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Recommendations on wheel spacers

dragon285

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I put 2 inch hubCentric spacers and have zero issues with my 2019 Laramie. I've had them on for 3000 miles already. At first i purchased the 1.5 inch spacers but that DID require me to trim the threads. I returned them and went for the 2 inch, and that required no trimming and it gave me the stance that I was looking for. I would recommend HubCentric, that way the spacer and tire will rest on the Hub and not on the lugs!! Here's a video of my Laramie with and without the wheel spacers. Hope this helps. Enjoy:

 

cjfioren

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I am hoping someone with experience can help with this....what is the minimum wheel spacer that can be used without trimming the stems? Wheel options attached.
 

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Billet1500 4x4

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If you go with BORA adapters 1.25", according to @Muttmutt you have to grind off about 1/16" or so to get 1" spacers to fit So at 1.25" you should be fine. This is based on the 20" laramie wheels in the first pic. Other factory wheels might be different.
 

DeDax

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DelRed, have you tried your spacers yet? Interested to see if you had to trim the thread on the OEM Lug?
 

capulowt01

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Anyone consider using hub centric rings to meet the 77.8 mm ??? They sell them on eBay


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

PanchitoR76

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I just ordered my Bora 1.25” spacers. I’ll let you know when I get them, if they’ll work without grinding on the black wheels like in your second picture.

Where did you ordered from? I only found one place to order from but the page is not secured (motorsport-tech.com) and was wondering if there is an specific store I can order from securely, please advise...thanks!
 

Andyram85

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I have been running 2” spacers for about a month now. They are made by shifted in Florida. They gave the truck a much better look with the factory 22” wheels. The truck also feels more stable with the wider stance.

Pics of your truck??
 

TimMetoyer80

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I put 2 inch hubCentric spacers and have zero issues with my 2019 Laramie. I've had them on for 3000 miles already. At first i purchased the 1.5 inch spacers but that DID require me to trim the threads. I returned them and went for the 2 inch, and that required no trimming and it gave me the stance that I was looking for. I would recommend HubCentric, that way the spacer and tire will rest on the Hub and not on the lugs!! Here's a video of my Laramie with and without the wheel spacers. Hope this helps. Enjoy:

With 2 inch spacers does the wheel size affect your comments on them. For example I have the 5th gen bighorn offroad that comes with stock 18s. I'm going to wrap them in 33in nitto ridge grappler, but the stock 32s are still in good shape. I hope my question makes sense. I appreciate any feedback. I ordered 2 in aluminum hubcentric spacers.
 

MannyN

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I would not trust an aluminum spacer, way to soft. Over time, the studs can come loose. Have to check torque frequently. I ordered the Bora wheel spacers 1.25" made out of solid steel. Pricy but way stronger. 4 weeks wait for them, they are made to order.
 

ekaz

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I would not trust an aluminum spacer, way to soft. Over time, the studs can come loose. Have to check torque frequently. I ordered the Bora wheel spacers 1.25" made out of solid steel. Pricy but way stronger. 4 weeks wait for them, they are made to order.
I thought Bora were aluminum?
 

MannyN

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Dodge Ram 1500 1.25" Wheel Spacer​
STAHL STEEL Wheel Spacers - From the same company that produces BORA Wheel Spacers! Built hub and wheel centric to create a perfect fit. This spacer will set the truck up just like a factory set up ensuring a perfect ride. Machined to spec in our Reno, Nevada factory - 1.25" thick with 14x1.5 studs, a 77.8 hub bore and a 6x5.5 bolt pattern. Lug nuts to bolt spacers to the vehicle are included. These spacers come with a lifetime warranty. Made in the USA.​
 

Shots

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For those of you who are looking for a cheaper option, while not wanting to sacrifice safety there are other options besides Bora. Bora is probably the most well known and they offer both aluminum and steel.
An example for cheaper options is KSP which are forged hubcentric rings at about 1/2 the price.

I know there is a lot of debate about what the spacer is made of and how it was manufactured. So lets do metallurgy 101.
I'll start with steel. Yes, steel is strong, but what do we mean by strong? What are you looking for, tensile strength, compression strength, shear strength? There are a lot of different types of steel, and they've all got different characteristics. For example a mild steel such as 1018 is much softer than something like a D2 tool steel. Then there's Titanium which is corrosion resistant, hard and lightweight (but also very expensive). However the harder something is, the more likely it tends to fracture when shocked. Think of it as a warm piece of wax versus one that was just in the freezer. The warm/soft wax will bend or distort while the frozen/hard wax breaks.
So the word "steel" doesn't necessarily mean "strong" because it depends on what type of steel they're using. That said even a "weak" steel may be sufficient for a given application. All I've been able to find from Bora is that they use "steel" or "stahl/steel". And just to be clear "stahl" is simply German for steel. Ja, ich spriche einige Deutsch.

Next is Aluminum. Much like steel there are different types of Aluminum. The most popular is 6061-T6 often referred to as aircraft aluminum. This material is light weight, corrosion resistant, strong and able to be hardened. A less common aluminum is 2024-T4 which is stronger but less wear resistant. All aluminums can be hard coated (anodized) which will greatly increase their resistance to being scratched/gouged. Depending on the material a hard coat may be harder than some untreated mild steels. However, since it's just a coating the core material is still able to handle a shock without fracturing. One down side to aluminum is that it is an outstanding thermal conductor and it will also expand with heat more so than most steels. In terms of a wheel spacer, if it expands it will tighten on the hub and wheel so you may have a difficult time removing it from the hub, or the wheel from the spacer if it's hot.

So which material is best to use for wheel spacer? Funny enough I don't think steel or aluminum is really the issue. The issue is the manufacturing process. For starters you'll want a forged material instead of cast. Forged material is heated until it is malleable (able to be formed) and then shaped. Cast is melted into a liquid state and poured into a mold to achieve its shape. Both should be machined afterwards to reach tight tolerances. The concern with casting is that can be more porous and more likely to have inconsistencies which may lead to failure.

Probably the most important thing to look for is a hub centric ring. This will prevent any unnecessary movement which would lead to wear, fatigue, and subsequent failure. Similarly make sure that you buy one that actually is the size the say they are. It's great if they say they're 77.8mm but that doesn't really mean a lot if the tolerance is +/- .5mm (.019"). I would expect/accept a tolerance of no greater than .005" based on a measurement from the stock wheel. That would allow them to slide on/off without a lot of slop while keeping it a snug fit.
Lastly, make sure they are tightened correctly and recheck torque every time you rotate your tires.

TLDR:
Aluminum or steel will both work and can be safe. Avoid cast material and buy from a vender who will hold tight tolerances. Recheck torque at every tire rotation.
 
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mastermayhm

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For those of you who are looking for a cheaper option, while not wanting to sacrifice safety there are other options besides Bora. Bora is probably the most well known and they offer both aluminum and steel.
An example for cheaper options is KSP which are forged hubcentric rings at about 1/2 the price.

I know there is a lot of debate about what the spacer is made of and how it was manufactured. So lets do metallurgy 101.
I'll start with steel. Yes, steel is strong, but what do we mean by strong? What are you looking for, tensile strength, compression strength, shear strength? There are a lot of different types of steel, and they've all got different characteristics. For example a mild steel such as 1018 is much softer than something like a D2 tool steel. Then there's Titanium which is corrosion resistant, hard and lightweight (but also very expensive). However the harder something is, the more likely it tends to fracture when shocked. Think of it as a warm piece of wax versus one that was just in the freezer. The warm/soft wax will bend or distort while the frozen/hard wax breaks.
So the word "steel" doesn't necessarily mean "strong" because it depends on what type of steel they're using. That said even a "weak" steel may be sufficient for a given application. All I've been able to find from Bora is that they use "steel" or "stahl/steel". And just to be clear "stahl" is simply German for steel. Ja, ich spriche einige Deutsch.

Next is Aluminum. Much like steel there are different types of Aluminum. The most popular is 6061-T6 often referred to as aircraft aluminum. This material is light weight, corrosion resistant, strong and able to be hardened. A less common aluminum is 2024-T4 which is stronger but less wear resistant. All aluminums can be hard coated (anodized) which will greatly increase their resistance to being scratched/gouged. Depending on the material a hard coat may be harder than some untreated mild steels. However, since it's just a coating the core material is still able to handle a shock without fracturing. One down side to aluminum is that it is an outstanding thermal conductor and it will also expand with heat more so than most steels. In terms of a wheel spacer, if it expands it will tighten on the hub and wheel so you may have a difficult time removing it from the hub, or the wheel from the spacer if it's hot.

So which material is best to use for wheel spacer? Funny enough I don't think steel or aluminum is really the issue. The issue is the manufacturing process. For starters you'll want a forged material instead of cast. Forged material is heated until it is malleable (able to be formed) and then shaped. Cast is melted into a liquid state and poured into a mold to achieve its shape. Both should be machined afterwards to reach tight tolerances. The concern with casting is that can be more porous and more likely to have inconsistencies which may lead to failure.

Probably the most important thing to look for is a hub centric ring. This will prevent any unnecessary movement which would lead to wear, fatigue, and subsequent failure. Similarly make sure that you buy one that actually is the size the say they are. It's great if they say they're 77.8mm but that doesn't really mean a lot if the tolerance is +/- .5mm (.019"). I would expect/accept a tolerance of no greater than .005" based on a measurement from the stock wheel. That would allow them to slide on/off without a lot of slop while keeping it a snug fit.
Lastly, make sure they are tightened correctly and recheck torque every time you rotate your tires.

TLDR:
Aluminum or steel will both work and can be safe. Avoid cast material and buy from a vender who will hold tight tolerances. Recheck torque at every tire rotation.
do you think a 5mm spacer on the factory studs works or does 5mm shorten the tread too much for the bolts to safely lock on
 

ekaz

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do you think a 5mm spacer on the factory studs works or does 5mm shorten the tread too much for the bolts to safely lock on
You should be fine with the stock studs running a 5mm spacer.
 

securityguy

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do you think a 5mm spacer on the factory studs works or does 5mm shorten the tread too much for the bolts to safely lock on
And to ensure that @ekaz is fully protected, as his Attorney, he will remain free from liability should anything negative happen after you install your spacers, so please understand that you take full risk and hold @ekaz harmless from all damages;)
 

ekaz

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You should be fine with the stock studs running a 5mm spacer.

And to ensure that @ekaz is fully protected, as his Attorney, he will remain free from liability should anything negative happen after you install your spacers, so please understand that you take full risk and hold @ekaz harmless from all damages;)
Exactly what he said. You should be fine, but cannot be held responsible if something were to happen. YMMV, install at your own risk, for off-road use only, batteries not included, no warranty or guarantee expressed or implied, may void warranty, etc. etc.
Thanks @securityguy
 

mastermayhm

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Exactly what he said. You should be fine, but cannot be held responsible if something were to happen. YMMV, install at your own risk, for off-road use only, batteries not included, no warranty or guarantee expressed or implied, may void warranty, etc. etc.
Thanks @securityguy
Lollllll. OK well to help you sleep tonight. I installed 6mm and it's no issue for anyone else exploring this...
 

Shots

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LOL thanks for the chuckle folks.

As for if it's safe or not. The rule of thumb is that you will get maximum grip with a thread engagement of 1.5x the diameter. So a 14 mm nut should screw on 21 mm to have the most grip. That is dependent upon some variables such as materials, thread type, etc. but it's a good start.

The stock lug nut is 1.51" deep, but it's only threaded about half of that depth.
Lug nut depth.jpg

The stock lug stud is roughly 1.58" long. Obviously the wheel takes up some of that length. Using my stock wheel I counted how many revolutions the nut makes from start of engagement to contact with the wheel. By turning 12.5 times it engages 18.75mm (or 0.738") on a M14 x 1.5 thread.

As you can see, the OEM nuts aren't using the maximum engagement, which isn't a big deal. I doubted they were at the minimum engagement either, so I did some math. Doing some calculations with a M14 x 1.5 thread (↓ reference formulas ↓) we can figure out the minimum engagement needed.
1636121189900.png 1636121262703.png
Having done that, the minimum thread engagement can be determined to be 0.4634" (or 11.08mm).

A 5 mm spacer will essentially lessen the stud length by 0.196" so you'll end up with 0.542" of thread engagement instead of 0.72. However, you'll note that is still a bit more than the minimum 0.463".

Summarized:
An M14 x 1.5 thread should engage 11.76 - 21 mm of length. Any less risks shear, any more is redundant.
Stock configuration engages 18.75 mm which is a tad over the middle.
A 5 mm spacer reduces engagement to 13.75 mm which is on the low side, but still more than the minimum thread engagement.

For my Imperial friends:
An M14 x 1.5 thread should engage 0.463" - 0.826" of length. Any less risks shear, any more is redundant.
Stock configuration engages 0.738" which is a tad over the middle.
A 5 mm (0.196") spacer reduces engagement to 0.542" which is on the low side, but still more than the minimum thread engagement.


At the end of the day, you could technically run a 7mm spacer and still be right on the cusp of spec, but I wouldn't do it. Having done the calculations, I'd be comfortable running a 5 mm spacer on my truck, but as previously mentioned, play at your own risk. 😁
 
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