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CraigDM
#1 Posted : 11 October 2018 05:57:48(UTC)
CraigDM

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I've had a few quotes for refurbishing my alloys. Prices are in the range £70-110 per wheel. Would a better option be to buy some cheapish new alloys, or is this avenue fraught with hidden risks??

Scottishfiver
#2 Posted : 11 October 2018 06:09:32(UTC)
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Really depends on your existing alloys on 2 core points one being how "correct" you want the car to remain or the rarity of the Ltd Edition OEM alloy itself, eg "unobtainium" Mk3 Z Sports. 

For me, on that model anything else but OEM would ruin it...but that is an extreme example.

If they are common as muck I'd look at Rotas range just for one but the possibilities are endless.

Just watch "un-sprung weights & offsets" and get professional advice if unsure.

After that, there is no right or wrong answer, just personal preference. 

If you move from original, make sure your insurance company is informed to take away any wriggle room from them.

They can and would use your move away from original equipment, or some would. Better safe than sorry.

Edited by user 11 October 2018 06:12:55(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

CraigDM
#3 Posted : 11 October 2018 06:23:58(UTC)
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I'm fairly new to the MX5 scene, so not really up to speed on what's good and what's not with regards to wheels!

Current wheels are 17" with 10 spokes. I quite like these but they do need a bit of work. My dimela is do I pay £400 to sort these out, or just get a full new set and sell the originals.

Like you say, it's probably all down to personal taste. Having never bought aftermarket wheels though, I just wanted to check there are no hidden pitfalls. Such as bad quality alloys!
Scottishfiver
#4 Posted : 11 October 2018 06:29:35(UTC)
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17"? What model of 5 do you run?

Some would say it's over-wheeled anyway, some would say it's "cool". 

If it's a Mk1, my personal view is 15" is plenty...but that would mean new rubber too and you'd be looking at around £700.00 plus.

Mk3's seem to get away with 17" no worries.

Edit:

Just noticed you have a 2009 NC...I guess 17" will prove much more expensive than a refurb.

 

Edited by user 11 October 2018 06:32:14(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

MickAP
#5 Posted : 11 October 2018 07:48:19(UTC)
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I faced this dilemma when looking at my MK3 sport alloys. Looking at refurb prices I decided to keep an eye out for another set. A set popped up on this forum which were from a MK3.5, the facelift version of mine, incredibly they had only seen around 400 miles on the road as winter wheels. The owner had the tyres removed and was selling the alloys on as he had sold the car, I snatched them for £325 the set, they were like new when I collected them.

My tyres were on the verge of needing replacement anyway so win win in that department too as it wasn't costly to get the rubber swapped over. Regards insurance I just declared them as an upgrade OEM Mazda alloys no worries there.

Another bonus I sold the original alloys on for £150, the buyer bought them to use them on his track car.

Edited by user 11 October 2018 07:52:08(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Current car...07 plate True Red Sport. MeisterR's, Colbalt rear box, Royal Steering Wheel retrim.
Raymond Harper
#6 Posted : 11 October 2018 07:51:52(UTC)
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Did mine last year. It is quite easy to do. Biggest  cost was tyre removal and refitting otherwise just paint, primer, lacquer, cleaning wipes and sandpaper.

Edited by user 11 October 2018 07:53:52(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Drumtochty
#7 Posted : 11 October 2018 09:00:01(UTC)
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When alloys are powder coated they have to be heated to a reasonable temperature and in the past there have been cases of powder coated wheels cracking in use.

Therefore there will be less of a chance of this happening with new alloys.

More expensive to buy new but less risk.

How much of a risk it is to use powder recoated alloys is something I cannot advise on.

Your money and your choice.
Eddie Cairns

99 Mk2 1.8IS
08 Mk3 2.0 Sport RC sold, Drumtochty Glen, Auchenblae, Laurencekirk,
Aberdeenshire
saz9961
#8 Posted : 11 October 2018 09:54:46(UTC)
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Beware cheap wheels with polished rims (and not so cheap wheesl). They will last 1-2 years before spidering under the lacquer appears.

A wheel restorer I use refuses to powder coat, because of the reasons cited. Powder coating can work, but you need to be assured that the temperature is carefully controlled.

And the cheap wheels are never £70-100 a corner. You need the cost of fitting tyres; are you going to pay to swap over whatever tyres you have on now (and balance), or get a wheel& tyre deal for £150-200 a corner, hoping that you get a reasonable brand of tyre.

I have a set of Work CR-01 3-piece split rims I am contemplating as a winter refurb; years ago, a previous owner had the centres powdercoated, which is now ruined (powdercoating is not that resiliant, and is pointless, if they then just put lacquer on top of the powder coating), but the barrels are bare allow, and just need a machine polish. I'm wondering if I can just deflate the tyres, and then dismantle the wheels; is that going to work? Or do the tyres need to come off.
rhino666
#9 Posted : 11 October 2018 10:22:51(UTC)
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The options for larger wheels are limited and more expensive than the 14s and 15s most of us are used to. In your position I would look to buy a used set of correct wheels in the kind of condition required and sell yours on.

As already said cheap wheels will not serve you well and refurbishing expensive and not always money well spent. 

1997 black 1.6i MK1 - 4/12/2002
1991 red 1.6i Eunos - 21/9/2008

BG
#10 Posted : 11 October 2018 10:55:40(UTC)
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  A few years ago i managed to arrange a 10% discount for club members on wheel services at Lepsons in Gillingham Kent. The work is top rate from the stripping down, inspecting for cracks etc. and making any repairs that might need to be done. If a wheel is beyond safe for any reason they will tell you. The results are not cheap but the wheels are like new. Or, i should say better than new.

  

Mazda designed the suspension around the original "Daisy" wheel 14" diameter and then the 15" became an option. Factory OEM wheels are always a sure bet especially on such a chassis critical car such as the MX5. Even if you can't afford the cost of a top class refurbishment i would recommend you find some to tidy up and then fit really good matching tyres.

Good Luck with whatever you go for  

Edited by user 11 October 2018 10:56:18(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

5846 off the production line in 1989 Mariner Blue 1.6 "Life support machine" More Smiles-per-miles than any of the hundreds of varied vehicles i`ve ever driven / Ridden and the most FUN of all £ for £
saz9961
#11 Posted : 11 October 2018 15:28:22(UTC)
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I don't think its true that Mazda designed the wheel, then thought about the rest of the car.


Actually, the wheel originally had an extra spoke, then got redesigned duriong development.

And when it came to it, it turned out that, within reason, the NA./NB MX5s were not so "chassis critical".

ie. when launched in 89, two different wheels were offered, one steel, one alloy. Then in Japan, they added 3 different style of option wheels. then came the BBS. then Mazda UK added a wheel. then another wheel. MNeanwhile, M2-Inc, Mazda's thinktank, did a crazy thing and fit a 14lb porky 15" Panasport, in a choice of two different tyre widths, 195 and 185 (185 on a 15", yes that is correct). Then Mazda UK came up with the Le mans, and an OZ wheel was reckoned to have the factory blessing. then came the California Relex. then mazda brought out a new 14" wheel. Then started chroming some of them. Mazda UK then shot gunned us with multiple Italian made wheels, in various sizes and offsets, all covered by the factory warranty. then the 15" BBS wheel arrived, and we thought that was it. No, because then a new Enkei 15" came out. Then more Mazda UK specials. I've forgotten Mazda Germany, they were as bad. At least then , in 1998, we all agreed that 15", 45 mm offset. Then the NB arrived, sorting wheels that were either 45mm offset 9base steel) or 40mm offset (nice offset). Then they blew our minds with a 16" wheel. Not possible cried the community. Well at least they won't do a 17" wheel. For Japan, Aus, NZ and US, yes they did, for the turbo.

So upshot; the wheels aren't nearly as critical as you might think. I stick my neck out and say avoid 20" 17s, but mainly because the tyres at that size on a NA/NB can't get hot enough.

Trivia; most wheels aren't born (cast) round, they make them round after, some makers better than others, Rota aren't so good at this step. I suspect the cheapie wheels aren't so good at this either.
BG
#12 Posted : 11 October 2018 22:46:07(UTC)
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  Over the last few years i've spoken with so many people who have sort out original Daisy wheels to bolt onto their cars who have been most impressed with the result, to the extent of remaining with that set up. Likewise lots of people with aftermarket wheels on NC's are now going back to OEM Mazda wheels for the same reason.

  Sure Mazda felt the need to offer various choices to customers to get the cars sold. They are of course in the business of doing that. However the extensive R&D that went into the whole MX5 project was to give a turn key car straight out of the showroom that was absolutely fantastic without any tweeks. 

  They were also restricted by industry standards and limits so left an awful lot of scope for owners to "personalise" their cars beyond what was acceptable for a production line car. Some mods are really very very good others are just pointless to the extent of ruining that perfect base line set up. You can't get any lower than the foundations on any build and wheels are no exception unless you care more about looks over function that is.

   

5846 off the production line in 1989 Mariner Blue 1.6 "Life support machine" More Smiles-per-miles than any of the hundreds of varied vehicles i`ve ever driven / Ridden and the most FUN of all £ for £
saz9961
#13 Posted : 11 October 2018 23:43:26(UTC)
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In that caase, the best wheels to fit are 14" BBS wheels; lighter and stronger than the "Daisys". Neither the BBS (14 and 15"), Enkei 15" 5 Spoke, Enkei 14" 7 Spoke, and M2-Inc spec Panasports were off the shelf wheel designs. All were bespoke to the MX5.

Tyres are better now than in 1989. Even cheap Nexans are likely better than the original Dunlops. But, it remains the fact, that in 2018, the available tyres in the requisate 185/60/ 14 size are limited, and generally inferior. For the moment, there is a greater choice of superior tyre in the 195/50 15 size, at least until, 15" wheels become less common.

There is nothing magic about the Daisys. They followed a sizing convention that was common to the Japanese car industry at the time (the car was originally intended to be a parts bin car). They are light wheels, but similarly sized wheels fitted to Honda Civics were about a lb lighter.

What was forgotten that when new, these cars were delivered with sloppily set up alignment, leading to handling problems and steering vibrations until the owners paid for an alignment. Mazda had pretty vague specs for alignments, so it was left of enthusiasts back in 94-95 to figure it out, leading to the famous Miq Millman and Lanny Alignment specs.

People being impressed with 14" Daisys are usually coming from oversized wheels. The issue with the Mk1 is that on British B-roads, it doesn't cope so well with irregularities, and the rear bump stops are overworked, leading to a jittery ride. Taller section tyres mitigate this effect. But the MX5 handles better on the roads it was designed for; US and Japanese roads, which seem to have much less camber.
Galaxy Grey Man
#14 Posted : 12 October 2018 06:25:10(UTC)
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I too faced this dilemma earlier this year.

My 16” oem Mk3 alloys are available from MX5 parts for £110 each + tyre fitting etc (less when discounts are available)

Quotes for refurb varied from £200 to £300+. In the end I opted for refurb at JP alloys Cannock who enjoy a good reputation.

Total bill for the powder coating inc repainting the centre caps was £330. I am very pleased with the result & honestly believe I have ended up with a better than original finish.

Edited by user 12 October 2018 17:51:54(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Neil & Debbie
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Hilux
#15 Posted : 15 October 2018 17:37:15(UTC)
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"  Just watch "un-sprung weights "

 

.....................what he said - if you don't know about it then read about it.

 

Bigger wheels, heavier wheels/tyres have a gyroscopic effect and affect the OEM designed damping rates [and therefore the handling, steering feel and turn-in]

 

Compare the weight of an aftermarket wheel with the OEM 'Daisy' wheels will explain a lot.



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