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Old 07-17-2001, 04:28 PM   #1
Drew888
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Delicious Tuned 336/336

Unhappy Why so much price difference in rims???

Some people are selling theirs for almost $500.

Come on now, Tirerack's least expensive is $134 and the most expensive SSR Comp is $375

Please explain this to me? I don't get, what seems to be, the serious price gouging.

Besides the look is there a real advantage to spending that much $.

Please help out.


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Old 07-17-2001, 04:33 PM   #2
CosmoTheCat
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1) Name recognition.
2) Quality of build.
3) Type of construction... stamped, forged, cast, single piece, multi-piece, etc.
4) Weight.
5) Design.
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Old 07-17-2001, 05:02 PM   #3
Drew888
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That much I can figure out, but thanks for replying.

What about 'real world' advantages?

Weight, paying for the name, and strength is all I can see, but from a buyers perspective why would you spend soooo much on a rim when a great looking rim can be had for so much less.

My practical side just doesn't get it. It's just too hard to throw away $. If it makes me faster or stronger then ok.

But cool looking SSR's or something similar and saving
$500 on 4 rims makes more sense to me.


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Old 07-17-2001, 05:13 PM   #4
Zahnster
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SSR's look good, are strong, lightweight and are somewhat expensive(though not $500). They are semi-solid forged.

Volks and many other $500 wheels look good, are strong, lightweight and expensive. They are also fulley forged. Which means stronger and lighter in general.
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Old 07-17-2001, 05:29 PM   #5
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That's like saying why is a WRX so much more than an RS. They both look pretty much the same right? The WRX is just better in performance.
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Old 07-17-2001, 05:42 PM   #6
Drew888
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Certainly, to each his own.

I don't have any problem with anyone spending serious $ on their cars it's just that I am looking to be educated on the technical side of more expensive rims.

So far I am finding out about semi and fully forged but I haven't had anyone explain to me why it 'technically' makes sense to spend and extra $200 or so per rim.

If you don't really know it's no problem. I'll easily spend the $ if it make 'logical' sense.

So far it looks like I can spend around $200/rim and not loose out performance wise...just looks.

It's your $ and it is certainly a subjective thing.

Not bashing anyone's choice or looking to start anything. I just feel that someone out there has a real logical/technical reason that I haven't heard yet that may make me think twice about buying the lesser expensive rims.

If no one can then I can be perfectly happy with my $200/rim and spen the $1000 or so I saved (all around) on something else that makes a bigger difference.

This started for me by seeing someone selling a rim for almost $500! If there isn't a real significant difference, or really low sales volume, to justify the $ then they are ripping us off.
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Old 07-17-2001, 05:54 PM   #7
Gerry
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This will sum it up for you..
"You get what you pay for" ....Gerry
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Old 07-17-2001, 07:01 PM   #8
shinestreetwill
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Quote:
Originally posted by JC
That's like saying why is a WRX so much more than an RS. They both look pretty much the same right? The WRX is just better in performance.

couldnt have said it better myself..
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Old 07-17-2001, 07:23 PM   #9
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ever owned a set of konigs?
didn't think so. I bought my sets willingly, but I knew I was buying substandard crap.........
You get what you pay for.
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Old 07-17-2001, 07:43 PM   #10
Drew888
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Thanks for the input guys but your only lesson here is "you get what you pay for".

Ok, sure but can you elaborate a little more? I don't have any experience with upgrading rims whatsoever.

Sybir, so what was your personal experience with the Konigs?

Zahnster, thanks, that's more of what I am looking to understand.

horatio102, I understand that much, did you spend a lot on your rims?


Thanks again !

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Old 07-17-2001, 07:49 PM   #11
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Let me add some additional information.

The stock 16" wheels are 16lbs. Do you realize how difficult it is to find 17 or 18 inch wheels that are nearly the same weight or lighter?

Since wheels are unsprung weight, every pound you add(17lb wheels mean 4 pounds added) is more like 10 pounds(40 total using the above example) or something like that.

Lighter wheels make you accelerate faster, stop quicker and turn quicker. Lighter wheels that are also strong enough to survive street driving will like be forged or semi-solid forged(SSF).

To get light and strong with some style cost $$$.
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Old 07-17-2001, 08:05 PM   #12
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If you're only interested in looks, as a disturbing number of people are, then by all means buy a cheap set of wheels. They are usually made by a simple casting method and are not very strong or if they are reasonably strong, they are very heavy.
As you move up in price, you will get low pressure casting, which makes for a more dense metal. The quality and strength of the alloys goes up. The more expensive and strongest wheels are forged which makes them very strong and light. The super expensive wheels are magnesium or other more exotic materials. Wheels in the higher price ranges are also usually heat treated and X-rayed to find internal imperfections, which can affect strength.
It's common sense.
Stronger is better than weaker.
Lighter is better than heavier.
Those things cost money. What's not to understand?
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Old 07-17-2001, 08:20 PM   #13
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I'm a manufacturing engineer.
It's my job to figure out how to make parts better and cheaper.
I happen to have wheel lust, I have no idea why.

Our biggest problem from a cost standpoint is volume.
Not only do we have rare cars, but they gave us an unusual offset.
For a manufacturer to take on a project like us, they need great confidence that every wheel they make will sell. that's #1.
In order to do that, they need to read the customer. I feel confident in saying that the average subaru customer buying aftermarket wheels simply will not buy crap. Hence, the fancy processes. The more time you spend working on something, the more it costs you. the most expensive will be ; cast, forged and machined.
You could go so far as to take billet aluminum, magnesium, or titanium and machine all of it. I think that route would run you 500 a pop, from a cost standpoint.
Anyway, in order to stamp, cast, or forge a wheel, you need dies, presses, and high priced engineers to make it happen, after that, the more you sell, the less they cost you. Then, tack on a brand name, shipping and distribution, and the "I must have those or I'll die" factor and voila, 350-500 per wheel.



With the new wrx getting a foothold here, there will be more wheel makers jumping in, existing builders expanding their lines to include our offset, and then supply and demand will take hold.
I can see spending 500 per wheel, for the right one.
The volk's, racing hart's, ssr's, and even the oz's are actually bargains if you take into account all of these factors.
1 or 2 years from now, you'll see better prices in general, but a few will not budge.

This really is jewelry for guys, think about it.
do you "need" semi solid forged and diamond machined sub-16 lb wheels to get to work, so you can earn the money to pay for them?

I do, please help meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

but think of all the things you could buy for 3k........

Personally, I like the volk's in 5 spoke form, but I think they don't make those anymore, the ones without the dimples at the rim.

Last edited by Wreqs; 07-17-2001 at 08:26 PM.
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Old 07-17-2001, 11:01 PM   #14
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So to sum everything up. More expensive wheels are lighter and strong, cheaper wheels are only one of those or neither of them.
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Old 07-17-2001, 11:36 PM   #15
PhlypSide
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Sometimes you can get a good deal on wheels that are lightweight at the same time.... now I don' t know if these will all have the right PCD (bolt pattern) or offset but here are some decent wheels that won't burn a hole in your pocket:

Rota Formels (look alot like the BBS 17" optional wheels, I bought a set of these in 1997 and had to weigh them (I was overseas) and on a comercial/cargo grade scale they weighed in at 17lbs each.

Axis Lensos (very light and very reasonably priced... I dunno if they're around anymore)

There are also some new(er) Zepter wheels that are remarkably similar to the Axis Lensos and are also sOOoper light. Right now everyone seems to be sold out of the 16" size though.

Look around, you'd be suprised what you can find at a bargain with out going ghetto-terrific.

lateRZ
"If I had things my way, all my cars would be on Volk TE37s "
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Old 07-18-2001, 02:28 AM   #16
kdmd2b
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I just thought that I would explain the reason that the weight of the wheel is so important is that the wheel is revolving. Thus, the wheels have rotational momentum. To get the car to go you must apply more force to give the wheels enough rotational momentum to reach your desired speed and the brakes must absorb more in order to stop you. Since the wheels are spinning quite fast a small increase in mass adds a lot more momentum for a given velocity. The trick is to make wheels that are both light and strong. I do not know much about any specific wheels but I would imagine that the expense comes from making a wheel that is both strong (so that it won't get bent) and light (this requires the use of fancy metals and techniques such as forging). Finally, they have to make the wheel look cool or no one will buy it. This is just my speculation but I thought I would throw in my two cents.

Kurt
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Old 07-18-2001, 02:29 AM   #17
CosmoTheCat
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Drew888

Quote:
horatio102, I understand that much, did you spend a lot on your rims?
I spent about $21k for my wheels.
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Old 07-18-2001, 02:32 AM   #18
Rexy
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OZ SLs...the best for the money....245ea. at Discount Tire
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Old 07-18-2001, 02:32 AM   #19
CosmoTheCat
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For the average Joe an inexpensive wheel that looks nice is fine. If you're going to race, either track days, auto/rally cross, or otherwise, it would be wise to look into more expensive wheels. I myself will probably not get any aftermarket wheels. If I do, they will a) be about the same weight, b) have fewer spokes than stock (why make it harder to clean?) and c) be moderately expensive. I know that in order to get a lightweight wheel inexpensively, corners will have been cut.

Those are my wheels. I don't want to take any chances with things breaking. I drive hard. I don't mess around with my tires, brakes, or wheels. Once the RE92s are worn, they're gone. Replaced with something stickier. In winter I'll get a set of snow tires.
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Old 07-18-2001, 03:35 PM   #20
garface
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ACtually, the SuperLeggeras are 227.50 each after I-club discount.
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Old 07-18-2001, 03:45 PM   #21
nizz
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Question

How and where do we get this i-Club discount for the OZ Superleggeras?

nizz
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Old 07-18-2001, 07:51 PM   #22
garface
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Nizz- You can get the discount from Discount Tire Direct. Don't remember the number off hand, but you can get it at www.tires.com. When you call, ask for John Burton and tell him your on the I-Club and what you want. Their prices are already better than most other places, so after the discount it's even better. John even called my house twice to update me on the order. They should be in real soon, I can't wait.
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Old 07-19-2001, 01:24 AM   #23
CosmoTheCat
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I remember that link...

8005896789 ask for John Burton x438 mention i-club
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Old 07-20-2001, 10:57 PM   #24
Sooberman
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Thumbs down Discount Tire?

Nope, John's extension is now 427. It only took me only 3 calls to find that info out. Story:
Called DT Monday morning, got extension, left message.
Monday 5PM: Reached John, talked to him got a price of around $229 (w/i-club disco), BUT: ~$147 shipping and won't be in til mid-late Aug. Wanted to place deposit, but he had to make a call first.
Tues, called John, left message to call me back.
Wed, left another message.
Thurs, still waiting.
Friday, left John message in the morning. Called 3 times and got his voicemail each time. Time to type story.

P.S. - He said he had 8 sets ordered for i-club members. I thought I'd get the first of the coming shipment, I guess that's if I can ever talk to him again!

Back to topic:
Here's one of my favorite sayings: "You buy cheap, you get cheap."
If you really don't care that much about the way the wheels look, and believe me, people can spot cheap rims (see Sears), just get a set of steel ones. I think they're pretty strong, they make great plastic covers for them and you don't have to worry about curbing them!

Edit: John called me Monday, calmed the savage Sooberman! He apologized and said that he was out of the office the rest of the last week. I mentioned that he should've stated that on his voicemail. Well, looks like Aug/Sept for the wheels! Oh, he's got 8 wheels not 8 sets! And I believe I got the first 4! Thanks John!

Last edited by Sooberman; 07-23-2001 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 07-21-2001, 12:07 AM   #25
garface
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Yea, he is tough to get in contact with. I think he's only in the office Mon. to Wed. or something like that. Where'd he get $147 shipping? Mine was like $60. Let's see $227.50x4 + 89x4 = 1266 +60 shipping = $1,326 and I'm paying $1,350 including mounting, balancing and lugs. I don't know why you got that shipping price?
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