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Old 04-28-2020, 10:27 PM   #1
ariZona28

 
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15" or 17" wheels for GM A bodies.

I knew this would happen and the day of reckoning has arrived. After 17 years of "therapeutic" use one of my 245 14s on my '71 Cutlass checked out. Now it is decision time. I'm staying with the Olds Super Stock 2s, might find some 15s or go with Year One 17s. I'd like to know what other folks are running for tires. Keep in mind I absolutely HATE the skinny sidewall look on older cars so that is out. I want tires that hook-up and handle well but I realize this is not a Gen 5 Camaro. 350 built to '70 W-31 specs, Turbo 400 and 3.91 posi. Suspension is all stock, may do some upgrades in "the land of maybe someday". I would like to see pics of other vehicles with 17"s to help me decide one way or another.
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Old 04-29-2020, 01:23 AM   #2
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I'm with you on preferring a meatier sidewall. Why not stay with the 14"s? I'm not sure if this will be good on a narrow wheel: https://www.summitracing.com/parts/cok-548050
They also have a DOT legal drag tire: https://www.summitracing.com/parts/hoo-17030

If not, definitely go 15".
I didn't scour a ton of sites.

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Old 04-29-2020, 06:53 AM   #3
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Beautiful car, you just don't see those around much anymore. Always one of my favorites.

If it were me, I would go with one of two options on a car like this. I would either go a period correct wheel/tire combo like a set of Cragar SS or Centerline wheels and Goodrich Radial T/A's. Or I would hunt for some factory 445 wheels. To me a car like that is a time capsule, so I like period correct stuff to enhance the nostalgic effect.

A 17" wheel would work for performance and open up a lot of tire possibilities. The sidewall would shorter, but nothing like what you see on the modern 20" wheels, you would still have some 'meat' on them. If you wanted go with a "Retro-mod" look.
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Old 04-29-2020, 07:05 AM   #4
Nothing like an SS
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Beautiful car! Love old school muscle!

I can only speak from G Body perspective (Monte Carlos). While 15" would remain correct for the car, I had gone to 17" that were repros of original SS wheels just larger diameter. They still had plenty of tire and looked correct, definitely improved the handling some too. Opened up many more options for tires to as mentioned above.
I did also update the entire suspension with Hotchkis suspension system and Bilstein shocks, so that made a difference in handling too.
Wish I could find some pics........but 17" would work if the wheels "look" right for the car.
If you potentially upgrade suspension later, you will want to go 17" wheels.

There is also a good argument to just stick with period factory correct. Ultimately, your car, do what makes you happy! Great car either way!
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Old 04-29-2020, 03:05 PM   #5
Nailbender
 
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I love the car! I run 15” on my 67 Chevelle any bigger I think looks weird.
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Old 04-29-2020, 07:38 PM   #6
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Please do not put 17" wheels on that car.
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Old 05-19-2020, 07:58 PM   #7
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Time for polyglass tires
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Old 05-27-2020, 12:36 PM   #8
ariZona28

 
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My Cutlass is crying out for attention. The OTHER front tire blew out just sitting in the garage. I'm doing a casual search for some 15" SSIIs. Probably go with BFG T/As, 245 60s. Going to try to find wheels local so I can inspect condition prior to purchase.
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Old 05-27-2020, 03:03 PM   #9
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Holy shit! Very nice Olds

17 "would be a step backwards.
I'd stay at 15 ". It just looks better.

Here is the picture 17 "vs 15"

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Old 05-16-2021, 04:59 PM   #10
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OK, after way too much hem-haw, other auto priorities, price, quality and availability I made a command decision to stick with my original 14s and purchased some brand new BFG T/As. Not a big size selection so I went with 225/70/R14. Just got fed up seeing my former crown jewel on injured reserve. Gave it a good wash and went for the 1st real spin in over a year. Won't take long to burn the old fuel out of the tank!
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Old 05-17-2021, 10:19 AM   #11
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I'm running 15" on 1985 442 rims 255 rear and 215 front the hard part is finding the rims now, after pulling my Cutlass out of Storage this spring I have found that the tires need to be replaced from sitting for the last 10 plus years.
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Old 05-17-2021, 11:04 AM   #12
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Those wheels look great. I would stick with them
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Old 05-17-2021, 12:28 PM   #13
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I like the SSII wheels. If you ever decide to go bigger, you could always do 15" SSI wheels and still retain a factory look. I actually put SSI wheels on my Chevelle because I liked the chrome better than the silver paint. I got mine from Wheel Vintiques and have been more than happy with them.
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Old 05-17-2021, 02:04 PM   #14
ariZona28

 
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I came REAL close to getting those 15" SSI models. Very nice AND made in USA! I also tried to find some of those 15"s like Rocket 403 has, no luck and if I did find them they'd probably need to be restored. Then I purchased my C5 Vette, started doing Auto X with the Z/28 etc, etc. Looked at the Olds last week and just said F**K it, doing tires today. Wish they were a bit fatter but I don't push the car as hard now that I've got the other beasts. When questioned I just tell people my Olds is a "different kinda fast".
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