Your Wheels Are Two-Faced, Part Two
At Phoenix Rim Repair, we are familiar with wheel structure because we work with naked wheels (wheels without tires) every day. There is a lot to wheels and rims that the lay person is completely oblivious to. Behind the visible cosmetic face (outer facing wheel surface) there are many important components making up a good wheel and its relationship to your vehicle. What are these? Read on to learn more about the secret life of your wheels.
The exterior of a 3-piece wheel, the dish is the portion of the wheel that sits beyond the spokes. In contrast, a “deep-dish” wheel spoke sits below the outer lip and is mainly for aesthetic purposes. Important to note here is that the deeper the dish, the more susceptible the wheel face is to damage from impacts. The wheel can become bent on the outer edge or crunch the dish against a spoke causing it to crack. This kind of crack is difficult to repair to the level needed because it’ll lose some of its original strength and integrity.
Wheel spokes are located between the plate and outer wheel edge. Spokes support the wheel’s edge and help it to resist impacts. As you are probably aware, spokes vary greatly in appearance - from the typical 5-spoke pattern to more minimalist designs, and even some unusual wheel concepts. These designs are responsible for its resistance to damage, so not only is appearance important, the material integrity is equally so. In certain cases, a welding repair could possibly make the wheel a detriment to safety and performance.
Self-explanatory, the circle design that the wheel lug bolts appear is called the bolt circle. The Bolt Circle Diameter, or BCD plus the number of bolts used makes up the “bolt pattern”. For instance, 5 lug bolts at a 5.25-inch BCD can be described as a 5x5.25” bolt pattern. Bolt patterns vary between auto manufacturers, model types and years. For example, despite earlier models, many BMW wheels are 5x120mm. On the other hand, most Mercedes wheels are 5x112mm bolt pattern. This is why it is typically impossible to cross-mingle wheels between other car brand and models.
If you missed the first part of our list, click here to go to last month’s post.
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