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Optional Dunlop Wire Wheels for 1978 Riviera LXXV

Graig Muller

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Several years ago I purchased a set of the very rare optional Dunlop wire wheels for my 1978 Buick Riviera LXXV. I had to have the wire wheels repaired as some of the spokes were either broken or missing. I had a reputable shop repair them.


I then took them to a Big O Tires shop to have American Classic white wall tires mounted and balanced on them. I had the tech install tubes inside the tires with baby powder. 

Ever since they were installed on the Riv, while drive 55+ MPH, the car starts to vibrate significantly. It seems as though they were not balanced correctly.


Does anyone know what maybe the issue?

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Dunlop/Rudge wire wheels need to be balanced with a cone inserted in both sides of the wheel center.  The wheel won't be correctly centered if there is only a cone in one side during balancing.  Few modern tires shops have the correct equipment for balancing these wheels.  Find a shop that works on old Jaguars and MGs and they might have the right cones for your wheels.  At a guess, your wheels have a larger size center than MGs and most British cars.  Standard sizes were based on the largest size bearing that could be used on the spindle, so 42 mm (75 splines), 52 mm (88 splines), 62 mm (100 splines) were common sizes, though 72 mm (112 splines) and 80 mm (124 splines) & 90 mm also existed.



Dunlop/Rudge-style wheel with 72 mm size center,  112 splines, 18" rim, 72 spokes triple-laced.  For balancing,

one cone fits in the front, another in the back.  


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As far as I know the Dunlop wheels for American cars of this era are regular bolt on with lug nut wheels. I know they were an option on some Cadillac Seville's but apparently at least a few were used on Buick's as well. They have a reputation for poor quality spokes right from the factory and also for being very hard to correctly repair.



Edited by 1912Staver (see edit history)
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