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Old 07-15-2004, 08:16 AM   #1
Silk
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Since eMass' speaker thread has been so helpful to everyone, I was hoping to start the same thing here for wheels and tires. If an almighty mod could make this a sticky, that would be most appreciated ([Done -brendan]). If anyone has additional items they would like see listed in the boilerplate, please PM me and I would be happy to edit my post. Thanks in advance to all those participating since this will helps us all be more informed buyers.

Here is a boilerplate for those wishing to submit info.

Wheels
- Brand, Style (e.g Volks, TE37)
- Diameter, Width, Offset. (e.g. 16x6.5 +45)
- Weight (anyone know the stock wheel weight?)
- Store, Price, Shipping

Tires
- Brand, Style (e.g. Falken, ZE512)
- Size (e.g. 215/70-16)
- Store, Price, Shipping
- Review (e.g. Traction (Dry, Wet, Snow), Road Noise, Ride, Rubbing, etc.)
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Last edited by T Mac; 11-21-2004 at 09:47 AM.
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Old 07-20-2004, 11:05 PM   #2
Wolfmeat
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I'll throw in my $.02...

Wheels
Enkei RPF1
18" x 8" +35
17.8# ea. (The stock 16 X 6 riims weigh 20.5#)
Midwest Tire & Auto $275 ea.

Tires
Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 245/45ZR18
Mr P's Tire $260 ea. (inlc. mount & balance)

This combination offers superb dry and wet traction. The ride is very smooth for this size. Much better than the BFG G-Force T/A's that I tried previously. I would recommend offset between 40 and 45 mm with this tire, but I have not had any rubbing problems. This combination makes the E handle like a sports car.
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Old 08-02-2004, 07:22 PM   #3
johsti
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2003 2WD EX MT
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: San Jose
Posts: 17
Wheels
- Stock EX 16x6

Tires
- Brand - Falken ZE512
- Size - 235/60/16
- Purchased from a local tire store in San Diego for $71 a tire
- Review - I only have about 1500 miles on these tires, but my initial reaction is extremely positive. The difference between these and the goodyears are night and day. Dry traction and handling have been greatly improved. They are very quiet, and no rubbing whatsoever. I'm not too sure about the wet traction, but I would be willing to bet that they would provide better traction than the worn goodyears. I have no idea about snow traction.

For someone that spends the majority of their driving on paved surfaces, this tire is an excellent upgrade. I have a 2wd 5speed, and have no intention of going off-road in my E. My goal was to improve handling and traction, without spending time and money on new wheels, suspension, alignments and so on. It takes quite a bit more effort to break the front tires loose now. On the worn goodyears, it was almost scary how quickly they would lose traction. Handling is much improved, and the car feels flatter through turns due to the lower profile and stiffer side walls. The squirmy soft sidewall on the goodyears made me feel unstable on twisty roads. By no means does the E handle like a sports car, but I definitely feel more comfortable during spirited driving. The ride is a bit more firm, but that could be attributed to the higher tire pressure. I'm running them at 36psi front, 38psi rear.

Why Falken? I have been very impressed with Falken tires. They make a quality product that performs excellent at a bargain price. I've been running Falken FK451's on my stage 2 WRX (285 crank hp), and must say that they have been one of the best performing street tires I've ever experienced. The price makes them all the better. Search on some other car forums, and read the positive reviews for yourself (nasioc.com , audiworld.com ). For what it's worth, Consumer Reports rated the ZE512 #1 in the high performance all season category (Not too sure about CR’s opinions, but the tires impressed them nonetheless). They also have a 60k mile treadwear warranty.



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Old 08-05-2004, 04:39 PM   #4
dracki
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Wheels: Stock EX 16x6 20.5#
Tires: BF Goodrich Long Trails 215/70/16
Purchased for $112 each from Big O Tires with lifetime rotation every 3k to 4k miles and free mounting and balancing.
They had a heck of a time getting the balancing right...took them three seperate tries. Bad vibraring steering wheel. Seems ok now.

Nice tire profile and highway rated for 75k miles.
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Old 08-25-2004, 12:47 PM   #5
STO7M
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I saw pics of your tire/wheel set and it is really beautiful. That said, you dropped serious change on that mod...BUT it does look great. Any problems in the balancing and alignment stage of install?

I am looking and gunmetal wheels in the 17 inch range. I am concerned about turning radius as I really like the way this little truck turns on a veritable dime!

Thanks for the input!

M
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Old 09-09-2004, 03:10 AM   #6
dbpaddler
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2004 4WD EX AT
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Had to replace a flat unrepairable Wrangler today and took it as a sign from the gods to just junk them all(have close to 20k on and was not happy with how they felt anyway). Picked up the Firestone Destination LE's in 225/70R16 for $400 including the road hazard warranty and an oil change. I was pressed for time so I didn't feel like heading to the dealer for it. Got it done at Tires Plus in Bryn Mawr (if anyone is local).

Liked the look of a more filled wheel well. Noticed a difference in the ride as soon as I got moving. Put about 30 miles on it after on the highway and stop and go. Much smoother, definitely quieter, handled a little tighter, and the steering seemed easier. Have it at 40/39 psi's front/rear which was the same I had the Wranglers at. Have a feeling the gods were right on this one.

Can post pics if no one else has yet.
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Old 09-11-2004, 09:50 AM   #7
LMN_OP
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I also changed to FireStein Destination LEs on EX alloys, 225/70-16.
I have since driven 10K on them and I am not as impressed.
Initially they were sloppy until I upped the air pressure to 38.
At Honda recommended 34, there was a split second delay between turning the steering wheel and the car actually turning.
THey are louder as well, especially when hauling buttocks on curvy roads.
Wet traction was very good venturing around when Richmond got flooded recently, and snow traction should be good as well.
I'm gonna have to try even higher pressure since dbpaddler is happy with it.
BTW, I only paid $290 for my set.
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Old 09-11-2004, 10:46 AM   #8
paulj
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With 40/39 psi, did the stock tires wear evenly? Some have speculated that the recomended pressures were too low, causing the the edges to wear faster. I suspect it is more a problem of perception, with shallow grooves on the edge tread, leading to an early appearance of edge baldness.

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Old 09-11-2004, 12:33 PM   #9
dbpaddler
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I called around to about 6 different stores to get that price. Two were nowhere close, the rest were all in that ballpark. And that's after sales tax too. No one was coming close to the $300 price rance and some were over $400. I personally don't care what is recommended for pressure. I just go with what drives well. I've put 17k mi on in about 7 months so I'm sure I'll rack up some more miles soon and give a better review than just my initial impression after a couple hundred miles. But running the pressure around 40 (max is listed at 44) seems to work best. I left the shop at 35 and drove for about 20 minutes thinking okay, it's quieter but it just doesn't feel right. Upped it to 40 and it was much better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by
I also changed to FireStein Destination LEs on EX alloys, 225/70-16.
I have since driven 10K on them and I am not as impressed.
Initially they were sloppy until I upped the air pressure to 38.
At Honda recommended 34, there was a split second delay between turning the steering wheel and the car actually turning.
THey are louder as well, especially when hauling buttocks on curvy roads.
Wet traction was very good venturing around when Richmond got flooded recently, and snow traction should be good as well.
I'm gonna have to try even higher pressure since dbpaddler is happy with it.
BTW, I only paid $290 for my set.
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Last edited by T Mac; 07-20-2005 at 12:19 PM.
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Old 09-23-2004, 05:57 PM   #10
tom schibler
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Kumho KH 11 235 60 R 16 100 W (load rating of 100, speed rating of W, good for sustained speeds of 168 MPH--something to shoot for). Treadwar 280, Traction AA, Temperature A. Purchased at Discount tire, Midway Drive, San Diego, CA, for $91 each mounted and balanced.

What a difference tires can make--I have a new car!

The difference is dramatic. The car carves through turns with confidence instead of wallowing unnervingly as the old tires hunted in vain to take a set. No more embarrassing squeal from the front tires when accelerating briskly from a stop--not even the inside front tire when accelerating and turning. What amazes me is that in addition to the improved handling, the ride is also better. Where I live, we have a lot of speed dips with sharp approach angles. They seem much more muted now with the new tires. Pretty good considering the shorter sidewalls. I wonder how the tire volume compares btwn 215/70/16 and 235/60/16? This may account for some of the simultaneous improvement in ride and handling. It would be interesting to test different tires of identical sizes for the truest comparison. The top of my car is now also 3/10 of an inch lower to the ground which further lowers the cG, in addition to the 1.7 inches lower from the Eibach springs (makes roofrack loading/unloading easier as well).

With tires, every distinct brand and model behaves differently, so I wouldn't generalize about any other tire in the same size or any other tire by the same manufacturer. Seems like every tire manufacturer out there has their share of good and bad tire models. For example, though the original equipment Wrangler HPs were dogs in retrospect, the Goodyear Eagle F1 GS-D3s on my Porsche 911 are incredible. There are even several "Eagle F1" variants and generations with varying levels of performance.

By the tire size calculator at Miata.net, the difference in speed reading on the speedo is about 2%, so 60 mph indicated is 58.4 mph actual. I was given the name of a good speedo shop in downtown San Diego, so I plan to check that out (term speedo recalibration used loosely-it may even be a software thing.)
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