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Old 07-08-2018, 01:16 AM   #1  
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Widening aluminum wheels?

anybody have any experience with this? I ended up with a set of NOS SLP 3rd gen 17x8 ZR1's recently and I mocked them up on my 92 1LE and fell in love with the period correct look, but want to keep running the 315 rear tire size I have been for years. I called and talked to a few shops that offer this process and I ended up shipping 2 of them off to Eric Vaughn down in the LA area to have him widen them to a 17x11 for the rears. Has anybody else done a set of widened wheels???
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Old 07-08-2018, 07:44 AM   #2  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

I know a lot of people use WeldCraft.
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Old 07-08-2018, 10:02 AM   #3  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

I talked with weldcraft and they seem very confident in their process, with TIG welding a strip of aluminum rolled into the cut wheel to make it wider. Eric Vaughn was a little more money, but he cuts the wheel, ads the material using a rolled barrel used in 2 and 3 piece wheels so there is only one joint, then he machine cuts both sides to they fit together rather than just a butt weld, and he uses a rotating machine of some kind along with some sort of fixed arm for his MIG aluminum machine just like Alumimum high pressure tanks, and or how a lot of the big wheel companies weld the face into billet wheels. I like the idea of that a lot better than 2 herliarc butt welds personally.
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Old 07-08-2018, 03:00 PM   #4  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

I used a small shop in Burlington nj. Wheelworks. Mine were done probably 10 years ago and he did a very nice job. Cost 250$ a wheel then. These were done by cutting the wheel and adding a rolled piece to the two halves so there are 2 weld seams on the inside of the wheels. Either way is fine, but I would agree that a single weld is probably "better".
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Old 08-07-2018, 05:56 AM   #5  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Please post pics when you get the widened SLP rims back. I am very curious how well they will fit. Are you planning to run spacers?
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Old 08-07-2018, 06:27 AM   #6  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

A couple friends have had it done and I want to but just can't seem to bring myself to do it for some reason
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Old 08-07-2018, 06:52 AM   #7  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

It is up to over $300 per wheel where I am
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Old 08-07-2018, 07:36 AM   #8  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Heliarc, lol
Done right the GTAW weld is better than the GMAW since you don't get the cleaning effect from the AC weld like in GTAW. Either way, one or two welds, it's the same strength
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Old 08-07-2018, 09:36 AM   #9  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

+1 for Weldcraft. I had them repair a wheel, did a great job.
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Old 08-07-2018, 03:14 PM   #10  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

+1 for weldcraft. They widened my 10 spokes on my 4th gen too 10.5in. Excellent quality!
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Old 08-07-2018, 04:00 PM   #11  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

I find it almost funny that is can be $300 to widen a wheel, when I can sell you a set of 17" x 9.5" wheels for $1,100 that blow the SLP ones away in terms of quality and functionality.
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Old 08-07-2018, 04:04 PM   #12  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Doesn't matter if its a good deal or not if you are after a specific look.
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Old 08-10-2018, 04:11 PM   #13  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?






I got the wheels back from Eric Vaughn Machine today, the wheels look great, no scratches of scuffs on the front side, Eric was super easy to work with, got the wheels done exactly when he said he was, and was totally reasonable on freight. He also shipped the wheels back in double walled incredibly sturdy boxes which was nice, as well as wrapped the lips in protective plastic. Exactly what i wanted, I couldn't be happier with the whole deal. 2 thumbs up for Eric Vaughn Machine!
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Old 08-10-2018, 04:17 PM   #14  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Looks great, now lets see some pics on the car!
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Old 08-10-2018, 04:17 PM   #15  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

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I find it almost funny that is can be $300 to widen a wheel, when I can sell you a set of 17" x 9.5" wheels for $1,100 that blow the SLP ones away in terms of quality and functionality.
thats still damn near $300 per wheel, not to mention they look nothing like a factory wheel. Obviously I was going for a factory wheel look. There are a ton of people who run ZR1 wheels on these cars because They look correct on the cars. The SLP ZR1's don't require spacers or adapters on the third gens, but they only made them in 17x8, I just wanted a wider look on the back of the car. I'm sure the CTW's are nice wheels, but in my personal opinion they look like they belong on an import car, that's just me.
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Old 08-10-2018, 05:48 PM   #16  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Looks good! Definitely a different method than Weldcraft.
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Old 08-10-2018, 07:26 PM   #17  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Nothing good is inexpensive - that much in life is true.

Not only did the ZR1 wheel only come on the Corvette, it was put out years after the last 92 f-body rolled off the line. They only look correct on late C4 Corvettes. The only wheel that one might say is period correct is the Ronals that SLP put on the Firehawk. To me, I associate 4th gens with ZR1 wheels, along with late C4 Corvettes.

I'm not sure why SLP made the ZR1 for the 3rd gens - they didn't sell all that well and at only 8" wide gave no actual advantage other than a smidge more brake clearance.

CTW wheels are very similar to the factory ZR1 wheels in looks - but have so many advantages (lighter, better brake clearance, better brake cooling, easily fixable, and are proven race winners) that we have sold dozens of sets to people on this forum.

Don't get me wrong, the SLP wheels are good quality and fit right - but they are just too narrow to compete with what is on the market today at 9" or even 9.5" widths.

Quote:
Originally Posted by charlie6178 View Post
Thats still damn near $300 per wheel, not to mention they look nothing like a factory wheel. Obviously I was going for a factory wheel look. There are a ton of people who run ZR1 wheels on these cars because They look correct on the cars. The SLP ZR1's don't require spacers or adapters on the third gens, but they only made them in 17x8, I just wanted a wider look on the back of the car. I'm sure the CTW's are nice wheels, but in my personal opinion they look like they belong on an import car, that's just me.
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Old 08-10-2018, 07:49 PM   #18  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

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Nothing good is inexpensive - that much in life is true.

Not only did the ZR1 wheel only come on the Corvette, it was put out years after the last 92 f-body rolled off the line. They only look correct on late C4 Corvettes. The only wheel that one might say is period correct is the Ronals that SLP put on the Firehawk. To me, I associate 4th gens with ZR1 wheels, along with late C4 Corvettes.

I'm not sure why SLP made the ZR1 for the 3rd gens - they didn't sell all that well and at only 8" wide gave no actual advantage other than a smidge more brake clearance.

CTW wheels are very similar to the factory ZR1 wheels in looks - but have so many advantages (lighter, better brake clearance, better brake cooling, easily fixable, and are proven race winners) that we have sold dozens of sets to people on this forum.

Don't get me wrong, the SLP wheels are good quality and fit right - but they are just too narrow to compete with what is on the market today at 9" or even 9.5" widths.
I'm sure they didn't sell well being that they were only made in that one 17x8 option. Personally I think that's plenty for a front wheel on a street driven third gen, and I went 17x11 rear for the 315/35/17 rear tire that a lot of guys put on these cars. I think it looks right, personally I don't think a 275 is enough tire for the 91-92 ground effects. There are so many people who love the look of the ZR1 on a third gen, I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks they just look right on the car. Plus I have a 92 Z28 1LE that I am throwing the SLP catalog at so I wanted the OG SLP wheels
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Old 08-17-2018, 12:57 AM   #19  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?


So I ordered tires today, I went 245/45R17 front and 315/35R17 rear. I went with the Mickey Thompson Sport Comp. it's newer tire, I used it as a front tire with a set of drag radials on a 4th gen I had and I really liked the way they fit, looked, and rode. Should have them from summit in a few days, and will have them on the car immediately.
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Old 08-17-2018, 09:15 AM   #20  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Awesome, I am planning to do the very same thing with my SLP rims by sending them to Weldcraft. Please post installed pics as I am very interested in what its going to take to modify the car to get this wheel and tire combo on the car. If my measurements are right the back spacing is going to be very close to the bump stop.
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Old 08-17-2018, 11:41 AM   #21  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

I have a 17x11 6.75" BS wheel on the car now with a 315 nitto drag radial on it and it clears the bump stops. I put ARP stud in it and bought some H&R hubcentric .300" spacers so I am positive it will clear.
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Old 08-25-2018, 10:17 AM   #22  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?


I got the tires this week, just haven't had time to make it to the tire shop to have them mounted. Hopefully Monday or Tuesday I will be able to get them on the car and take it for a drive. Stay tuned!
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Old 08-25-2018, 11:56 AM   #23  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Way cool !! - cant wait to see them on the car - CONGRATS !!
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Old 08-29-2018, 11:10 PM   #24  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?


Got these big MF'ers mounted today and the 315's look great on the 11" wide wheels. I'm going to bolt them on the car finally and get it off my lift tomorrow and post pics
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Old 08-29-2018, 11:44 PM   #25  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Those look great. I just read through the last page and looked the shop up you used and its less then a mile from my Cabinet shop. Good to know
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Old 08-30-2018, 05:57 PM   #26  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Those fit under the car?
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Old 08-30-2018, 08:40 PM   #27  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

I got them on the 1LE today and I love the look and it drives amazing! More pics soon!
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Old 08-30-2018, 09:02 PM   #28  
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:25 PM   #29  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Any clearance issues with the rears?
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Old 08-31-2018, 12:40 AM   #30  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

The rears I put an eibach hubcentric 12mm slide on spacer with ARP studs to get the wheel to sit right where I wanted it in the quarter panel, and it's about 1/2" inward from flush and zero rubbing inside on the bump stop area or even the front of the wheel tub
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Old 08-31-2018, 05:36 PM   #31  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Damn, I held my 10 1/2 wide 10 spokes with 315s up to mine and it didn't look like there was a chance in hell they would fit. I'll have to revisit. lol
Do you have any shots down the side?

Last edited by 7_ws6ta_9; 08-31-2018 at 05:38 PM. Reason: added more
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Old 08-31-2018, 08:19 PM   #32  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

That looks killer!!!! May have to send a couple of mine off now. Thanks for making me spend more $$$$
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Old 08-31-2018, 10:22 PM   #33  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Are widened cast wheels allowed at the track? Road track and 1/4 mile.
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Old 08-31-2018, 11:05 PM   #34  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?


I'm not sure if they are allowed at the track or not. I can definitely understand concern about them. I am a machinist by trade and would much rather have not gone with a widening process but wanted this look for the car so here we are haha. Pictures do it absolutely no justice. The wheels and stance on the car is in my eyes just about perfect. I have been driving it the last 2 days and I'm falling in love with it all over again.
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Old 08-31-2018, 11:07 PM   #35  
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Old 09-01-2018, 07:45 AM   #36  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Love the look!
Let's see an @ss shot!
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Old 09-01-2018, 11:17 AM   #37  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?



Thanks guys, I think it was well worth the wait and the money going this route. I couldn't be happier with the way it looks.
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Old 09-01-2018, 07:38 PM   #38  
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Very nice. The fit is perfect! You definitely nailed this.
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Old 09-01-2018, 07:43 PM   #39  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Looks Awesome! Stock springs? Can we get a pic from the rear and inside the fender wheel?
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Old 09-01-2018, 10:26 PM   #40  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

No it's on sportline springs. I will take some behind shots and fender clearance shots tomorrow. Next plan of action now since the wheels look so good is refinishing the look of the calipers behind them
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Old 09-05-2018, 09:44 AM   #41  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Tracking them shouldn't be an issue. I've had mine on several tracks (dragstrips) with out a problem.
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Old 09-05-2018, 09:57 AM   #42  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Great looking car!
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Old 09-05-2018, 11:19 AM   #43  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

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Tracking them shouldn't be an issue. I've had mine on several tracks (dragstrips) with out a problem.
But did you tell them about it?

The reason I asked the question is because rules generally are made to keep drivers safe. I'm wondering how racing bodies view welding on cast aluminum wheels.
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Old 09-05-2018, 01:29 PM   #44  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

So supposedly eric machines a lip in both the inside and outside before pushing them together so they are in a sense interlocked, then welds them inside and out. He claims a lot of saltflat racers have used his wheels for years. I can't imagine it would be an issue, and I would have no concerns putting some drag radials on the wheels and racing with them, but I personally just am not planning on doing that at this point. However I am planning on buying a set of OER firehawk reproductions soon and sending off 2 of them go eric to have them narrowed to a 4.5" wide for a front runner so I can have a drag setup for when I do want to take it to the track.
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Old 09-05-2018, 03:39 PM   #45  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

Man that looks sharp!!!!! Nice job!
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Old 09-11-2018, 03:18 PM   #46  
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Re: Widening aluminum wheels?

No, I did not point them out directly but he asked me about my spacers to make sure they were legal and I did tell him the were widened.
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