how much do lightweight wheels help?? - Nissan Forum
B14 95-99 chassis 1995-1999 Sentra and 1995-1998 200SX

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#1 Old Jul 4th, 2005, 02:23 PM
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how much do lightweight wheels help??

I am mostly into drag racing and improving my 1/4 mile times. I was looking into purchasing some lightweight wheels, (15" koing heliums) how much do they help acceleration and how much do they improve 1/4 mile times?? Are they really worth buying?

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#2 Old Jul 4th, 2005, 03:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bling
I am mostly into drag racing and improving my 1/4 mile times. I was looking into purchasing some lightweight wheels, (15" koing heliums) how much do they help acceleration and how much do they improve 1/4 mile times?? Are they really worth buying?
They help alot in MANY areas. Gearing, acceleration, handeling (less unpsrung weight), braking, the list goes on. 15" wheels will be good for 1/4 times mainly because you can run a wider tire than stock which will help 60' times, however they only drastically 1/4 times when compared to 17" or larger wheels. I think they are worth it for many reasons and I think those are nice wheels for the $.

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#3 Old Jul 4th, 2005, 06:56 PM
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Every pound of rotating mass you remove is equivelant to removing 5 times that much from the chassis. So if you save 10 pounds by removing your rear seat cushion, you'd only have to remove 2 lbs from the wheels. You tell me if that's a big difference.

I have Team Dynamics 15x7 Pro Race 1 wheels on my BMW 325i. They weigh in around 13 lbs and are super strong. Even driving on the street I'm yet to damage one.

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#4 Old Jul 4th, 2005, 07:08 PM
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Light weight wheels will be helpful but more importantly is the size the distance from the center of the wheel to the outside plays a more important part even if say a 15" and 17" wheel weight the same or even if the 17" weights less
the 15" will be more easier to spin try the smallest wheel you will except--- take a 2 foot pole with a small wieght on each end and try spinning it with your hand then do the same weight but with a 4 foot pole you'll see what i mean

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#5 Old Jul 6th, 2005, 12:31 PM
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If that's the case, wouldn't the smaller radius steel rims be better than the larger radius alloy rims.

The stock wheels are usually 13" or 14", whereas aftermarkets are usually 15" to 17" for b14.

That doesn't even take into account if the non-stock tires are lighter than stock tires, given that people want wider tires for a larger contact patch.

Or the issue of more friction caused by the larger contact patch which might negatively impact the ease of rolling the tire.

Anyone do performance test to compare stock tire setup with aftermarket setup? Or various other aftermarket wheels? I would be interested in the results as well, since I'm looking to do a wheel upgrade in the near future.
#6 Old Jul 10th, 2005, 01:35 AM
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Cool Wheels....

Yeah yeah, 17" wheels are soooo slow.....
If you're counting tenths of a second.
They're great on the street though,
Better handling than stock, huge contact patch.
How much control do you want?
I can spin 13's and 15's all day, so what?
You're not moving dude!
My 17's chirp and I'm gone...

How much more does a 17" allow weigh over a 15" steel?
The larger size also has the effect of lengthening your gears, 1st gear really needs it anyway. I have to shift into second before I can blink!!!

Anyway, it's all about the total package. Looks count too.
If I were at a strip and not on the street prolly go with 15-16" alloys too, but it's all about what you wanna do with the car.

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#7 Old Jul 10th, 2005, 10:58 AM
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if you go out to an auto-x track, you can tell the newbies apart when you see them roll up in their huge wheels. i mean, unless your brakes are big won't let you run smaller diameter wheels, why not run the smallest possible size(diameter) with the possible widest width. so far, the konigs are good bang for the buck, but i've seen a 15x7 at the performance mag, i think it's from Axis. the Konigs are only 15x6.5.

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#8 Old Jul 10th, 2005, 01:28 PM
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Kosei K1's and Team Dynamics Pro Race 1's are the 2 best 15x7 wheels for the money. They sell both in a ton of fitments and custom offsets. My 15x7 Pro Race 1's that were custom machined for the offset on my 325i were only like $130 and weigh in at 13 lbs.

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#9 Old Jul 10th, 2005, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanTheMan
Yeah yeah, 17" wheels are soooo slow.....
If you're counting tenths of a second.
They're great on the street though,
Better handling than stock, huge contact patch.
How much control do you want?
I can spin 13's and 15's all day, so what?
You're not moving dude!
My 17's chirp and I'm gone...
You're confused about the causes of the effects you've seen.

Larger diameter wheels won't increase your contact patch most of the time. Here's why: In order to keep the tyres from scraping against the chassis/suspension of our cars, we need to outfit larger wheels with low profile tyres. A side effect of doing so is that it reduces the total outer diameter of the wheel/tyre combination: Usually to the point where it isn't that different from your stock wheels/tyres (you can check this by measuring the outer diameter of your current wheel/tyre combo against that of your stock wheel/tyre combo). This means that despite how it looks, you aren't putting more rubber to the ground at all.

So why is it that come launch time, you're spinning your set of 14's while your set of 17's feel like they're glued to the ground? Part of it could be that you're using a stickier compound on your 17's. Part of it could be that when you went up to 17's, you also increased the width of the wheel (which, unlike wheel diameter, will directly affect the size of your contact patch). But the main reason for it is that the higher rotational mass of the larger wheel/tyre combo is causing keeping the wheels from accelerating as quickly as your smaller wheels/tyres. Your set of larger wheels/tyres aren't giving you more grip. They just can't "spin up" quickly enough to exceed the limit of your tyres' traction.

If you really want to increase the size of your tyres' contact patch, you should get wider wheels and tyres, not go up to larger diameter wheels.

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#10 Old Jul 10th, 2005, 02:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azkicker0027
if you go out to an auto-x track, you can tell the newbies apart when you see them roll up in their huge wheels. i mean, unless your brakes are big won't let you run smaller diameter wheels, why not run the smallest possible size(diameter) with the possible widest width. so far, the konigs are good bang for the buck, but i've seen a 15x7 at the performance mag, i think it's from Axis. the Konigs are only 15x6.5.
Just to support your point, here's an article that briefly outlines what you lose by going to larger diameter wheels:

Plus Sizing for Dummies - from Mazda6tech.com

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#11 Old Jul 10th, 2005, 03:51 PM
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ok, so the lighter the wheels the better. But see hears the thing, I am all about getting lower 1/4 mile times, so would 205/50/15 tires be the best or something else? The wider the tire, the more it affects acceleration. rite?

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#12 Old Jul 11th, 2005, 12:42 PM
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The wider the tire, the more grip you get on the surface. The bigger the wheel, the more energy it takes to move that wheel.


Acceleration has somewhat to do with grip, but it has a lot more to do with how big your wheels are. Like Reverm said, rotational mass.
#13 Old Jul 11th, 2005, 08:17 PM
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Plus Sizing for Dummies - from Mazda6tech.com

I read this link. It may have contained some true info but the poor grammar and spelling errors made me wonder about the author's overall intelligence.
#14 Old Jul 11th, 2005, 08:59 PM
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Tire Calculator
let's throw this in the mix.

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#15 Old Jul 11th, 2005, 09:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azkicker0027
Tire Calculator
let's throw this in the mix.
interesting, but you have to remember that the koing heliums wiegh like 10 pounds, much lighter than the stock 14" alloys.

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