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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone here widened their factory wheels? I am looking at a company called Weldcraft Wheels. I would be doing this only to the rears and looking to run the widest drag radial that is practical. Any thoughts on how much I could widen the wheel?
 

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The Parts Guy
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There's room to add quite a bit of width, but keep in mind that you'll only be able to add to the backside of the wheel. In order to take full advantage of the space available in the stock wheelwells, you'll have to run spacers to move the wheel out.
 

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I bookmarked Weldcraft Wheels a couple of years ago with plans of doing the same with 15x7 AR Aero's, still working on it, anyways I was figuring on 1.5 to 2 inch wider with a custom hub centric wheel spacer equal to my back spacing selection. Any wider than 9 inches of rim may have your tire rubbing the inner quarter panel with a tall and wide drag radial. That's my dos centavos.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
So I will look at adding 2.5 inches, bringing the wheel to 9 inches.

Also, do you have any experience running wheel spacers? I've only heard negative things about them.
 

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I looked into the cost of widening my stock 16x7 Sport wheels to 16x8 to safely run a 255 section width tire, and the cost was over $200 per wheel. For approximately $150/wheel, I can buy new wheels in a 5x108 pattern with the appropriate backspace in a 18x9" size, and I just wasn't married to the original style wheel.

If the fanblades float your boat, then go for it. Personally I would sacrifice an inch of width before running a spacer, but if they're only for drag use that may change the rules as you're only using them 1/4 mile at a time.

Here's a handy website that you can put your measurements into to see how the wheels would fit. There's going to be some error of course, but it gives you a ballpark.

Rim & Tire Size Calculator. Custom Offsets - Wheel-Size.com

Assuming stock wheels use a +39 offset, the widened wheel/tire will sit inboard an additional 1.2", and stick out an additional 1.2" if you use a 275/50/15 (a 26" tall tire).
 

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but if they're only for drag use that may change the rules as you're only using them 1/4 mile at a time.
Personally, I would not want the drive wheels on a drag car with a spacer. All that torque put to extended shanks? No thank you.

Al
 

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50 years of Mercury Cougar 1967/2017
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Both my cougars have 15x8 weld draglite 90's on them.
They both have 275/60-15 tires.
 

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Personally, I would not want the drive wheels on a drag car with a spacer. All that torque put to extended shanks? No thank you.

Al
I never really looked into spacers as an option, so like I said, it might change the rules. Apparently it doesn't.

I personally wouldn't run spacers either, or pay to have the stock wheels widened unless they were something very special, I'd just get wheels that fit.
 

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I have ~3/8" spacers on the front of the Toyota, and they have been fine. They use extended shank lug nuts.

But when you start thinking of the wheel riding on the ends of the wheel studs, it makes you a little nervous. When drive wheels are involved, it would make me a lot nervous! Especially if you are talking about a 1" spacer.

Al
 

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Why not just do a hub swap to 5x4.5 and then you can buy Mustangs wheels which are soooo cheap.

Check out americanmuscle.com, I bought a set of 18x10's for my mustang this summer for $400. Can't beat that.
 

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You could do what I did. Fill and drill cobra replicas. They are 17x8.5 not the full size you want but you can still run a 275, or switch to 4 bolt hubs. Which I don't know if you can, or why you would other then it being a cheaper alternative. I paid $60 per wheel to get them filled and drilled at the place I went too. And if you do that you can get bigger brakes down the road too.
 

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You could do what I did. Fill and drill cobra replicas. They are 17x8.5 not the full size you want but you can still run a 275, or switch to 4 bolt hubs. Which I don't know if you can, or why you would other then it being a cheaper alternative. I paid $60 per wheel to get them filled and drilled at the place I went too. And if you do that you can get bigger brakes down the road too.
You can very easily put the bigger brakes on the stock hubs by simply elongating the bolt holes 1/8th an inch. They're hub centric, so the bolt holes are just there to secure the rotor to the hub, not locate it.
 
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