OEM 15x8 on narrow trac axles

1980cj7

Basic User
City
Pueblo
State
CO
#22
65.5" from sidewall to sidewall. 32x11.5 on the restored 15x8 white wagons from certifiable jeep. 2 1/2" lift from BDS. Narrow track axles.
 
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Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#24
65.5" from sidewall to sidewall. 32x11.5 on the restored 15x8 white wagons from certifiable jeep. 2 1/2" lift from BDS. Narrow track axles.
Looks awesome. I really like the white wheels with the tan color. Were you able to tell if the 15x8's had any effect on your turning radius? Do they still rub the leaf springs on tight turns?
 

1980cj7

Basic User
City
Pueblo
State
CO
#25
I think my turning radius has gotten a little larger, but not enough to second guess the lift/tires. There is slight rubbing.
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#26
I think my turning radius has gotten a little larger, but not enough to second guess the lift/tires. There is slight rubbing.
Good to know. Thank you for the info. I think that pretty much points me in the direction of moving forward with the 15x8 chrome factory wheels with 1.5 inch spacers (assuming the spacers will clear the front axle hub issue I stated earlier).

A month or two ago this 1981 Jeep CJ-8 Scrambler with Narrow-Trac axles and 32x11.5 tires with a 2.5 inch lift was on eBay. I really liked the stance of it so I sent the seller a note asking what size spacers he had and he said he had 1.5 inch spacers on there. His wheels look to be 15x8 (any 2nd opinions?) Even if they are 15x7's I would only lose 1/2 inch from each side on my stance with my 15x8's but I would gain better seated tires, more stability, a smaller turning radius, and prevent tire rubbing.

I'm still baffled as to why Jeep offered the 15x8's on the narrow-trac axles when they have even more backspacing than the 15x7 and exacerbates the tire rubbing issue. I guess a lot of what Jeep did didn't always make sense.

Anyways here are a few pics of the eBay Scrambler I was talking about.




 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#27
I'll finally be getting around to getting this done tomorrow. Replacing stock 15x7 wheels with stock 15x8 w/center caps, adding 1.5" Rugged Ridge spacers to my Narrow Trac axles, in addition to new BF Goodrich AT 32x11.5 tires. Fingers crossed it all works out!

If anyone wants specific before/after pictures or measurements let me know and I'll do my best to get them.
 

AdamH

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Mt Holly
State
NC
#28
i run 35x12.50s on factory 15x8s and narrow tracs and Spidertrax spacers. I only rub when trying to do a full lock
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#29
i run 35x12.50s on factory 15x8s and narrow tracs and Spidertrax spacers. I only rub when trying to do a full lock
I'm guessing you're not using factory center caps? even with the 1.5" spacers I mounted I can't mount the front wheels with the center caps without altering them. Now I'm looking for a fabrication shop That could help me make some super clean cuts to notch out small sections of the center caps so that they will fit.

If you have a different experience or any ideas I'd like to hear them as I'd prefer not to have to cut the center caps
 

jerseyjeeps

Crazy about AMC Jeeps
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Landing
State
NJ
#30
This is a 1979 with 15x8 on narrow track axles. Your avatar image looks amazing. Curious as to why the upgrade ? Is it that at the angle straight on its too narrow ? If so I agree that an 81 scrambler and all narrow tracks for that matter just don't look as good as the 82 and up. Looking forward too seeing what you do :thumbsup: have always loved that 8 !

View attachment 48131
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#31
This is a 1979 with 15x8 on narrow track axles. Your avatar image looks amazing. Curious as to why the upgrade ? Is it that at the angle straight on its too narrow ? If so I agree that an 81 scrambler and all narrow tracks for that matter just don't look as good as the 82 and up. Looking forward too seeing what you do :thumbsup: have always loved that 8 !

View attachment 48131
Thank you Eric and yes that's exactly it, when looking at it straight on from the front or back it reminds of some those gym rats that are all bulk up top but have little toothpick legs. Just doesn't look right. The 15x8's with the 1.5" spacers definitely gave me the width I want. Now I just have to figure out how to get the center caps back on the front without looking too chopped up.

I'll try to post some before and after pics this weekend.

Also, I'd like to see the pic of your 79 with 15x8's the attachment/link didn't work for some reason in your post.
 

jerseyjeeps

Crazy about AMC Jeeps
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Landing
State
NJ
#32
Agreed. I had even thought that if I ever had a run around '81 I would swap wide track axles under it. Not for everyone but it's another way to do it :cheers:

Not sure what happened but here it is.

ImageUploadedByTapatalk1429795939.849823.jpg
 

certifiablejeep

Definitley Certifiable
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Bedford
State
NH
#33
Actually discussing with the wife to put wide tracks under her CJ5 as with the NTs and the slots, it really looks like Mr. skinny legs.
Also she has 4.10's in there and 31's, so it is not the greatest combo... some 3.31 wide tracks and those slots I think would be just about right for her to run around in it... and a little more width never hurt the stability either.

I can also fix the Jeep lean at the same time... win all around, except for the dude that has to do the swap... poor guy ;)

cb
 

AdamH

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Mt Holly
State
NC
#34
I'm guessing you're not using factory center caps? even with the 1.5" spacers I mounted I can't mount the front wheels with the center caps without altering them. Now I'm looking for a fabrication shop That could help me make some super clean cuts to notch out small sections of the center caps so that they will fit.

If you have a different experience or any ideas I'd like to hear them as I'd prefer not to have to cut the center caps
mine aren't drilled for the center caps so no issue there. I hope you get your caps to work after the mods.
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#35
Closing the loop here. So to quickly review my original issue, I have narrow trac axles and when I bought my jeep several years ago it had after market wheels on it with backspacing and width that gave it a nice stance. I've always liked the original wagon wheels and so I bought a set of the 15x7 to put on. Well when I did that the it just looked silly to me because I went from 10" wide wheels to 7" wide wheels and change in backspacing that made the stance way too narrow looking for my taste. So, I found a set of 15x8 wagon wheels that were factory drilled for center caps thinking that the extra inch on each wheel would give me the stance I wanted but it turns out that the factory 15x8 wheels have 4 inch backspacing vs the 3.5 inch backspacing of a 15x7 factory wheel. So I really only gained a 1/2" width on each side which still looked to skinny for me. In the end I ended up putting 1.5" wheel spacers on to give the stance I wanted but when I did that it offset the center caps so that they would no longer fit on the front manual locking hubs. Details and pics of why it wouldn't fit can be found earlier in this thread. So to fix the center cap not fitting issue I found a machine shop that built a jig to cut the center caps in order to fit the hubs. I think it turned out great in terms of being a clean cut. I was afraid it was going to come out mangled looking.

Here's what the cuts looked like..


And here is what it looks like once installed...



Unless you get really close you don't really notice that it has been modified with the exception of the manual locking hub being inset 1.5".

Let me know if there are any questions.
 
City
Austin
State
Tx
#36
Breal, do you have before and after pics of your 8 stance? Did it make a positive difference worth it? I have an '81 with narrows too. Thanks!
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#37
Let me see if I can find some before pics. Might be a few days before I have the chance to post them if I can even find them. I'll follow up one way or another. But definitely worth the effort.
 
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Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#38
I unfortunately don't have any readily available straight on front or rear pics of the stance. Here is on from a front angle where you can kind of see how much the front wheels are inset from the fenders. This is with narrow tracs and 15x7's and no spacers.


I've since added 15x8's and 1 1/2" spacers which added a total of 2 inches to each side or 4 inches total from outside rim to outside rim. It makes a significant difference in the stance in my opinion. I'm not near my jeep right now to get current pics but will try to get some in the next week or so.
 
City
Austin
State
Tx
#39
Super thanks Breal!! I'm inquiring mostly because I have an 81 with NTs and 15x8s and 33x12.5s BFG A/Ts. It looks a bit narrow with a 2 1/2 lift, but I'm also running it without fender flares. BUT, I'm not even considering finding stock fender flares because then it'll bury the tires. So I'm trying to figure it out if I want to widen out and then put flares on.

Thanks
 

Breal

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Jackson
State
WY
#40
I also have the 2 1/2 lift but do have fender flares. As I understand it, the narrow trac is 4 inches shorter than the wide trac, so by adding the spacers you get to where you need to be and it just looks right like it's supposed to be that way. Some day maybe I'll just make it official and swap in the wide trac axles.
Stay tuned for the pics once I get back to my Jeep.
 
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