Alloy wheels in the bush

Submitted: Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 18:48
ThreadID: 11104 Views:2339 Replies:8 FollowUps:4
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Hi All,
As many late model 4x4's come standard with alloy wheels i was wondering how they stand up to pot holes,corrugations and overall hard use.
I realise cracking one out bush would be like slicing a tyre and harder to replace.
Any bad experiences or thoughts?
Thanks in advance Mark
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Reply By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 18:58

Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 18:58
I had what the man at Ian Diffens called a "dangerous cheap japanese import" set of rims on my 2.1Tonne Rocky when I bought it. I eventually changed them to steel rims (purly because of price) when 3 out of five wheel studs sheered off one wheel and my wheel went rolling past me at 100kms/h. The alloy rim was still "ok" but I tossed it as it had a lot of cosmetic damage and who knows what micro fractures. However my long winded point is if it is strong enogh that the studs break before the rim I wouldn't be too worried! I also have factory alloys on my Surf and do a fair bit of off road work with it, apart from the fact that they tend to get scratched in rocky/gravely rutty tracks there are no problems. Hell my whole car get's scratched so who cares if the wheels are too!! ;-)
AnswerID: 49573

Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 19:12

Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 19:12
Vic Widman from Great Divide Tours has always used alloy rims. To date he has one that had a piece knocked out of the rim, but the tyre didn't go down.

The reason he likes the alloys is cosmetic, the vehicle looks good and the other, and I think this is more to the point is that he finds it hard to lift a steel rim and wheel.

If you have seen Vic, you will know what I mean, he tips the scales at 50kg.

AnswerID: 49576

Reply By: Aston - Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 20:56

Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 20:56
Alloy wheels in the bush:

To answer the question:
Nissan, Landrover, Toyota, that's out of the real 4WD 's & there's a lot after that.

And there are lots of companies that repair them.

What's the problem?

AnswerID: 49592

Follow Up By: bigfella - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 14:36

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 14:36
What do you call real 4WD's?

Not another negative opinion I hope!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
FollowupID: 311445

Reply By: Martyn (WA) - Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 21:25

Monday, Mar 08, 2004 at 21:25
I personally believe the old adage, "aluminium breaks steel bends", I had alloys on my GQ, I put them on, they looked nice and thankfully I never had to do any tyre repairs (BFG's nuff said), but I was ever mindful of how careful i would have to be not to damage the rim if I did get a flat, plus if you accidently drive on a flat for any reason aluminium being so soft the damage will be bad also happen quickly. I've got steels on my GU and I won't be changing them, I could do something a lot more worth while with the $1000 right now. On my Rangie I have alloys, I've rolled three off the rims and I'm always having problems with mud getting jammed between the rim and the tyre, this might be the type of use it gets rather than the fault of the alloys, I don't take the pressure below 22 psi and things have got better. I'm doing a sand gymkhana next weekend so I'll see how I go then.
Alloys look nice when new and not abused, when they start to corrode through scratching etc they look like crap, getting them fixed up again isn't cheap, steels, sand blast, prime and paint, in a lot of cases they will look like new,cheap as well.
My opinions as usual, others may vary.
Keep the shiny side up

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AnswerID: 49594

Follow Up By: crfan - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 12:13

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 12:13
You can sand blast prime and paint alloys most of the new ones are painted or laquered.
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Follow Up By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 19:03

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 19:03
I ran my alloys for several hundred k's on the long weekend at 10psi with a fairly big load. (lot's of beech driving etc) with no adverse effects, I wonder if it's the type of tyre/rim cobitnation causing your problem or somthing...
FollowupID: 311470

Follow Up By: Martyn (WA) - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 21:40

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 21:40
I appreciate what you are saying but if you scratch the paint or the laquer down to the base metal, when you get water be it salt or fresh water this gets in behind the laquer and corrodes the aluminium which then oxideses and swells up cracking either laquer or the paint and it's a down hill spiral from there. The coating adds protection yes I agree 100% but once the coating gets damaged it isn't long before the rot sets in. I've used some of the cheaper mag cleaner which is quite agressive and can leave a terrible mess, I had to get one rim blasted and re machined to get it "looking the part" again.
Keep the shiny side up

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Reply By: Bilbo - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 00:33

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 00:33
Hvaing spent many years in the WA bush, steel rims are the best. I've just bought a L/C 100 series Td with alum. rims on it. When it's time for me to go back in the bush, I'll be buying steel rims with tubes in 'em. Fixing yer own punctures in the bush is purgatory enough without worrying about belting hell out of the rim while yer doing it. Look at mining vehicles and cockies - all use steel with tubes. Ally is OK fer sand and posing on bitumen but out in the serious mulga - steel rims and tyres with tubes in 'em, thank you.

AnswerID: 49621

Reply By: Well 55 - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 10:29

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 10:29
About the only advantage of alloy over steel is their unsprung weight is a lot less, ie the weight on the axle.

Nice for a pose factor but not practical in the bush. As a farmer I've seen them stained with cow s..t and they look terrible. Dogs love em.
AnswerID: 49636

Reply By: crfan - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 12:12

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 12:12
I use alloys for a number of reasons
1:they look good
2:tyres /brakes/discs/wheel bearings run cooler
3:unsprung weight less
4:dont rust
5:and did I mention they look good
AnswerID: 49644

Reply By: ianmc - Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 12:31

Tuesday, Mar 09, 2004 at 12:31
I have a set of 15X7 alloys which I bought cheap & have recaps on them but for rough outback I will probably revert to my sollid steels for reasons shown above.

Your allots dont have to be expensive to clean. Use wet & dry emery then a light clear spray over for protection. Also a wire brush in an elec. drill works wonders if they are bad.
AnswerID: 49646

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