Bead Lock Wheel VS Steelies - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old January 24th, 2007, 09:50 PM
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Question Bead Lock Wheel VS Steelies

Looking for some advise here. I want to upgrade wheels but I don't know which way I want to go. I want a black steel wheel but might be interested in beadlocks. I use the vehicle professionally for LR dealer events and corporate events for LRNA. I dont have much of a need to air down way low but when I go out for fun I do drop the pressures. I would love some options for different wheels and havent had much luck finding many options. What wheels do you guys have and what do you like???

Tim
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  #2  
Old January 24th, 2007, 10:09 PM
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It's up to you really. If you have the money, W.E. makes great beadlocks. From what your describing, I wouldn't get beadlocks. But, I am odd in this department. I know they are better, but I run some of the hardest trails out there at 5-8psi and don't loose beads. I just run skinny wheels. Keep in mind that beadlocks are annoying. They usually leak, and every time you have to pull your tire off and back on your looking at removing and replacing 32 bolts. Thats 256 to replace 4 tires.

Truth is, most people don't need them.
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Old January 24th, 2007, 10:16 PM
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LR alloys have great bead retention. I run 8lbs with Interco LTBs and am nowhere near losing a bead.
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  #4  
Old January 25th, 2007, 09:22 AM
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I have a set of 33's on LR Alloys for running around town and a set of 35's on MRT Beadlocks for the trail. The beadlocks really look great. They are black with a red ring. They work very well on the trail so you can really air down low. I have a set of Staun deflaters and a powertank, so airing down and airing up is pretty easy. Staun makes an internal beadlock system that you can use on any wheel, by drilling in a second valve stem.

The beadlocks suck driving on the road, they bounce and vibrate and can't be balanced. And they are not DOT approved, but I sometimes do it anyways for short distances. I put the Equal balancing powder in them thinking it might help, and it does at about 60MPH.

Were I to do it again, I would go with the Walker Evans or go with the Staun internal Beadlocks.
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Old January 25th, 2007, 10:33 AM
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Use either discovery series I steel wheels or any alloys. Rover has an inner lip that is great for bead retention.
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Old January 25th, 2007, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilfij
Use either discovery series I steel wheels or any alloys. Rover has an inner lip that is great for bead retention.
I use Disco I steelies. I've never been below 12psi so I can't comment on super low pressure but they have worked well. Powder coated black I think they look sharp.
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  #7  
Old January 25th, 2007, 03:38 PM
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After doing some more research I am seriously considering Staun internal bead locks. It gives you a bead lock from inside the wheel on both inside and outside beads. You have to drill a hole in the wheel for the staun to get pressureized but they look like they offer the best bang for the buck.

http://www.ok4wd.com/index.php/catal...rnal_beadlock/

Tim
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Old January 25th, 2007, 06:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dillo90
I use Disco I steelies. I've never been below 12psi so I can't comment on super low pressure but they have worked well. Powder coated black I think they look sharp.

Thanks for that pic, I've got 7 of those disco steels out back and was going to spray paint them black. Nice truck BTW, everything is so straight and clean.

The Stauns do indeed seem to make a lot of sense and not at a bad price.
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Old January 25th, 2007, 10:04 PM
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Recently installed the Staun Beadlock inner-liners. Haven't had a chance to get pressures down under 20 lbs yet, but I feel really secure with them on the truck. I've got the innerliners set at 50 lbs. Tire shop charged me $80 a tire to install and balance.

Doug W.
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Old January 25th, 2007, 10:34 PM
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Do a little more research over at Pirate about the Staun inner beadlocks. There are a lot of people that are not so thrilled with them. I have never tried them, so I don't know any more than what I have read.
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  #11  
Old January 25th, 2007, 11:06 PM
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Read this post on Pirate:

jandoaudio
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Location: Bozeman, MT
Posts: 107 To preface my info, I was the deep snow, cold weather tester for the stauns.

Having said that, I have run them for almost ten months now and nearly 15k miles as my tj is both my wheeler and my daily driver.

Installation
Installation is a very straight forward, though potentially frustrating process, but if you take your time and CAREFULLY read the directions it is by no means hard nor is it complicated. The newest revision of the directions that I read was very clear and informative, but they must be read and understood in full or you will find yourself beating your head against a wall after you just skimmed them and missed something (such as not checking that the flap that fits between the wheel and the inner tube to insure that the tire can be aired down is in the correct position, necessitating removal of the tire and adjustment of the beadlock case) Drilling the hole is not a hard thing, you can do the entire install in your garage with a set of tire spoons and a cordless drill.

Performance
Like I said I have been using them primarily for snow, though they have seen a week of moab abuse along with street miles and this summers dirt time.
I run between 1-4 psi in the deep and fluffy and as such had a habit of continually burping air out of the beads on sidehills and when winching, etc. not to mention the lost beads due to such low psi. This pressure is mandatory in the deep snow since your primary objective is to float.

In this application I have yet to have a bead failure, the tires are often running just above the beadlock itself and they have been bottomed out countless times due to the low pressure without any issues to date. I was curious if the rubber inner tube would have issues at extreme cold (-20 deg) but I never experienced a temperature related failure. I have tried to winch them off the beads in deep snow and tested this theory once by deflating one of my front beadlocks and then winching nearly sideways in about 3 feet of snow, needless to say the tire with no beadlock lost both beads while the tire with the bead lock rolled around the sidewall against the beadlock but never came unseated ( reseating a bead in 3 feet of snow that you just piled up around your tire is another story that involves a lot of shoveling )

I am running 35" Toyo O/C MTs and typically run with guys with 38.5" sx's and 42" TSLs, they aren't running beadlocks yet and the difference in my heep at 2 psi and theirs at 5 because they will lose a bead is enough for me to keep up and break trail if need be at times. I credit primarily to being able to run a lower pressure but also to being lighter, in the snow its all about having a low enough ground pressure. I also run with a yj on 35" mtrs with trailreadys who obviously runs the same places that I do, however he looses an inner bead occasionally and experiences the same issues I was having.

Drawbacks and Advantages
The primary advantages to the Stauns are that they are a double beadlock that allows you to use your current wheels. The biggest benefit for me was that they were a double lock, which is extremely important at 1 or 2 psi.

They do have their disadvantages, but they are more important to some than others. They lack the rim protection that you get from traditional beadlocks and that is important to many people here, my rims are pretty well hashed and it would be nice to be able to bolt a new ring on and have it be like new. I think that mrblaine has likely the ideal solution, a combination of Stauns with a traditional beadlock. I am considering a fakelock as my next wheel so that when the ring gets hashed I can just get a new poser ring. The other potential disadvantage is the complexity of the system, however it can be mitigated by taking your time on the install and making sure everythings correct. Valve stem placement is key with regard to the beadlock case, I overlooked this on the initial install and had a tire that was very slow to air down as a result. Once this was rectified air down was no problem and hasn't been since.

Problems, Failures, Etc

During my testing of the Stauns I have experienced three tube failures, all due to operator error, but greatly emphasizing the importance of taking your time during the installation. The first failure was due to me some how pinching a small section of the tube against the new valve stem hole when I was installing the tubes and not making sure that everything was lined up before inflation. it pinched a tube and put a pinhole in the tube. I removed the beadlock, patched the tube, reinstalled more carefully this time, and have had no problems since. The second failure was the day before I left for Moab and I had been wrenching instead of sleeping for the previous two nights and decided I should go through the beadlocks before I put the tj on the trailer. All of the beadlocks looked like new except for a small amount of black where they contact the sidewalls, however I was in a hurry and somehow pinched the inner tube when seating the bead resulting in a 12 inch slit down the side of the tube. A new tube later it was like new and moab was great.

The third failure was more interesting. I think it started when I picked up a nail in my tire. After fixing the tire I apparently let a very small rock (the size of a bb) get into my tire which got inside the beadlock and when I aired everything back up after fixing the puncture, the rock started to wear the tube and about 4 months later it showed up as a flat bead lock. I didn't know what had happened until I disassembled it but sure enough, the rock had worn a pinhole into the beadlock tube. I patched the tube, reinstalled everything carefully with strict attention to cleanliness and have had no problems since.

Overall Impressions

As you can see by such a longwinded post, the beadlocks have been an education. While the installation is not hard, it is rather tedious and requires both precision and cleanliness, but at the same time I wouldn't hesitate to do it in my driveway, the important thing is that you take your time. For my application the beadlocks couldn't have performed better, I was able to reuse my mickey thompson classic II's and gain the benefit of a double beadlock all at the same time. In the snow rim protection isn't as big of a deal as it is in the rocks, but that issue needs to be addressed either way by the end user whether they are careful with tire placement, weld a ring into the rim as mentioned above, or choose a wheel with rim protection already integrated into it.

The beadlocks balanced out with little trouble and to the untrained eye, they aren't even there. The casing of the beadlocks seems to be very durable, the aforementioned nail wasn't discovered until I went to air up my tires from 1 psi. I feared it had punctured the beadlock but upon removal it was bent at about a 90 degree angle where it had contacted the beadlock casing. The casing was lightly abraded but it was by no means destroyed and had bent the nail instead of being punctured by it.

The beadlocks have lasted through a broken front axle shaft, a grenaded clutch do to me trying to fight my way to the top of a snowy hill an inch at a time with clutch drops and the demise of a super 35 kit.

I am currently collecting the parts to do a mild stretch along with a 14 bolt, a sixty and 38's which will necessitate 16" wheels and you can be assured that I will purchase a set of the stauns to complement them. They have been a great solution for me.

I have tried to be as unbiased as possible, but if anyone has any other questions hit me.

4x4poet, you mention Big Sky Country as your address, I live in Bozeman, MT. If you are anywhere near and would like to check out the beadlocks feel free to pm me and we'll set it up.
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  #12  
Old January 26th, 2007, 06:32 PM
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Doug my 90 is in LA right now, did you get you Stauns locally? If so where did you get them and who did you have install them?

Thanks,

Tim
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Old January 26th, 2007, 09:26 PM
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Call Larry at Dirty Parts.

www.dirtyparts.com
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  #14  
Old January 27th, 2007, 12:30 AM
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Larry is doing some work on some FJs for me down there so Ill give him a call for sure. Thanks
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