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Old 03-13-2013, 08:13 PM   #1
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15" Wheel VS 17" Wheel

I have tried a search and have not been able to answer these questions with the results.
I am looking at pricing out a set of 35"/315 Tires and have found that the Goodyear MT/Rs are considerably cheaper with a 15" hole.
Other than wheel selection and options, is there any reason that I wouldn't want a 15" wheel on this size tire? Would a 15" alloy wheel fit ok, with 4-4.5" BS on a 2.5" lifted '13 JKU?
I've read a ton of great reviews regarding the Duratracs, but how do the MT/Rs compare?
Thanks!

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Old 03-14-2013, 08:38 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fitnesstec View Post
I am looking at pricing out a set of 35"/315 Tires and have found that the Goodyear MT/Rs are considerably cheaper with a 15" hole.
Other than wheel selection and options, is there any reason that I wouldn't want a 15" wheel on this size tire?
The smaller the wheel size, the cheaper the tire. In general, you can often buy tires AND wheels in the 15" size for the same price, or cheaper, than 17" tires alone.

The advantages, other than $$, are lighter weight, bigger contact patch and fatter sidewall (which some see as a disadvantage).

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Originally Posted by Fitnesstec View Post
Would a 15" alloy wheel fit ok, with 4-4.5" BS on a 2.5" lifted '13 JKU?
15" alloy wheels will generally fit over your brake calipers (not all will...and almost none of the steelies will). However, with some 35" tires there have been balancing issues. If you're gonna run 35's, you might wanna consider a 16" wheel size. You'll have more tire choices, too.

Also, the 15" wheels are mostly 3.75" backspacing, and lower. This means they'll stick out farther from your Jeep, which puts extra stress on your ball joints, etc. Not a big deal...but if you're looking for something in the 4.5" bs range, you're gonna have to move up a size, to the 16" wheels.

All that said, the problem you'll have with the 16" DuraTrac is, it's an E-rated tire. Heavier than other DT's, and quite a bit harsher on-road. I run em on my rig, and don't often recommend them to other Jeepers unless they know what they're getting into. I like my Jeep to drive like a truck.

Everything's a trade-off.

Don't let what I said about the 15" wheel size scare you away; lots of peeps run the 15s with DuraTracs and have no issues. But it's better to be aware of possible problems than to get blindsided by em later...

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Old 03-14-2013, 09:39 AM   #3
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Haven't people had balancing issues w/ 35s on 15" wheels?
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:15 PM   #4
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Haven't people had balancing issues w/ 35s on 15" wheels?
Yup. From above:

Quote:
Originally Posted by kbwwolf View Post
However, with some 35" tires there have been balancing issues.
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Old 03-14-2013, 01:21 PM   #5
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My bad, I skim posts too quickly when I'm at work sometimes. You gave a good answer.
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:37 PM   #6
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kbwwolf,

Great post, great info....when you say no big deal to the extra stress on the ball joints...how do you quantify that? I have a very reputable shop near here that recommends very strongly against 15" wheels because of the stress increases... Have you seen any engineering numbers on the stress differences?

Mike
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:42 PM   #7
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No big deal. Cuz you jut replace them. Regularly. Lol
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:44 PM   #8
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kbwwolf,

Great post, great info....when you say no big deal to the extra stress on the ball joints...how do you quantify that? I have a very reputable shop near here that recommends very strongly against 15" wheels because of the stress increases... Have you seen any engineering numbers on the stress differences?

Mike
No, I mean it more in a sense that the stock ball joints stink, as is. Sooner or later you're gonna have to replace em, whether you go with aftermarket wheels/tires or not – especially if you wheel much.

Obviously, running a bigger setup with smaller backspacing will hasten their demise.

My thinking is just to get as much out of them as possible, with the understanding that, once they go, it's worthwhile to swap em for something like the Synergy ball joints, which are stout.

I'm running 35s, and expect mine to bite the dust in the near future.
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Old 03-15-2013, 07:09 PM   #9
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All good info... I’m just thinking with as tight as 15" fit on a JK when on the trail if debris such as mud with rocks gets into you wheel seems it could be detrimental to either caliper or serious damage to the wheel.... Much less at 55 down the highway a rock fly in inside of wheel jam up and lock up one wheel...

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15" wheel , 35" tire , duratrac , goodyear mt/r

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