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Wheel weights - stick on v. clamp on

1113 Views 32 Replies 23 Participants Last post by  fitboyawesome
I bought a new set of American Racing wheels from my local tire shop, along with new tires that they mounted and balanced, a couple months back. Within a week or two, I found a strip of stick-on weights laying on the shop floor near one of the wheels. I took that wheel in and had them rebalance it. Dude put a couple stick-ons and a single clamp-on on it.

It stuck in the back of my head that I may have lost other ones but wouldn’t even know it since the wheels are new and there wouldn’t be any indication if the weight came off clean.

I just had the rear wheels off for a couple weeks while I was rebuilding the rear end, and just happened to notice a strip of weights laying where I had one of the wheels during that time.

What gives? Should I ask them to just use clamp-ons? I’d prefer sticks-ons, but I also want them to stay put. Should I just take them somewhere else and hope they know how to get them to stay stuck?
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They have ran them in large tires for years. My dad was a diesel mechanic and told me about it years ago when I was trying to get some large tires to balance on my lifted truck. I run them in my motorcycles and it made a HUGE difference the first time I used them. Had a V Rod and would get bad wobbles at around 90, with the beads I could easily hit 120+.
From what I gather they work well for vertical imbalance but are ineffective for lateral imbalance. Big truck tires need them as you could not put enough weight on the wheels. I can see where they would work for motorcycle tires as well since the tires are relatively skinny compared to the overall height. They are kind of like a Philips head screw driver, they work really well on the screws for which they were designed, but don't work on all screws. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Thanks for the rapid feedback. I took it up to the shop and had them redo all four wheels, and remove the one clamp-on that they used last time.

I took brake cleaner, a new rag and duct tape with me. They were using brake cleaner, but a pretty nasty looking rag, so I asked them to use my clean one. When they were done, I took note of how many were on each wheel (so I’d know if any were missing in the future), and put duct tape over them. Hopefully they stay put this time.
 

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Agreed, weights came off due to improper installation.
I've had issues in the past. Getting re-balanced can be a PIA (I always bring rims to the tire shop, not whole vehicle).
I had one set of rims that I actually used 2-part epoxy to prevent weights from coming off. Epoxy was put around the perimeter of the weight. All good.
I hate weights that clip to the outer rim, on the outside. Chips the clear-coat. I live in a salt belt. You can guess what they start to look like.
 

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What I found amazing was when the gent balanced my custom 18 inch wheels and Michelin PS4s tires last December. The two rears (295/30) required “no” weight, and only one of the fronts (225/40) took weight: 1/2 ounce.
He claimed that he always has good luck with the PS4s and that my three piece wheels must have been machined perfectly.

On my DD vehicle wheels I’m happy when it takes 2 ounces or less (per side in some cases)….
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
What I found amazing was when the gent balanced my custom 18 inch wheels and Michelin PS4s tires last December. The two rears (295/30) required “no” weight, and only one of the fronts (225/40) took weight: 1/2 ounce.
He claimed that he always has good luck with the PS4s and that my three piece wheels must have been machined perfectly.

On my DD vehicle wheels I’m happy when it takes 2 ounces or less (per side in some cases)….
That is surprising. That would mean that those two wheels happened to also get perfectly balanced tires, or they indexed just right that the imbalance of the tires offset the imbalance of the wheels.
 

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When I was balancing my own tires/wheels, I was a bit "anal" (right?) about it and would mount the tire then put it on the balancer. If it was off by more than an ounce, I'd mark the "light" spot on the tire, break the beads and rotate the tire 180* on the rim and balance again, repeating until I found the "lightest" weights.
 

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When I was balancing my own tires/wheels, I was a bit "anal" (right?) about it and would mount the tire then put it on the balancer. If it was off by more than an ounce, I'd mark the "light" spot on the tire, break the beads and rotate the tire 180* on the rim and balance again, repeating until I found the "lightest" weights.
That^ is the right way to go about it. I used to have a local kid who would do that for me (I’d toss him a few bucks).
 

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Don't forget to use the heavy-dot and runout-dot on your tires for initial mounting. In most cases (depending on both wheel and tire), you can end-up with needing little or no weight. To save typing, I found this: How to balance

I am including a couple images with the more-important runout dimple or dot (match with the red tire dot if you have one). Yeah, after being used, rusted or repainted, you may be SOL for finding it:
Automotive lighting Automotive tire Wheel Camera accessory Tread


Tire Wheel Automotive tire Tread Automotive design
 

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W
When I was balancing my own tires/wheels, I was a bit "anal" (right?) about it and would mount the tire then put it on the balancer. If it was off by more than an ounce, I'd mark the "light" spot on the tire, break the beads and rotate the tire 180* on the rim and balance again, repeating until I found the "lightest" weights.
WHat's annal about doing it right? Especially if it's your stuff .
 

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It always tickles me if I can clock a tire on a wheel and get it to balance out without having to add any additional weight. Small pleasures.

I never did get the duct tape on wheel weights. If the wheel is cleaned properly, the weights will stay. If duct tape will stick, the weights will stick. The adhesive on duct tape doesn't last very well in that environment, at least on a driver. Plus, me, I just plain don't want duct tape serving any sort of function on my car. To me, having it there Implies I'm not capable of doing a more proper repair.
 
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I bought a new set of American Racing wheels from my local tire shop, along with new tires that they mounted and balanced, a couple months back. Within a week or two, I found a strip of stick-on weights laying on the shop floor near one of the wheels. I took that wheel in and had them rebalance it. Dude put a couple stick-ons and a single clamp-on on it.

It stuck in the back of my head that I may have lost other ones but wouldn’t even know it since the wheels are new and there wouldn’t be any indication if the weight came off clean.

I just had the rear wheels off for a couple weeks while I was rebuilding the rear end, and just happened to notice a strip of weights laying where I had one of the wheels during that time.

What gives? Should I ask them to just use clamp-ons or recommended Mercedes e350 psi? I’d prefer sticks-ons, but I also want them to stay put. Should I just take them somewhere else and hope they know how to get them to stay stuck?
Stick-ons are compatible with all wheels but not all brake systems because, depending on the clearance, they could rub the rotors. Many alloy wheels only permit internal hanging weights, and some don't even permit that. There are numerous rim lip designs that accommodate various weights. I would get steel rim hanging weights and attach them to metals. Since a bubble balancer is static, many cars will continue to vibrate. It takes some skill to use a bubble balancer, so depending on how many tires you plan to balance and their sizes, you might be better off forgoing it and using balance beads.
 
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