Noob question about wheels and tires.

Joined
Sep 21, 2021
Messages
27
Location
Missouri
Hello,

Noob here. This is actually my second post. First one was asking about an FJ I had thought about buying. A few of you lead me to a different one and after a long wait for a title issue with the previous owner I am finally getting my first ever FJ40. It is a Feb 1971. Very excited. (Also, want to thank mtntopper from the the mud family for all of his help with checking it out for me and answering all of my new guy questions.)

It sounds like I will need new tires pretty much immediately when I get it here. Because of this I have a few questions. I have read a ton in the forums and have learned a lot, but still have a few questions that I was wondering if you guys could help me with.

MY PLANS: So I am planning on putting a disc brake conversion on it (at least in the front). Also, when I can afford it I may like to do a 2-2.5 in. lift. It is currently stock.

MY QUESTIONS:
On some of the forums there was discussion about 15” vs 16” wheels. I realize the ones I have currently will not allow me to do the disc brake conversion because of the rivets. So I will need new wheels.

1) Will a disc brake conversion fit with 15” wheels, or am I better off getting 16” wheels?

2) Are there any drawbacks to either the 15” or 16”?

3) People on the forums seemed to have really liked the BFG 32x9.5x15 tires in the past, which they apparently don’t make anymore. If I go with the 16” it looks like I can get a 235/85r16 which is technically 31.7x9.25x16 which seems pretty close to the BFG’s everyone seemed to like in the past. I found the 235/85r16 at the local “National Tire and Battery” for about $150 a piece (Cooper tires). Would 235/85r16 fit on the stock FJ (not hit the wheel well when I turn or hit a bump? On one of the forums someone said they had to bend the pitman arm.). Would they still look decent if I get a lift? (Also, the tires for the 16” wheels seem to be cheaper and have the most options at my NTB which I like. Also 265/75r16 are an option that is pretty cheap. Would they fit?

4) If I get the 15” wheels it seems like many just prefer to run 33x10.5x15. It seems like there is some question on if they might rub when the FJ is stock, and also weather or not tire places will mount them on the 15 inch rims. Could anyone educate me if they run these in a stock rig and if they rub when turning or hitting bumps?

5) Another option is the 31x10.5x15. Thoughts? Will it rub, how will it look on the stock, and with a 2-2.5”lift.

6) I have had a friend tell me that with the 16” wheel there will be less sidewall on the tire which means there will be less cushion on an already rough ride. Anybody have any thoughts on that? (I realize I’m not buying this FJ for the comfy ride.


Finally,

Does anyone have any pictures of any of the following combinations:

FJ40 with:

-15” wheels no lift and 33x10.5x15 tires.
-15” wheels with a 2-2.5” lift with 33x10.5x15 tires.

-15” wheels no lift with 31x10.5x15 tires.
-15” wheels with a 2-2.5” lift with 31x10.5x15 tires.

-16” wheels with no lift and 235/85r16 tires.
-16” wheels with a 2-2.5” lift and 235/85r16 tires.

-16” wheels no lift with 265/75r16.
-16” wheels with 2” lift and 265/75r16 tires.


Thank you all for any input and pictures. Sorry for this getting so long.
 

firefighterjed

SILVER Star
Joined
Dec 2, 2018
Messages
499
Location
Idaho
Hello,

Noob here. This is actually my second post. First one was asking about an FJ I had thought about buying. A few of you lead me to a different one and after a long wait for a title issue with the previous owner I am finally getting my first ever FJ40. It is a Feb 1971. Very excited. (Also, want to thank mtntopper from the the mud family for all of his help with checking it out for me and answering all of my new guy questions.)

It sounds like I will need new tires pretty much immediately when I get it here. Because of this I have a few questions. I have read a ton in the forums and have learned a lot, but still have a few questions that I was wondering if you guys could help me with.

MY PLANS: So I am planning on putting a disc brake conversion on it (at least in the front). Also, when I can afford it I may like to do a 2-2.5 in. lift. It is currently stock.

MY QUESTIONS:
On some of the forums there was discussion about 15” vs 16” wheels. I realize the ones I have currently will not allow me to do the disc brake conversion because of the rivets. So I will need new wheels.

1) Will a disc brake conversion fit with 15” wheels, or am I better off getting 16” wheels?
- disk will fit behind a 15” wheel that has 3.25” backspacing.
2) Are there any drawbacks to either the 15” or 16”?
-16 seems to have greater variety of sizes available and in many cases are cheaper
3) People on the forums seemed to have really liked the BFG 32x9.5x15 tires in the past, which they apparently don’t make anymore. If I go with the 16” it looks like I can get a 235/85r16 which is technically 31.7x9.25x16 which seems pretty close to the BFG’s everyone seemed to like in the past. I found the 235/85r16 at the local “National Tire and Battery” for about $150 a piece (Cooper tires). Would 235/85r16 fit on the stock FJ (not hit the wheel well when I turn or hit a bump? On one of the forums someone said they had to bend the pitman arm.). Would they still look decent if I get a lift? (Also, the tires for the 16” wheels seem to be cheaper and have the most options at my NTB which I like. Also 265/75r16 are an option that is pretty cheap. Would they fit?
Should fit a stock height truck
4) If I get the 15” wheels it seems like many just prefer to run 33x10.5x15. It seems like there is some question on if they might rub when the FJ is stock, and also weather or not tire places will mount them on the 15 inch rims. Could anyone educate me if they run these in a stock rig and if they rub when turning or hitting bumps?
33s will rub a stock height rear fender
5) Another option is the 31x10.5x15. Thoughts? Will it rub, how will it look on the stock, and with a 2-2.5”lift.
31 will fit stock height, but will look small once the truck is lifted.
6) I have had a friend tell me that with the 16” wheel there will be less sidewall on the tire which means there will be less cushion on an already rough ride. Anybody have any thoughts on that? (I realize I’m not buying this FJ for the comfy ride.
1” of wheel diameter means 1/2” less tire radius. You won’t notice the difference.
Finally,

Does anyone have any pictures of any of the following combinations:

FJ40 with:

-15” wheels no lift and 33x10.5x15 tires.
-15” wheels with a 2-2.5” lift with 33x10.5x15 tires.

-15” wheels no lift with 31x10.5x15 tires.
-15” wheels with a 2-2.5” lift with 31x10.5x15 tires.

-16” wheels with no lift and 235/85r16 tires.
-16” wheels with a 2-2.5” lift and 235/85r16 tires.

-16” wheels no lift with 265/75r16.
-16” wheels with 2” lift and 265/75r16 tires.


Thank you all for any input and pictures. Sorry for this getting so long.
 

firefighterjed

SILVER Star
Joined
Dec 2, 2018
Messages
499
Location
Idaho
My pics don’t help a ton, since the rear fender is cut out, but you get some idea ….

Stock height with 31x10.5r15 on OEM 15x6 rims
E945207D-CCFF-461F-AFC4-5DECC2A52942.jpeg


with Old Man Emu (OME) 2.5”ish lift. Same wheels and tires as above
A60CAC50-7244-4EDE-B693-7EB9AAC6C5AA.jpeg


Now 33x12.50r15 on 15x9 wheels
3F84D64A-E0E4-417E-837F-7B5C412B8784.jpeg
 

4Cruisers

Supporting Vendor
SILVER Star
Joined
Apr 2, 2015
Messages
7,639
If you don't go with a lift, 30X9.50R15's fit nicely. This is a shot of my mostly stock '76 FJ40 with FJ60 wheels and 30X9.50s - and original 46-year-old springs. I just received my OME suspension kit on Thursday, will eventually go to either 235/85R16s on 70-Series wheels or the new Kenda Klever 33X9.50s on the FJ60 wheels.




MERUS Hill Climb.jpg
 
Joined
Sep 21, 2021
Messages
27
Location
Missouri
Thank you all. This is very useful. Thanks firefighterjed for answering the questions. Definitely helpful to hear from someone that knows. And thank you everyone else for the pictures. They really help. Nice rigs by the way. May also check out the Kendra klevers now.
 
Joined
Sep 21, 2021
Messages
27
Location
Missouri
YotaRecon97, those look nice. Any issues with rubbing or hitting the wheel wells? Did you need to bend the pitman arm or anything to make them fit?
 
Joined
Nov 24, 2021
Messages
22
Location
Southern Illinois
YotaRecon97, those look nice. Any issues with rubbing or hitting the wheel wells? Did you need to bend the pitman arm or anything to make them fit?
Thanks! Only issues I’ve seen is that 1: it’s a tight fit in the rear so I’m looking into a small shackle lift, and 2: the rim rubs agains the knuckle just a bit so I’m currently looking at doing either a 1/4 or 1/2” spacer
 
Joined
Mar 3, 2012
Messages
627
Location
Indiana
Something to consider in terms of ride quality is the load range for the tire. I would strongly recommend sticking with load range C or lighter if at all possible. Load range D and E are common and are rated for much heavier vehicles and their potential cargo capacity. The heavier load range tires will be super stiff even at lower tire pressures.
 

brooklyn

SILVER Star
Joined
May 11, 2007
Messages
770
You might want to consider a good used set of tires while you determine how you want to configure your suspension. Also, after you drive a bit, you may find you have to reprioritize what you want to spend your money on.
 
Joined
Feb 5, 2018
Messages
2,436
Location
Santa Fe, New Mexico
-15” wheels with a 2-2.5” lift with 33x10.5x15 tires.

The vehicle came with American Racing wheels 15x8 IIRC.

73 40 Front.jpg


73 40 Side.jpg


My old truck was a basket of issues related to the tire purchase. In my youth, I squandered what I had on BFG Mud Terrains, then tried to make them fit the vehicle. Rubbed on drag link. Rubbed on tub corner behind driver (lost part of a tire knob that night after install). Then installed lift springs, still rubbed. Street manners were horrible. I really don't think that the 40 is heavy enough to make those tires conform to the shape of the ground under them without running way underinflated (think beadlocks and low psi). I really wish that I had not asked for Mud or Pirate 4x4 advice when I built it, as I had never experienced a stock 40, in good order, as a frame of reference. I eventually had to move the back axle on the perch 1". Had I had some 31" All-Terrains at the time, I'd probably still have the vehicle, but I couldn't get away from the idea of upgrades, so, I ran out of time, space, and energy. The last that I heard, the vehicle was chopped up and made wider on a different frame.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 21, 2021
Messages
27
Location
Missouri
Thanks everyone. Maybe I will just drive it for a bit as is when I get it. I will evaluate the need for tires myself when it arrives (which should be in the next day or two). If I can get by with them for a while, i will drive on them and see what I think before making a decision.
 

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