now ad in the increased loads and deflections of a radial tire and that safety margin is gone. Failure may occur. I don't think any of our cars get the use of a daily driver. For that reason most will not experience problems because the cycle count is low. Using radial approved wheels is like wearing a seat belt. It is only needed when a problem happens. It can happen. Hopefully no one will get hurt when it does.
    I built a 5 X 8 utility trailer in 1982. I used a piece of the left over 2 X 2 X .187 square tubing for the tongue. It cracked and broke about two years ago. Calculating the load on a cantilevered beam suggested that it was destined to fail. After all these years it finally experienced enough cycles at load to cause a failure. I wish I would have known that when I built it. It now has a 2 X 4 X .250 tongue that will last forever. Physics applies to everyone equally regardless if you believe it or not.
    james r pepper

  25. #25
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpepper View Post
    Physics applies to everyone equally regardless if you believe it or not.
    Agreed! No one is exempt!!

    http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...hlight=sunbeam

    Craig

  26. #26
    Silver Hawk Member JoeHall's Avatar
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    I ran 205/75 radials on Studes for many years and many miles, then finally crossed over to 6" wide, modern wheels about 10-12 years ago. The wider wheels just look right with the 205s. The OEM wheels cause the tires to appear balloonish. I did not really realize that, till I switched over. The tires also flex much less with modern wheels, and the Studes feel a little firmer on curves and sweepers. The hub caps, "walk" on both of them, but not as badly on the modern wheels. Steel valve stems take care of that. I'd never go back to OEM wheels on a Stude.

  27. #27
    Speedster Member 56GH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeHall View Post
    I ran 205/75 radials on Studes for many years and many miles, then finally crossed over to 6" wide, modern wheels about 10-12 years ago. The wider wheels just look right with the 205s. The OEM wheels cause the tires to appear balloonish. I did not really realize that, till I switched over. The tires also flex much less with modern wheels, and the Studes feel a little firmer on curves and sweepers. The hub caps, "walk" on both of them, but not as badly on the modern wheels. Steel valve stems take care of that. I'd never go back to OEM wheels on a Stude.
    Agreed, Joe! Same as my experience with my 56J and '62 GT, Hawk! When I bought my GT it had 205s and Stude rims but the tires looked odd. It looked and handled better with 6-1/2" wide Ford rims. The metal valve stems work great too, although I think the ones from NAPA may be chrome plated brass. (There are two different size seals with each one.)

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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpepper View Post
    In the early 70's Ford had a big problem with OE Firestone 500 tires failing. Kelsey-Hayes engineers questioned whether they could be drawn into the issue as Ford's wheel supplier. They ran a few tests with strain gauged wheels comparing the wheel stress and deflection between bias ply tires and radial tires. They were alarmed at the results. Based on these results, a specification and test protocol was formulated in conjunction with SAE establishing an industry standard. Material deflection can cause failure. There is a load deflection fatigue curve for materials. Under a critical point, the item lasts forever. Deflected beyond the critical point, there is a finite life span. With every revolution a wheel flexes. Not every revolution is a maximum event. Our original wheels were designed with enough safety margin that failure would never occur. Now ad in the increased loads and deflections of a radial tire and that safety margin is gone. Failure may occur. I don't think any of our cars get the use of a daily driver. For that reason most will not experience problems because the cycle count is low. Using radial approved wheels is like wearing a seat belt. It is only needed when a problem happens. It can happen. Hopefully no one will get hurt when it does.
    I built a 5 X 8 utility trailer in 1982. I used a piece of the left over 2 X 2 X .187 square tubing for the tongue. It cracked and broke about two years ago. Calculating the load on a cantilevered beam suggested that it was destined to fail. After all these years it finally experienced enough cycles at load to cause a failure. I wish I would have known that when I built it. It now has a 2 X 4 X .250 tongue that will last forever. Physics applies to everyone equally regardless if you believe it or not.
    I fully agree that: Physics applies to everyone equally regardless if you believe it or not. Or, as Ayn Rand put it: “We can ignore reality, but we cannot ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.”

    I am not doubting that Kelsey Hays did some studies. Surely they have been published. Can you point me in the right direction? I have radial tires on my old Firestone Split rims on my 2R16A. The metal in those wheels is so thick, I can't imaging there being an issue. Would just like to see the data; like what gauge metal is not enough, what gauge metal is enough?

  29. #29
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    I have radial tires on my old Firestone Split rims on my 2R16A. The metal in those wheels is so thick, I can't imaging there being an issue.
    Yes, truck wheels are different. FWIW, I've been running Michelin 215/85-16" radials on my E12 for thirty-seven years now with zero problems.

    jack vines
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    I've been running Michelin radials since 1968 on my GT Hawk on aftermarket wider (7-8" depending on offset) wheels with zero problems, just better handling, safety and less body squeaks.
    Good luck on which route you choose to take.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynn View Post
    I fully agree that: Physics applies to everyone equally regardless if you believe it or not. Or, as Ayn Rand put it: “We can ignore reality, but we cannot ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.”

    I am not doubting that Kelsey Hays did some studies. Surely they have been published. Can you point me in the right direction? I have radial tires on my old Firestone Split rims on my 2R16A. The metal in those wheels is so thick, I can't imaging there being an issue. Would just like to see the data; like what gauge metal is not enough, what gauge metal is enough?
    I do not know if truck wheels are suspect. I know passenger car wheels are. The modulus of steel or in other words, it's spring rate is the same for all steel. What changes is the fatigue point and the yield point. The initial reaction to making radial spec wheels was to make them thicker. This also made them heavier which negatively impacted handling and braking. Thicker material made them stiffer so less flexing brought them under the fatigue threshold. As time went on, higher strength steel was used. the higher tensile strength and yield point improved the fatigue resistance and the weight came back down. A similar occurrence has happened with car and truck frames.
    james r pepper

  32. #32
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    The 1/2-ton trucks use late 40s Commander passenger car-style wheels, so the same concerns exist. The wheels on 3/4-ton (like Jack's) and above trucks are much heavier duty.

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