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1981 Bronco, 4.9L, ZF5, NP208, Detroit Truetracs, 3.55 gears, 31" Wranglers front and rear
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After some research and finding a thread here that was mostly positive, I decided to try balancing beads.

I put 6 oz of 2mm beads, as recommended by the supplier, in each of my 31" Coopers mounted on Alcoa 10 hole aluminum wheels. They seemed fine on my first drive with top speed of 55mph, but I had it on the interstate on Monday and at 65 I got a moderate vibration and it continued to over 70.

Tires are only 15 months old and look great. I bought the wheels used, so one could possibly be bent, but I'm thinking it would show itself before 65mph if that was the case.

I'm thinking of trying to get the beads out through the valve stem ??? and taking it to the tire shop for balancing, but thought I'd run it by y'all.

Any thoughts?
 

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The bigger the tire the bigger the chance one is actually out of round. A tire shop can check that with the beads in.
Also the vibration may not be tire imbalance.

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1981 Bronco, 4.9L, ZF5, NP208, Detroit Truetracs, 3.55 gears, 31" Wranglers front and rear
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The bigger the tire the bigger the chance one is actually out of round. A tire shop can check that with the beads in.
Also the vibration may not be tire imbalance.
I guess I should have noted I just put this set on. I previously had 31" Wranglers on factory steel wagon wheels and they were noisy but vibration-free to 75+mph.
 

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82 XLT Lariat 351w, Edelbrock 1406 4bbl ,C6 auto, auto locking hubs ,33x10.5x15
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Sounds like going back to the wagon wheels with the new tires would be the tell on the rims being bad... Plus you could get the beads out... And you aren't spending money on all this or that failed balancing and still having problems stuff... 31s on stock sized rims shouldn't be that difficult to balance properly...
That's where I'd go next...
 

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Tire balancing beads??????
I know there used to be a tire balancing powder, it was more like ground up rubber. I had it in 38" swampers, and then 44" monster mudders. It worked great, but a bit of getting used to. It could be shot in through the valve stem.
I don't see how you could ever get it out that way, how would you get them to pile up at the stem, so they could pour out?
I used to change my own tires, and so just scooped it out, and dumped it in the new one.
 

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1981 Bronco, 4.9L, ZF5, NP208, Detroit Truetracs, 3.55 gears, 31" Wranglers front and rear
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It could be shot in through the valve stem.
I don't see how you could ever get it out that way, how would you get them to pile up at the stem, so they could pour out?
They're pretty small beads. I haven't tried it yet, and it probably won't work, but I was hoping if I have the valve stem at the bottom (still on the Bronco) and pull the core out the air would bring at least some of the beads out with it. Maybe take a few cycles to get most out.:unsure::rolleyes:

Anyone tried that?
 

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They're pretty small beads. I haven't tried it yet, and it probably won't work, but I was hoping if I have the valve stem at the bottom (still on the Bronco) and pull the core out the air would bring at least some of the beads out with it. Maybe take a few cycles to get most out.:unsure::rolleyes:

Anyone tried that?
Well, back then, I was removing and mounting the tires myself, using the OBA setup I had put in the truck, since I had no compressor. To seat the tire on the rim, I pushed one side on, and with the valve removed from the stem, and an air line with a ball valve on it attached, open the ball valve, and carefully push the rim back until it contacted the other bead.
So, when I removed the air line to put the valve back in, air would come rushing out. None of the powder ever came out with it.
 

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1981 Bronco, 4.9L, ZF5, NP208, Detroit Truetracs, 3.55 gears, 31" Wranglers front and rear
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, back then, I was removing and mounting the tires myself, using the OBA setup I had put in the truck, since I had no compressor. To seat the tire on the rim, I pushed one side on, and with the valve removed from the stem, and an air line with a ball valve on it attached, open the ball valve, and carefully push the rim back until it contacted the other bead.
So, when I removed the air line to put the valve back in, air would come rushing out. None of the powder ever came out with it.
Well, then the beads probably won't either...
 

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Most of the more modern shops should have a machine capable of doing the runout of the wheels. Most Hunter Road Force Balance machines have this feature (for example).

Sounds weird but I have had the alcoa's not go on the studs evenly before. I'd try taking one off, re-indexing it, and re-installing. Then be very careful when tightening them back up to get them even, a little bit of corrosion on either the wheel mount surface on the wheel or truck can cause this issue.
 

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95 5.8L MAF XLT, Hedman Shorties/MF SS Y & Muff, E4OD, Man hubs, KYB Quads, 31x10.5x15, 313K miles
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They're pretty small beads. I haven't tried it yet, and it probably won't work, but I was hoping if I have the valve stem at the bottom (still on the Bronco) and pull the core out the air would bring at least some of the beads out with it. Maybe take a few cycles to get most out.:unsure::rolleyes:

Anyone tried that?
The Beads are not going to come out thru the valve stem!!!! You must break the tire bead on the rim to extract the beads and use a vacuum to get the beads out. If you want to save the beads then use a nylon stocking over the end of the vacuum attachment. Then there might be the problem of static electricity and some of the plastic beads might stick to the tire perimeter. Just some thoughts and ideas.
 

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1986 Eddie Bauer 5.0EFI AOD Full length headers Y pipe into single 3" Magnaflow 3" factory exit
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Something else to check is to jack the truck up, then rotate the tire, and check it for roundness. It could have a broken or shifted belt in it, which will be a bulge in a specific area you'll see as a high spot in the tread. If it is that, there is no fix besides a new tire, but I had that happen to a new escalde when I only had about 4000 miles on it, one of the steel belts in the tire broke or shifted & it had this vibration that started at 45, and just didn't go away till you slowed. The dealership lifted it up & spun the tire & you could see the bulge when it came around.

Kind of looked like this
 

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1981 Bronco, 4.9L, ZF5, NP208, Detroit Truetracs, 3.55 gears, 31" Wranglers front and rear
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The Beads are not going to come out thru the valve stem!!!!
I tried, but you are correct.
Something else to check is to jack the truck up, then rotate the tire, and check it for roundness. It could have a broken or shifted belt in it, which will be a bulge in a specific area you'll see as a high spot in the tread.
Thanks for mentioning this. I did jack it up and check. There was some out-of-roundness, but I think the problem is as described below.
Sounds weird but I have had the alcoa's not go on the studs evenly before. I'd try taking one off, re-indexing it, and re-installing. Then be very careful when tightening them back up to get them even, a little bit of corrosion on either the wheel mount surface on the wheel or truck can cause this issue.
Ding ding ding ding, I think we have a winner! I had not heard this, but I think this is the problem. The left rear was out a bit, so I indexed it and got it a bit better, but then swapped the rear tires since I couldn't get it as good as I wanted. The first try it was as bad as the other, so I indexed it one hole and it was good. The one now on the right side was still off a bit, but I took it for a test drive and still had some vibration starting at about 67mph, so I'll try some more adjusting tomorrow on that one and also check the fronts.
 
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1981 Bronco, 4.9L, ZF5, NP208, Detroit Truetracs, 3.55 gears, 31" Wranglers front and rear
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks to everyone who replied and especially @CrazyBRONCOguy because I was aware of most of the things brought up (but thanks for all the suggestions anyway because I may not have been aware or possibly hadn't thought of them), but I wasn't aware of the possible problem with the Alcoas not going on the hub consistently and having to index them.

I was about to go to the tire shop and spend (and waste) $111 to have the beads taken out and the tires balanced before y'all got me off my butt to check things out further.

Anyway, I got them all pretty good and there may be a slight vibration at about 76mph, but it's MUCH better. As mentioned in the last post, I had swapped the rear tires and they were pretty good, but indexing the left front didn't do any good, so I swapped the left side front and rear and that worked (after some indexing).
 
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@SRWillis
I think its because those particular wheels are also hub centric or the ID of them is much tighter then typical (especially aftermarket). This is also why you see them still on lots of desert style trucks that are not on a full beadlock. Over years of being off/on and differences of combos of parts I feel they are just picky on how they seat (because they fit so well)... I have a set of weld racing forged wheels that need the same attention when you put them (the 18" wheels on my 92 bronco). It also seems the smaller tires make this more pronounced when they are not just right too.

Glad to hear got sorted out. I usually make a paint pen mark on the back side of wheel as reminder of where I ended up at.
 

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1981 Bronco, 4.9L, ZF5, NP208, Detroit Truetracs, 3.55 gears, 31" Wranglers front and rear
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Interesting @CrazyBRONCOguy, didn't know they were used on desert style trucks. I marked the wheels and the hubs and will mark the location whenever they're removed. Guess I won't be rotating them anytime soon lol!
 
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