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Old 07-11-2009, 11:40 AM   #1
zzz123
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Default McGard Splinedrives vs Kics R40

Hey guys,


Just wanted your opinions on these two sets of lug nuts as I'm trying to make a decision. My car does see the track occasionally so I ruled out all the aluminum lug nuts out there (especially since my wheels come on and off a lot).

Here are the details for each that I have found so far, please feel free to correct me or add on and give your opinion / personal experiences. I know both have rotating taper seats.

McGard Splinedrives:
-About $100 (roughly).
-Close ended
-Steel construction
-"30% lighter" whatever that means.

Kics R40:
-About $150 (roughly)
-Open ended, extended
-Chromoly construction
-weight 40grams


So my questions / concerns:

-I've seen pictures of a set of R40's that were completely rusted. Poster claimed he had them for about 5-6 months, through a winter. Some said they might be fake. Are there a lot of fakes out there? Does chromoly even rust?

-Do the kics have thread all the way to the taper seat? I have read the threads are recessed and you may not get as much engagement as you want with stock length studs. Any input here? Is it safe to use with stock length studs?

-If I use extended ARP studs, which are also chromoly, does chromoly seize onto chromoly?

-I've read mcgard spline drive keys break a lot. Any such problems with the kics?

-Which is tougher and will withstand more abuse? The steel McGards or the chromoly Kics?

-Is there any difference between the black kics and the neon chrome ones? Durability? Anything other than looks?

-Referencing this post tire rack claims kics is better than mcgard but provide no reasoning for it. Any input?



Price isn't so much a factor. I just really want the "better" of the two.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 07-11-2009, 01:30 PM   #2
dan avoN7
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I highly recommend Mcgard spline lugs. They are very durable and of great quality. The only time I've seen a Mcgard key break was when an air impact gun was used and Mcgard makes very clear not to use air impact guns (there's even an air impact gun image on the key with a big red X through it ). I've used the same black Mcgard lugs and key for the last 4 years and they still look new.

I've never owned a set of R40's however I have seen a few brand new in the box sets with chips already on them.. The only advantage I could for these is that they are open ended, as you mentioned you may be getting ARP extended studs.
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Old 07-11-2009, 01:41 PM   #3
zzz123
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Thanks for your response dan avonN7.

Could you tell me if the mcgard's have threads all the way to the end of the taper? Their diagrams show that the thread truly runs from the start of the lug to the end of the inside near the closed-head. Is this actually true?
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Old 07-11-2009, 03:30 PM   #4
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What lugs would you guys reccomend for someone who wants black lugs and -
Wants to use air tools
Cost IS a factor
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Old 07-11-2009, 06:45 PM   #5
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I have r40 on all my cars. Yes, rust can develop. Cro-moly rusts. Your stock lugs rust too. I do not use the lock version. I don't find a need, wheel locks are easy to take off in seconds. I have used impact on mine, but usually only for taking them off with a 17mm socket. If cost is a factor, kics are not cheap like mcgard. The threads do not go end to end. The engagement area is about the same as a stock lug.
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Old 07-11-2009, 07:20 PM   #6
zzz123
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Quote:
Originally Posted by littlewhitewagon View Post
I have r40 on all my cars. Yes, rust can develop. Cro-moly rusts. Your stock lugs rust too. I do not use the lock version. I don't find a need, wheel locks are easy to take off in seconds. I have used impact on mine, but usually only for taking them off with a 17mm socket. If cost is a factor, kics are not cheap like mcgard. The threads do not go end to end. The engagement area is about the same as a stock lug.
If you had a chance to go back, would you go with mcgards instead? Do you find the engagement still very satisfactory and safe?

and why did you choose these anyway, seeing as they are one of the most expensive lug nuts on the market, what made you take the jump?
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Old 07-14-2009, 02:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zzz123 View Post
If you had a chance to go back, would you go with mcgards instead? Do you find the engagement still very satisfactory and safe?

and why did you choose these anyway, seeing as they are one of the most expensive lug nuts on the market, what made you take the jump?
Sorry, I've been away from my PC.

The engagement area is the same as my stock lugs when measured, not problem for me. The contact area against the wheel is good since the lug seat is larger than the seat area on the wheel.

Why did I choose this lug?
1. They are expensive
2. The rotating seat doesn't scratch my wheels
3. The rotating seat allows for the lug torque to be from stud tension and not surface tension
4. The 17mm head is good for wheels where normal sockets would scratch the wheels if a 19mm nut was used
5. They come in extended length so I can again lower the chance of damage to the wheels from removal
6. They are pretty.
7. They are made of steel, not aluminum.

So far, I have had them on my car for 70k miles, they have some rust on the inside, but nothing to ever get them stuck. The outside is still pretty and cleans up nice. I check my lug torque at every oil change and have never had it change. I use a Digital Snap-On torque wrench.
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Old 07-13-2009, 03:34 AM   #8
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no other input? anyone?
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Old 07-13-2009, 10:25 AM   #9
BeatLA
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I'm on my second summer with the McGards. I set them by hand with a torque wrench to 80 pounds. Every month I recheck, they are always still at 80 pounds. They have never seen winter, but for the summer and a half they've been on the car, they still look like brand new. The key would be pretty tough to break if you only tighten by hand, which someone already posted that you absolutely must. I like the rotating seat too, keeps the prodrives scratch free!

I have no experience with the kics, so can't help there.
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Old 07-13-2009, 10:46 AM   #10
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Thanks for sharing BeatLA.

It seems that everyone who has McGards has nothing but good experiences to report. A lot more people seem to seem to use them too, maybe because of the price.

I searched other forums for opinions on Kics and everyone who has ever had Kics just says "GET THEM" or "kics ftw". Something basically unsubstantiated and more or less useless.

I wanted to clear one thing up, do the McGards really have thread all the way to the taper like this diagram suggests:



I'm having trouble imagining the rotating taper and the threads working together.... Is the actual thread housing recessed from the taper so as to not scratch up the wheel?
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Old 07-13-2009, 12:51 PM   #11
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do not use an impact wrench for tightening lug nuts. if u have a flat and u have to change it yourself, u need to be able to get that wheel off.

i have have used mcGuards for over 4 years and they are very good. u may need to have a few replacements stored away as teh spinning seats may finally seperate from teh lugs. i just put some older muteki lugs back into service.
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Old 07-13-2009, 12:57 PM   #12
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Interesting, Boxologist. So the seat actually comes off after some significant wear and tear? I never use an impact gun to tighten but I do use one to loosen and remove the nuts. Will I have problems with the key? Some people have had experiences where they "broke" the key. How exactly does this happen? And how does it break? Cracks? Collapses? Shatters? Bends?

What makes you use the McGards over the mutekis on regular day though?
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Old 07-13-2009, 05:58 PM   #13
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i've had my Kyukogen(7 sided lug) key crack w/ a regular 18" breaker bar. teh mcGuard keys are an aluminium alloy and not a steel alloy. they seem to be stronger, even though they are of a thinner diameter. The McGuard lugs have a slightly larger seat area and are a sealed lug unlike my mutekis.
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Old 07-15-2009, 03:41 AM   #14
zzz123
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Interesting. Other than the fact they are pretty, I personally think the McGards stand as a good competitor, especially since they are about $50 cheaper.

Do you live in an area where it snows and the roads are salted? Proximity to the ocean?

I live in Southern California near the sea and I've seen friend's open-ended lugs rust to crap within weeks, probably really cheap lug nuts but still rust nonetheless.



Anyone care to chime in?
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Old 07-15-2009, 11:13 AM   #15
littlewhitewagon
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I am in diamond bar, but frequent hb, seal, and Santa Monica. I have taken the car to the snow with my snow tires and have yet to have one get stuck. The biggest thing about kics that I like is that no key is needed. It sucks when you need to take off your wheels, then find out you can't.
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Old 07-16-2009, 06:55 AM   #16
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McGard's are the way to go. Open end lug nuts are a possible headache for all the reasons in this thread. BTW, my old WRX has 180k miles on it with rotation done every 3/4k miles and the McGard's are still fine. Using them on my STi as well which now gas 63k and goes thru the same rotate regimen.

Hi Box- hope all is well
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Old 07-16-2009, 07:09 AM   #17
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I have closed end Mcgards on my WRX and they're pretty fantastic. Good finish, rotating seat, sealed end, hold torque setting well and relatively inexpensive. I keep the key hidden away in my car should I ever need it.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:12 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry View Post
McGard's are the way to go. Open end lug nuts are a possible headache for all the reasons in this thread. BTW, my old WRX has 180k miles on it with rotation done every 3/4k miles and the McGard's are still fine. Using them on my STi as well which now gas 63k and goes thru the same rotate regimen.

Hi Box- hope all is well
Mine's about the same with $30 ebay lugnuts, and about 20 track events.

Can't believe how much is spent on lugnuts!
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Old 07-20-2009, 10:51 AM   #19
zzz123
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thanks all! i went with the mcgards. so we will see how my experience goes.
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Old 07-20-2009, 04:45 PM   #20
littlewhitewagon
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I'm sure you will be just as happy as long as you don't use impact or lose your key.
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Old 07-20-2009, 07:42 PM   #21
vision.dynamix
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I own a set of Kics r40 NeoChros, and a set of Black McGard Spline Drives.
Quote:
Originally Posted by zzz123 View Post
Hey guys,


Just wanted your opinions on these two sets of lug nuts as I'm trying to make a decision. My car does see the track occasionally so I ruled out all the aluminum lug nuts out there (especially since my wheels come on and off a lot).

Here are the details for each that I have found so far, please feel free to correct me or add on and give your opinion / personal experiences. I know both have rotating taper seats.

McGard Splinedrives:
-About $100 (roughly). They can be had for around $60 with locks
-Close ended
-Steel construction
-"30% lighter" whatever that means.

Kics R40:
-About $150 (roughly)
-Open ended, extended
-Chromoly construction
-weight 40grams


So my questions / concerns:

-I've seen pictures of a set of R40's that were completely rusted. Poster claimed he had them for about 5-6 months, through a winter. Some said they might be fake. Are there a lot of fakes out there? Does chromoly even rust?
ChroMoly can rust. Ive seen the Kics lugs rust. The NeoChro versions are a bit more corrosion resistant, but it's still possible. I wouldnt run any "nice" lug in the winter if youre from a place that throws salt on the roads.

-Do the kics have thread all the way to the taper seat? I have read the threads are recessed and you may not get as much engagement as you want with stock length studs. Any input here? Is it safe to use with stock length studs?
There could be about 1 more thread between where the threads stop and the bottom of the seat.

-If I use extended ARP studs, which are also chromoly, does chromoly seize onto chromoly?
I know plenty of people who use Kic's nuts on APR studs. Im installing my APRs next week.

-I've read mcgard spline drive keys break a lot. Any such problems with the kics?
Ive had SplineDrives since 2005 and have yet to break a key. Just done be an idiot with it.

-Which is tougher and will withstand more abuse? The steel McGards or the chromoly Kics?

-Is there any difference between the black kics and the neon chrome ones? Durability? Anything other than looks?
The NeoChro ones are mainly lookers, but they are also more corrosion resistant as I previously said

-Referencing this post tire rack claims kics is better than mcgard but provide no reasoning for it. Any input?
They both have their Pro's and Cons.

With the APRs I wont be able to use the McGards anymore. The hard coated McGards hold their finish well, but I have oxidization in the splines.

Ive had Name Brand and off brand Aluminum Lug Nuts, and I will never do so again. Ive yet to have a McGard or Kics thread deform

There is about 1.125" worth of thread in the Kic's r40, as opposed to about .615" of thread in the McGard. So the Kic's has about 1/2" more thread, but on stock studs, how many of htese threads will you be able to use?

The seat of the Kics is a little wider than the seat of the McGard. At the bottom, they are the same size, but the Kics stay at the 60* taper for longer before they go vertical.



Price isn't so much a factor. I just really want the "better" of the two.

Thanks in advance!
Quote:
Originally Posted by zzz123 View Post
Thanks for your response dan avonN7.

Could you tell me if the mcgard's have threads all the way to the end of the taper? Their diagrams show that the thread truly runs from the start of the lug to the end of the inside near the closed-head. Is this actually true?
There could be about 3 more threads between where the threads stop and the bottom of the seat. On the opposite side, the threads stop about 1/2-2/3 the way up. They stop a lot sooner than the diagram claim.
Quote:
Originally Posted by zzz123 View Post
Interesting, Boxologist. So the seat actually comes off after some significant wear and tear? I never use an impact gun to tighten but I do use one to loosen and remove the nuts. Will I have problems with the key? Some people have had experiences where they "broke" the key. How exactly does this happen? And how does it break? Cracks? Collapses? Shatters? Bends?
Ive never had a seat come off, and Ive never heard of it happening to anyone else. I have 100k miles on mine.

I watched a tech at a tire shop shatter the key once on someone else's car. Im surprised the stud didnt snap or the lug nut didnt shatter before that happened, though.

Last edited by vision.dynamix; 07-20-2009 at 07:59 PM.
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Old 07-20-2009, 07:55 PM   #22
vision.dynamix
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Double Post?
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Old 07-20-2009, 11:25 PM   #23
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Another one for the SplineDrives. I've been running a set since late 2004, they still look great and no broken key (I've had em on and off MANY times)!!!!
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Old 07-21-2009, 05:51 AM   #24
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Vision Dynamix:

Thank you very much for the extensive and detailed reply. Looks like I may rethink my purchase or maybe just have both to try it out personally. I think simply due to the fact that I am not using extended studs, I probably will not need the Kics or any open ended lugs.

Thanks again, that pretty much answered all my questions dead-on.
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