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Everything You Need To Know Before Buying Wheels And Tires

April 2, 2021

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Shopping for your first set of wheels and tires can be a bit overwhelming and you want to be sure that you get the perfect setup for your build. Let us help.


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Table of Contents

1. What is a Proper Directional Wheel?

2. What are Wheel Width and Offset?

3. How to Read Tire Size

4. What Type of Tire Should I Get?

5. What are Tire Load and Speed Index? 

6. Wrap Up


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1. What is a Proper Directional Wheel?


This is one of the most common questions we receive and has a very simple answer. ARKON OFF-ROAD offers Proper Directional cast wheels, meaning the wheels installed on each side of the vehicle (driver/passenger) will mirror each other, and be tipping in the same direction - the proper way. Other companies that offer directionally designed wheels do not supply the proper wheels for vehicles to have the correct design on both sides of the vehicle. This results in your wheels flowing in the same direction once installed.


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2. What are Wheel Width and Offset?


This is crucial in getting the look you desire for your truck and sometimes it can get a little confusing.


Width


Width is the easy one, as you can imagine it is how wide the wheel is and that is measured from the inside of where the tire bead sits on both sides of the wheel. And while yes, going with a wider wheel increases stance, it’s not really the deciding factor here as the offset is going to play a big role. Many enjoy having a wider wheel for a stanced aggressive look.


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Offset


Offset is a general term that is the offset distance measured in millimeters from the centerline of the wheel where the mounting surface sits, with a zero offset being right on the centerline of the wheel. A positive offset means that the mounting surface moves towards the outside of the wheel or curbside as some would call it, meaning that the overall position of the wheel will move inwards towards the truck.

This means having a higher offset tends to come will have a flatter face design usually and sit inside the fenders. Depending on the width and vehicle of course. As you go lower in offset into the negatives that mounting surface is going to move inward in turn pushing the wheel out of the truck giving a more aggressive fitment. Not sure what offset you need? Check out the ARKON Gallery where we have thousands of builds and you can search for yours to find a setup that you love.


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3. How-To Read Tire Size


Keeping tire size in mind is also very important. Especially if you are buying your wheels and tires at the same time. We offer free mounting, balancing, and shipping with all wheel and tire packages. 


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Aspect ratio is the percentage of the tire width meaning that a 275/60 would have a sidewall that is 60% the height of the width 275mm. Meaning that a 275/60 will have a different height than a 315/60. The type of fitment you are planning on running will also determine which size you are going to want to go with on your new setup. We get that metric sizes can be confusing, so we have a calculator to help you fit the perfect size.


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4. What Type of Tire Should I Get?


There are tons of tire types on the market depending on the needs of the driver, but for the sake of time, we will focus on the main 3 types of tires seen on the majority of show builds. 


Mud Tire


For obvious reasons, most would associate a mud tire with off-roading. It is made for mudding. But mud tires have become incredibly popular to pair with your ARKON OFF-ROAD wheels. This is because mud tires have the most aggressive tread patterns and arguably look the best. A really popular choice is the Gladiator XComp MT. Keep in mind that these will be loud on the road and won’t last as long as the other tire types. 


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Hybrid Tire


A hybrid tire is the mix of a mud tire and an all-terrain tire. It is made to be driven on-road and off-road. This is a great all-around option. Hybrids can still look aggressive but will be quieter on the road while still having all of the capabilities you may need. A popular choice is the Fury Off-Road Country Hunter RT. The only con to really keep in mind is that hybrids can be pricey. 


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All-Terrain Tire


All-terrain tires can be brought off-road but are best for on-road and daily driving with more minimal off-road excursions. They will be quiet on roads and highways. This is great for your show truck and all-terrains will usually cost less. However, they will not be as aggressive-looking as the other two tire types.  A popular choice is the Toyo Tires Open Country AT III


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5. What are Tire Load and Speed Index?


Load Index


The load index is the heaviest load the tire can handle in pounds. This is indicated with a number ranging from 0-150, the higher the number the more pounds that the tire can handle. This is an indicator of how tough the tire is. 


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Speed Index 


 The speed index tells you the speed at which the tire can safely run and maintain over time. If it has a higher speed index this means that you will more likely have better handling and control at high speeds. This also means that the tire can handle extra heat too. All while still handling and controlling great at low speeds too. The speed index is indicated normally with a letter sometimes followed by a number. It starts at A1 and goes up to Y for the highest speed index. 


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Wrap Up



We know that picking out your first set of wheels and tires can be a little nerve-racking but hopefully, this helps you figure out how to find that perfect setup. Remember to check the ARKON  gallery to see what others are running and find a setup you love. What setup are you running? Let us know in the comments below. 


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