The Pantera Place
"Your de Tomaso Connection"

Mounting and Balancing Tires

By Mike Dailey

I recently upgraded to the new Pantera East 2005 billet wheel and installed new Dunlop SP Sport 8000 335/35ZR17s and 245/45ZR16 tires.  My choice to have the tires mounted and balanced was Gran Turismo East, Inc. 770-455-0347, 3306 Shallowford Road, Chamblee, GA 30341 

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Like always, I prefer to remove and mount my own wheels on the Pantera, so I stuffed the new wheels and tires in my daily driver car and took them to Grand Turismo.  

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The first thing they checked was to make sure that the run-out or the wheel rim trueness was within .050 spec guaranteed by Pantera East.  This needs to be check at the front and back of the wheel rim and is done by spinning the wheel rim on the balancing machine and observing the wheel rim.  The next thing was to check was the valve stem hole on the inside of the rim to make sure the edges were smoothed and then the valve stems were installed.  The Pantera East rims use pull through rubber valve stems with chrome covers that go over the rubber stem.  

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Gran Turismo uses a Corchi tire machine that is designed to mount tires without the tire mounting mechanism contacting the wheel rim as the tire is mounted on the rim.  The machine holds the wheel rim from the bottom or back edge.

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View of the 17" X 11" back wheel on the machine.

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The tire beads are lubricated to make the tire slip onto the rim easer.

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The inside bead of the tire is installed on the rim.

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Next, the outer tire bead is moved over the tire rim and down on the rim.  Two fast moving people are involved to keep the tire in place during the process.  You can see in the pictures that the mechanism and roller does not touch the wheel rim and is only in contact with the tire.

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 Air is applied to the valve stem and the tire snaps into the wheel bead.

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View of the tire installed.  Next, the side walls of the tire is hit with a large rubber mallet to make sure the tire is completely seated into the wheel bead before the balancing process starts.   

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View of the wheel and tire on the spin balancer.  Stick on wheel weighs are place on the inside of the wheel rim behind the center piece in various locations to balance the tires.  This is a good time to recheck the tire run-out.   

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After hauling the wheels back home I washed all areas of the rims and tires with warm water and car wash soap.  After drying the wheels and tires with a soft towel and before mounting them on the car, I waxed the inside of the wheels with pure carnauba wax to help keep them stain free.  Do not use any type of wax that contains cleaner or it will damage the wheel shine.  I use Meguiar’s Step 3 wax.  The Pantera East wheels come with a spec sheet that explains how to install the wheels on the car including the torque specs.