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Riviera Turbine Wheel Allignment


Gerald Shuck
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If you are taking the car to a shop make sure they know how the covers are installed before they work on it. Center caps first, lug nuts second, four nuts from the backside of the wheel third. You might also mention the X frame and make sure they have a hoist with long enough arms to reach the frame in the back. If you're still in doubt after talking with the advisor at the front counter, you might be better off to remove the wheels and turbines yourself and take just the steel rims to the shop for mount and balance.

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Balanced or wheel alignment? Title says alignment. Wheels have to be on car to have a wheel alignment.

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Don't the turbines cover the lip of the rim where the weights attach?  If balancing with the wheel covers attached it seems the cover will have to be removed to install weights -- then reinstalled in the same orientation as balanced.  Then, maybe a final balance check?

 

Decades ago I used to get my alignment done at a shop that balanced wheels and tires on the car.  This was nice in that it balanced the entire rotating assembly.  The downside was the wheel had to stay on the corner of the car where it was balanced and had to be reinstalled in the same orientation to the hub or balance would be affected.

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I don't care if it's balancing or alignment. I would not trust any shop today to understand the intricacies of how these wheel covers mount. Take them off yourself, bring the car in, and reinstall them when done. I've had shops try to pry off the bolt-on center caps of my Olds SuperStock wheels. This is why I now have my own tire mounting, balancing, and alignment equipment and do it all myself.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry for the confusion.  As some of you so astutely recognized, I misspoke my question and was asking whether or not the tires should be balanced with the turbine wheels installed or not.  I was hoping to run an experiment of balancing without them on then with them on but my tire shop dude insisted that they be balanced with the turbine wheels installed.   Here is another oddity for you all;  four of my stamped steel wheels are 5.5" and one is 6" but all five have the mounting holes/slots for the turbine wheel covers.  Did Buick change the Riviera widths somewhere along the way?  Old cars...

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1 hour ago, Gerald Shuck said:

Old cars...

 

The real problem is idiot previous owners. 😉

 

I recently picked up a 1980 GMC one ton. Factory TH400. On the first drive I noticed that the trans doesn't kick down. When I looked under the dash to verify that the kickdown switch is in place on the accelerator, I find that the switch is there, but the wiring to it is nowhere to be found. Why would someone remove that? 🙄

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The 6 inch wide wheel was part of an option for a larger tire size. Both optional tire sizes were available with the turbine wheel covers, however If I remember correctly the mounting studs are different due to the backspacing on the wheel. I never really thought about having my tires balanced with the covers on, never had a problem. I have two 64s, one with 6 inch wheels and turbine covers and one with 5.5 inch wheels and wire covers, both have Mastercraft 215 70r 15 radials installed within the last eight years. No problems. Took them the steels, they mounted and balanced, I brought them home and installed them and was good to go.

 

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If the Riviera turbines are anything like the 64-65 Olds N93 bolt-on wheelcovers, they were statically balanced at the manufacturer using small balancing clips attached to the back side.sc0510-93010_7.jpg

 

I've never seen anything in the Oldsmobile service literature regarding balancing tires with or without the wheelcover installed, and these things are heavy. On-car speed balancing was common in those years though.

 

Does anyone even do that anymore? A shop's insurer would probably have a heart attack if it knew one was in use. But lordy what a smooth ride after it was done.

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I agree with Joe and others, do not trust any service tech to touch those covers unless you stand there the whole time. I don't trust them to remove regular wheel covers! Best to remove them for balancing anyway, you will get a better job if they apply weights to both sides of the wheel.

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On 8/11/2022 at 9:06 PM, EmTee said:

$5.00 per gallon gas.  ;)

They couldn't just not floor it? Makes no sense. Also this means it was JUST removed? Or relatively speaking it was removed every time the price of fuel spiked over the last 50 years? AGaon, just drive like an egg is under your foot. That's what we were taught back in the first fuel crisis in 1973. No wiring change needed.:D

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