A Custom Rim Buyer’s Guide

In efforts to make their vehicles more unique, many car and 4×4 owners choose aftermarket accessories, which can include everything from new paint to wheels and tyres. Among this group, custom wheels have become quite the popular way to set a vehicle apart from all the rest. However, the wheel buying process can be very confusing for those who are doing it for the first time. This wheel buying guide can help drivers buy the right rims, no matter what they drive.

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Rims vs. Wheels: Is there Really a Difference?

Where automobiles are concerned, many people mistakenly confuse certain components with the names commonly assigned to them. Nowhere is such an error more visible than where the Ford Ranger wheels and tyres are concerned. Technically speaking, the tyres are the rubber parts that touch the road. The tyres are mounted on wheels that include (but aren’t synonymous with) the rims. Before buying custom wheels, the driver should understand what they’re looking for.

Wheel Production can be Confusing

Many people use the terms “rim” and “wheel” interchangeably because of the manufacturing process. Here, a wheel is made using a single piece of sheet metal, bent into a cylinder and welded. Once the unit is assembled, it makes up a vehicle’s wheel. On single-piece wheels, Fuel rims and wheels cannot be separated, and when one part is damaged, the entire wheel must be replaced.

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“Rims” Used as a Slang Term

Another error is quite common, even among those who consider themselves automotive enthusiasts. Most people tend to use the term “rims” to refer to XD wheels; it’s impossible to buy rims without buying a wheel, and the usage has become so common that it’s widely accepted. Those who say they have custom rims actually have aftermarket wheels including rims.

Chrome Rims

The most common (and eye-catching) choice in custom wheels are those made from chrome. Most who refer to custom wheels as rims are talking about chrome wheels. The introduction of alloy wheels allowed drivers to reap the benefits of the wheels’ light weight, namely increased road control and fuel economy. Chrome wheels are known for their great aesthetics, and with them, hubcaps are no longer necessary. Today’s chrome wheels are available in numerous designs, sizes and shapes, with the same great performance you’d get from stock alloys.

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Aluminium Wheels

Aluminium wheels are commonly found on most 4WDs and cars. However, the terminology is vague because there are multiple types of rims, created through a variety of methods and resulting in wheels of different quality levels. The effects of choosing aluminium wheels will vary from one customer to the next, and from one type of product to the next. Therefore, it’s important to look at custom aluminium wheels and consider their aesthetic effects before purchasing.

Classification of Alloy Wheels and General Maintenance Tips

Alloy wheels go a long way in enhancing the performance of a vehicle while uplifting its aesthetic appeal. Auto enthusiasts have been opting for alloy rims over the conventional iron wheels for a long time now, although, the technology used back then has improved over time, meaning that today’s alloys are stronger, lighter and more suitable for your all-terrain needs, as compared to what was previously on offer.

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Primary Classification:

Alloy wheels can be classified into multiple types depending on how they are made, practical uses and the materials used, and we shall discuss a few types in brief here.

Alloy wheels are either cast or forged, and this determines their use. While cast alloys work better for the showoffs, forged alloys are used extensively for strenuous tasks, for example, off-roading expeditions.

Alloy wheels are mostly made up of aluminium nowadays due to the lightweight nature of the alloy, although, magnesium alloy used to be in demand back in the 1970s – 80s. However, magnesium was discarded soon due to the highly combustive nature of the metal, which proved to be a problem during accidents, since, in case of a fire, the wheels burned hot and were difficult to extinguish.

Aluminum has similar properties to magnesium, but it does not burn as vigorously. As a result, aluminium is the metal of choice when it comes to manufacturing lightweight wheels. However, choosing a set of wheels for your ride is not an easy task. Ask any amateur and he will confirm that there is more to the process than meets the eye.

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Points to Ponder:

The foremost fact that comes to mind is deciphering the actual use of the wheel. If your primary focus is to show off, you can opt for a set of cast alloy rims from any reputed wheel-maker. Make it a point to run a background check on the manufacturer and the seller before investing, since quality is a major concern with alloy wheels and the market is filled with cheap duplicates.

On the contrary, if you want the alloys to enhance the overall performance of your vehicle, make it a point to opt for forged wheels, since their construction is suitable for absorbing greater amounts of thrashing.Hence, you do not have to worry about the wheels cracking in the middle of the street.

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The same applies for off road adventures. If you plan on taking your vehicle off road, and are looking for a set of alloys wheels for your ride, take your time out to research the market, before settling down for a certain brand. KMC Wheels are an example of dual purpose wheels, the kind that can be used both on and off road, as well as for showing off!

Maintaining a set of alloy wheels can be difficult. Hence, make it a point to check for cracks or dents periodically. Replacing an alloy is an expensive task, since, they cannot be repaired easily. It is always smart to make a well-informed decision!

Buying Off Road Wheels

Your choice in 4WD wheels can affect your vehicle’s performance, and it can also change its appearance drastically. It’s important to choose wheels that are the right size for your tyres and your vehicle, and people replace them for a variety of reasons. Regardless of why you’re looking for new Speedy wheels, it’s important for you to know what to look for, and to know the differences between various components.

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Rims and Wheels

Though the terms “wheel” and “rim” are often used as if they are separate parts, there’s little difference between the two. The rim is seldom seen because it’s a part of the wheel that holds the tyre in place and is attached to your vehicle. The tyre is a separate part, rotated by your vehicle’s axle and wheel along the road. When you get a flat tyre, changing that tyre generally resolves the issue though driving on a flat can cause wheel damage. There’s rarely the need to replace the rim, wheel or lugs.

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Vital Wheel Measurements

The most important part of finding new TSW wheels is knowing your vehicle’s measurements. You’ll need to determine your wheel width, rim diameter and bolt pattern before buying wheels, to prevent damage, decreased performance and the potential for a dangerous blowout.

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  • Rim diameter is measured across the wheel’s centre, and it should be the same as the tyre diameter. To determine this number, you can measure your current rims or tyres with a ruler, or look for the information on the tyre’s body.
  • Rim widths are given as a range that can safely be used with a particular type of tyre. To get the best fuel economy, handling and performance from your vehicle, it’s best to choose a width that’s roughly in the middle of the range.
  • Bolt patterns are specific to each wheel and vehicle, and common options include four-, five-, six- and eight-lug setups. The bolt pattern size is distinguished by lug number as well as the hub circle diameter. Bolt diameter can be found by measuring distance between two opposite bolts, and bolt pattern is commonly written as the bolt number multiplied by the hub circle’s diameter.

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Custom Wheels

Custom wheels are becoming more popular and they are available in a variety of options for those who want to change the performance and appearance of their vehicle. Many 4WD owners opt for custom wheels, but they are also available for passenger cars. Though a custom wheel package is usually bought to change a vehicle’s appearance, it can change handling and performance when paired with the right tyres. Regardless of the Monster wheels you choose, you can find your chosen design in numerous bolt patterns and sizes, making it easy to find the perfect fit for any vehicle.