Author Topic: Who makes the best reproduction wheels  (Read 895 times)

dream car

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Re: Who makes the best reproduction wheels
« Reply #15 on: December 04, 2019, 01:26:50 PM »
Just received my set of 4 wheels from Paradise wheels from California. They are identical to the factory wheels except better. Chrome work is beautiful and center aluminum bright polished. What set off the difference is in the back.  The Paradise wheels spokes are welded to the rims, where factory wheels are glued not even riveted. I broke two wheels on my 69 Shelby back in the old days. when hit curbs in the rain. I would not trust a 50 years old glue when my life is riding on it. give Craig a call 760-290-3031 @ Paradise

Bob Gaines

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Re: Who makes the best reproduction wheels
« Reply #16 on: December 04, 2019, 02:50:15 PM »
Just received my set of 4 wheels from Paradise wheels from California. They are identical to the factory wheels except better. Chrome work is beautiful and center aluminum bright polished. What set off the difference is in the back. The Paradise wheels spokes are welded to the rims, where factory wheels are glued not even riveted. I broke two wheels on my 69 Shelby back in the old days. when hit curbs in the rain. I would not trust a 50 years old glue when my life is riding on it. give Craig a call 760-290-3031 @ Paradise
You are misinformed about only glued wheels. When 69 production first started the wheels had the centers glued in place . They had problems related to that and the wheels were recalled during production. The solution was that the center was riveted in place. The majority of 69/70 Shelby's ended up with the riveted wheels by production or by recall replacement. There was even a period in time during 69 production that 15 inch magnums like what was used on the Boss 302 until a replacement could be substituted.The wheel that Paradise makes is very faithful in all respects except the wheel rim and the welding used on the backside of the centers instead of rivets. The wheel rim is federally mandated to have a DOT acceptable rim with a safety bead that the genuine wheels did not . Fortunately it is minimally visible and typically not a issue in concours unless in the tougher class Like premiere or Throughbred. No one selling new wheels can legally get around that . On the other hand the rivets vs, welding is highly visible relatively speaking and is a liability issue for the MFG. Welding is typically cheaper and faster too. If a little more effort was put into the process a superior reproduction could be made. When Craig/Paradise restores vintage wheels for instance he restore the center and adds a new DOT rim and typically drills out the rivets then taps the hole for a cap screw he also ads glue for good measure. Now if he would install the cap screw instead of welding on the new wheels like he does on the restored original wheels and cover the tip of the cap screw with a glued on cap that looks like a rivet head . That change would makes his wheels extremely close to genuine original. Restorers who will separate the wheels and rechrome the genuine wheel then re installed a restored center and use glue and rivets to install it are few and far between. For example the last wheel company that besides their other services also did the Shelby wheel restore as noted that I am personally aware of went out of business. Bottom line is Paradise wheels look good but they could be better . They receive a small deduction in concours because of the noted shortcomings. Of course to each their own and if a owner knowing the difference makes a informed decision that they are good enough then that is all that matters . :)
Bob Gaines,Shelby Enthusiast, Shelby Collector , Shelby Concours judge SAAC,MCA,Mid America Shelby

69 GT350 Vert

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Re: Who makes the best reproduction wheels
« Reply #17 on: December 04, 2019, 06:20:10 PM »
I still use my original, glued rims on my shelby Convertible.  The chrome is rough on 2 of them.  I am planning to get reproduction wheels next spring because I don't feel comfortable on the glued wheels any longer.  I wonder if the original center caps fit tightly on the reproduction rims, or if you have to use reproduction center caps?

Bob Gaines

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Re: Who makes the best reproduction wheels
« Reply #18 on: December 04, 2019, 07:36:02 PM »
I still use my original, glued rims on my shelby Convertible.  The chrome is rough on 2 of them.  I am planning to get reproduction wheels next spring because I don't feel comfortable on the glued wheels any longer.  I wonder if the original center caps fit tightly on the reproduction rims, or if you have to use reproduction center caps?
I have not heard of any issues. Maybe others have. If the caps seem too loose put a little clear silicone from the back side of the wheel between the cap and the cap hole in the center. Once cured the caps will be secure and yet the silicone can be easily cut away in case cap needs to be changed. This has to be done from time to time on genuine 69/70 Shelby wheels when the caps seem loose once installed.
Bob Gaines,Shelby Enthusiast, Shelby Collector , Shelby Concours judge SAAC,MCA,Mid America Shelby