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I threw this page together to show pictures of the 11" ZR1 wheels I stuck on my SS a number of months ago. My intentions were to make a nice Install Page but, as always, I've got a ton of other projects going on so haven't had the time to do the page like I wanted. There will be several pictures here including pics during the install. I won't go into a lot of detail with the pics but hopefully you'll get the idea. If I ever get the chance, I will come back and make this a more detailed install page :)
The tires on my SS wheels were getting quite worn. I had been thinking about doing something to jazz up the SS a bit and coupled with the fact that I've always had traction problems, I figured now was the perfect time to get widen the rears a bit :) I purposely went with the ZR1 style wheel because I still wanted to maintain the SS look. These wheels are essentially the same as my old SS wheels except they are chrome and the rears are 11" wide. This is exactly what I was looking for.
These wheels aren't "actual" ZR1 wheels. They are replica wheels put out by Autumn Fleet Sales, more commonly called AFS. They put out a great replica wheel at a very good price. Another important thing to note is my 11" rears are not of ZR1 specs. They actually share the dimensions of the Corvette Grand Sport 11" rear wheels. The difference is the ZR1 had "bulged out" rear fenders compared to the regular Corvette. A real ZR1 wheel has a 36mm offset. GM wanted to put an 11" rear tire on the Grand Sport but the ZR1 wheel would not fit because the Grand Sport doesn't have the bulged rear fenders so GM made the wheel a little different and gave it a 50mm offset. This was great for us F-Body guys because now we could have a ZR1 style wheel which required minimal work to install! A real ZR1 wheel with its 36mm offset requires the F-Body guy to roll the rear fender lips. This can be tricky and can cause damage to the paint if you are not careful! The Grand Sport wheels with their 50mm offset are tucked in a bit more and don't require one to roll the fender lips. Instead, you have to slightly modify the bump stop. This, IMO, is much easier than rolling the fender lips :)
I'll also point out there is another company that makes a nice replica ZR1 Wheel and that's Performance Wheel Outlet. But, at the time I ordered my wheels, PWO did not offer the ZR1 style wheel with the 50mm GS offset.
I've noticed a bit of interest in 11" rear wheels for the F-Body. Because of this, I have put together a separate section on my F-Body Links page... check it out!
If you already have 11" rear wheels and would like to be included on my links page, just send me an email with the details!
Another item to consider is the weight of the wheels. For hard core performance guys this is important. Weight wasn't as big of factor for myself since my SS is my daily driver. Even though there are different companies that make the ZR1 replica wheels to exact (or near exact) dimensions of the real deal, the weights are considerably different. The real deal GM wheel is the lightest of all that I have seen. I called AFS and PWO and got their wheels weights:
Performance Wheel Outlet
Autumn Fleet Sales
The AFS wheels are supposed to be a little lighter. I ordered my AFS wheels in a packaged deal. I got the 4 chrome wheels with mounted and balanced Dunlop SP Sport 8000 tires. The 2 for the 9.5" wheels are 275/40/17 (standard size for 17" wheel to maintain same overall height as the stock f-body wheel and tire combo) and the 2 for the 11" wheels are 315/35/17. They sent a pamphlet from Dunlop that had all the tire specs. According to this pamphlet the 275/40/17 tire weighs in at 30.0 lbs and the 315/35/17 tire weighs 35.3 lbs. Being the curious guy I am I weighed the wheels and tires I received. The 11" combo weighed 58 lbs and the 9.5" combo weighed 52 lbs. The air in the tire weighs a little so the 9.5" combo adds up pretty close with the info I had. The 11" combo is off a little... oh well :)
OK, now on to some pics!
The chrome wheels from AFS come with Corvette centercaps. They send them with the Corvette emblem not attached but the centercaps have molded into them a black ring. I didn't want Corvette centercaps on my SS and also didn't want a blank cap with a black ring. The fix for this was to order some completely blank centercaps from SLP and some black with a red outline vinyl decals to match the color scheme of my SS. Pictured below are the centercaps that came from AFS as well as the blank centercaps and decals I ordered.
Here are some "getting ready" pics. Quite a stack of tires, eh? :)
Here are some close-ups of the wheel. I really like the SS decals!
Notice the bump stop and how I had to cut the lip of the bumpstop off. I also had to modify the bump stop by notching out the holes. All this so the bumpstop could be slid closer to the center of the car. I did this on the driver side. With my car, the rear is way out of center and the passenger side was worse! I had to completely remove the bump stop and pretty much destroy the mounting area for the bumpstop. So far, no problems but I do plan on getting an adjustable panhard rod and centering the rear then reinstalling the passenger side bumpstop. This is now noticeable from the rear as you can tell that the driver side tire sticks out a bit further than the passenger side tire. Since I like the way the driver side looks, I have a spacer I'm going to stick on the passenger side... this will probably even allow me to keep the panhard rod I have. We'll see.
This picture compares my old 275/40/17 Firestone Firehawk tire with my new 315/35/17 tire.
Here I just threw together a side by side comparison from the 315/35/17 to a 275/40/17 to the stocker 245/50/16. Big difference!
And finally, here are some pictures after the install
And here are some side by side before and after shots...