Bead-Balancing Tires? - Ford Bronco Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
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Bead-Balancing Tires?

I read an old thread regarding bead-balancing, but, just thought I'd post something a little newer and see how some of the guys, that were going to try it back then, are liking the results. Here are some questions I have about it:

1.) Does it work well?

2.) What material did you choose for your beads and why? (I see some in plastic, steel, ceramic, etc.)

3.) Is there any noise, at low speeds, from the beads dropping/rolling around in the tires?

4.) How fast have you gone and remained vibration-free?

Thanks guys!

Eric
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-26-2017, 04:06 AM
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I'm running bead balance in multiple rigs and my Harley too.

Obviously, I like it. When I first tried it... I used those plastic pellet balls, weighed to spec... likely according to the same threads you've read.
I was pretty happy with it. I've gone through a lot of used, craigslist wheels and had serious problems tossing weights... or maybe all the tire guys in my area are idiots. some of those questions I'll pass on... because I seem to run across a lot of bent wheels and can't really afford sweet, new ones.

anyway, after I tried it... I've gone back to it several times over the years. I'm not strictly all about it... but I'll use 'em in a heart beat if I think they're better for the application or if there's any problems with weights.

Some bike shops and Les Schwab both use/sell glass beads in little, pre-measured bags for your application. so they're easy enough to come by now and that seems to be the professional "go-to" but that's just my limited experience.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-26-2017, 08:24 AM
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I've got beads in my 37 inch Toyos..good thing about Toyos is they don't usually need a lot of weight, but if you do, beads are the way to go for a larger tire, and particularly one that is going to be used off road as traditional weights can get pulled off..


1.) Does it work well?

Yes, they work great.


2.) What material did you choose for your beads and why? (I see some in plastic, steel, ceramic, etc.)

Not certain, whatever the tire shop put in there. Pretty sure they were plastic.

3.) Is there any noise, at low speeds, from the beads dropping/rolling around in the tires?

No noise but then again my truck is pretty loud and 37's have a bit of a hum to them..

4.) How fast have you gone and remained vibration-free?

I've gone past 80 and thats about as fast as I'd want to go in this rig..
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-26-2017, 08:08 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks gentlemen. I just picked up a set of 33x10.5x15 General Grabber X3's. They balanced out okay (worst one needed 5 oz.), but, I figure if I can get them even more balanced, why not. I know the tires aren't huge, but, the closer to "perfectly balanced" the better. Those stick-on weights always seem to find their way off the wheel and my style wheels don't allow for clamp-style weights to be installed.

Eric
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-26-2017, 08:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silver70 View Post
Thanks gentlemen. I just picked up a set of 33x10.5x15 General Grabber X3's. They balanced out okay (worst one needed 5 oz.), but, I figure if I can get them even more balanced, why not. I know the tires aren't huge, but, the closer to "perfectly balanced" the better. Those stick-on weights always seem to find their way off the wheel and my style wheels don't allow for clamp-style weights to be installed.

Eric
That is a small tire, you likely should just stick with what you have.

I used the plastic beads in some 37x12.5x15 Iroks I ran and that was ok. They are noisy however when you slow down for a stop, the centrifugal forces goes away and I could clearly hear them fall every time I stopped. Guess a loud stereo would fix that.

5oz really is not a big deal, if they are running smooth you should just keep what you have. You might want to consider stick on weights, I have not used the lip weights in years.
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-27-2017, 12:13 AM
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Hmm how exactly do they work? It would seem that they would migrate to the heavy part of the tire, I don't get it?
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-27-2017, 02:31 AM
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In the 1970's you could buy bead balance rings that mounted to the inside lip of the wheel - out of sight. I bought some from J.C. Whitney and put them on my 72 El Camino. They were great - quite and perfectly balanced. I never could figure out how they worked, but they did. I haven't seen anything like them since then.

I didn't know you could use the same principle by placing beads inside the tire. I like that idea, but how do you know how many beads to put inside the tire?

TB

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Originally Posted by 445 FE Bronco View Post
Hmm how exactly do they work? It would seem that they would migrate to the heavy part of the tire, I don't get it?
exactly, as the tire spins the beads are forced to the area of the tire where the weight would otherwise be needed.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-27-2017, 05:33 PM
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I have BB gun ammunition in my 36 inch super swamper sx.
8oz in each rolling smooth even at 75 mph with one hand on the steering wheel.
The steering will shake only a little in a fast sharp turn, maybe they are moving??
Same tires without beads and the steering was almost always shaking.
Marc
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-27-2017, 07:07 PM
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Do it. I use the plastic pellets from wally world. normally less than $20 to do 4 big tires. try that at with normal weights.

works great.

some noise at low speeds but its rare I hear it...over the sound of the diesel.
or gas for that matter...... or other rattles or radio...really not an issue.

maximum legal speeds. Plus or minus.

I have not balanced a wheel with conventional weights in YEARS since going to the bead balance. Its more for the economics for me...I rarely use a tire shop since I mount and balance my own stuff now.
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-27-2017, 07:08 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadofax View Post
That is a small tire, you likely should just stick with what you have.

I used the plastic beads in some 37x12.5x15 Iroks I ran and that was ok. They are noisy however when you slow down for a stop, the centrifugal forces goes away and I could clearly hear them fall every time I stopped. Guess a loud stereo would fix that.

5oz really is not a big deal, if they are running smooth you should just keep what you have. You might want to consider stick on weights, I have not used the lip weights in years.
I lose a lot of the stick-ons, though. People on the freeway behind me are probably like, "What the hell just hit the front of my car!?" A half-strip of weights has got to do some damage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 445 FE Bronco View Post
Hmm how exactly do they work? It would seem that they would migrate to the heavy part of the tire, I don't get it?
Basically, as the tire spins and the "heavy part" moves to the top of its rotation it pulls the tire upwards very minimally (centrifugal force). The beads move in the opposite direction because the are "floating" around in the tire's air-space and not, mechanically, attached to the tire. They will pin to the inside walls with centrifugal force, but, are not constrained to that location within the tire permanently. They will, still, try to react against an opposing force of vibration (Newton's Third Law). For example, if you were to hold a half-full bottle of water in front of you steadily, and then jerk your hand, rapidly, downwards. The water, now, "moves" to the top of the bottle.

Neat demonstration video of beads in action:

eq263AYgyYg

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrooks View Post
In the 1970's you could buy bead balance rings that mounted to the inside lip of the wheel - out of sight. I bought some from J.C. Whitney and put them on my 72 El Camino. They were great - quite and perfectly balanced. I never could figure out how they worked, but they did. I haven't seen anything like them since then.

I didn't know you could use the same principle by placing beads inside the tire. I like that idea, but how do you know how many beads to put inside the tire?

TB
Those rings worked like fluidampers for your engine. There was a type of viscous liquid inside the rings which mimicked what the bead-balancing does.

The manufacturer of the beads often provide a chart on how many ounces you should add, to each tire, for each tire size available.

From what I've been reading, "ceramic-compound" beads are the best because they don't break apart like pure ceramic and they don't clump together when wet like plastic. Nor will they damage your rims like metal. However, I started this thread because I want to know if anyone's first-hand experience is different than what I've read.

Eric
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 06:58 AM
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Been running beads for years with zero problems. Mostly the Counter Act brand you can find on Ebay.

I ran copper BBs in a set of Swampers and those worked too, but you could hear em at low speed, and being a bigger media they don't balance the tire as fast so occasionally youd get a shimmy when you first take off.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 06:30 PM
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I had that "take-off" issue myself when I was using the airsoft pellets.

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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 07:01 PM
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I like them in mine. I've blown a bead and got water or mud in the tire and I think they clumped up on me and had some issues but I recommend trying them - yes


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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 11:25 PM
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I use magnum balance beads in bfg 35x12.5r15. I have been up to 95ish and truck was smooth as can be. Then work great as long as you don't accelerate to fast.
As for noise at slow speed, I haven't heard them but my ears are. It the best.


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post #16 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 01:03 PM
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You're probably referring to something like these, so yeah, they still exist, just not cheap!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrooks View Post
In the 1970's you could buy bead balance rings that mounted to the inside lip of the wheel - out of sight. I bought some from J.C. Whitney and put them on my 72 El Camino. They were great - quite and perfectly balanced. I never could figure out how they worked, but they did. I haven't seen anything like them since then.

I didn't know you could use the same principle by placing beads inside the tire. I like that idea, but how do you know how many beads to put inside the tire?

TB
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post #17 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 02:07 PM
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that's a very interesting product... but not cheap. noticed they have them for the bikes too.
beads are waaaaaay cheaper though and give the exact same effect.

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post #18 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silver70 View Post
I lose a lot of the stick-ons, though. People on the freeway behind me are probably like, "What the hell just hit the front of my car!?" A half-strip of weights has got to do some damage.



Basically, as the tire spins and the "heavy part" moves to the top of its rotation it pulls the tire upwards very minimally (centrifugal force). The beads move in the opposite direction because the are "floating" around in the tire's air-space and not, mechanically, attached to the tire. They will pin to the inside walls with centrifugal force, but, are not constrained to that location within the tire permanently. They will, still, try to react against an opposing force of vibration (Newton's Third Law). For example, if you were to hold a half-full bottle of water in front of you steadily, and then jerk your hand, rapidly, downwards. The water, now, "moves" to the top of the bottle.

Neat demonstration video of beads in action:

eq263AYgyYg



Those rings worked like fluidampers for your engine. There was a type of viscous liquid inside the rings which mimicked what the bead-balancing does.

The manufacturer of the beads often provide a chart on how many ounces you should add, to each tire, for each tire size available.

From what I've been reading, "ceramic-compound" beads are the best because they don't break apart like pure ceramic and they don't clump together when wet like plastic. Nor will they damage your rims like metal. However, I started this thread because I want to know if anyone's first-hand experience is different than what I've read.

Eric
I have direct first hand experience with Dyna beads when I was managing a motorcycle dealership. As far as automotive tires I do not.

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post #19 of 21 (permalink) Old 03-03-2017, 08:02 PM
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Noise and/or vibration is a concern from your tires in your possibly lifted 4x4 with 33"-37" mud terrains? Anyone ever just mount their mud terrains with the paint dot in line with the valve stem, seat the bead, air up and drive without balancing? I haven't put a wheel weight on any motorcycle I've owned in the last ten years. Just lined up the dot to stem. I've done this with bias ply tires on my 785lbs Harley touring bike and I've done this on a track-day only 1000cc sport bike with cheater slick Pirelli Diablo Corsa's. Never had an "unbalanced tire" vibration and or noise issue. Just my personal experience . If I had 37" mud terrains I'd just put a little water in it for the same "centrifugal" effect and added traction in the slop lol. Always put water in my tractor tires, never wobbled nor stuck in the mud. But I'm small town country boy from south Louisiana lol. Anyone ever mess with a buddy by slapping 30 or so oz.'s of stick on wheel weights to the drive shaft of their friends truck?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrooks View Post
In the 1970's you could buy bead balance rings that mounted to the inside lip of the wheel - out of sight. I bought some from J.C. Whitney and put them on my 72 El Camino. They were great - quite and perfectly balanced. I never could figure out how they worked, but they did. I haven't seen anything like them since then.

I didn't know you could use the same principle by placing beads inside the tire. I like that idea, but how do you know how many beads to put inside the tire?

TB
To find out how many beads to use there is a very complicated algorithmic equation based on E=MC2. Or you can used Boyle's Law. Or I'm sure the snake oil salesman will tell you "X" amount of beads per ounce of weight needed. Personally I'd work the math myself based on maximum anticipated hydrostatic pressures.

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