Steel wheel Build?

HandForged

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So in my search for wheels for my project truck, what I really want is a 16" steel wheel with the hub cap clips in them for a factory look. Now I know they are made and sold but the price is exorbitant at 240.00 a wheel. I contacted a couple companies today that sell the steel wheel empty shells. Stockton wheel was one of them. I have a good amount of the OEM hubcap wheels here. The center section measures just over 13". The steel shells that Stockton and a couple others sell are the same inner diameter. Why not drill out the rivets and use the centers on the new shells?

I will quantify this with a few things. I am an experienced machinist and welder. I've built steel wheels before with the military 16.5 press in centers and with the appropriate jig can be welded up with 0.020" or less runout, which is better than most factory wheels you can buy. Cost would be about 60.00 per shell and time. Sounds good to me. The gentleman that I spoke with said there was a possibility of getting a 17" wheel shell with a similar center diameter. I have not heard back for him as of yet. If they have a 17" shell that I can use the centers from the wheels I already have, I'll be pulling the trigger on this. Just wondering if any of the brethren here have made their own?
 

Tank5

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I am after the same thing but want an 8" wide rim, so I can mount a little bigger tire but still use Toyota hub caps. I don't feel like I have the skill to build wheels but I would like to see it done.

Currently I have a set of vintique smoothie steel rims in 17x8. They use a gm hub cab. I think my plan as of right now is to modify Toyota caps to fit the GM wheel when I get to it. I feel like modifying the hub cap is a cheaper safer option for me.
 

HandForged

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I am after the same thing but want an 8" wide rim, so I can mount a little bigger tire but still use Toyota hub caps. I don't feel like I have the skill to build wheels but I would like to see it done.

Currently I have a set of vintique smoothie steel rims in 17x8. They use a gm hub cab. I think my plan as of right now is to modify Toyota caps to fit the GM wheel when I get to it. I feel like modifying the hub cap is a cheaper safer option for me.
Have you ever trued a spoked motorcycle wheel? I know that most people haven't but essentially that is exactly what you would do with a truck wheel. After the center is tapped into the shell, at whatever backspacing you require, you build a truing stand. Now it doesn't have to be overly complicated, just sturdy. Think a hub with bearings on some sort of shaft. Supported on either side. You make a few marks on the shell, get it as close as you can with a caliper as you spin it and tack weld one spot. Rotate 180 degrees and check the runout. adjust until it's 0 on the dial if possible, with a hammer and light taps. tack again. Now just repeat this over and over again until it has a series of tack welds and you can spin the wheel on the stand. rolling it and checking runout with the dial indicator. You're looking for zero all the time but you aren't going to get it. 0.020 is really good but don't be surprised if you measure a stock wheel for reference and get something like 0.090" or MORE... on a truing stand some stock wheels look like a weeble wobble. Finish it up with what I call a certifiable weld. If you aren't capable of doing that, take it to a certified welder and let him finish the job for you. it has to be welded, cooled move as far from the original weld as possible, repeat until all of the seams have been welded. It will be stronger than most steel wheels you are likely to see. Especially if both sides are welded out.

Also, 16x8 wheel shells are fairly standard. So it would be easy to get them.
 
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GLTHFJ60

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I have seen people do this by taking stock 40 series wheels (with the clips) and having them widened by a company similar to stockton wheel. Pricey to have wheels widened, but the only way to get that look AFAIK.
 

Dilspec

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Stockton will do it. I had them do a pair of 40 series wheels it was about $1000+shipping roughly to have them widened and powder coated.
 

pb4ugo

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Maybe about a yr ago, There was a thread somewhere in the 40 section about widening stk wheels. One of the members mentioned he found Summit was offering 15 or 16 x 8 wheels shells and he was going to attempt adapting fj40 centers in to them. I never heard if he was successful or not. During that time I did checkout the Summit wheel shells ID and compared it to the 40's wheel center OD on welded rims and it looked like they were a vary close match. Yrs ago I had a friend adapted 8 lug centers to H1 Hummer bead lock wheels.
 
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HandForged

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Stockton will do it for sure. Problem is the price and turn around time. I think he quoted me 150 per wheel to use my centers in a 16 wheel. Price wise that doesn't work out with shipping both ways, buying the 16" premade OEM wheels are only 240 each. Not sure what they charge to widen the wheels but they have 8" wheel shells so putting the fj40 centers in the larger shells would be the way to go.
 
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Here are a couple of thoughts.
1. You can buy the clips, I think Cityracer, just weld those to a 16 or 17 wheel

2. Ever try to get a hub cap off a stock wheel, now add another 2 1/2" deep shell and try to get it off. You have to make or use a special tool to get to them to get off.

I do not like hubcap wheel because they are a pain to get off. I tell my customers that I will try to not scratch the wheel or the caps and sometimes have to catch the cap as it flys in the air. I even have the proper hub cap tool to remove and tap them back on.
 

HandForged

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Here are a couple of thoughts.
1. You can buy the clips, I think Cityracer, just weld those to a 16 or 17 wheel

2. Ever try to get a hub cap off a stock wheel, now add another 2 1/2" deep shell and try to get it off. You have to make or use a special tool to get to them to get off.

I do not like hubcap wheel because they are a pain to get off. I tell my customers that I will try to not scratch the wheel or the caps and sometimes have to catch the cap as it flys in the air. I even have the proper hub cap tool to remove and tap them back on.
I looked those clips up. 13.00 each. or you can save a little money and spend 300 for a full set.:rofl::rofl:
 
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I looked those clips up. 13.00 each. or you can save a little money and spend 300 for a full set.:rofl::rofl:
Welllllll, $300 plus $400 for a set of your choice steelies +$700 plus a few hours to set up? Might still be cheaper. If you look around you might be able to find some clips from a early Ford or Chevy or Dodge that would do the same thing. Do a search, you might find something. AND yes $300 for a set of clips is crazy!!
 

HandForged

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Where I'm at is more like 300 for the shells, wheels with clips I already have and the rest is my labor and time. I weigh the cost of things against what it would take for me to do it myself. Is it worth my time to do this or should I just buy the dang thing. 300 bucks and a couple days work to get what I need or a couple thousand and get it next week sort of thing.
 
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