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Old 02-15-2007, 06:35 AM   #1
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Question Wheels: Black Steelies or stock Rubicon

Alright, sorry but I need some more advice. Gettin 33" tires and I was looking at some black wheels to go with them. I have a Black Rubicon and was looking at something like the Xtreme Steel-Series 97 wheels because I like the look of black wheels. My question is, do I stick with the stock Rubicon wheels or go for black wheels? I was looking at prices and I could get the wheels for around $75 a piece but I see that the price of the stock Rubicon wheels are like 3 times that. Would this be downgrading? Also, if I did go with the new wheels, what size would be best with 285/75R16 tires? Thank you for all of the good advice!

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Old 02-15-2007, 08:01 AM   #2
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Rubi wheels are 16", other stock wheels are 15". Keep in mind, tires for larger wheels are generally more expensive, so a 33" tire for a 16" wheel will likely be more expensive than the same tire for a 15" wheel. Plus, with 15" wheels, you can get measurements a LOT easier to comprehend - 33x12.5x15" is much easier for me than the metric.

Steel wheels are not a downgrade per se, but they do have things to consider (getting out of shape/round, rust, etc).

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Old 02-15-2007, 08:07 AM   #3
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Ok, what if I painted my stock Rubicon wheels black? Would this work? Would it last?
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Old 02-15-2007, 08:14 AM   #4
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What about doing both? I have the Rock Krawler black wheels and I kept my stock Moabs too.
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Old 02-15-2007, 08:23 AM   #5
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Like Simple said, I'm having both. I don't have the MOAB's but I'm keeping my 15" alloys with 32x11.50's and I'll be getting some steel 15x8's for my 33's. AT's on the 32's and MT's on the 33's
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Old 02-15-2007, 08:42 AM   #6
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if you keep the rubi wheels and run 33s on them, you will need wheel spacers. and as mentioned, the tires will run quite a bit more because of the wheel size.

just for reference....i got 33x12.50 r15 BFG MTs for $170 each. my buddy just got 285/70 r17 (33x12.50 r17) BFG ATs for $220 each. $50 more, it's an AT which is cheaper for the same size than a MT, but still more expensive because the wheel size is bigger.

if you do decide on black steelies...which i would...forget about those procomp xtreme steel series. they are way overpriced and are the same wheel as the crager soft 8s which can be had for $34 a wheel. i got my 5 installed, mounted and balanced for $180 at discount tire (using a price match from summit racing).

anyway, i love mine on my black TJ....


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Old 02-15-2007, 09:22 AM   #7
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Ok, sounds like a great plan. What size wheels should I go with? 15 x 8 with 4" backspacing? Again, I'm going with 33" tires.

I forgot to mention earlier that I will be putting a 3.5" RE lift on before I get the bigger tires.

And TXST8tj.....thats a nice jeep! thats what I'm going for.
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Old 02-15-2007, 09:33 AM   #8
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I did keep mine on stock wheels, but went the spacer route.
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Old 02-15-2007, 10:23 AM   #9
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The stock Rubicon wheels are nice. I am going with black steelies on mine since I have stock 15x7 wheels and can't do much with them.
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Old 02-15-2007, 10:40 AM   #10
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The money you would save on 15" vs 16" tires would pay for a set of soft eights. (you can get them for $39 each). Granted, there are problems associated with steel wheels, but they are cheep enough that you can replace them with out too much expense. Rocks can play havoc on alloy, one good hit and they can be trash.

I'm very happy with my 33x12.5 Goodrich A/Ts on 15x8 soft eights. They have great road manners and do well in the rocks and mud. 15k miles and they are barely showing wear. I also like the look.
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Old 02-15-2007, 10:45 AM   #11
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I originally had aluminum wheels, then switched to steel for 3-4 years, then went back to aluminum. I don't know if there are rocks where you are but steel wheels don't hold up to rocks worth a crap. They dent and bend too easily plug you have to keep after them with a wire brush and paint to keep the rust at bay. You can even see the old steel wheels in my avitar to the left.

I'm back with aluminum and I'll never go back to steel.
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Old 02-15-2007, 11:06 AM   #12
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I'd rather replace a cheap steel wheel than an expensive aluminum wheel.
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Old 02-15-2007, 11:59 AM   #13
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i have to say that i like the look of larger tires on the stock moabs...but i will say that scouts jeep looked even better after he got the steelies.
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Old 02-15-2007, 12:00 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gcdcpakmbs View Post
Like Simple said, I'm having both. I don't have the MOAB's but I'm keeping my 15" alloys with 32x11.50's and I'll be getting some steel 15x8's for my 33's. AT's on the 32's and MT's on the 33's
you'll need spacers for the stock alloys.
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Old 02-15-2007, 12:24 PM   #15
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If i rubi i would keep the stock moab wheels but that just me you can go with black steel and i dont think that there is a big difference in them.
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Old 02-15-2007, 02:55 PM   #16
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Okay, thank you.....I think I'm talked out of the steel wheels. I do like the thought of having black wheels but the MOABS are nice too. This way I won't have to worry about trashing them because around here there are a lot of rocks, and when it snows its a mess. Thanks for the opinions......any more throw em at me.

Also, I was reading stories about tailgates and stock spare tire carriers getting ruined from trying to mount a bigger spare tire. I am thinking that since the Rubicon comes with stock 31's that the carrier and tailgate will be able to handle the 33's that I'm gonna buy. Opinions on this??
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Old 02-15-2007, 03:33 PM   #17
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Unless Jeep reinforced the spare tire bracket or you have some means of support for the spare 33x12.50 tire, the bracket isn't up to that much weight. My old OE spare tire bracket cracked and failed within a year of installing a 33x.12.50 tire on an aluminum wheel.
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Old 02-15-2007, 05:09 PM   #18
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Once you replace the steel wheel 2 or 3 times because its to bent up to use anymore your losing money. In all the years of playing around off road I have only seen 1 alloy broke and COUNTLESS steel rims bent up beyond repair. If your going to wheel it and dont want to tear up your Moab's go with a cheap alloy like a $87.00 AR Outlaw 2 or a summit wheel.
I sold my Moab's and took the money and bought some cheap Alloy's, MT Classic II's.
I stayed with 16X8 because I like the back spacing of the wheels better then 15" wheels. As for price difference in tires my MTZ's in 16" (285/75/16) cost 4 dollars more then a 15" 33X12.5. Considering how much better 16's do on road its a small price to pay. I'll never go back to a 15" wheel and may even go to a 17 when I switch to 35's.
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Old 02-16-2007, 09:55 PM   #19
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Plus, with 15" wheels, you can get measurements a LOT easier to comprehend - 33x12.5x15" is much easier for me than the metric.
I found this site a couple of years ago and find it quite useful for computng tire sizes.
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Old 02-17-2007, 08:59 AM   #20
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If you carry a big spare

Alot of times when people go to bigger tires they change backspacing and then the spare tire no longer makes contact with the rubber spacers on the tailgate. That puts more stress on the spare mount because the tire is bouncing around and flexing the mount. It might be just a small amount of flex, but anyone who's folded a soda can back and forth knows that eventually it breaks.
When you close the tailgate, does the tire wobble? Not good if it does.

If your big spare doesn't sit tight against the spacers, you need to adjust them. I bought some rubber blocks at the hardware store for a couple bucks, cut them in roughly the same shape as the bumpers, got some longer bolts and made it a tight fit again.
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Old 02-17-2007, 09:55 AM   #21
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Don't just the spacers cost a lot more than the steel wheels? Running spacers is just few other screws you gotta worry about. I would go with the steels. As mentioned above 15" tires will cost less than the 16" tires by like $30-40 a tire.
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Old 02-18-2007, 08:54 AM   #22
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I stayed with 16X8 because I like the back spacing of the wheels better then 15" wheels.
With more backspacking in 16x8 wheels, wouldn't you be more likely to rub. I thought that is with you have to get spacers, to set the wheels further out. I thought people got wheels with larger backspacing when trying to tuck the wheel into the wheel well and smaller backspacing for 4x4 applications, or do I have this backwards.
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Old 02-18-2007, 09:53 AM   #23
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Backspacing stands for how far the mouting point is in the wheel from the lip of the rim. The smaller the backspacing # the less space there is between the mouting point and the inside lip. For offroad that should be good since you get stability/wider track so its harder to flip. The main problem that people get wheels that are less backspaced is rubbing when turning. The stock wheels are made for 30-31. When you put in 33s that are wider it will rub when turning and thats why you get smaller backspaced wheels.

If i'm correct the stock ones were around 5.5"

https://www.rsracing.com/tech-wheel.html
rear spacing is same as back spacing
https://www.rsracing.com/images/tech-wheelterms.gif
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Old 02-18-2007, 10:20 AM   #24
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With more backspacking in 16x8 wheels, wouldn't you be more likely to rub. I thought that is with you have to get spacers, to set the wheels further out. I thought people got wheels with larger backspacing when trying to tuck the wheel into the wheel well and smaller backspacing for 4x4 applications, or do I have this backwards.
No, you are correct in your logic.
But once you get past the point where your tires don't rub 4.25-5.00 (depending on the tire). then all you are accomplishing is making the tire stick out farther.
Some people like that look and I think that's great for them, its why we have so many options. I on the other hand don't like the snow, salt, mud and rocks thrown up the side of the Jeep all the time or the look of tires sticking out 3 inches beyond the wheel well. I used to run 15's with 3.75 BS and with one compute to work the side windows are covered to the point you cant see out. Now I run a 33X11.5 (285/75/16) with no rubbing, 4.5 BS and very little stuff gets thrown up.
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Old 02-18-2007, 10:24 AM   #25
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Scoob you still have those rims? I'm looking for rims thats all If you do what kind are they?

You can always run extended tubefenders or extended flares if stuff on your sides is your problem.
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Old 02-18-2007, 10:42 AM   #26
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Scoob you still have those rims? I'm looking for rims thats all If you do what kind are they?

You can always run extended tubefenders or extended flares if stuff on your sides is your problem.
No I sure dont. I got them (A/R outlaws, and 31 X 10.5 Wrangler RTS's) + $1000 cash for my Moabs and MTR's off mty Rubi. I then sold them to the shop that mounted and balanced my Mickey Thompson's for $300.00.
I used that $300.00 and bought a set of Moab's with 1200 miles on them (for $350.00) from a local guy I am going to pick up a set of 33 X 10.5 (255/85/16) Maxxis Bighorns and run them on the Moab's in the winter.
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Old 02-18-2007, 11:00 AM   #27
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Backspacing stands for how far the mouting point is in the wheel from the lip of the rim. The smaller the backspacing # the less space there is between the mouting point and the inside lip. For offroad that should be good since you get stability/wider track so its harder to flip. The main problem that people get wheels that are less backspaced is rubbing when turning. The stock wheels are made for 30-31. When you put in 33s that are wider it will rub when turning and thats why you get smaller backspaced wheels.

If i'm correct the stock ones were around 5.5"

https://www.rsracing.com/tech-wheel.html
rear spacing is same as back spacing
https://www.rsracing.com/images/tech-wheelterms.gif
I am getting a 3.5" suspension lift and moving from the stock rubicon 245/75r16 (30.5x9.6/16) to 285/75r16 (32.8x11.2/16). Will I rub?
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Old 02-18-2007, 11:20 AM   #28
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I am getting a 3.5" suspension lift and moving from the stock rubicon 245/75r16 (30.5x9.6/16) to 285/75r16 (32.8x11.2/16). Will I rub?
Depending on the tire, yes. If your talking the stock Rubi Moab with it's 5" of BS

Something that has a lot of sidewall lugs, like the MTZ will rub when you you turn. Other types of tires might not.
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Old 02-18-2007, 11:58 AM   #29
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Scoob is correct. Preatty much they will only rub when you turn more though. You can adjust the maximum angle you can turn so you dont rub then that would reduce your steering angle. As far as spacers go i was looking at 2" spacers on ebay a while ago and each was like $60 which is more than new rims. I think 1" were around 30 or so which should make it.

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