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Discussion Starter #1
I have regular 235/60/15s and I am thinking of going to a 17 or 18 inch wheel, in the American TTO style wheel on my 68. I get a pretty comfortable smooth ride with these tires. My car sits almost perfectly stock and I was wondering if there is much difference in ride quality and possible rubbing issues when you go to the lower aspect ratios, with the smaller sidewall. I have seen all the combos in the picture section, and it really like the look of CARLC's car because it it almost identical to mine.
I have a five leaf set up in the rear and 6308 Z/28 coils up front.
I do a lot of cruising on back highways and city driving to cruise nights.
I was just wondering if the smaller side walls would give me a much rougher ride?
 

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Rubbing issues have to do with tire daimeter and width, and rim offset.
40-50-60 series makes NO difference.

The biggest change I noticed when I went from 215-65-15 all around to 225-50-16 front and 255-45-17 rear was a reduction in "wallowing" The car's feel became much more precise, whether it was steering response or just the way it rode over a bump.

I didn't notice a difference in ride smoothness, but I may have been gddy over the improved steering response and on center feel.
 

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Have to watch pot holes more with narrower aspect tire ratios because there is less side wall to absorb and cushion wheels impact. One pot hole equals a lot of money.

Larger Dave
 

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Tires will make the single largest noticable handling difference of all the suspension mods you can make. Wider lower profile with softer rubber means performance improvements. With steel wheels and low priced aftermarket wheels you will see a noticable decrease in ride quality as you venture away from 60/70 series rubber. These wheels are ridged and rely on that big sidewall to give you any ride quality.

If you buy a high quality billet wheel to put your rubber bands on the wheel will make up for the loss of sidewall. Keep in mind though that as you venture into smaller sidewalls and taller wheels there is a point of diminishing returns both in ride quality and handling.

One of the site members was involved with a Magazine and did wheel and tire performance testing. Carl found that 17" wheels provided the best performance times on his car. They ran a variety of wheels and tire sizes. From my own experiences I think 40 or 45 series will give you the best ride quality on a good 17" wheel.

Tire brands too though have a lot to do with it. I ran 60 series BFG's on 15" rallys when I got my Camaro and switching to 60 series Dunlops made a world of improvment in ride quality. That was short lived as I went to 17's. Took the same Dunlops last year and put them on the Nova replacing the BFG's it had on it and found a much better ride there too...
 

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Have to watch pot holes more with narrower aspect tire ratios because there is less side wall to absorb and cushion wheels impact. One pot hole equals a lot of money.

Larger Dave
If you worry about front end alignment you are already putting in the effort to avoid potholes and will be ready if you run low profile tires...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks Dennis et al. I was actually going to go with a 15 inch and I saw quite a few good looking wheels in the larger sizes. I do not like the tires I got with the car so I had planned to get new ones. The 17s sound pretty good to me and I will have to decide how large I want to go . I guess the next question is back space but that has been covered a lot and I will search that one.
I guess my ride comfort is more important now to me, and now that I have changed the front and rear suspension and bushings the car wallows a lot less. If the tire make a big difference, it will be a joy to drive. What I was worried about was that it would become too rigid.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Pot holes are not as much of an issue up here in Canada, as uneven pavement. With the frost and the cold weather the pavement will move appart and there is a constant jolt as you go over the ridges. By mid summer a lot of them have settled down, but it can be jarring in a rigid suspension car.
I know all about $ and potholes. I hit one in Pennsylvania on the way to Myrtle beach in my Chev Wagon on an Interstate!. It bent the wheel so bad that with the tire off it would not even roll! The suspension was knocked back 1/4 inch.
 

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low profile series tires are not directly related to bad ride quality. Improper shock and spring selection, wore out rubber in suspension are all major factors to ride quality. So many of todays everyday performance cars run on 40-50 series tires with decent ride comfort. aspects ratios are directly related to tire width. A 345/35 series Viper tire actually has more side wall than 245/50 series tire. Not saying that there becomes a point of dimishing return when it comes to larger sizes, just that there is more to consider than tires when it comes to ride quality.

Mike
 

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low profile series tires are not directly related to bad ride quality. Improper shock and spring selection, wore out rubber in suspension are all major factors to ride quality. So many of todays everyday performance cars run on 40-50 series tires with decent ride comfort. aspects ratios are directly related to tire width. A 345/35 series Viper tire actually has more side wall than 245/50 series tire. Not saying that there doesn't become a point of dimishing return when it comes to larger sizes, just that there is more to consider than tires when it comes to ride quality.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks guys, I really haven't had a lot of experience with lower profile tires. All of my recent drivers have been vans or SUVs. All of my Camaros for originality reason before this one had Rallyes with original style rubber.
I will keep the old tires and wheels, but I am looking for a more performance style look.
Now I have to go wheel shopping.
 

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Stick with 15s if you have stock suspension. I tried 17s and took them off right away. Unless you have very smooth roads or dont drive it much the 60s ride way better.
 

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American racing tt 2S 17X 7 AND 17 X 8 with hancook hr IIs. 245/45/17s
 
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