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Steel (16") Vs Stock Rims (17") - Pro and cons of Steel rims on a R50


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Hi All,

Thanks for allowing me to join this group. Well let me start of by saying that I have a 2004 Nissan Pathfinder that I've been working on now for about 3 months. I've been working on little mechanical issues it has. But almost done.


I've been looking for some steel black rims in 16" and have found them. But the problem now is that the store manager told me that NIssans and Toyotas have issues with Steel rims. So I have here to the pros to find out the answer. Have any of you who have steel rims on your R50 have you encountered any issues?


Here are the rims that I want to install on the Path! These rims are 16" by 8 and 6X5.5. Tires will be a 265/75R 16


Also, I need to change my value covers which are leaking. Any advise you guys can share?


I'm in Socialist Republic of California




Edited by Blueinfan
Need to correct something
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I had 15" steel rims on my '02 and the only issue I had was the center bore was 6mm too big on the wheels so I had to get some hubcentric rings to fill the gap (hub on the truck is 100mm, hub on the wheels I used was 106mm) which stopped some slight steering wheel vibration I was experiencing.


He's probably thinking of the fact that a lot of Toyota's are lug-centric which can be a PITA when it comes to balancing, and some cheap-o steelies may not have the lug holes drilled perfectly enough or something.  He didn't specify what these "issues" with the steel rims are?

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This is his reply- 


Unfortunately, that is a steel wheel and all Nissan and Toyota trucks have issues with aftermarket steel wheels fitting onto the vehicles.


Kind Regards,

Stephen Pearson

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Find a new shop.  Stephen Pearson probably deals mainly with Jeeps, and always has issues with Nissans and Toyotas because he doesn’t know what he’s doing.  Absolutely no practical difference between those trucks and any other trucks. No joke, shop elsewhere, or risk this guy screwing something up to prove his point. 


Only things you need to give thought to are backspacing, center bore, and lug nut style. Most steelies take acorn lug nuts and have large center bores to allow them to fit all vehicle makes.  That means you’ll likely need hub-centric rings. You can buy them on Amazon or eBay or wherever; they’re a couple bucks for a set of 4. You’ll likely need 100mm-106mm or 100mm-108mm. For the steelies I ran on my 98 Frontier long ago, the center caps somewhat served a centering purpose because they installed between the wheel and hub.  I never had balancing issues. Keep in mind that you may have some issues installing both hub-centric rings and center caps like this since they’ll occupy the same space.  Also, don’t rely solely on the lug nuts to center the wheel.


Your OE nuts are acorn style, but you might not be able to re-use them unless they're tall enough. Aluminum wheels have thicker mounting surfaces than steel, so short lugs may bottom out on the wheel stud. If your OE lug nuts reach, or almost reach (~1/8”) the wheel hub when the wheel isn’t installed, you’re probably okay.  If you do need new ones, they’re M12x1.25.


Not too relevant here, but only notable with Toyotas are when dealing with their mag-style nuts. The basic solution is to just change them to acorns. In my case, I run 17x8 4Runner alloys on my Frontier now...I use 100mm-106mm hub rings and mag-style lugs on it.  Works fine. 

Edited by hawairish
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