Split Rims - Pro's & Cons

lostboys

Member
Apologies if old ground is covered here. (Couldn't find any specific threads though.) & I guess it may be a question for Toyota drivers(?).
Have purchased a Series 70 Troopy with split rims as standard, & Dunlop SP Road Gripper F's.
Have read heaps, & am leaning towards replacing them for the following reasons -
- They need a fair amount of skill & care to repair
- Shall carry 2-spares & puncture kit, & can probably plug tubeless tyres much easier as we go, & get proper repairs when we reach civilization if necessary.

Yeah, a fair bit of extra $$$'s, but I reckon simplest is best.
Any thoughts?
(Apologies again for revisiting old arguments/discussions:))
 
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stevemc181

Well-Known Member
I used to drive geologists around in the Cape for a living and we would run split rims, I loved them for ease of use when repairing a puncture, which we did often. We would just run rag (Bias Ply) tyres (14 ply from memory) The tyres of today are a lot more puncture proof but with the rags, we would have the tyre off in no time and either patch or retube and carry on. We had a few vehicles equipped with Tubeless Radials, but these were useless when bush bashing as we would generally tear the sidewall right out of them and render the tyre useless.
If you have the right tools, either wheel can be worked with, but it is far easier to get the tyre off a split rim. They both have pro's and cons, but if you do change wheels, go for steel wheels and not alloys. Much easier to work with a steel wheel without damaging it during repair in the bush.
 

lostboys

Member
Thanks so much for the insight Steve. Most appreciated, & I understand your preference - horses for courses.
I shall definitely look @ steel rims as opposed to alloy.
 

2luxes

Well-Known Member
Ian

Reading through this should help you decide. http://www.beadelltours.com.au/tyre_information.html
Don't forget to click on the tyre repair demonstration link the the top of the page then open the list of 34 photos.

Whether you use one piece rims or splits depends a lot on how far you want to go to repair punctures. The little plug kits that many people take with them can easily get you out of trouble with some punctures in tubeless tyres but definitely not all punctures. Some will need large reinforced patches or combination plugs that have to be applied from the inside. That is where wheel choice comes into play. If you can take your tyres off a one piece rim without any trouble then you don't need split rims. If you can't then you will need them.

The only exception to that is if you are using very heavy cross plies like an MRF 7.50 x 16. You will have no hope of getting them on and off a one piece rim. Tyres like that are used extensively for cross country driving all over the Outback and are the reason why Toyota still makes split rims for the Cruiser ute and troopy.

If you do use splits then don't forget a few vital points. One is keep the inside of the tyre as well as the tube clean during assembly. Dirt or sand can rub through the tube. Put chalk powder inside the tyre and rub it all over the tube. Seal the valve stem hole and the removable ring gap with something like roof and gutter sealer from Bunnings. That will keep sand and water out of the tyre. I also put a tiny bead of it right around between the ring and the wheel then run my finger over it. I don't know if it is possible for water to get in through there but it is easy enough to do so I thought why not?

Don't worry about all of the rubbish that you read on the net about them being dangerous and likely to blow your head off while inflating them. The ring fits like a circlip into a grove about 6 m deep in the wheel. It also extends back inside for about 40 mm. The shape of that section inside is identical in shape to the other side of the wheel. The steel reinforced bead of the tyre is sitting on top of it as well as pressing sideways on the visible section outside. Getting the ring out of there during inflation would be like placing a radiator hose clamp on top of a circlip sitting in a groove on a steel shaft then trying to remove the clip without removing the clamp.

The ring is never going to come off unless it is damaged and not seating properly or the ring/ wheel or both are very severely rusted.
 

03hilux

Well-Known Member
Don't worry about all of the rubbish that you read on the net about them being dangerous and likely to blow your head off while inflating them. ........................................................................................The ring is never going to come off unless it is damaged and not seating properly or the ring/ wheel or both are very severely rusted.

All the more reason to worry when reassembling. Time, care and knowledge is what will keep you alive.
 

ULost2

Well-Known Member
Also when assembling them, the split in the ring must go directly opposite the valve. There is a weld in the rim where it should line up.
never knew that one. But I know the truck split rim will take ya head off if not done correctly
I have to admit I have a soft spot for 4x4 split rims; and the narrower tyres and not sure I would change just for the sake of changing. A tubeless tyre with a nail in it will take awhile to go flat however a tyre on a split rim will be flat within minutes.
The trucking industry will not be rushing back into split rims any time soon . Bugga me; I change some of those yet flats on trucks today are rather rare

"and the narrower tyres" . Now that should get a few fire up :eek: :D
 

Chatty

Well-Known Member
For my two cents worth - I think split rims would be great for the really rough/isolated stuff - the sort of thing where mining company geologists are heading into the middle of nowhere. With that sort of thing they are quite often making their own tracks so the tyres get abused above and beyond what most 4WDers see. Damage to the tyres is likely, will quite possibly be severe and so the ability to quickly remove, repair and replace a tyre is a big factor.

The sort of 4WDing I do, where I'm typically in a group or in the not terribly isolated areas (even the Simmo isn't really that "isolated" now) I think conventional rims are fine as the tracks are well defined and less likely to damage tyres. But yes, damage can occur, hence the need for spares and repair kits. The thing is that damage is less likely and most probably less severe, so the effort to repair a tyre on a conventional rim isn't too bad in the big picture.
 

2luxes

Well-Known Member
Time, care and knowledge is what will keep you alive.

True but the time care and knowledge to see that the ring and wheel is not damaged and the ring is seated properly in its grove only takes a few seconds.

I have been using these wheels since my early days at work in the 1960s. I find the easiest and safest way to inflate them is to crouch down at the side of the tyre and watch them. Don't hide them under a car or wherever where you can't see them.

I hold the valve stem in its correct position with one hand behind the wheel then put small amounts of air in a little bit at a time with the other hand. I can then watch both sides of the tyre slowly expanding into its fully seated position. If the tyre and wheel are clean with a tiny amount of lubricant on them, that will take no more than about 5 psi pressure.

The ring is not going to come off while doing that and once the tyre is fully seated, there is no chance in the world of it getting out. If there was the slightest chance of these wheels exploding while the fitter was doing everything correctly with a good condition wheel and ring, they would never have been put onto the market in the first place. It is the big two or three piece earth moving equipment wheels that have killed people but even then they would have had to be damaged or incorrectly assembled for that to happen.

As I said before, the use of these wheels depends on your tyre changing skills and how well you want to be prepared for puncture repairs. You can carry two spares but can anyone guarantee they will not get two or more big hole punctures on a trip? If you keep reading on the net you will find that has happened to many people. It may not be all that much of a problem if you are on a mountain track and fairly close to a town but it gets a little more difficult if you are half way along tracks like the Canning or the Anne Beadell.
 

stevemc181

Well-Known Member
I don't go remote without the ability and equipment to repair a tyre properly. Some call it overkill, but I call it insurance and carry a fair bit of repair gear with me. I am currently running alloys which are a damn pain in the arse to lever 10 ply LT tyres off, particularly the inside bead. I only repair these when out bush if I am out of spares. I will be repairing a couple this weekend from a recent trip down to the Telegraph track in WA's South. One I managed to get a Permacure plug in, which will be replaced with an internal mushroom plug, the other is a split that didn't penetrate, but is on the sidewall and looked pretty suss for the hwy run I was about to do. This will be strengthened internally with a radial patch and the tyre relegated to an off-road spare only.
 

lostboys

Member
Thanks so much gents.
Some terrific straight-up input here!!!
Although having this truck for a few months now, & have done quite a bit of reading, have not given the issue serious thought until now. & having now slept on it, there's enough to make me reconsider.
(I never rush into anything like this & shall not be heading off long term for another 12-months...& to some pretty isolated locations.)
There'll be some Victorian back country trips in the short term, so will make sure I have the right tools & background, & give the split rims a go (all in as new condition).
Have never had split rims previously, hence, the apprehension.
 

03hilux

Well-Known Member
True but the time care and knowledge to see that the ring and wheel is not damaged and the ring is seated properly in its grove only takes a few seconds.

I have been using these wheels since my early days at work in the 1960s. I find the easiest and safest way to inflate them is to crouch down at the side of the tyre and watch them. Don't hide them under a car or wherever where you can't see them.
.

I fully agree with being able to see whats going on.
If you must stand near the assembly whilst inflating, its best that you stand as far away possible. Rather than hold the valve stem in position, with the air line attached, gently pull the airline straight back toward the tyre. That way, should the split rim choose to depart, the air line will be severed, not your hand or fingers.
 

03hilux

Well-Known Member
Its worthwhile going to your local tyre shop with your split rims and ask them to take their time and show you whats involved in removal and replacing the tyre. Just explain you are planing a remote trip, and want to know how its done just in case.
If they are nice, like I was when I managed a tyre shop, they won't charge you, but they might, so go in prepared.

Just a handy hint when you get a puncture;
Always wipe the inside of the tyre case over lightly with an old towel. If you cannot find the cause of the puncture, ( sometimes you won't) stand the tyre up and push down firmly. Lightly wipe the bottom of the inside of the tyre with towel. Do small sections at a time. The towel will snag on anything poking through the tyre.
 

2luxes

Well-Known Member
upload_2016-1-7_22-9-49.jpeg


I just found this old photo that I saved years ago. The tyre is a 7.50 x 16 MRF Superlug cross ply. Their maximum load from memory is about 1495 kgs at 106 psi. This one looks like it has got a puncture but no it is brand new and has not been driven yet.

It has ZERO air pressure in it. The sidewalls are so thick that the weight of that Patrol can't flatten them. These are the type of tyre that split rims are made for. You will see them all over places like the huge Outback cattle stations or anywhere where people are regularly driving on both dirt roads and cross country.

This one has a mud tread pattern but Beadell Tours use the same tyre in highway pattern.
 

2luxes

Well-Known Member
That way, should the split rim choose to depart, the air line will be severed, not your hand or fingers.

But the point is the rim will not choose to depart. There is no sideways pressure on the ring until the tyre is fully seated. From that point on the tyre will put sideways pressure on it but it can't get out of its deep groove in the wheel because the steel reinforced tyre bead is sitting directly on top of it. Those rings are L shapped, not flat. What you see from outside is only half of them. The invisible part is the actual seat for the tyres. In order to get the ring off, a 16 inch tyre would have to be stretched out to at lease 16 1/2 inches and that is not going to happen.

I have no doubt that if drove about ten minutes from home and left a wheel and ring on a rock beside the ocean for about a year, they would be so badly rusted that the ring would have a chance of flying off. That comes back to using parts that are in good condition and tyres that are not so old that the rubber has cracked and let moisture in to rust the beads. All faults like that would be clearly visible and you would have to be mad to use them.
 

ULost2

Well-Known Member
pretty basic; always mark the tyre where valve is. makes it easier to find the offending object or small hole in the tire

and don't leave tools in the tyre. it was a lot work for me to find my lost multigrips in a damn big tractor tyre that went flat. Stuffed if I know how I got those tires off the Case tractor, into the ute, onto the shed floor, pull the bloody thing apart, patch the hole, put it back together, into the ute, back onto the tractor by myself. And they were filled with water to add weight for traction. things we used to do!
 

03hilux

Well-Known Member
pretty basic; always mark the tyre where valve is. makes it easier to find the offending object or small hole in the tire

and don't leave tools in the tyre. it was a lot work for me to find my lost multigrips in a damn big tractor tyre that went flat. Stuffed if I know how I got those tires off the Case tractor, into the ute, onto the shed floor, pull the bloody thing apart, patch the hole, put it back together, into the ute, back onto the tractor by myself. And they were filled with water to add weight for traction. things we used to do!
Thats Funny Ian. I worked in the tyre game (passenger, TBR, industrial and earthmover) for close to 15 years. I started as a fitter, then worked my way up to management, and I can't say I ever saw tools left in a tyre.
 
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