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Old 12-28-2020, 07:50 PM   #1
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Default Question about wheel spacers on RT 210.

The wide body on a 210 causes the wheel to look too narrow for the body. Does it hurt to put wheel spacers on the rear?
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Old 12-28-2020, 08:34 PM   #2
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You should be OK if you install them properly (sand the hubs smooth, file the wheel faces flat, use loctite, re-torque them after a drive, etc.). Note that you need wheel adapters, wheel spacers are universally illegal.

You will need to cut the tips off the studs unless you use thick wheel adapters.

The American Racing wheels on the Roadtreks are not hub-centric so don't worry about that.

This video is a bit of a scam as it's done on a Ford but it will give you an idea on how to go about it if you use thin adapters.

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Old 12-28-2020, 08:50 PM   #3
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As I mentioned on the other thread where this came up, if he has the 9.75" Dana super 60 semi floater axle and 2" spacers, and aluminum wheels with an extra 1.375" negative offset compared to stock, he will have 3.375" offset compared to stock wheels on the Chevy. The 9.75" axle tends to run very hot hub temps in these vans, we had one in ours, and with AR wheels the hubs were hot enough to raise the tire temps and pressures in the rear. His 210 is heavier in the rear than our 190 was.


I still say that he needs to get a look at his hub temps, especially if he has the 9.75" axle. The semi floater runs no internal bearing race on the wheel bearings. The rollers in the bearing run right on the axle so if the bearing fails, the axle is ruined and also more prone to break from the heat and scoring. Semi floating axles carry all the weight on the wheel so if the break the wheel can come off completely and will for sure drop.



I am not saying there would immediate failure or even long term, but IMO, the odds of a hazardous condition are certainly greatly increased. Losing an axle on a 5 ton van is not a thing you would want to experience and would possibly put you on the roof instead of the wheels.
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Old 12-28-2020, 09:09 PM   #4
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I am not up on the semi-floaters as our van has a full floater but I'm sure research could be done on the pick-up trucks to see what they can get away with.

Here's the axles on a semi-floater. Boooo.

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Old 12-28-2020, 09:38 PM   #5
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Axles in semi floaters see shear force, bending force, and torsional force. The bending force in particular is directly related to the wheel centerline distance from the bearing, so bigger offset increases axle shaft bending and flex as well as bearing misalignment from the curved shaft.


Here is an illustration that seems to show a roller bearing running on the shaft like the 9.75" in many Roadtrek Chevies. Now imagine the wheel mounting surface is like twice as far away from the bearing and think about bending loads and increased bearing load both at the wheel and at the differential carrier bearings.

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File Type: jpg Semi float axle.jpg (50.8 KB, 143 views)
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Old 12-29-2020, 02:19 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the answers. Should I get a 210, I have a lot to study before doing "surgery" like that.
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Old 12-29-2020, 08:57 PM   #7
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Bottom line, spacers are a bad idea for many reasons. As are wheels that have a different offset than the OE wheels. If you have a choice, don't.
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Old 01-03-2021, 06:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atlee Hokie View Post
The wide body on a 210 causes the wheel to look too narrow for the body.
You're the only one that cares about this. How much time do you spend looking at the problematic view?

Since it's a cosmetic issue, it's not worth any increased risk. Or, giving your insurance an excuse to deny any claim that has any relationship at all to the change.
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Old 01-03-2021, 09:19 PM   #9
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I would not do it, especially after I had to replace the driver side axle on our semi-floating "Super 60" at about 100k miles. Strangely enough, the driver side was worn badly and the passenger was not worn at all. Good thing as I could not find a replacement for the passenger side.
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Old 01-03-2021, 09:46 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Luv2Go View Post
I would not do it, especially after I had to replace the driver side axle on our semi-floating "Super 60" at about 100k miles. Strangely enough, the driver side was worn badly and the passenger was not worn at all. Good thing as I could not find a replacement for the passenger side.

I just took the axles out of my 96 Buick Roadmaster wagon which has a similar design rear axle, with the bearing running right on the axle. Both axles were OK, but the passenger side was perfect and the driver side had some slight wear. This a GM 8.5" semi floater on a 5K# car.



It could be a simple a thing as the oiling for the axle bearings. They get oil from the differential that has to run out the tubes and back, so even the crown of the road could make a difference depending on how high the oil level is in the differential section. Passenger side will be on the down side of the crown on most roads so would oil better, I think. Full floaters use a similar oiling on many of them and a lot of people make sure to fill the differential with the nose of the truck down from the back so they get a bit of overfill to better oil the wheel bearings. The same might help the semi floaters.
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Old 01-09-2021, 09:23 PM   #11
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Well maybe I don't know enough to intelligently contribute to this discussion buy we've had Weldtec rear wheel spacers on for 1.5 years, maybe 12000 miles, no problems. Ours is a year 2000 Chevy versatile 200 RT. They claimed that wider wheel spacing improves stability and looks better.
There have been other problems with our lift though, (which isn't what you asked about is it?) like having to replace front upper and lower ball joints, and the rear custom leaf springs body attachments needing tightening. We have some semi-ominous fiberglass creaking sounds occasionally which I attribute to bouncing on rough roads and a previous small fender bender that happened under a different owner. The biggest problem I've had with the rear wheel spacers was when I had new larger wheels installed at Discount Tire, who stripped one of the new lugs and Weldtec had to re-machine that one.
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Old 01-21-2021, 06:59 PM   #12
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Same here, have 4" spacers on 2004 Roadtrek 200 for 2 years. I did service the differential before adding the spacers. Funny thing, I could not locate the gaskets for the differential only to find there are none, lol. Drives much better with the spacers and added benefit is it does look nicer.
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Old 01-22-2021, 10:55 PM   #13
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When I'm sitting behind the steering wheel of a RT210, I don't have to see the wide body that causes the wheel to look too narrow for the body. You only see that when you're in a vehicle following the RT210! Messing with a vehicles wheel offset can be a dangerous affair because it alters the way the manufacturer engineered the suspension/handling and safety of the vehicle.
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