1. Welcome to Jeeps.net!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all Jeep discussion topics
    • Communicate privately with other Jeep owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

Can I run 15" wheels on my Willy's?

Discussion in 'Wrangler JK (2007-2017)' started by HotRodN, Jan 26, 2018.

  1. Jan 26, 2018 at 5:58 PM
    #1
    HotRodN

    HotRodN [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2016
    Member:
    #709
    Messages:
    37
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Greg
    Cypress Texas
    Vehicle:
    2016 Willy's 2 door
    Bumper, winch, fender flares. Stock ride height for now.
    Hey all,,,,, I'm back LOL,,,, just picked up a 2016 Willy's and time to start thinking about wheels and tires. A friend mentioned possibly putting on 15 inch wheels (because tires are cheaper).
    So I need to find out if you can run that size wheel or do they need to be larger? 16" on up.
    I'll have a bunch more questions I'm sure and will be checking in often as I can.
    Great to be back on the forum and to have a Jeep again.
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  2. Jan 26, 2018 at 6:24 PM
    #2
    Blue Baby Sound

    Blue Baby Sound Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2017
    Member:
    #2005
    Messages:
    135
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Jeff
    Vehicle:
    2014 JKUR 2018 JK
    Some 15s will work, some won't. But to me it doesn't matter because 15" & 16" limit your ability to upgrade brakes, tie rods & knuckles. Most all of those require a 17" or larger.
    So IMO 17" is the sweet spot.
     
    Bob, aggrex and JKBob 25 like this.
  3. Jan 26, 2018 at 6:48 PM
    #3
    aggrex

    aggrex Jeepin

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2016
    Member:
    #203
    Messages:
    1,036
    DE
    Vehicle:
    Backcountry '16
    RockHard>CMM>TF>SpringTail>67design>QT>RR>Bolt>GPCA>Curt>MagnaFlow>Spidertrax>JKS>MC>JWS
    Totally agree with BBS as 17s are the way to go. Similar sized 15s or 16s tire selections may be cheaper since current jeepers mostly roll on 17s for best overall size. More importantly for choosing 17s over 15s or 16s are the clearances for caliper/rotor or suspensions now and after the lifts.
     
    Blue Baby Sound, Bob and JKBob 25 like this.
  4. Jan 26, 2018 at 7:32 PM
    #4
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1197
    Messages:
    2,217
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bob
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Vehicle:
    2016 JK Wrangler Sport
    2" Superlift kit. 315/ 70/17.
    I own a 16 JK. When i was looking for wheels. I wanted 15s and was told by several people / manufactures. There s a very good chance 15s won't clear calipers. If you scratch'em. Their yours. So i went with 17s. One more vote for 17s.

    And by the way. You own a jeep. I wouldn't worry about 10 bucks a tire. Lol. :goingcrazy:
     
    Blue Baby Sound and aggrex like this.
  5. Jan 27, 2018 at 9:48 AM
    #5
    HotRodN

    HotRodN [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2016
    Member:
    #709
    Messages:
    37
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Greg
    Cypress Texas
    Vehicle:
    2016 Willy's 2 door
    Bumper, winch, fender flares. Stock ride height for now.
    Ha haa,,, yea 10 bucks ain't a big deal. As we all know Jeep stands for,,,, just empty every pocket !!!! Okay 17 (or 18) will be the choice.
    Being able to increase the braking power larger calipers is something I definitely want to do.
    Also want to change the back spacing to get the tires a tad further out. I like a wide stance. I'm thinking of going with a 10 inch wide tire so the bead width will need to match.
    What does getting them an inch further out do to geometry. Will there be lots of issues to be concerned with?
    The first that comes to my mind is changing the steering stabilizer.
    One other change will be a 2 or 2 1/2" lift. Did that to my 2014 and it worked out just fine for my liking.
    Thanks for all the input folks. Glad to be back on here. may try to go to the Jeep Jamboree this year. Looks like a lot of fun.
     
    JKBob 25 and aggrex like this.
  6. Jan 27, 2018 at 7:11 PM
    #6
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1197
    Messages:
    2,217
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bob
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Vehicle:
    2016 JK Wrangler Sport
    2" Superlift kit. 315/ 70/17.
    Good to have ya back @HotRodN.
    What I'm running. 17s with 6.75 inch backspace. Tires, 12.50 x 35. With a 2 inch lift which really has no effect on geometry. If you keep your stock fender flares. Pick up 17s and either a 10 inch wide tire, or go for a more of a wider stance with the 12.50s. You should have no issues and will be happy with your stance. Heres my 16 JK for excample. But, keep in mine im runnin flat fender flares that are an inch and a half wider than stock flares. I really think with stock flares. You'll get the look your goin for.
    20180121_150324.jpg
     
    Offroad798 and aggrex like this.
  7. Jan 28, 2018 at 6:40 PM
    #7
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    1,595
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    There was a big discussion on this about a year ago. It actually made me consider 15 in wheels, but I run 40s on my JK and I would be very limited to tires. I think only 2 Superswampers. Anything over 37s you are very limited in tire selection. For the JK I will stick with 17 inch wheels. I do have 15s on my CJ and I don't plan on going any bigger than the 37 Toyos I have on it.
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  8. Feb 4, 2018 at 1:24 PM
    #8
    HotRodN

    HotRodN [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2016
    Member:
    #709
    Messages:
    37
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Greg
    Cypress Texas
    Vehicle:
    2016 Willy's 2 door
    Bumper, winch, fender flares. Stock ride height for now.
    JK Bob, that's the just right stance I'm looking for. I don't have stock fenders, they were replaced with short flat metal ones. I'd prefer to get the same one's on your machine. Do me a favor if you don't mind, post the tire, wheel and flares you have. Awesome !!!
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  9. Feb 4, 2018 at 1:26 PM
    #9
    HotRodN

    HotRodN [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2016
    Member:
    #709
    Messages:
    37
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Greg
    Cypress Texas
    Vehicle:
    2016 Willy's 2 door
    Bumper, winch, fender flares. Stock ride height for now.
    Hey Offgrid,,,, great to hear from ya dude,,,, not sure you still have my number but if you do get it touch K. Things have changed in life and I have a freed up schedule (sort of) to make one of the meetings. Are you going to the jamboree this year in Plano? Catch ya later cuz,,,,
     
  10. Feb 4, 2018 at 1:30 PM
    #10
    HotRodN

    HotRodN [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2016
    Member:
    #709
    Messages:
    37
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Greg
    Cypress Texas
    Vehicle:
    2016 Willy's 2 door
    Bumper, winch, fender flares. Stock ride height for now.
    JKBob,,, could you to post a side shot of your JK. TIA,,, Grego
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  11. Feb 4, 2018 at 6:06 PM
    #11
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1197
    Messages:
    2,217
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bob
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Vehicle:
    2016 JK Wrangler Sport
    2" Superlift kit. 315/ 70/17.
    20171224_131836.jpg
    Here ya go dude.
    Flat Fender Flares of coarse. 17 x 9 wheels. 35 x 12.50 x 17 tires with just a 2" lift. Cause of the flat flares. People often mistake my lift as 4".
     
    chris4x4 likes this.
  12. Feb 7, 2018 at 5:30 AM
    #12
    HardHat420

    HardHat420 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2017
    Member:
    #1282
    Messages:
    194
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    14 jku sport
    A 4x4 belongs on 15s period, unless you're running 40s.

    I haven't had any problems clearing the calipers with 2 different sets of 15s.

    Haven't upgraded but it doesn't appear to me that the tire rod ends will be a problem either.

    15s allow for a 6 ply tire. All 17s are 10 ply except for maxxis buckshot 2 and geolanders mud terrain. 20171221_212627.jpg

    20170913_140717.jpg
     
  13. Feb 7, 2018 at 6:35 AM
    #13
    Blue Baby Sound

    Blue Baby Sound Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2017
    Member:
    #2005
    Messages:
    135
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Jeff
    Vehicle:
    2014 JKUR 2018 JK
    I completely disagree, unless you're running small tires. IMO nothing less than 17", 35" or larger tires you should be upgrading the brakes to compensate for the added unsprung weight. All the BBKs I've seen require a minimum 17" wheel, some 18".
    • TeraFlex- A minimum of 17” diameter wheels must be run with the big brake kit.
    • Wilwood- This Brake Kit may fit 18-inch wheels

    Knuckles:
    • Reid Racing Knuckles- Stock 17 inch wheels with 6 inches backspacing will clear some tie rod/drag link combos and not others.

    Tie rods:
    • ROCK KRAWLER - Requires 17" or Larger Diameter Wheels.
    • SYNERGY- Requires 16" or larger wheel diameter
    • YETI- Tie Rod Assembly fits all JK with factory production 16 inch wheels.


    The statement about all 17s being a 10 ply rating is incorrect. For example our last build we used a Cooper STT Pro in 37X12.50R17 which has a load rating of "D" which would be an 8 ply rating. The STT Pro is also available in a "C" rating. But keep in mind there aren't actually 6, 8 or 10 plies. Radial tires aren't like bias ply tires, instead look for load ratings when you're comparing tires.

    To quote TireRack:
    "Today's load range/ply ratings do not count the actual number of body ply layers used to make up the tire's internal structure, but indicate an equivalent strength compared to early bias ply tires. Most radial passenger tires have one or two body plies, and light truck tires, even those with heavy-duty ratings (10-, 12- or 14-ply rated), actually have only two or three fabric plies, or one steel body ply.

    In all cases, when changing tire sizes or converting from one type of size to another, it is important to confirm that the Load Index in the tire's service description of the new tire is equal to or greater than the Load Index of the original tire and/or that the new tire's rated load capacity is sufficient to carry the vehicle's gross axle weight ratings."

    phUNij_12939bda1fecd11511e8de99f935b277e36d0531.jpg


    Not trying to beat you up, but I've watched too many people back themselves into a corner long term. Remember to build with the end in mind. If you think you'll ever go 35" or above then you'll need to beef up the steering and/or add a big brake kit, then you need a wheel larger than 15" or 16".
     
    Offroad798, JKBob 25, aggrex and 2 others like this.
  14. Feb 7, 2018 at 6:48 AM
    #14
    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2016
    Member:
    #2
    Messages:
    2,693
    Gender:
    Male
    Great information! If you want to make a post with tire information, and anything else you want to include regarding this topic, in its own thread, I can "Sticky" it so folks can use it in the future.
     
    Blue Baby Sound and JKBob 25 like this.
  15. Feb 7, 2018 at 5:50 PM
    #15
    HardHat420

    HardHat420 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2017
    Member:
    #1282
    Messages:
    194
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    14 jku sport
    Still think a jeep belongs on 15s.

    Yes there are some selections in 17 that are D rated, but not many.

    It's dark now but I'll post a pic of my tie rod ends tomorrow. I really don't see how anything but bigger calipers would be a problem.

    My jeep brakes fine with 35s.
     
  16. Feb 7, 2018 at 6:21 PM
    #16
    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2016
    Member:
    #2
    Messages:
    2,693
    Gender:
    Male
    I found 27 before I quit searching. That being said, I'm not sure wheel size makes a big difference. Ive mostly focused on Sidewall Height for the off road I do. Depending on vehicle, I try to aim for a sidewall that's over 7.5" or so.
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  17. Feb 7, 2018 at 6:59 PM
    #17
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1197
    Messages:
    2,217
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bob
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Vehicle:
    2016 JK Wrangler Sport
    2" Superlift kit. 315/ 70/17.
    This is one time....I'm going to keep my mouth shut. And it ain't easy. So....:popcorn:.
     
    OFFGRID and chris4x4 like this.
  18. Feb 7, 2018 at 7:01 PM
    #18
    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2016
    Member:
    #2
    Messages:
    2,693
    Gender:
    Male
    I'm just giving my 2 cents. I think there are many others out there that wheel more difficult terrain, or air down lower, and would want or need a larger sidewall height.
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  19. Feb 7, 2018 at 7:03 PM
    #19
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1197
    Messages:
    2,217
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bob
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Vehicle:
    2016 JK Wrangler Sport
    2" Superlift kit. 315/ 70/17.
    Awesome info @Blue Baby Sound. I agree with Chris. Post this in a sticky. Great work and research Jeff.
     
    Blue Baby Sound likes this.
  20. Feb 7, 2018 at 7:04 PM
    #20
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1197
    Messages:
    2,217
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bob
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Vehicle:
    2016 JK Wrangler Sport
    2" Superlift kit. 315/ 70/17.
    Agreed. And it's not all about how many plies a tire is. To many variables involved.

    Edit. So much for keepin my mouth shut. Lol.
     

Products Discussed in

To Top