1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance.. - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 18th, 17, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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Shanan
 
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1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Hi guys,

Firstly I want to apologize as I know this has been done to death, but I am hoping someone with experience cast their eyes over my query and confirm I am on the right track.
I have done a LOT of reading about the subject, although there is some conflicting info out there. Before I throw down my hard earned dollars - just hoping to get confirmation on my findings.

I owned a 1968 Firebird some time ago and the previous owner had fitted 18" wheels.
My memory is fading, but I do believe they were 18x8 Fronts and 18x9.5 Rear. I like how they looked.

I did lower that firebird with a 3inch rear drop (leaf) and recall had some trouble with the 9.5" rears with 275/40/18, but did get them to fit with a lower profile tyre (265/35/18 I think), along with very small .25" shim and minor rolling of the guards.

Previous owner could not remember backspacing on those wheels - so I never knew exactly what they were.

Sooooo.....I am wanting to repeat things a little for my 1968 camaro.

Ideally I would like a 9" wheel in the rear, BUT the wheels I love come in 8" or 9.5" only. 8" is a bit small on the rear from my perspective, so unfortunately looks like I am going to have to massage the 9.5" to fit the rear again....which was a pain.

I am hoping someone here can confirm I am on the right path with sizing though:

Front (factory disc) = 18x8 wheel with 5" Backspace. Tyre will be 225/40/18
Rear = 18x9.5 wheel with 5.5" Backspace. Tyre will be 265/40/18

Anyone run this combo with a 2" drop front and 3" drop rear?

I did find one post with the exact wheel I am after, but he does mention scrubbing in the rear (on a larger 275/40/18 tyre) he still needed to address. Pretty certain he was running leaf spring as well. Never found any following posts of him resolving the rubbing issue though.

From my reading - I think I should be ok, but second opinion can't hurt.

Cheers,

Shanan
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 17, 06:35 AM
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

What tires and wheels are you looking at?

You should be ok with those sizes. 4.75" bs on the 18x8 would be ideal, but you're choice of a 225/40/18 is safe, and should be fine with 5" bs.

The 18x9.5 w/5.5" bs is correct. Many people have been able to run a 275/35/18 or 275/40/18, so your 265/40/18 should be ok as long as your suspension is tight. There's no guarantee since every car is a little different. You could go with a 265/35 rear if you need to and gain a little extra clearance, but you shouldn't have to.


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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 17, 04:48 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

67Rally - thanks for the comments.

The wheels I am looking at are from Circle Racing - Series 90. I am going for a look much like the attached image.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 17, 05:15 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Sorry - will try again with that image....

Last edited by Shan; Aug 23rd, 17 at 02:13 AM.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 19th, 17, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Circle Racing are the only guys that do the rounded stepped lip/soft lip on the rally style wheel. That type of lip appeals to me on older cars. They can do any backspace config though - which is helpful.

The look I am going for is like the attached image. Sorry for the quality, I had to reduce image quality to upload for post.

Black camaro has 18x8 245/40/18 front and 275/40/18 18x9.5 rear. The owner does mention having scrubbing issues in rear with that combo, but does not mention backspace or how he resolved his issues in later posts.

You mention 4.75 BS being ideal for the front?
Most people recommend more backspace as opposed to less given you can shim to resolve BS issues on the inside of wheel, BUT that said - I would prefer to avoid using shims at all.

Now that I think about it - I do recall my firebird having rubbing issues on the front guards (outside edge of tyre) when running the 245/40/18. Top edge of tyre was catching on the inside wheel arch bolts (even though it had low profile rounded head type bolts fitted).

I am pretty sure that was resolved when I tightened the front with a DSE spring and shock 2" drop kit, but I changed the front tyre profile to 225/40/18 around the same time - so cannot remember for sure if DSE kit fixed the issue or the tyre change did. Was a while back.

So people are running 8" on front with 4.75" offset ok?

Will I likely need to shim the front on a 225/40/18 tyre with 5" bs?

Would prefer to avoid shims - so any comments here appreciated.

Thanks again.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 20th, 17, 03:22 AM
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Quote:
Originally Posted by 67Rally View Post
What tires and wheels are you looking at?

You should be ok with those sizes. 4.75" bs on the 18x8 would be ideal, but you're choice of a 225/40/18 is safe, and should be fine with 5" bs.

The 18x9.5 w/5.5" bs is correct. Many people have been able to run a 275/35/18 or 275/40/18, so your 265/40/18 should be ok as long as your suspension is tight. There's no guarantee since every car is a little different. You could go with a 265/35 rear if you need to and gain a little extra clearance, but you shouldn't have to.
Our 69Z pro-touring car is dropped 3" and has 17X9.5 with 6" BS. Had 5.5 BS but the tires rubbed outer wheel well lip just enough that it would not work. Now those wheels are on a 69 SS Nova and they OK except for a hard bump they just touch on the Nova also. With the 6" BS it made a huge difference and there is still room to even have more BS if one wanted. Comment above is correct as many original cars the rear was not actually centered and its normal to have one side closer than another.


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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 20th, 17, 06:49 AM
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shan View Post
Circle Racing are the only guys that do the rounded stepped lip/soft lip on the rally style wheel. That type of lip appeals to me on older cars. They can do any backspace config though - which is helpful.

You mention 4.75 BS being ideal for the front?
Most people recommend more backspace as opposed to less given you can shim to resolve BS issues on the inside of wheel, BUT that said - I would prefer to avoid using shims at all.

Now that I think about it - I do recall my firebird having rubbing issues on the front guards (outside edge of tyre) when running the 245/40/18. Top edge of tyre was catching on the inside wheel arch bolts (even though it had low profile rounded head type bolts fitted).

I am pretty sure that was resolved when I tightened the front with a DSE spring and shock 2" drop kit, but I changed the front tyre profile to 225/40/18 around the same time - so cannot remember for sure if DSE kit fixed the issue or the tyre change did. Was a while back.

So people are running 8" on front with 4.75" offset ok?

Will I likely need to shim the front on a 225/40/18 tyre with 5" bs?

Would prefer to avoid shims - so any comments here appreciated.

Thanks again.
I have 5" bs on my 18x8's w/245/40/18 and they needed a 1/4" spacer so they wouldn't rub on the subframe. 4.75" is what I always recommend on an 8" wheel.

If they didn't offer custom offsets, I'd say 5" bs should be okay with a 225/40/18 because the tire is over 3/4" narrower (20mm = .79") than a 245/40/18. But I'd go with 4.75" bs if that's an option.

Do you have anyone near you with a similar size setup near you that you could borrow? Those aren't cheap wheels, I'd definitely want to get it right, and I don't want to steer you wrong due to the variation between these old cars. You can buy or rent a wheel fitment tool pretty cheap compared to ordering a wheel or even a tire that doesn't fit right the first time.


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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 20th, 17, 09:22 AM
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

I am running 18" wheels on my 68 Camaro, and here are the specs on the wheels.

Front 18x8 offset et13mm
Rear 18x9.5 offset et25mm

They needed a 1" spacer in the rear for them to fit perfectly. I currently have a 235 front and 255 rear tire on it in the pictures.







Hope that helps.

Ryan

Project: 1968 Camaro 5.3, T56, Z51 brakes, 12 bolt, etc.


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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 20th, 17, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Hi Guys,

Thanks all for the comments.

Brent - appreciate your concern. I realize I am putting the cart before the horse a little. I have the opportunity to get these FREE FREIGHT from the USA to Australia, the savings are too good to ignore unfortunately and it is a time limited offer. Will need to make a decision soon so wheels can be made in time.

The camaro is still in the USA (on the boat anyway) - coming to australia as we speak - so even if I found someone local with right wheels for test fitting (unlikely is Australia) - car is not physically here yet.

So yes - I do appreciate it is not an ideal situation, BUT I am not trying to go too crazy on sizing.

I know the combination can work as I have run similar myself and obviously other guys are running it. Appreciate the tolerances can vary between cars, but I think the savings I will get on the freight are worth the gamble. If I have to shim some to make it work - so be it.

Just need to make sure I cover as many bases as possible first - minimize the risk - so I am thankful for your help with that.

I have asked some questions on a local Aussie car forum as well. Another guy with experience also suggested 4.75 BS for the front also.
So along with your comments, that is another confirmation of 4.75 BS on 8" wheel for the front (he had dropped the suspension as well). So I think you are on the money with that.
Given there will be more dish with 4.75" BS v's 5" BS - makes the 4.75" BS a better option visually.

Just FYI - the Aussie owner was running:

Front 18 x 8 bs 4.75" 245/40
rear 18 x 9 bs 5.375" 275/40
Had to make small clearance on rear guards, very little room on inside

So at this point - seems that the following is most likely to work on a 1968 Camaro (although tolerances can vary on each vehicle):

18x8 with 4.75 BS on the front.
18x9.5 with 5.5 BS on the rear.

Biggest tyre this will accommodate with a drop kit is likely 245/40 Front and 275/40 Rear - although in many cases I have read - the rear experiences rubbing with the 275/40 on lower suspension settings.

Safer tyre choice is 225/40/18 fronts and 265/40/18 Rear.

Any other comments appreciated.

Cheers,
Shan
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 24th, 17, 01:10 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Hi guys,

Thanks for the responses. I did post a response of my own earlier, but for some reason it went to moderator for approval and was never released. Weird.

Anyway....

Brent - appreciate your concern about possible misinformation given the age of these cars. I do understand I am putting the cart before the horse a little. I have a limited opportunity to take advantage of a FREE freight offer to get the wheels to australia. It is quite a saving and simply too good to pass up. So whilst I see your point - it would be ideal to approach this differently - the savings I am making are worth risk. I need to ask a lot of questions and check what I can to minimize that risk, but I do feel confident I am heading down the right path.

Added to that - finding anyone local with the right wheel and tyre combo where i live would be pretty unlikely.

I have also posted on local forum and had further confirmation on the fronts. So seems your 4.75 BS is the way to go Brent!

CAMARO GEN 1:

FRONT - 2" drop, 18x8, with 4.75" Backspace is good and allows for tyre options 245/40 and smaller.
I also know 225/40/18 works with a 2" drop and right backspace from my experience with my 68 Firebird.

REAR - 2.5+" drop, 18x9.5, with 5.5 backspace.
Some people have fit 275/40, but lowering is likely to rub with this sizing.
I have run 3" drop (leaf spring) with rolled guards on the firebird with the 275/40 and found them too big, but seems others have had more success. A 265/40 will give you fewer troubles, but I suspect guard may still need to be rolled to make it work.

I will wait a little longer to see if there is any other member input, otherwise I will pull the trigger and move forward.

Cheers,
Shan
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 24th, 17, 02:43 AM
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Re: 1968 Camaro 18" wheels....hoping for some assistance..

Make a cardboard cutout and test fit it ?

One of the wheel and one of the tire so you can adjust or easily trim. After all is good.... MEASURE

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