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    Hi everyone,

    What is the recomended modern tire size for my 1961 lark? It is still running on original wheels but needs new tire and I am too cheap for cokers.[:I]

    Dylan
    '61 lark regal 4dr wagon
    Dylan Wills
    Everett, Wa.


    1961 Lark 4 door wagon
    1961 Lark 4 door wagon #2 (Wife's car!)
    1955 VW Beetle (Went to the dark side)
    1914 Ford Model T

  • #2
    P195/75R15 Radials. Good luck finding any other than through Coker, Universal Tire, etc.

    And if you do find a local stash of real P195/75R15s through conventional tire sources, buy all of them you can if they are less than $50 each! BP
    We've got to quit saying, "How stupid can you be?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge.

    Ayn Rand:
    "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."

    G. K. Chesterton: This triangle of truisms, of father, mother, and child, cannot be destroyed; it can only destroy those civilizations which disregard it.

    Comment


    • #3
      quote:Originally posted by BobPalma

      P195/75R15 Radials. Good luck finding any other than through Coker, Universal Tire, etc.

      And if you do find a local stash of real P195/75R15s through conventional tire sources, buy all of them you can if they are less than $50 each! BP
      Only problem here is they may be very old since 195s haven't been available for some years.


      Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia
      '53 Commander Starliner (since 1966)
      '64 Daytona Wagonaire (original owner)
      '64 Daytona Convertible (2006)
      Museum R-4 engine
      1962 Gravely Model L (Studebaker-Packard serial plate)
      1972 Gravely Model 430 (Studebaker name plate, Studebaker Onan engine)
      Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia.
      '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Avanti R-1, Museum R-4 engine, '72 Gravely Model 430 with Onan engine

      Comment


      • #4
        quote:Originally posted by BobPalma

        P195/75R15 Radials. Good luck finding any other than through Coker, Universal Tire, etc.

        And if you do find a local stash of real P195/75R15s through conventional tire sources, buy all of them you can if they are less than $50 each! BP
        Bob doesn't agree with me...but I use 205 75 15's successfully on the 4 1/2" Stude rims. They are the smallest 15" tires you can actually purchase new without resorting to expensive "collector car" tires.

        I would make sure your rims are in VERY good condition. Strip all the paint off of them and inspect closely for cracks. Spin them up to see if they are true. Make sure the lug nut holes are in good shape and that the larger, more common lug nuts haven't been used on the wheels which can distort the lug nut holes.

        A better solution is to get a set of newer 15" x 5" or 6" wheels that were made for 205 75 15 radial tires.

        Again, Bob has a lot more knowledge and experience with this subject than I do, I'm just saying what works for me. Your experience may vary



        Dick Steinkamp
        Bellingham, WA



        Dick Steinkamp
        Bellingham, WA

        Comment


        • #5
          If you can live with 70s instead of 75s (doesn't seem like a big change to me)
          A regional store here (also affiliated with the national Tire Rack outfit) offered me 205/70/15s for my Avanti.

          They said they're easy to get from Cooper and other US makes.
          Set of four for about $375...


          Any recommendations on the 70 vs 75 issue?

          63 Avanti R1 2788
          1914 Stutz Bearcat
          (George Barris replica)

          Washington State
          63 Avanti R1 2788
          1914 Stutz Bearcat
          (George Barris replica)

          Washington State

          Comment


          • #6
            70 series are fine on the Avanti but 215's are needed to keep the rolling circumference similar to what you probably have now. The 205's will put your speedo reading higher than it should be, but could be corrected with a speedo drive pinion change.

            Comment


            • #7
              I have the same issue. A lot of people change out the wheels and tires but I have had good and bad info. What do I look for when I go the junkyard to find wheels? I will measure the stock wheels but how much backspacing can I go on a stock 61 Lark 4 door and what are the best fitting wheels to get?

              Comment


              • #8
                Thanks everyone. I got 205's on it now and the wheels are in good shape,but I'll keep a lookout for a set of 195's.

                Dylan
                '61 lark regal 4dr wagon
                Dylan Wills
                Everett, Wa.


                1961 Lark 4 door wagon
                1961 Lark 4 door wagon #2 (Wife's car!)
                1955 VW Beetle (Went to the dark side)
                1914 Ford Model T

                Comment


                • #9
                  Go to the grocery store and pick up an issue of Hot VW's magazine.
                  There should be vendors that sell all kinds of sizes of small 15" tires. To save space I'm using a brand new 135R15 as a spare in my 1956 Golden Hawk. I wouldn't try to drive cross-country with it, but it should be OK to limp home on, driving carefully. I ordered this tire from one of the VW vendors. They have many sizes available. The VW guys are running the 135's on front and then much taller tires in the rear. Usually available only in blackwalls, though.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks I'll try that.

                    Dylan
                    '61 lark regal 4dr wagon
                    Dylan Wills
                    Everett, Wa.


                    1961 Lark 4 door wagon
                    1961 Lark 4 door wagon #2 (Wife's car!)
                    1955 VW Beetle (Went to the dark side)
                    1914 Ford Model T

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This is DEFINITELY TRUE folks, actually they (P205X70R15) are NOT fine on an Avanti, or most any Studebaker. Do not fall for the "we have them in stock" sales pitch, trust me I have been there! These 70 or 60 Series tires must be ordered in way bigger sizes than P205 XX15 to be tall enough for the correct look, ground clearance and speedometer operation!
                      If you got 215, 225 or 235's then they would be so wide you could have clearance problems and of course they are WAY too wide for the 4 1/2 or 5 in. Stude. rims!

                      quote:Originally posted by WCP

                      70 series are fine on the Avanti but 215's are needed to keep the rolling circumference similar to what you probably have now. The 205's will put your speedo reading higher than it should be, but could be corrected with a speedo drive pinion change.

                      StudeRich at Studebakers Northwest -Ferndale,WA
                      StudeRich
                      Second Generation Stude Driver,
                      Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        quote:Originally posted by StudeRich

                        This is DEFINITELY TRUE folks, actually they (P205X70R15) are NOT fine on an Avanti, or most any Studebaker......
                        StudeRich at Studebakers Northwest -Ferndale,WA
                        Then what size would you recommend?
                        And source?
                        I'm not thrilled with paying double for "classic" tires.
                        It can't be THIS complicated...I sure many a Stude owner (circa 1970-74) put new them "new-fangled" radials on their cars without problems.


                        63 Avanti R1 2788
                        1914 Stutz Bearcat
                        (George Barris replica)

                        Washington State
                        63 Avanti R1 2788
                        1914 Stutz Bearcat
                        (George Barris replica)

                        Washington State

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Just the ones almost EVERYONE uses and recommends (cept Palma!), the ones Dick Steinkamp recommended way back in the forth post! That is the P205X75R15 Radials! [^]

                          And those of us that want the "correct" look in reasonably priced low line tires, need to buy these QUICKLY as the correct 1 in. narrow White walls are being discontinued very quickly by many manufacturers! [:0][V]

                          I would paint them WHITE or use porta-walls before I would drive around with those ugly "Taxi Cab" blackwalls, UGH!! [xx(] [V]


                          StudeRich at Studebakers Northwest -Ferndale,WA
                          StudeRich
                          Second Generation Stude Driver,
                          Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I just spoke with the store that said they couldn't get 205/75/15s...
                            well it seems they can after all.
                            New Cooper Trendsetter SE with 3/4" ww.
                            $420 mounted, balanced and all taxes.
                            Seems like a good deal.

                            I spoke with the owner, he said exactly what you all were saying...75s are being phased out quickly.
                            So I might buy now uinstead of waiting until spring when I need them.

                            63 Avanti R1 2788
                            1914 Stutz Bearcat
                            (George Barris replica)

                            Washington State
                            63 Avanti R1 2788
                            1914 Stutz Bearcat
                            (George Barris replica)

                            Washington State

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I think I have the same problem, too. I've got a 62 Daytona hardtop that was left on my property. All the tires on it were radials and ran from 205's - 215's. Three of them held air but the rest has delaminations and severe cracks. I have a set of 215's used from another car and I'm thinking about having them mounted just to see how it rides. When I tried it with the old tires it was very scary. For my 58 scotsman 2 dr, I bought the new radial rims offered by the seller in the back of Turning Wheels. They are wider and radial accomodating, but as advertised won't accept the dogdish hubcaps, full cap only.
                              If you want to have some fun shopping for tires, go to TireRack.com and they list all the specs on all their tires and reviews of each tire. I've saved a lot of money using them and have never been disappointed with their product or shipping. They will even ship to the tire store that you want to have mount them.
                              The old 215's fit the rear but I didn't try them on the front where usually there is more room. I'm just worried about the narrowness of my original rims. I hate investing any money right now because I'm not sure if this car warrants a lot of investment. It's a sweet car for a free buy-in, but where might it take me? So far I have invested over $50.00! Before I continue any farther, I need to investigate obtaining title.

                              Comment

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