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Light Weight Wheels and why, add yours to the list, read the requirements first

RAAMaudio

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#1
Preface:

Since weight is the mortal enemy of performance and more so unsprung weight, then adding rotational forces....light wheels and tires make a huge impact on all areas of setting up a fast car, acceleration, braking, handling, and include things like wear and tare on the chassis from bushings to the actual unibody....and effect fuel mileage, in a race car than can mean winning or losing a race......

This is far more significant than sometimes considered but if you look into any serious racing program weight is always the most important and most costly in the super high end of things especially but it also matters to us, even if we do not fully realize it.

SO, what do we do, we dig in, find the lightest wheels and tires that fit our needs and go forth knowing we made a wise decision based on real performance, simple as that.

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This will be updated, adjusted, etc as the inputs come in, always open to good ideas and more so to real world experience, never to old to learn.

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Rules of the road for inputs:

Minimum width is 7"
Maximum width is 9" for those willing to work over the fenders, etc....

Maximum weight:
15" wheels, under 14lbs
16" wheels, under 16lbs
17" wheels, under 18lbs

-Actual weight per wheel in the particular offset absolutely required, see below about how to weigh wheels.
-A wheel that takes a large amount of balance weights can be penalized for such an issue.
-An 18lb wheel is not really a light weight wheel in a 17x8 or so, borderline but with so few wheels in 4x108 we have to have at least enough leeway to include a reasonable amount of choices, I highly recommend under 17lbs, less is even better:)

Under $300 per wheel
-You really do not gain anything but bragging rights spending more in most all cases I can imagine, no matter what some may spend on advertising.

17" max diameter:
-Because we simple do not have room for 18's due to gearing issues and rubber band tires which are not the best way to go.

Max width, 9":
Because that will take considerable effort, wider will take massive effort, wider will be considered if you can do so with some sort of reasonable effort, of course:)

Tires:
-This is about real performance and most often stance is about getting attention instead, we are real performance guys, right? lets keep it that way, no super stretch allowed.
-Any tire you want to list is fine as long as a real performance tire, summer only, all season, winter, track....

Alternate bolt patterns:
-BY ALL MEANS, it is a relatively low cost way to open up a new world of low cost, light weight, well built wheels and more tire choices.

Pictures:
-Of course, submit them, subject to editing.

Photoshop:
-NEGATIVE, not allowed, unless it can be proven to be a real solution within these parameters.

Slammed:
-Same as stance, if you really want real performance you will not slam you car, it simply does not equate so of little use on this thread.
I do not know how low we can go and have proper suspension geometry yet but some are working on that and I will as well then we can figure it out and let everyone know. Unlike some we will measure including tire diameter, etc, not just how far a pinch weld is from the ground.

Other ways to save weight:
-Aluminum valve stems
-Light weight lug nuts(my favorite is the Gorilla short length, open end, spline drive, cheap, strong and easy to use, a bit of security, nearly as low in weight as a set of aluminum close end nuts I have, never one single issue, track, street. etc....

Hub Centric:
-True hub centric is preferred of course.
-Rings work just fine but have to be tight tolerance and metal as plastics melts on the track, I know from experience.

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HOW TO WEIGH A WHEEL:
-Best, certified scale calibrated to weight lower weight items accurately is the best.
-Bathroom scale will be allowed if care is taken and stated it was a bathroom scale, subject to correction when more accurate data is available.
-How to use a batchroom scale,
The most accurate way to use a bathroom scale is to put it on a level and solid surface so it will not rock, zero it out then weigh yourself, then yourself holding the wheels and subtract the difference.

Repeat this at least one more time, if off repeat a third or fourth time until you get a stable reading, if that does not happen then average all the results.

If access to more than one scale please use as many scales as you can and let it be known per scale and averaged.

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That is all I can think for now, let's make this a one stop place to really get to the point of picking the best wheels for your application, if performance is the goal. If you have other priorities then please start your own or contribute to an ongoing thread.

Have a great new week!
Rick
 

MKVIIST

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#2
Great job Rick, I'll be adding to this as well. Lets try to also get some pictures posted too (Mounted or not).[twothumb]
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #3
I will post what I have already done and the 15x9, 13lb track wheels and tires I will be running very soon:)

Look fast and be fast are not always mutually compatible, we can do both if we desire but it takes a bit more effort or restraint in some cases.

I prefer to look nice but not to attention grabbing and be fast but in all ways, not just a straight line which to me is fun but far less than other ways of being fast.

Not that I endorse it but I have gotten away, in the past, with a ton of pretty crazy stuff because my cars were not loud nor obviously looking to get noticed. I also did this by myself, away from endangering others, respecting my neighbors and especially their children, for hundreds of thousands of miles, sunny, rain, snow, gravel, dirt, on road, off road, mountain passes, in the air, etc......one fun run was 400 miles through Montana, gas stop, 2 mountain passes, bone stock 95 Tacoma 4 banger with 5 speed, under 3.8 hours....I also put on 50k miles in 6 months crossing WA State with a faster average and never got pulled over.....

Anyway, back on topic, I am glad to see very little stance or ricer stuff on this forum, very cool group of real enthusiasts here:)

Rick
 

PCA-1

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#4
Anyway, back on topic, I am glad to see very little stance or ricer stuff on this forum, very cool group of real enthusiasts here:)

Rick
Since you brought it up, there is nothing wrong with stance, which is a personal choice, and use of "rice" not a term used very little today in Ford Focus or Fiesta circles.
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #5
I beg to differ, this is a thread about performance, it others want to create and maintain a thread about stance over performance that is perfectly fine with me. There are many that just do not know the difference and thus we hope to help them understand. There are those that do know and choose their own path, that is cool, they can make their own thread.
 

Colin1337

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#6
I'm rocking Motegi MR125's
17x7.5
42mm offset
16.3lbs per wheel

Stock tires for now, but when these die I want to get a 225/40 or 215/40 on all four wheels.

Sitting on BC custom valved coilovers. Unfortunately I forgot to measure the height before I installed these.
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #7
I believe you have the best color available on these cars, it led me to abandon a $30k 332ti project and haul an ST back from CA to UT with some options I preferred to not have to pay for......:)

I do have to say and I have to say before that I have not done the math yet but your car might be a bit lower than it should be for optimal handling, sure looks cool though!

I came very close to buying a set of those wheels but my change to 4x100 made for more choices considering I was going to have track and street wheels and tires, good choice!
 

Colin1337

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#8
I believe you have the best color available on these cars, it led me to abandon a $30k 332ti project and haul an ST back from CA to UT with some options I preferred to not have to pay for......:)

I do have to say and I have to say before that I have not done the math yet but your car might be a bit lower than it should be for optimal handling, sure looks cool though!
Its actually a hair higher than that now, maybe 1/2 inch all around?
I've just been to lazy to get a newer picture haha
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #9
Way back in the 70's I did lower my 510's a bit more than I should of because I just did not know better.

Power was cray expensive, hardly any parts to mod the car so I made most of my own, tires were crap compared to now...but I had a huge amount of fun with my very lightened cars going all out to their best ability....

Eventually I leaned about geometry and combined that with weight reduction, location, etc........
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #10
I meant to say also that those are a very good choice in a lower weight, wider wheel and the color is great on the Silver car, my favorite combo in car and wheel color for the ST:)
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #11
My wheels, I will be looking at other threads and bringing over the pics and specs of other wheel choices as well:)



17x7, 4x100, +40 offset, Konig Feather, 16.8lbs

205/45/17 Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3 W rated, 38 lbs per corner, the absolute best 3 season tires made(listed as all season but not as good as some in the snow)

New TPMS sensors, mounting, warranty, lifetime balance, $1292 plus tax.

These are very good wheels for a very good price and the best tires I could put on for all around use. They can be used on the track when really cold, wet, etc and then I will have dedicated track wheels and tires for good weather. These will also ride much better than the stock tires, probably handle just as good or very close and not be an issue in bad weather like the stockers. More sidewall, +0.8", means less chance of bending a rim as well. The tires are wider than I expected for a 205/45/17, a little stretch which is good, they could fit a bit wider wheel just fine.

---------------------------------------

My track setup will be 225/45/15 Hoosiers that are 8.8" wide or 225/45/17 BFG Rivals that are 8.5" wide on 15x9, 13lb roll formed wheels for just $134 each! I am working with a brake company to provide a BBK to fit them with. The track wheels and tires will weigh around 33 lbs per corner.

This is why I changed to 4x100, far more to pick from and some good ones for great prices:)

Track wheels I have on the way:)

 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #14
Yes, good info, the less balancing needed the better the build in some ways at least:)

But, to be more accurate as the tires could be the biggest factor and known when tested together, you would have to spin the wheels on the machine first.

One way to get an idea is bolt the wheel to the hub and turn it using a dial indicator or DIY measuring device and see how much run out it has, the least the better, if much at all it is a bad wheel. That is just part of the equation but it helps weed out one aspect.
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #15
Need inputs please and I need to get some work done on this thread as well! I have been super busy with my car mods and life in general but this thread needs some love because it can help our fellow enthusiasts make wise wheel and also tire choices being how critical weight especially in this area is to real performance.
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #16
Thanks:)

I need to be more specific it seems, a 15x6.5 wheel is not light if it weighs 16.6 lbs, etc...my 15x9 at 13lbs is a light weight 15.

I think we need minimum widths as well so lets try this.

Minimum width is 7"
Maximum width is 9" for those willing to work over the fenders, etc....

Maximum weight:
15" wheels, under 14lbs
16" wheels, under 16lbs
17" wheels, under 18lbs

Those seem reasonable but open to suggestions, etc....of course!

I will edit the first post to include those parameters.

rooSter, would you mind deleting some from your post buddy, please?

Thanks:)
Rick
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #18
I believe most if not all 225 wide tires are simply to wide for a 7.5" wheel and will be slower in most cases and weigh more, the height is going to be an issue for clearance as well.

I would look for a 215 or even the 205/45/17 Pilot Sport W rated all seasons or others can be fine on a 7.5" wide wheel as run quite wide for a 205 on my 17x7's, they look and will work great but would of been nice on a 7.5" wide wheel.

Wider tires are not always the best way to go, sometimes slower, the sidewalls need great support to work properly, not super stretched which is just silly in real performance terms, just enough to maximize the contact patch and limit side to side sloppiness.

I am running 15x9 on 225s, very wide 225s I will admit. The narrowest wheel I would put a 225 on would be 8" wide.

Nothing in concrete, sometimes rules limitations lead to some pretty big differences and living with certain things such as racing rules.....why there are cantilever slicks that are very wide but work on 7" wheels, etc....
 
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RAAMaudio

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Thread Starter #19
The summer only PS3 comes in a 215/45/17 that might work if not to tall at 24.7" with a 7.7" wide tread

BFG Rival in that size has an 8" wide tread, 24.7" tall, 21lbs, I think it would be better on an 8" wheel.

Advan AD08R comes in a 205/45/17, great tired, $$$$ I almost bought them before I decided on my setup.

Let me know what your specific needs in a tire are and I will dig up what I consider the best to use and the best for the price as well if you have a budget limit let me know.
 

rooSTer

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Ok I've deleted it for now..I'll repost later with new requirements.

Thanks:)

I need to be more specific it seems, a 15x6.5 wheel is not light if it weighs 16.6 lbs, etc...my 15x9 at 13lbs is a light weight 15.

I think we need minimum widths as well so lets try this.

Minimum width is 7"
Maximum width is 9" for those willing to work over the fenders, etc....

Maximum weight:
15" wheels, under 14lbs
16" wheels, under 16lbs
17" wheels, under 18lbs

Those seem reasonable but open to suggestions, etc....of course!

I will edit the first post to include those parameters.

rooSter, would you mind deleting some from your post buddy, please?

Thanks:)
Rick
 

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