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Rich Z's Blatherings Since Connie and I have retired the SerpenCo business, topics here will focus on topics of a more personal and general nature.

New wheels on the C5 Z06
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Old 12-03-2018, 03:59 PM   #1
Rich Z
Cool New wheels on the C5 Z06

So the tires on the C5 Z06 were getting some cracking on the edges, likely from being old and I started thinking I should be looking around for some new tires before I get stranded somewhere with a blown tire. I bought them 7 years ago, used, from a guy who had wrecked his camaro. My car was in a shop, and the owner was complaining that the tires I had on the car were old and hardened, so he was having a lot of trouble getting traction on the dyno to get a good reading. So the guy with the camaro posted an ad on my corvette forum selling the tires and wheels for a decent price, claiming they were perfect, so I figured this would solve the problem with my currently old and hardened tires.

Well, the wheels (a clear coated aluminum) were not as "perfect" as the guy had claimed, but for the price, they would do. They also had mismatched tires on the wheels, with the front tires being slightly smaller than what comes stock, and a different brand and tread style from the rears. But still, I thought I needed to do SOMETHING, so I bought them anyway.

Then come to find out that the shop suddenly seemed to not really need those new tires once I had them. It dawned on me that he wanted me to buy HIS tires he was selling. Silly me.... So anyway, the chromed wheels I had on the car while they were in the shop got ruined because the guy left my car out in the elements for the year he had it. The chrome was bubbling up in places, and just got to be real ratty looking. So I put the "new" ones on, since the wheels were now in better shape than the ones I had on the car. And, of course, the tires were newer too.

And they were just fine for the past 7 years. But now these tires were getting old and apparently developing cracks at the edges of the tread pattern. Now, bear in mind that the Corvettes don't have spare tires. And the C5 Z06 does not even have "run-flat" tires like the hatchback and convertible (nor the newer generations) does. What you DO have is an air pump and a can of fix-a-flat in the trunk. Yeah, there are a lot of things that can happen to a tire where that won't help you even one little bit. Not to mention that it is not at all likely that ANYONE locally will have that tire size in stock. So it behooves you to keep good rubber on the road.

Come to find out that the tire sizes for the C5 Z06 are pretty much unique for that vehicle. And selections are getting slimmer and slimmer every year the further back in history that model generation gets. They are 17 inch wheels in front, and 18 inch wheels in back. Yeah, that is right. No tire rotations on this puppy. Anyway, I found that if I went to the option of 18 inch wheels on front, and 19 inch wheels in back, the tire selection got a whole lot better. Since I wasn't that crazy about those wheels that came off of the crashed camaro anyway, I figured I might as well just bite the bullet now and replace the wheels and the tires.

Besides, buying a wheel and tire combo, I just have them shipped to me, put the car up on my lift, yank off the old wheels, and put on the new ones. Done. Theoretically, anyway. Well, it didn't exactly work out that way, but you can see where that would be better than dragging two vehicles to a local tire shop, leaving the wheels and car with some guys that aren't likely to give a damn whether they chip up the wheels (or your fender) putting the tires on them, and taking all day to do that. So I had to just find a wheel design I liked and which tires seemed to be best for my vehicle, and have them delivered here.

So that is what I did.

I had to wind up pulling out the wheel well liners to remove the brake cooling air ducts, as the new tires were rubbing against them, but what the heck. I don't track the car anyway, so it won't be a problem without them. I don't see any reason that my rear brakes will ever get hot enough to need that extra cooling. And it's not like you can see those ducts anyway.

Of course, we have been getting LOTS of rain the last few days, and no way I am taking the car out to mud bog down our road, so it's going to be a while before I can take it out for a test drive. But at least I can go into the garage and look at how nice the car looks now.
Old 12-04-2018, 10:20 AM   #2
I was starting to feel sorry for your plight, but then noticed that you not only have an awesome C5 Z06, but a huge garage, a monster tool chest(s), and a lift too. Now you have good tires, so can redline the C5 Z06 when the road dries out. No excuses about the clutch.
Old 12-04-2018, 04:21 PM   #3
Rich Z
When I bought the car, I really didn't know enough about the Corvette to be buying anything. So I didn't catch the fact that the Z06 being offered had standard C5 wheels and tires on it. So from the very beginning, I have been buying wheels just to replace ones that just weren't working out very well.

So that is why I bit the bullet now and bought all new, even though it was a lot more than I wanted to spend on tires alone. With any luck, these wheels will last the rest of my life (and the car's life too). And I will be able to find a good selection of tires being available all along the way. Seems like a lot of vehicles these days are going to larger diameter wheels than what we used to see. Guess it cuts down on the amount of rubber needed to make the tires.
Old 12-04-2018, 05:10 PM   #4
When I want to spend big bucks on anything I agonize over spending the money for days. I weigh the pros and cons until Sue can't stand it anymore, and says buy the $#%&@ thing and quit talking about it. All except corn snakes, she says I have more than enough already and has banned FedEx from our home.
Old 12-04-2018, 05:46 PM   #5
Rich Z
Seems like old age has taught me a bunch of things that I wish I had known when I was younger. One is, that you often regret things you should have bought when you think back on it, and very rarely regret spending the money when you did buy them. Like I certainly regret not buying that '67 427 vette instead of the '66 GTO. $4000 just seemed like a LOT of money at the time for a car with only two seats in it. Or when I worked at a Dodge dealership in the parts department and could have bought a brand new Hemi Cuda with a substantial employee's discount.

Looking even further back, I remember my grandfather talking about the fact that he could have bought all the ocean front property he wanted in Ocean City, MD for just $100 an acre. Heck, I remember my dad congratulating himself for buying a Gulf front lot in Englewood for $12K and was just a few months later offered $18K for it.

Sort of makes you wonder what some young person could invest in today that will be worth a mint when they get to be 60+ years old. Certainly they couldn't go wrong with buying a home with some land.

BTW, I don't know about you, but I have noticed that buying things with a "lifetime" warranty doesn't mean as much to me lately as it used to.

But I did buy a lifetime warranty on the Jeep Wrangler when I bought it.
Old 12-04-2018, 05:55 PM   #6
Rich Z
Originally Posted by Twolunger View Post
I was starting to feel sorry for your plight, but then noticed that you not only have an awesome C5 Z06, but a huge garage, a monster tool chest(s), and a lift too. Now you have good tires, so can redline the C5 Z06 when the road dries out. No excuses about the clutch.
Well, as for the garage, it proved to be a necessity here. After spending literally thousands of dollars getting some vehicles repaired after rats and mice had gotten into them and chewed up the wiring, I knew that wasn't something I wanted to have to do every couple of years. Or maybe even more frequently. So I needed to protect the vehicles by getting them inside something. So I sold off a bunch of guns I had collected to pay for getting a garage built. The lift only cost something like $2300 delivered and installed, so it just seemed like a good idea. It has paid for itself MANY times over with all the work I had to do myself on that C5Z after a couple of shops butchered it.

And as for the tool chests, yeah, I am a bonafide tool-a-holic. A while back I went on a quest to have a COMPLETE socket set collection. Took me a while, but I finally did it.

I made the mistake of buying sets of those socket holders, and it just drove me crazy seeing the empty posts on those holders. I HAD to fill them!

What was REALLY funny was that I was ordering a bunch of sockets from Advance Auto, and they sent me every one I bought from them in a separate individually shipped box, even though I order most of them together in large orders. Seriously. FedEx and UPS were delivering these little boxes every day for weeks. Advance Auto HAD to have lost money on that deal.
Old 12-04-2018, 06:04 PM   #7
Rich Z
This is what proved to be the undoing of my sanity concerning the sockets.

Old 12-04-2018, 08:45 PM   #8
Those sockets are for display only. LOL. I'll bet you have a working man's set that are partially rusty and grease covered. I'm too unorganized for nice socket holders. I throw them all in a big tool box drawer and then use mild profanity when I can't find the one I want in a hurry. Makes it more of a challenge.

When I was young and single my dad always told me to be smart and buy property instead of hot cars. I told him you can't impress the ladies by showing them a piece of property in your old car.
Old 12-05-2018, 10:18 PM   #9
Speaking of tools, I stopped at my sister-in-law's house to give her some idea of what my brother's tools should bring. He was a certified master mechanic who died from the motorcycle accident in Daytona. I didn't realize how many tool chests he had. One whole section of her garage was taken up with tools and tool chests. I figured they could easily bring $5,000. but now it seems that her son wants the tools. Too bad, she could probably use the cash, but now I know where I can borrow specific tools.
Old 12-06-2018, 01:10 AM   #10
Rich Z
Depends on what kind and brand of tools are there. Some specialty tools can be right expensive. And of course the name brands like "Snap-On" are much more expensive and sought after than the stuff that you can buy at the local Harbor Freight.

And, of course, depends on what sort of condition they are in.

Problem is, finding the right buyer could be the problem. Most people wouldn't have the patience for listing each and every tool separately on Ebay.

If I kicked the bucket tomorrow, I don't know what Connie would do with all the tools and crap I have accumulated.

Heck, I likely have a small fortune just in herp related books and publications here. Seems to me I have a couple dated from the late 1800s, if I remember correctly. I probably should sell them, but darn, it seems like such a pain in the butt. Undoubtedly better for me to do that than her, however.

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