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Old 12th October 2006, 00:51   #1
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Arrow Part 2: Update to Solution for vibrations after installing alloy wheels

This is an update to wheel vibration/ brake shudder issues experienced on high speed cruising after installing alloy wheels.

On part 1 of this topic (http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/151614-post1.html), I mentioned about the need for "centering" aftermarket wheels by installing "centering rings" to reduce the effects of steering/ wheel vibration at speed. Also I mentioned how the vibrations dissappeared after I installed metal centering rings on all 4 wheels.

7000kms later after running on such a setup, I have more experience to share with discerning driving enthusiasts. The reason I have started this as a new thread is so that readers can quickly find this information by going to the first post of the thread.

In my previous long distance daytrip (~700kms), I experienced severe brake shudder when braking from moderate cruise speed (~130km/hr). The brake pedal would pulsate badly when high pressure is applied to the brake, causing passengers in the vehicle also to feel the shudder/vibration. At 160km/hr, it gets a little violent.

Since this was discomforting, I had the brake discs immediately checked for lateral runout and skimmed them to tolerance at a specialized lathe. This indeed helped because the brake shudder reduced considerably. However, over a period of time, it started to increase again.

So last weekend, I installed brand new sets of front brake discs (rotors), brake pads and re-bled the system with new brake fluid. Also, I checked for air bubbles trapped in the lines. After this was done, I took a test drive and found that there was no brake shudder at all in the beginning. However, my happiness didnt last very long. After several attempts over a high speed stretch, I noticed that brake pulsation was starting to creep in. Very slowly, but definitely creeping in.

I didn't want my new brake discs to start warping like my old ones. So I immediately got my alloy wheels off (K-speed 13" with centering rings and all) and installed my stock Corsa wheels (13"). Now, back to the high speed stretch and what an amazing difference there was. The stock wheels on a Corsa were brilliant as far as high speed cruising and braking were concerned! (And sucked as far as looks were concerned)

I tried running several times over, but the new brakes never showed a hint of pulsation or shudder. Verdict: You stand a very good chance of ruining your car by changing over from it's stock wheels.

Now then, a person who's been running on alloy wheels finds it very difficult to run on boring steel wheels. So yesterday I got a brand new set of Aura wheels installed (F61350 13" which is relatively new and not yet displayed on their website) and sold off my used K-speed set (KS315 13") to a used wheels dealer.

Why did I get Aura wheels? Because they were the closest I could get to my original steel wheel specification, which includes:
  • an exactly matching center-bore for my car (56.5mm hub dia)
  • an exactly matching rim width (5")
  • an offset that matches my original (46mm)
  • am anyway running original/ stock tires
In the looks department, the Auras don't stand a chance against my earlier K-speed set (which was a classic 5-spoke with a machined finish, which you can see in my team-bhp garage)

Well, I was back to testing this morning. Heavy braking from 150km/hr. No brake shudder! Tried several times over. Not a *hint* of brake shudder. And it wasn't creeping in either. Hopefully thats the last I have seen of wheel issues.

So here is a summary:
  1. Installed K-speed 13" alloys on stock tires, wheel vibrations occured at high speed
  2. Installed centering rings, high speed vibrations dissappeared
  3. After 7000kms, brake shudder set in
  4. Installed new brake disc, pad and fluid. No brake shudder initially, but it starts to set in slowly
  5. Swapped to stock wheels, no brake shudder whatsoever
  6. After being bored with stock wheels, installed Aura alloys matching original hub-dia, rim-width and offset.
  7. No brake shudder whatsoever

So now, you can make your own verdict. If you have questions, please post them here. I will try and answer as much as I can or know about.

I have to add though, that the Aura's still don't feel as great as the stock Corsa wheels in the 160km/hr territory.

Hope this helps.

sAP

PS: In case you are wondering where all this testing occurs in a place as crowded as chennai, it occured on the Chennai-Tambaram bypass -- which is basically a 19.5km stretch of toll road that is closed off on both sides with railings. A multiple-entry ticket and securing your hand-baggage with a seatbelt is the way to go.

Tires were balanced each time they were mounted on the wheel. Tire pressure was maintained at 30psi-cold on each test (Opel recommends 29psi cold).
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Old 13th October 2006, 16:56   #2
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Arrow Thread moved

This thread is being discussed here instead http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/tyre-a...oy-wheels.html (Solution for vibrations after installing alloy wheels) (See post #63 & thereon)

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Old 14th December 2009, 12:19   #3
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I bought a Chevrolet Cruze LTZ recently. The OE was JK Vectra 205/65 R17. I upsized the tires to Good Year F1 225/45ZR17 and also fitted Flying Eagle 17" alloys.

I find that there is wobbling in high speeds between 120KMPH to 140KMPH. Wheel Balancing was done twice. Will this problem be solved after installing a centering ring?

Also I find the tires are low profile and the suspension is not responding as it was with OE. Or is it just that I am having a doubt. I am not sure. Are low profile tires good for highway driving? Are they long lasting? Will they affect the suspension of my cruze? Some one pls help.
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Old 14th December 2009, 15:40   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sameer_sultan
Are low profile tires good for highway driving? Are they long lasting? Will they affect the suspension of my cruze?
No. No. No.

You're running too low a profile.
Where did you get the wheels and tyres?
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Old 14th December 2009, 17:32   #5
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Welcome back sAP

Quote:
Originally Posted by sAP View Post
So now, you can make your own verdict.
IMO, STOCK SETUP IS ANYDAY MORE RELIABLE THAN AFTERMARKET ALLOYS.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sAP View Post
Now, back to the high speed stretch and what an amazing difference there was. The stock wheels on a Corsa were brilliant as far as high speed cruising and braking were concerned! (And sucked as far as looks were concerned)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sAP View Post
I tried running several times over, but the new brakes never showed a hint of pulsation or shudder. Verdict: You stand a very good chance of ruining your car by changing over from it's stock wheels.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sAP View Post
Now then, a person who's been running on alloy wheels finds it very difficult to run on boring steel wheels. So yesterday I got a brand new set of Aura wheels installed (F61350 13" which is relatively new and not yet displayed on their website) and sold off my used K-speed set (KS315 13") to a used wheels dealer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sAP View Post
Well, I was back to testing this morning. Heavy braking from 150km/hr. No brake shudder! Tried several times over. Not a *hint* of brake shudder. And it wasn't creeping in either. Hopefully thats the last I have seen of wheel issues.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sAP View Post
I have to add though, that the Aura's still don't feel as great as the stock Corsa wheels in the 160km/hr territory.
So true! Its a matter of looks versus feeling great while driving at all speeds. I would prefer the latter.

Last edited by kpzen : 14th December 2009 at 17:34.
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Old 14th December 2009, 17:46   #6
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Welcome back sAP
KP, sAP was here 3 years ago.
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Old 16th December 2009, 05:04   #7
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Arrow The perennial issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by sameer sultan View Post
I bought a Chevrolet Cruze LTZ recently. The OE was JK Vectra 205/65 R17. I upsized the tires to Good Year F1 225/45ZR17 and also fitted Flying Eagle 17" alloys.

I find that there is wobbling in high speeds between 120KMPH to 140KMPH. Wheel Balancing was done twice. Will this problem be solved after installing a centering ring?

Also I find the tires are low profile and the suspension is not responding as it was with OE. Or is it just that I am having a doubt. I am not sure. Are low profile tires good for highway driving? Are they long lasting? Will they affect the suspension of my cruze? Some one pls help.
Hi Kpzen: Thanks! After what I've been through playing around with alloys, I have to say I am very skeptical changing out my OEM wheels on any car -- especially ones that use lug bolts instead of lug nuts. My Acura uses lug nuts, but my BMW uses lug bolts. So no way I am going to install anything other than original BMW wheels on my car. Having said that, my Acura has aftermarket Konig wheels and tested vibration free upto 127 miles per hour (203 km/hr). But its not feel quite the same as the original alloys it had.

Hi Sameer:

Not sure if the 225/45 R17 is the right upgrade from 205/65R17. I think 225/55R17 would be more appropriate to keep the outer diameter within 3% of the original. Compare it here: Tire Size Calculator - tire & wheel plus sizing

This doesn't answer your original question though, since fitting smaller wheels do not in itself cause vibration.

Please go throught the thread http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/tyre-a...oy-wheels.html (Solution for vibrations after installing alloy wheels) and make your own inferences.

To be brief; the 2 schools of thought are that (i) installing centering rings is required if your wheels are hub-centric/ use lug bolts (ii) merely balancing the wheel accurately is sufficient in all other cars.

I would say, do both -- as I did in my Acura -- though merely balancing should have been good enough => Install centering rings and re-balance the wheels at a shop that someone has referred to have solved a vibration problem.

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Old 16th December 2009, 10:51   #8
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First of all, Cruze OEM size is 205/60 R16. The correct size is 225/50 R17.
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Old 16th December 2009, 12:45   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
No. No. No.

You're running too low a profile.
Where did you get the wheels and tyres?
Majestic Tires Casa Major Road.


Hi Sameer:

Not sure if the 225/45 R17 is the right upgrade from 205/65R17. I think 225/55R17 would be more appropriate to keep the outer diameter within 3% of the original. Compare it here: Tire Size Calculator - tire & wheel plus sizing

This doesn't answer your original question though, since fitting smaller wheels do not in itself cause vibration.

Please go throught the thread http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/tyre-a...oy-wheels.html (Solution for vibrations after installing alloy wheels) and make your own inferences.

To be brief; the 2 schools of thought are that (i) installing centering rings is required if your wheels are hub-centric/ use lug bolts (ii) merely balancing the wheel accurately is sufficient in all other cars.

I would say, do both -- as I did in my Acura -- though merely balancing should have been good enough => Install centering rings and re-balance the wheels at a shop that someone has referred to have solved a vibration problem.

I installed the centering rings and now the vibration and wobbling has disappeared in high speeds. I also did balancing. I think now I should change the tyre to 225/55R17 as you suggest. Thank you for your advice.

Also i would like to know whether low profile tires are not good for highway driving?

sAP[/quote]

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikhilb2008 View Post
First of all, Cruze OEM size is 205/60 R16. The correct size is 225/50 R17.
Yes you are right.
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Old 17th December 2009, 11:05   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sameer sultan View Post

I installed the centering rings and now the vibration and wobbling has disappeared in high speeds.
Glad that worked out for you.

I am seeing an increasing number of people with similar experiences irrespective of whether the vehicle uses lug nuts or lug bolts. So my 2 cents to everyone is to use centering rings on all vehicles unless you are using OEM wheels -- in which case they are already precision machined to match the center bore.

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Old 17th December 2009, 11:20   #11
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Arrow Low and wide vs high and slim

Quote:
Originally Posted by sameer sultan View Post

Also i would like to know whether low profile tires are not good for highway driving?
I totally missed that question out. The only place where wider tires are really at a disadvantage is on snow. Slimmer tires cut through the snow better than wider ones. In most parts of India, this doesn't even apply.

There is a risk of damaging your rims with low profile tires if your tire pressure drops or you hit a bad pothole.

Otherwise, low profile tires provide better response and handling due to reduced sidewall flex and more rubber contact on a paved road.

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