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New to upgrading wheels

bdawson1998

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Hi there! I have been reading through all the guides about wheel sizes all morning - I am not new to fixing up old cars but I have never bought bigger wheels than stock for any car before. I found the guide, been using the search function, etc trying to soak up as much information as I can.

I bought a '94 Ranger not long ago, fully stock. It has 14" tires that are becoming extremely hard to size (as you all know!) I need more options for tires so I am looking to get bigger wheels.

I found some 15 wheels on CG and I see that it has the right dimensions and the bolt patterns. I am still unsure if the offset number is OK? It's not to the "ideal" on the guide... There wasn't much information on the ad. I have attached the photos.

Any ideas on if it will fit? Or what other measurements should I look out for when purchasing? I should probably measure the center post hole?

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bdawson1998

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I'm finally understanding offset numbers.. SO more positive the offset, the narrower your stance. I thought it was the opposite. I'm guessing these wheels are going to be too tight.
 

Blmpkn

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That offset equates to about 5.3" of backspacing. Most stock ranger wheels iirc have 4.5" of backpacking, so probably a little tight.

Could always run spacers.
 

superj

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If the price is good, just get some spacers, like mentioned above
 

bdawson1998

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OK more questions - can you put on hub centric rings onto a spacer??
 

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OK more questions - can you put on hub centric rings onto a spacer??
If the wheels use conical lug nuts, you won't need hub centric rings. If you insist on using rings, maybe...

For that much backspace difference you'd want adapters, not simple spacers. That is spacers that bolt to the factory lugs and have lugs of their own to mount the wheels. For that you'd likely need two sets of rings one for spacer to axle, and one for the wheel to spacer.

Personally I'd just skip the rings, most wheels that you would put on one of these trucks don't need them.

As for your wheel choice, something else you need to watch is your hub bore and depth. I don't know that the wheels you have pictured would fit over the hubs on your truck, even if they had the diameter they mightnot be deep enough. I'm not sure if thats something that the tech article mentions.

The easiest solution for you would probably to be find some 15" or 16" Ranger take-off wheels. Pretty much guaranteed to fit. I had the same issue with my 84 over a decade ago. It had 14" steel wheels, needed tires. The wheels would have needed refinishing to cleanup bead seat and 14s were already getting hard to find then. I grabbed the factory 16s I'd taken off my 99 and installed them with appropriate sized tires. Was a nice combination that made the truck ride and handle better. IMO I wouldn't even look at 15s, they are already starting to follow the 14s into obscurity. 16s will be around a lot longer.
 

Lefty

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I bought 15" ProComp wheels which offered a slightly wider stance for my Ford Edge. I think they cost less than $150.00 each. Then I bought oversize Cooper tires. Wheels and tires are the best and cheapest way to improve the value of your truck.
 

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Ranger850

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I agree with @JoshT, 14" & 15" rims are slowly fading away. Those rims look more like "Fwd car" rims to me. Ranger/Explorer rims are a direct swap. Others like Mustang, Crown Vic/LTC/Grand Marquis rims will also fit, but bore size and back spacing may vary.
 

Lefty

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I agree with @JoshT, 14" & 15" rims are slowly fading away. Those rims look more like "Fwd car" rims to me. Ranger/Explorer rims are a direct swap. Others like Mustang, Crown Vic/LTC/Grand Marquis rims will also fit, but bore size and back spacing may vary.
I'm told jeep wheels work too. The bolt spacing is the same.
 

Ranger850

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I'm told jeep wheels work too. The bolt spacing is the same.
I don't "Jeep", so I can't relay any info on them.
 

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I think these are the wheels @Lefty bought. But maybe not. Great price on them right now either way.

They are 8 inch wide with a 3.75 BS. Which means it would be 1 3/4 inch wide per side. These are lug centric (at least my 16's are).

I'm not a spacer/adaptor guy. I feel like if you don't have to... don't. Just more points of failure.
 

Lefty

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I think these are the wheels @Lefty bought. But maybe not. Great price on them right now either way.

They are 8 inch wide with a 3.75 BS. Which means it would be 1 3/4 inch wide per side. These are lug centric (at least my 16's are).

I'm not a spacer/adaptor guy. I feel like if you don't have to... don't. Just more points of failure.
Looks right Uncle Gump. And yes, no spacers needed. Order the 3" inch center caps. The standards are too small. I like these wheels because they gave the Ranger an old school look.
 

racsan

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Im running fwd 16” rims at the moment, with adapters that are 1-1/2” thick. Im normally not a fan of this but it was one of those things that made sense expense wise. My winter beater hhr had started some internal knocking noise, I decided to stop driving it, I had a spare set of factory steel rims with 2 year old winter tires on them. The bolt pattern on these wheels is very close to the ranger but not exact. I think its 5 on 100mm. I found a set of adapters on amazon for $200. The winter tires on my ranger winter wheels were in need of replacement, still had decent tread but were past 10 years old. Sure I could of got 16” rims for the ranger & had the tires swapped over but overall I feel this was the cheaper and simpler way to go. The thickness of the adapter made up for the positive offset of the fwd rim. Yes they dont look cool, I did add some silicone vaccum caps to the wheel studs, just for looks. The smaller overall size has my speedometer off a little, about 6mph is all. Original stock size was 225/70/14, My other set is 235/75/15 and Ive got the speedometer set up for that size, the other set of tires that had been my winter set was 225/70/15’s Whats on there now (hhr rims) is 215/60/16. My original gearing was 3.45 its now a 4.10 Overall I feel the best size is the 225/70/15’s. the 235/75’s are just a bit too big for the 2.3 4cyl, only so much torque there, even with 4.10’s. The hhr set being a 60 profile ride kind of rough. Dont think they woild be happy with a big load, wouldnt want to with adapters anyhow. I do have about 400# of softener salt in the bed. Between that and the cap its plenty of weight for the winter.
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Lefty

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A nice looking wheel.
 

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...The easiest solution for you would probably to be find some 15" or 16" Ranger take-off wheels....
I second this.^

Ranger, Explorer, B-series, Navajo, all the same thing.

Mustang & Crown Vic with spacers/adapters.

Jeeps (at least Wrangler) until recently have the same pattern. The stock wheels don't necessarily have correct backspacing. There are lots of aftermarket wheels from them that work fine tho.
 

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