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Thread: Why I don't like split rims!

  1. #1
    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Why I don't like split rims!

    I worked on split rims a bit when I ran a shop but I never liked it. A few years prior I was working in another shop and we went to luch while one filled up and pressurized. I was learning to work on cars and the mechanic that was teaching me had been around since before WW2. We went to lunch and all of a sudden, there was a huge bang when the split part of the rim slipped off. I never had this happen but I know one guy who it did. He's ugly as a mud fence and he goes by the name "moonface" since it looks like a half moon.



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ED0o0...layer_embedded



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  2. #2
    Senior Member Piney's Avatar
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    In the Army all of our 2 1/2 ton trucks (commonly known as a Duece and a Half) and most of the 5-ton cargo trucks had split rims (I don't recall if the "super-singles" were split-rim or not - damn old age). Mechanics were required, after replacing tires on those rims, to inflate them in cages to prevent what happened in the video from maiming our soldiers. Can't say I've ever heard of one on a vehicle blowing apart, though.

  3. #3
    Ridin Dirty dom's Avatar
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    Holy shit that video scared the crap outta me. I think I might have split rims on my box truck. How do I tell?

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  4. #4
    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Piney View Post
    In the Army all of our 2 1/2 ton trucks (commonly known as a Duece and a Half) and most of the 5-ton cargo trucks had split rims (I don't recall if the "super-singles" were split-rim or not - damn old age). Mechanics were required, after replacing tires on those rims, to inflate them in cages to prevent what happened in the video from maiming our soldiers. Can't say I've ever heard of one on a vehicle blowing apart, though.


    Military wheels are a little different than regular split rims. Combat wheels bolt together. They are made to change a tire while being shot at. When I collected Power Wagons, a lot of the civilian versions had splits and guys would change them to combat wheels for ease of installation of a tire a safety. I think non-combat equipment had the regular splits. I think Uncle went with safety rims all the way except on specialty equipment by now.
    Last edited by grouch; 02-25-2012 at 09:34 AM. Reason: I kant spel wirth a dern
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  5. #5
    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dom View Post
    Holy shit that video scared the crap outta me. I think I might have split rims on my box truck. How do I tell?

    Back in the early 50's, Chrysler introduced safety rims. This is the design used today. It's a steel (or alloy or aluminum or....now) ring with a center that bolts to the axle. The lips goes all the way around. I guarantee you have these on your car. A split rim has a locking ring that slips in beside the tire to hold it onto the rim. That's why you used to see guys at a tire shop slinging DBH's (Darn Big Hammers) to seat the rim. They also have huge cages built out of heavy steel tubing like Piney mentioned. That's where the one I had worked on blew up. Usually, the cage holds it but I've seen them bent beyond use for a really large tire.

    I found this on the web. It's for GM vehicles but it refers to the combat M35 (military Power Wagon) wheels and also the old split rims.

    http://www.cckw.org/wheels.htm

    Where my buddy got caught and hammered was when you are airing a tire up, unless you have a chuck that locks on, you have to lean over the wheel and hold it on. This puts your face right over the rim if it blows. If your truck is just a few years old, you probably have regular safety rims. Everybody I know with older equipment in the last 10-15 years has been changing their rims over. With tubeless tires, there's no reason to have split rims anyway.

    I keep a lot of stuff in the garage for when I'm teaching someone to work on equipment. Exploded mufflers, ruined brake drums I had to use a cutting torch to get off the car and so on. I do NOT have any split rims as I don't want to have anything to do with them.

    I'm squeemish about just airing a tire up on a safety rim on a regular car with just 30-40 psi, much less a truck tire with 90 psi. That "POP" when the rim seats makes me jump every time. I've only seen a couple pop off the rim but years of hazards with splits has me jumpy and I plan to stay that way. I'm ugly enough as it is, I don't need to help it along.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Piney's Avatar
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    Combat wheels must be after my time - I got out of the Army in 1992. Although, all of our HMMWVs (Humvees) had run-flat tires - a smaller diameter metal wheel mounted to the rim inside the tire that would keep the flat tire [sort of] round if it lost air. It was advertised to go 50 miles at 50mph on paved roads. Fortunately, we never got to test it out.

    All of our Duece and a Halfs were AM General, and they all ran wheels like these -

  7. #7
    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Piney View Post
    Combat wheels must be after my time - I got out of the Army in 1992. Although, all of our HMMWVs (Humvees) had run-flat tires - a smaller diameter metal wheel mounted to the rim inside the tire that would keep the flat tire [sort of] round if it lost air. It was advertised to go 50 miles at 50mph on paved roads. Fortunately, we never got to test it out.

    All of our Duece and a Halfs were AM General, and they all ran wheels like these -

    Those look like a modified split rim. The combat wheels were actually before your time I guess. They were used in the 50's through the early 70's. Maybe later.
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