I have 4 mid 1930's 16" wire wheels.... thought they would make a nice wheels for a dual axle trailer to haul the "T". BUT, I hate to build a trailer JUST for the T. What kind of weight do you think they could handle?
So long as the wheels are sound, the load rating has more to do with the tires . . . a Model T on a tandem axle trailer running on four 16" tires would certainly not be an overload.
Rich is right on. A two wheel trailer hauling a T or TT, I might not recommend (of course I don't like two wheel trailers hauling any vehicle except a motorcycle), but a four wheel trailer divides the load weight among two more points, lessening the load on each point. Get some good modern 16" tube type truck tires (not sure if tubeless will work).
A tandem axle trailer can pull a tyre off the rim easy enough on full lock turning even with modern safety rims, I wouldn't be to keen on non safety rims from the 30's.
Frank has made a valid point. Side stresses when screwing a tandem trailer around will do nothing good to old rims, especially wire wheels. An added expense is having trailer axle hubsmade/adapted to old wheel stud patterns.
Allan from down under.
Yeah Frank is correct....modern safety rims have a ''ridge'' rolled just inside the bead area of the wheel. This controls side stresses on the tire sidewall and prevents the tire from rolling away from the wheel edge and breaking the bead loose. That is why modern tires have to be broken loose from the rim by machine. With the vintage wheels pulling would be fine, but a hard turn or sudden swerve and you could pop a tire loose from the wheel.
You can get the 5 x 5.5" hubs off the shelf at the trailer parts store that the wire wheels will bolt onto. I have done it for camping trailers and small utility trailers but I wouldn't haul much of a car on that setup. With that being said I have seen the setup you are proposing done at some hot rod shows but seeing something at a show doesn't necessarily make it a great idea for everyday use.
You could get a set of these. Not cheap, but safe, and available in any size..
So then, the consensus is that running on rims without the "safety" double ridge is unsafe for road use ? What about the split rims and wires for your T, Model A wheels, and all of the original wheels on the collector cars we drive ?
Possibly I'm misinformed about the chronology and the application, but I believe "safety rims" were developed in the 50's and the design had mostly to do with perfecting the application of tubeless tires. What sorts of circumstances would cause a sound, properly inflated tire to dismount from the rim? Has anyone experienced this ?
There's nothing in the make up of an automobile of any era that can't be misused to the point of failure, so I suppose we should live in fear of everything.
Rich, on a car, the tyres are steered. There is much less side load than there is when screwing a tandem axle around. The harder you turn, the greater is the side load. With no safety lip, the tyres can much more easily be dislodged from the rim.
Allan from down under.
Allan, wouldn't you consider that a question of degrees? I can see your point, if by "screwing a tandem axle around" you mean jack-knifing the trailer forcing it skid sideways. If that difficulty were a function of an attempt to maneuver, I don't see a safety issue in the mis-handling. If it happens at highway speed, you probably have more pressing issues than whether a tire failure is caused by the lack of a double-ridged rim . . .
Removing anything on a modern vehicle, be it a car or trailer originally equipped with a item designed for safety and that removal is found to have contributed to an accident or death the liability rope will be wrapped around your neck pretty tightly. I would give it some serious thought....my 2 cents worth.
OK, I was unaware of the "safety rim". I just thought a trailer built using those rims would look more "period correct" when hauling the T around. I'll toss the rims back in the attic of my shop.
Right you are, David. Be afraid. Be very afraid. In fact, Don't haul your T around on anything, anywhere, anytime. It would be best if we all would just stay in bed with the covers over our heads. It's a feral world out there, and everything bad that can happen most certainly will.
I have Dad's old trailer that his brother made for him in 1960. 4'x8'and 3' high sides. '32 Ford axle, parallel leafs, Ford 16" wire wheels, car radial tires. I had it setting out behind my shop last winter, and filled it heaping with used brake drums, rotors, and hub assemblies. I estimate the load at around 4000 pounds. I made the 5 mile trip to my friend's salvage yard just fine. I can attest to the strength of Ford's wire wheels.
Here it is, with a lighter load.
I can't remember what year this was, or what year the cars were, but there is a famous picture of several full size early '30's Ford cars hanging from one Ford wire wheel of the same year to demonstrate and display the strength of the wheel. I'm betting that someone who reads this might have that photo and post it,......FWIW,.......harold
I'm with Rich on this. Personally I would use them
I would use them too, but having worked for one of our large insurance companies for a couple of years as a damage estimator my real-world experience is that if any sort of negligence can be tied to YOU in an accident the insurance company paying the claim will have YOU in court, and they WILL collect. The point is NOT the strength of the wheel, hell install 80 of them under a flatbed and you could haul the space shuttle. No doubt. But without that ridge inside the edges of the rim a low tire or a sudden maneuver on the highway likely will cause bead separation. Another wonderful little point to consider is the tire....are they DOT rated for trailer use? A trailer tire is constructed differently, to minimize sidewall flex. A car tire is built to flex, for ride comfort , etc. The two don't mix. I've built a couple of trailers, small 2 wheel utility trailers. I'd use any sort of wheel and tire, no big deal. But when hauling a 1500 lb car (always add 25% to the weight, You will load it full of stuff for the trip. lol)at least consider what could be a real scenario. Preaching OVER...
Simple answer is to run tubes in them, like they had in the thirties anyway. You would have radial tubes with modern tires. The lip is made to hold tubeless tires in place, which came after WW2. With proper inflation, turning a double axle trailer would be no problem. How many of you remember the 16.5 tubeless truck tires that only had air pressure to hold them on? The 14.5 house Trailer wheel and rim are still in common use today, used in up to four axles at a time under mobile homes and they also are held on the rim by pressure alone, without a tube. Yes they roll off the rim IF they are low on pressure. So, the simple answer is to put tubes in them, and be sure they have enough air in them. The rims themselves should be strong enough to take it.
Tubes in non-safety rims didn't stop me as a kid from pinching tubes or rolling tyres off in paddock bombs!! It was all part of the fun of putting a car on it's roof.
My experience with insurance companies is they talk a mean story and then collapse like a wet Kleenex on the court house steps. Yeah it can be a pain, but I like collecting double costs off them!!
They look cool on the trailer above. Neat touch. Tim
A 6.00-16 tire is rated at 1400 lbs. at 32 psi. So four wheels would be rated at 5600 lbs., enough for a Model T and trailer. The standard trailer tire in our part of the world used to be the best used tire you could find. My 16 ft flatbed came with new trailer tires. On my 14 foot stock trailer I am running 7.00-15 eight ply made in China tires.
I think that no matter which tires you run, the most important thing is that you keep them properly inflated.