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Thread: Narrowest Stock Wheel?

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    Boat Anchor Repairman Captain Obvious's Avatar
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    Default Narrowest Stock Wheel?

    What's the narrowest stock wheel Datsun ever used? 72 FSM says 5 inch, but I don't have manuals earlier than that.

    Did they ever use anything narrower than 5 inches, or is that the narrowest?

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    Semi-retired admin Arne's Avatar
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    5" was new for '72. Before that they were 4" wide.
    Arne - Former owner, HLS30-37705, 7/71, 905 Red
    Car blogs - 240Z - Porsche 911

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    Boat Anchor Repairman Captain Obvious's Avatar
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    Thanks Arne. Cool.

    Next question... Anyone got a 4.5 inch steel wheel from a 70 or 71 Z available? I need just one for my spare.

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    Still hunting for a 4.5 inch wide Z wheel and not making a lot of progress. Thinking that maybe I could open my field of interest a little? Are there wheels from other cars that might work?

    For example, what about Roadster wheels? Anybody know the specs? Are they 14 inch? Same lug pattern? 0 offset?

    Early 4 1/2 wide Z steel wheels - 40300-E4100

    Roadster wheels - 40300-14600 and 40300-14601

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    I may have a 4 1/2 " wheel, but it would be in my attic above the garage. I'll take a look in the next day or two if you're still looking. Unfortunately, shipping
    across the country my be expensive. I have a set of 5" wheels in perfect condition if interested. They would just need a little touch-up paint for show condition.

    Dan
    Original Owner/1971 240Z
    Gold Medallion/First place Stock Class/2012 ZCON

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    Boat Anchor Repairman Captain Obvious's Avatar
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    Thanks Dan. I've got feelers out in a bunch of different directions, but at this point, yes... I'm still looking. So if you get the chance to peek up in the garage attic, measure what you have. I've already got a 5" wide, so that won't do anything for me, but 4.5 or even 4.0 would be great.

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    So anyone know anything about the Roadster steelies? Through on-line digging and reading, I think I have verified that they are 14" and have the 4x4.5 lug pattern, but what about wheel width and offset? Anyone know?

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    You could try sourcing a mini-spare from just about anything with a 4x4.5 bolt pattern. I wouldn't limit myself to Datsun parts. Offset will have less of an impact on a wheel that narrow, and even if it's 10mm off one way or the other it would be acceptable to limp home on.

    Bit of searching around found this site that indicates the following models with the 4x4.5 bolt pattern:

    Acura - Legend '86-'89
    Acura CL 2.3/3.0
    Acura TL 2.5
    Buick - Special '61-'63
    Chevrolet Corvair all 4-bolt
    Chevy II all 4-bolt
    Datsun/Nissan - most models to '89
    Datsun 260Z, 280Z / ZX *, turbo '70-'85
    Datsun 240Z * - needs chamfered nuts
    Dodge Colt '79-'88 - offset may be wrong
    Dodge Colt (early)
    Eagle Summit '86-'92
    Falcon, Maverick, Granada all 4-bolt
    Ford Mustang all '65-'68 4-bolt
    Geo Metro '88-'98
    Honda Accord '90+ except V6 Accord
    Honda Prelude '92-'96
    Infinity G20 '91-'94
    Infinity M30 '90-'92
    MGA, MGB
    Mazda - 626, RX7 '83-'87 ????
    Mazda 323 '86-'89
    Mazda 626 '83-'87
    Mazda RX-7 '84-'88
    Mitsubishi Gallant '83-'97
    Mitsubishi Mirage '88-'92
    Nissan 200SX '80-'88 *
    Nissan Altima '93-'98
    Nova ('61-'70)
    Olds - F-85 '61-'63
    Plymouth - Arrow, Sapporo '79-'88 * (Sapporo wheels look similar to LE)
    SAAB - 900 and 90 to '87 come in 5.5 x 15 or 6 x 15 *
    SAAB - 9000 to '87 some will work *
    Sprint '85-'87
    Suzuki Swift '89-'98
    Toyota - most exc. MR2 and P.U. to '89
    Triumph TR 1..5

    Perhaps a mini-spare could be found for one of these. The more modern Acuras and Nissans would be a good place to start.
    Last edited by bacarl; 06-18-2014 at 06:47 AM.
    Brian
    73 240Z HLS30-151534

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    Thanks for the info on the space savers, but that's not the real problem here. Let me put the whole story out there...

    First, let me start off with: I did get my hands on a 4.5 inch wide Z rim, so if anyone is still looking for me, thanks for the help and I'm calling off the dogs.

    Now back to the story... I have a 77 280 with the collapsible accordion spare and the inflator bottle. I don't trust it. I don't know if the bottle has anything in it, and I'm not sure that accordion spare would be all too happy to be woken up from a 40 year long slumber. So, with all that in mind, I started looking into different options instead.

    Problem number one... I don't have enough room to use a full sized spare. The spare tub in 77 is too small of a diameter. A full sized tire won't fit down in the small tub. I don't know when exactly they made this change, but I know a 74 will accept a regular tire and wheel combo, and 77 will not. So in either 75 or 76 they reduced the size of the spare tire tub and made it necessary to use the smaller accordioned inflat-o-spare.

    So, I went to the junkyard and started looking for mini space saver spares. I found lots of them with the proper lug pattern (like your list above), but the diameter restriction is an issue even with the space saver spares. I took a tape measure with me and bought a 15" space saver with a diameter that should fit.

    When I got home I pulled on front and one rear wheel and checked fitment. Fit fine on both front and rear. Offset was wrong, but I didn't really care too much. Like you said, it's temporary only and emergency use. Offset isn't really a big deal. However, as I was test fitting the 15", I realized it had very little air in it and as I filled it properly, it grew in diameter and when done, it wouldn't fit in the tub anymore. Duh. So 15" doesn't work.

    Back to the junkyard and picked up a 14" space saver with the correct bolt pattern. It's a 115/70/14 and even when fully inflated, it fits in the 77 tub. But when test fitting to the vehicle it highlighted problem number two... It fits fine on the rear, but in the front, it won't clear the caliper because of the shape of the back side of the wheel.

    So, the bottom line is that I'm not sure there exists a space saver spare that will fit in the reduced diameter 77 tub while still having a large enough wheel insides to clear the front caliper.

    That brings us to now... I've got this 115/70/14 tire that would work just fine if I moved it to a wheel that would clear the front caliper. The space saver rim is 4" wide and with the very short sidewall on the space saver rubber, I doubt I could stretch it out to a 5" wide Z rim. But I DO think I could get it onto a 4.5 inch Z rim.

    My theory is that a 4.5" Z rim with a 115/70/14 space saver spare tire mounted on it will fit the 77 tub AND will be able to be mounted to all four corners. And if that 's not all!! A bonus would also be that the offset would be appropriate.

    And that's the whole Alice's Restaurant Massacre as to why I'm looking (was looking) for a 4.5" Z rim.

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    Registered User Kurbycar32's Avatar
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    Most modern sports cars come with this:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Supercar Spare.jpg 
Views:	16 
Size:	26.6 KB 
ID:	72285


    Its a pretty big weight and storage saving technique. With modern tires I have yet to have a situation that left me with a tire that couldn't be revived with a can of fix-a-flat long enough to get me to a tire shop.
    Last edited by Kurbycar32; 06-19-2014 at 07:45 AM.
    Early 1974 260z
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    I have another idea for ya Cappy. One I tested.

    I have a 73 and I carry the same collapsable spare that you had in your 77 originally. Got mine from a 83 zx, doesn't matter. Since I too don't trust the "can-o-air" I simply bought a small cig lighter powered tire inflator and carry that.

    To make sure this was a "real" solution, I used it to inflate that collapsable spare. Worked just fine. Not all that fast, but it worked. Then I drained the pressure from the spare. It collapsed right back down to original size. Yes, they are re-usable.

    One more idea to get something to work. About your 14" space saver spare. Since it fits the front, but not back, you could swap tires if a rear blows out. Put front on back, then spare on front. Remember all of this is for the highly unlikely event of a flat, so a bit of time spent is worth the years of driving with sig. weight savings. I use the extra space around my collapsable spare for critical spare parts, safety gear and nice little inflator.
    -----------------------------------------
    Jim
    73 240Z HLS30 149331
    69 510 PL510 77603

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    Registered User siteunseen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zKars View Post


    One more idea to get something to work. About your 14" space saver spare. Since it fits the front, but not back, you could swap tires if a rear blows out. Put front on back, then spare on front.
    Now that's an obvious solution! Too much A. Guthrie? He's nuts!
    1972 240Z #918 New Sight Orange
    1977 280Z #305 Light Blue Metallic
    1972 240Z #110 Persimmons Red

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    Thanks for the additional suggestions guys.

    One other thing my "plan" provides is reducing the overall width of my spare. The accordion spare is on a 5" wheel and pretty much bumps against the underside of the false wood floor. And believe it or not, but because of the significant offset difference, the space saver wheel (the one that fits the rear but not the front) bumps up against it as well. You would expect the space saver to be narrower, and the rubber portion is. But because of the offset built into the metal portion, the overall width is about the same.

    Moving that space saver rubber to a narrow Z wheel will allow me to drop the height of that false wood floor and gain some valuable space back there.

    Of course, a can of fix-a-flat is thinner yet, and a AAA card is thinnest of all!

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    another option - get a tire plugger kit and a spark plug air pump, both of which are small and inexpensive.
    fix-a-flat can make a real mess of your tire & rim, and isn't permanent. i am of the old-school camp that doesn't mind having a tire plugged (yes, it does have a balance offset effect, but it stays put so you can re-balance if needed). tires are expensive, punctures are (in my experience) mostly nails/screws and easily plugged.

    the spark plug pump is quicker than the cigarette lighter variety, smaller/lighter, and has and doesn't run out like compressed air cartridges.

    i can usually plug a tire, re-inflate and get back on the road as quicker than jacking up the car (dangerous on the side of the road) and yanking lugs and swapping tires, and once fixed, you're done - no need to do it again to replace the spare w/a new tire.

    just my .02

    (and i also carry a AAA card, just in case)
    '78 280z - Daily driver/work in progress...

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    Quote Originally Posted by rossiz View Post
    another option - get a tire plugger kit and a spark plug air pump, both of which are small and inexpensive.
    Well you do know that some of this is your fault, right? I was just trying to get a spare in there that worked, but then you go and tell me about how you lowered your wood deck floor for more room. Now I have to do that too.

    I was happy with just a reliable spare before you went and did that!!

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    oops!

    but i do have to say it's nice being able to fit more than a pocket pack of kleenex or a cd (laying flat) in the back area of my hatch... i actually use my z for getting groceries (when it runs) and the increase in cargo space w/the lower floor, while only a couple of inches, makes a big difference.

    i guess i'm a "real" forum member now, as it seems i've officially influenced another member w/some wildass idea!
    up until now, it's been all you characters feeding me money-sucking temptations
    '78 280z - Daily driver/work in progress...

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    you're a very, very bad man...
    '78 280z - Daily driver/work in progress...

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    Quote Originally Posted by rossiz View Post
    i guess i'm a "real" forum member now, as it seems i've officially influenced another member
    The flow of suggestions and ideas is clearly bidirectional! No oops there!

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