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Custom Wheels: What you need to know!

Posted in AMC, Camaro, Chevrolet, Custom, Featured, Rides, Wheels by MrAngry | March 3rd, 2011 | 18 Responses |

Proformance Wheels

It seems like just about every car on the road today has a set of aftermarket wheels. Some look fantastic, while others are just nightmares. A good set of wheels can change the look and feel of your ride, increase performance and enhance it’s value, but this is if, and only if they are chosen correctly. Over the years wheel and tire sizes have increase dramatically. For instance, back in the 1960’s most cars came stock with 14-inch wheels and hubcaps, the 70’s went to larger 15-inch wheels and then in the 1980’s we saw the emergence of 16-incher’s. It wasn’t until the 1990’s though when the aftermarket wheel scene really took off. All of a sudden we had 17, 18 and 19-inch wheels and then in the first part of the new millennium we saw the introduction of the DUB or 20-inch wheel. I remember when I first saw a 20-inch wheel on a car and was like, what the f*ck was that! Back then it wasn’t all that common, but today they’re all over the place. For those who are uneducated in the process, there are few elements when buying wheels that you really need to look at. First you need to define the application for which the wheels are going to be used, second is to determine your fitment parameters and lastly you need to pick out a style that suits your ride.

• STEP 1: Define the Application

Proformance Wheels

Be honest and ask yourself what you’re going to use these new wheels for. For example if you have a car that sees duty as a weekend track toy you may want to stay with original OEM sizes, but perhaps go with a lighter wheel to cut down on rotating mass. If it’s a show car and weight really isn’t a concern, then your biggest issue is style. If however the wheels are for a daily driver, then you want to find a good aftermarket wheel manufacturer that produces a quality forged wheel that can stand up to the rigors of everyday driving.

• STEP 2: Fitment Parameters

Proformance Wheels

Rims don’t mean a damn thing if they don’t fit on your car. Some people assume that all rims will fit on all rides but sadly, this is not the case. For example the odds of a 20-inch wheel fitting neatly on a Honda Civic is slim to none. Can you make it fit? Possibly, but not without modifying just about everything under the wheel well. Keep in mind also that manufacturers spend millions, upon millions of dollars on R & D to make sure that a certain size wheel works perfectly on that vehicle. So, while you think you may be smarter then the manufacturers, odds are you’re not. Also remember that when you’re looking at fitment you also want to consider the wheels overall mass. I always laugh when I see SUV’s rolling on 26’s and then behind the wheel are these little itty-bitty stock brakes. If you’re going to go for a big wheel and tire combo just remember that you’re adding A LOT of rotating mass to the car. That means you’re automatically screwing with the vehicles alignment, handling characteristics, braking, acceleration and calibration of the speedometer, so you best consult a professional before simply slapping wheels on your car.

1. Things to Remember.
– Will it fit in the wheel-well
– What is the correct backspacing (everyone messes this up)
– What is the OEM correct bolt pattern
– Is there a good selection of tires available
– Do the wheels rub anything at full lock

• STEP 3: Style

Proformance Wheels

Remember when people went out and put “Spinners” on their cars. Quite honestly it was one of the dumbest automotive trends that I’ve ever seen and I thank God everyday that it’s dead. The style of the wheel you choose can either make or break your car. Today there are rims out there in just about every style imaginable from a host of different manufacturers. Keep in mind though that the rims you put on your car are a reflection of your taste, so be careful when choosing. Understand also that if you don’t want to purchase an off-the-shelf product that you can have a one-off custom set of wheels crafted. I had this done for my Daytona by a company called Proformance Industries in New Rochelle, NY. Not only did they make me exactly what I wanted, but in the end I got something that was 100% unique, while at the same time getting the professional guidance I needed to help me make the right decision.

Proformance Wheels

Obviously at days end the wheels you put on your car are entirely up to you. Just remember that before you purchase anything to do your research as it will make the entire process of fitting new shoes to your ride that much more enjoyable.

* All Photo’s Courtesy of Proformance Industries.

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18 Responses

  1. BigRuss says:

    really good right up… it makes my head hurt and want to cry when i see a decent(some times really nice car) turned to shit by applying 24″+ wheels… i know that the right wheels for the ride really sets the look of your car. hell i had 20’s on my grand prix coupe but it looked right. it wasnt too big or anything like that

  2. Forged Frank* says:

    I lol @ chrome wheels! tacky as fvck… Dynamic Performance Engineering makes some of the best lightweight, aesthetically pleasing wheels on the market–

    • ptschett says:

      Put the right wheel on the right car and chrome can be nice… for example my dad’s green ’70 GTO convertible with 15″ chrome Cragar S/S’s. On the other hand I might dump my late-model Challenger’s factory 20’s (big blocky plasti-chrome style) and get the 18″ wheels from the SE Rallye package when the original tires wear out.

  3. J D Stadler says:

    Excellent read, wish I’d known this stuff back when I was a young’in. If I do end up getting a GTI I actually plan on getting rid of the stock rims, I can’t stand them plus they’re 18’s with little rubber band tires. Last year you could choose 17 or 18″ rims, this year it’s just the 18’s. Boooo. I’d rather not risk busting a rim every day I drive it, because we have some pretty awful potholes down here.

  4. Jimmy says:

    Need some expert help and advise pls.. I just bought a 2010 Prius Pkg III. The came with 15′ stock wheels that look so boring. I was told that putting on after market wheels will affect the mpg or damage the vehicle because of the weight on the wheels. I’m not planning to go to crazy on the car by installing body kit or anything like that. All I want is just better looking wheels. I like the looks on the WORK Varianza V5S,F2S and the Trafficstar SFR brand kind of wheels. I know those brand are expensive. I want something similiar and have a budget of $2000 for tires and wheels pkg. Can you please give me some expert advise on what I can get for my ride. Thanks in advance…

  5. fast eddie says:

    i love 13’s gettin out the turn hot

  6. vero says:

    …something to reckon

  7. Brandon says:

    I was wondering if engine modifcations where needed to put 28inch wheels on 2007 avalanche?

  8. jack harden says:

    i have a 2013 vw mk7 golf and it has standard 17″ wheels would i be able to just put some 18″ wheels on ??

  9. gonzales says:

    i have a 2010 dodge challenger and i want my friends 24s there nice but they come off a charger and his tire size is 245/35r24 would that be ok for my challenger good for turnng?? please let me kno

  10. GLEN says:


  11. Hector says:

    Hi there, I have a 94 civic lx and wish to upgrade to aluminum rims, less rotating mass. My use will be just normal everyday driving, freeway and city. What brand rims and size do you recommend? I current have 14″ stock rims and tires.


  12. vocalone says:

    good info i have a question… my Yukon Xl Denali has 22″ wheels and it fits the gruck well. I want to have it aligned but is it best to have it done with factory wheels or the aftermarket wheels?

  13. Ramy Bebawy says:

    i want to put 19″ on a VW golf TSI with stock 16″ what are your thought on that? will i need to change anything if i do that? please let me know I’m new to the whole rims idea don’t want to make a mistake and be forced to change things in the car where i have to pay a lot!?

  14. Ryan Savy says:

    I have a Minibus 8 seater Suzuki APV 2012.And the original size is 185/80 R14 and i wont to put a bigger size like 15″,16″ or 17″. Can you advise me which one will be the best with the right tyres