OEM 15x8 on narrow trac axles

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#1
A question for the Jeep CJ-8 production history buffs. From what I know the Scrambler was only produced with narrow trac axles during the first year of production in 1981(also used on pre '81 model CJ's). That same year was the last year that they made the 15x8 wheels and the only year that they made the 15x8 wheels with center caps. So it seems to reason that the 15x8 wheels were designed to work well with the narrow trac axles. That being said, from what I can tell and what I have read the 15x8 wheels have more back spacing than the 15x7 OEM wheels. If the 15x8 have more back spacing, would that not just exacerbate the issue of tires rubbing the frame or leaf springs? I guess my question is why did AMC decide to offer wheels with more back spacing on the narrow trac axles? Did the 15x8's just help with a wider stance on the narrow tracs? Was back spacing never really an issue because the stock tires didn't have any issues with rubbing? Is any of my information wrong? Is anyone running 15x8 OEM wheels with narrow trac axles with larger than stock tires and not have problems with tires rubbing on the leaf springs? Anyone running 15x8's on narrow tracs and is having a problem with rubbing?
 

1980cj7

Basic User
City
Pueblo
State
CO
#2

I will be installing this sweet set of 15x8 wagons with bfg 32x11.5's on my 1980 cj7 in a week. It has narrow axles. I report back after. Btw I got these from Craig (certifiablejeep) he did great work with them
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#3

I will be installing this sweet set of 15x8 wagons with bfg 32x11.5's on my 1980 cj7 in a week. It has narrow axles. I report back after. Btw I got these from Craig (certifiablejeep) he did great work with them
Awesome, that'd be great.
 

Chipster1990

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Birmingham
State
AL
#4

I will be installing this sweet set of 15x8 wagons with bfg 32x11.5's on my 1980 cj7 in a week. It has narrow axles. I report back after. Btw I got these from Craig (certifiablejeep) he did great work with them

I would love to see the results as well. I have a set of the chrome 15x8's with center caps that I was contemplating mounting 32x11.5's onto. Although I have an '83 with wide tracks I would like to see how those wheels and tires look on your 7.

Great questions Breal! It seems the 15x8's factory drilled for center caps would be really rare then?? I have a set of four and would like to find a 5th for the spare.




 

Julio

Basic User
City
St Charles
State
Mo
#6
This doesn't really answer the question about 15x8's on narrow track, but my 82 came with 15x8's with wide track of course. When Jersey Jeeps was here, he explained it to me. In 82 there must have been some 15x8's still at the dealer and my PO decided to get them as an option. The spare had a non drilled 15x8, all others were drilled with center caps. This was confirmed by the date code on the wheels. It's interesting history I thought.
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#7
This doesn't really answer the question about 15x8's on narrow track, but my 82 came with 15x8's with wide track of course. When Jersey Jeeps was here, he explained it to me. In 82 there must have been some 15x8's still at the dealer and my PO decided to get them as an option. The spare had a non drilled 15x8, all others were drilled with center caps. This was confirmed by the date code on the wheels. It's interesting history I thought.
Cool to know that there were some exceptions. Thanks for sharing.
 

Julio

Basic User
City
St Charles
State
Mo
#8
Jersey sure does know his history. It's always cool to find out things about what where and why.
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#9
Is anyone currently running OEM 15x8 wheels with 31x10.5 tires on narrow trac axles? If you are it would be great to see a pic of how they look. I'm trying to visualize what that combo looks like in terms of stance and how far the tires are from the fender flare.
 

certifiablejeep

Definitley Certifiable
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Bedford
State
NH
#10

I will be installing this sweet set of 15x8 wagons with bfg 32x11.5's on my 1980 cj7 in a week. It has narrow axles. I report back after. Btw I got these from Craig (certifiablejeep) he did great work with them

Did you get them mounted up and installed?

cb
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#11

I will be installing this sweet set of 15x8 wagons with bfg 32x11.5's on my 1980 cj7 in a week. It has narrow axles. I report back after. Btw I got these from Craig (certifiablejeep) he did great work with them
How did this work out for you?
 

LetchcoreCJ7

Legacy Registered User
City
Nashville
State
TN
#12
I don't believe the back spacing is greater on a 15x8 vs a 15x7. You can tell a 15x8 from a 15x7 from the outside. The center looks deeper meaning the the backs pacing did not change.
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#13
I've had to learn the hard way by purchasing both the OEM 15x7 and 15x8 chrome wheel sets. I have since learned that stock 15x7 wagon wheel backspacing is 3.5 inches and stock 15x8 wagon wheel backspacing is 4 inches.

I was thinking that I would try some spacers but learned today that spacers do not work with stock axles and stock wagon wheels with center caps.

I was hoping that 1980CJ7 had some luck with his. I haven't had the opportunity to mount my 15x8 wheels yet to know how well the work or not.
 

certifiablejeep

Definitley Certifiable
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Bedford
State
NH
#14
I've had to learn the hard way by purchasing both the OEM 15x7 and 15x8 chrome wheel sets. I have since learned that stock 15x7 wagon wheel backspacing is 3.5 inches and stock 15x8 wagon wheel backspacing is 4 inches.

I was thinking that I would try some spacers but learned today that spacers do not work with stock axles and stock wagon wheels with center caps.

I was hoping that 1980CJ7 had some luck with his. I haven't had the opportunity to mount my 15x8 wheels yet to know how well the work or not.
Curious to know... what part doesn't work with the center caps with the wheel spacers? I have a set of wheel spacers on my NT's and I don't see why it wouldn't work to mount them... I figure it would be because on the front ones, you would have a hard time reaching the hub to put it in 4 wheel? I think I saw something on another forum where someone still used the stock front center cap, but machined it down... it was a 1" wheel spacer, so it was more stubby, but it looked ok.

cb
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#15
Curious to know... what part doesn't work with the center caps with the wheel spacers? I have a set of wheel spacers on my NT's and I don't see why it wouldn't work to mount them... I figure it would be because on the front ones, you would have a hard time reaching the hub to put it in 4 wheel? I think I saw something on another forum where someone still used the stock front center cap, but machined it down... it was a 1" wheel spacer, so it was more stubby, but it looked ok.

cb
Here's the problem I ran into. If you compare the two pictures you'll see that the original lugs are positioned over each half moon shape on the axle hub. You'll also notice that the spacer puts the new lugs over the higher points of the axle hub.
Now if you look at the 2nd picture you'll see that the shape of the center cap with it's half moon shapes are directly over each lug hole. But since the spacer shifted the lugs over the higher point of the axle hub the wheel will not mount because the shapes no longer fit together.

The spacers are spidertrax 1.25 inch. I'm wondering if I can find a thicker spacer if that will help get it past that axle hub and allow me to mount it. What size spacers are you using?


 
Last edited:

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#16
So, I went back and checked all the websites that sell these and they all say that they fit cj axles, including spidertrax.com. Are they just assuming that no one runs stock wheels anymore? Am I missing something? I'm assuming others have run into this issue before. I can't be the first.
 

certifiablejeep

Definitley Certifiable
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Bedford
State
NH
#17
I see what you are saying... but I I am thinking, what is the smallest wheel spacer they sell? if you get 2 1/2 inch ones or 2 3/4 inch ones, you will shift yourself back into the promised land?

The half moons would like up with 2 off set ones... but yeah, i see what you are saying... stock wheels would work in the rear no issue... the fronts...well...

Unelss you just don't use front caps, I do that on my CJ with 6 bolt conversion because caps don't fit at all, or aftermarket 5 bolts also don't fit.

cb
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#19
I see what you are saying... but I I am thinking, what is the smallest wheel spacer they sell? if you get 2 1/2 inch ones or 2 3/4 inch ones, you will shift yourself back into the promised land?

The half moons would like up with 2 off set ones... but yeah, i see what you are saying... stock wheels would work in the rear no issue... the fronts...well...

Unelss you just don't use front caps, I do that on my CJ with 6 bolt conversion because caps don't fit at all, or aftermarket 5 bolts also don't fit.

cb
I'm thinking maybe a 1.5 inch will get me past the axle hub to the point that I'll be able to clear it with the center caps. I'll need to go back and measure to be sure.

I originally wanted to use Spidertrax as I had heard good things about them though they don't make a 1.5 inch for the 5x5.5 bolt pattern.

Anyone have any experience with Rugged Ridge Wheel Spacers? Good or bad?
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#20
Breal, will post pic in am
Awesome, thank you. I'd be curious to hear if you kept the 32x11.5 BFG AT's on them and what it did for your clearance. Are you getting any tire rub on the leaf springs? Did it effectively change the stance at all and if so what does it measure to now from outside tire wall on driver side to outside tire wall on passenger side?

Sorry for all the questions, I'm trying to learn as much as I can without learning the hard way and costing me money only to figure out that I like it another way.

Looking forward to the pics and feedback. Thanks.
 
Top