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  #1  
Old 12-08-2009, 12:04 AM
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bogger37 bogger37 is offline
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custom rim widening

Just wondering if anyone here has any experience with widening steel rims. The rims will have to be DOT approved when they are finished. The rims are 22.5 and 24.5 inch semi rims. I am located in Canada and work for a company that sells semi and light truck tires. We are selling a lot of these rims that are already widened. I have a small fabrication buisness on the side and have been asked if I want to widen these rims. I imagine that the old rims would have to be cut apart on a lathe, then a peice of rolled steel would be put between the two rim halves and tack welded together in a jig.
the rim assembly would have to be checked for runout before the final weld. I am sure it can be done, the only problem I can see would be finding a lathe big enough to take a 24 inch rim. anybody see any problems with this procedure, or have any other ideas how this could be done. Especially the cutting the rim apart. is there any other way besides using a lathe, like maybe setting up the rim on a spindle so it can spin and using a plasma cutter. any info would be appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 12-08-2009, 01:07 AM
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entropy entropy is offline
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I'm thinking the place to start is finding out how you are going to get a DOT cert.
That is where I would start.
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  #3  
Old 12-08-2009, 01:46 AM
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bogger37 bogger37 is offline
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yeah i'm looking into that. Right now I have 18 rims to widen that do not have to be DOT certified. They are going on a machine that resurfaces pavement. The machine only goes 1 mph.
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  #4  
Old 12-08-2009, 07:35 AM
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gipperz gipperz is offline
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I've seen guys use a brake lathe to cut rims. The same machine you turn rotors on. That d.o.t. thing might be troubling. gipperz
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  #5  
Old 12-08-2009, 09:42 AM
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Flatline's Up! Flatline's Up! is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gipperz View Post
I've seen guys use a brake lathe to cut rims. The same machine you turn rotors on. That d.o.t. thing might be troubling. gipperz
a brake lathe is a damn smart idea I think
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  #6  
Old 12-08-2009, 05:22 PM
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bogger37 bogger37 is offline
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I just got off the phone with an engineering company near where i live. They guess it will cost at least $10000 to get certified. Got to sell lots of rims to make that pay. Still trying to get ahold of the DOT to confirm that.
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  #7  
Old 12-08-2009, 06:44 PM
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catapultkid catapultkid is offline
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i know vdub guys do it all the time, here are some pictures









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  #8  
Old 12-08-2009, 06:50 PM
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idahoaj1 idahoaj1 is offline
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heh... that actually looks kinda cool!
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  #9  
Old 12-08-2009, 10:24 PM
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bogger37 bogger37 is offline
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Those vw pic's are pretty much what I had in mind for the semi rims. I just had a good look at one of the rims I will be widening. I will have to cut the center out and move it inward to keep the backspacing the same. Any ideas on removing the center, and being able to reuse it.
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  #10  
Old 12-08-2009, 11:48 PM
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catapultkid catapultkid is offline
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i think you can order the various bits from in order to make your own offset, seen it somewhere. jegs also has various steelies for cheap
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  #11  
Old 12-08-2009, 11:53 PM
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CarterKraft CarterKraft is offline
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fixture

I would think a old bent trailer axle half would make a perfect lathe post. I am thinking mounted verticaly with a adjustable "tool" holder mounted on arm off of the axle tube. the holder would be adjustable both on the radius of the wheel and of course the height, this way any wheel diameter could fit if the bolt pattern was the same, or adapters could be made for differant wheels. chuck up the torch, or plasma and spin the wheel manaully. insert the new piece and using magnetic base indicator check for runout both ways, tack it and true it, weld and done.

After typing this post I decided I wanted to draw it out for my own future referance and I thought I would share it with you for ideas. The more I think about the more I like the idea of building one of these. I have done some old school VDub wheels before on some low buck sand rails and this would have been allot of help.

Last edited by CarterKraft; 12-09-2009 at 12:16 AM. Reason: adding pic
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  #12  
Old 12-09-2009, 12:00 AM
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catapultkid catapultkid is offline
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hmmm. might send you a couple to do if it works. hehe. but yeah sounds like a plan. what about bending the inserted piece in a perfect circle? thinking 3 inches wide?
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  #13  
Old 12-09-2009, 12:24 AM
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CarterKraft CarterKraft is offline
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a good metal shop should be able to handle the rolling, even truing them on a lathe if need be, as for DOT cert after all of this I doubt it. I don't really care about that for what I use them on.
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  #14  
Old 12-11-2009, 04:57 AM
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PinkNinja PinkNinja is offline
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Where in Canada are you?

I've been looking for a company that can do this...

Then I just need to find some 17'' steelies with a 5x114.3 bolt pattern...

Need some 17x12 and 17x10's lol
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  #15  
Old 12-11-2009, 10:21 AM
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catapultkid catapultkid is offline
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i like your drawing, seems simple enough. ive actually got everything i need to do this at shop too. just need some steelies and get the metal curved correctly. post pics if your going thru with it. i would love to see it in action!
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  #16  
Old 12-28-2009, 09:49 PM
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mudwizer mudwizer is offline
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try southern wheel in florida they might sell you the rolled hoops i have bought plenty of wheels from them you just have to weld in the centers also i made a jig out of a old spindle to cut and weld wheels together if you have any questions you can e mail at johnmh1024@aol.com
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  #17  
Old 12-29-2009, 01:24 AM
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bogger37 bogger37 is offline
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I decided to scrap the semi rim idea for now. I got to many other projects on the go, and there is just to much involved. but I may experiment with the rim widening on truck light truck rims in the future. thanks for all the ideas
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