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  • Tire size suggestion

    I have been looking at new tires for the 60 and thought I had the perfect size, 225 75 14. Unfortunately Diamond back tires no longer makes them, they have a 215 75 14. I noticed Coker has a 225 70 14, looks like it might work too. Would a 70 series fit our cars? My existing tires are 215 75 14 and they look small and narrow, I am sure they are wider than the original bias ply though. Do you think the 225 70 14 would be a good choice or should I go with the 215 again? Thanks for the help.
    sigpic1960 Gold Bird, original owner since new. tbirdregistry #3158

  • #2
    Tire Size

    Gold Bird this subject has been discussed several times over the years, on this site. To view and ultimately help you, with your choice go to the search button on the home page. When open, type in tires or tire size and hit locate. This will bring up all the threads/ posts that the members recommended. I personally have Coker 215 75 R14 on my 58 HT and they ride very nice.

    Dano Calgary,Alberta Canada
    Dano Calgary,Alberta Canada
    Thunderbird Registry
    58HT #33317
    60 HT (Sold )

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    • #3
      Tire sizes are fairly easy to read, once you know that the numbers mean. The first number (215 or 225) is the overall width in millimeters. The next number is the aspect ratio. This is the height of the sidewall as a percentage of the width 70 is 70%, 75 is 75%, etc. From what I can gather, the old bias plys were either 78 or 80 aspect ratio. The last number, of course, is the wheel diameter in inches.

      With that info, you can do the math and figure out what approximate size any tire is. The easier way is to go to Discount Tire's web site and use their tire calculator.

      Use 205 85 14 and you get the approximate dims that Coker shows for the 8.00-14. To get the approximate dims that Coker shows for the optional 8.50-14, use 212 85 14.

      The calculator will tell you the dimensions of each tire and what your speed will be when your speedometer reads 65 MPH.

      Comparing to the 8.00-14, the 215 75 is about 2.2 MPH slow and 1.0" smaller (1/2" lower to the ground) and the 225 70 is 3.1 MPH slower and 1.32" smaller (over 5/8" lower). Compare to the 8.50-14 and it gets worse. I don't think there's any way to know what tires your car came with originally.

      You're right, the 225 75 14 is only 1.1 MPH slower and .46" smaller (less than 1/4" lower).

      Between the 215 75 and the 225 70, get the 215's.
      Last edited by dgs; February 5th, 2008, 01:29 AM. Reason: Add link
      DGS (aka salguod)
      1960 Convertible - Raven Black, Red leather
      www.salguod.net

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      • #4
        Thanks for the info, I was hoping to get a slightly wider tire, but looks like the 215-75 is the best overall fit. Interesting on the price comparison between Coker and Diamond Back. Coker lists their tire at $190 and Diamond back has the same size for $159. I think they are both the same tire manufacture too, BF Goodrich?
        sigpic1960 Gold Bird, original owner since new. tbirdregistry #3158

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        • #5
          I have 225/75-14" tires from coker. They look good on my car.

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          • #6
            That is correct. the stock wheels are narrow. 5" or 5.5" ?
            The widest you would want to go with those is 215's. Pref 75 series to get some height out of em.

            Another option is (and I know you want to keep your car all orig) is to go to a wider 14" wheel. Then you could run a 225/75/14 and have some meat on the road, throw your stock h/caps on there and look all orig.

            I like how the car rides and drives WAY better w/the 15's on there. As I've stated on other posts, I am sketchy about the wire wheels. I had got them with the understanding they are sealed and could be run tubeless. What a crock of bull that is. I have tubes in all four. Every one of those sick things leaked. Some would go flat in two or three days. Others would lose 5 lbs per week. I love the wire wheels on there, but I worry about tubes and blowouts. When we go out in that car, it's not for parade duty. We're usually hookin & cookin.

            So we'll see what winds up on there. I can't decide.
            John Byers
            1960 Convertible (Orig owner)
            sigpic

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            • #7
              Originally posted by byersmtrco View Post
              That is correct. the stock wheels are narrow. 5" or 5.5" ?
              The widest you would want to go with those is 215's. Pref 75 series to get some height out of em.

              So we'll see what winds up on there. I can't decide.
              Yeah, when I started looking at going bigger on the 65, I learned it had only 15x5" rims. I wasn't feeling the 225x75s, I now have 7" for the front and 8" for the car and am going to run 245x60 up front and 255x60 in the rear.

              I am thinking it will look really good with the whitewalls and the factory caps on the car and the wide tires will look mean but subtle.

              When I get the DB tires on the car, I will post up some photos for opinions.... Currently working on getting the rear of the car lowered a bit.

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              • #8
                Well, just ordered new tires from Diamond Back, 215 75-14s. After talking to them he too said that is the best size for the stock rim. I also was impressed about their product after he explained how they are made. I will post some pictures when they are on, thanks to all for the input!
                sigpic1960 Gold Bird, original owner since new. tbirdregistry #3158

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by RustyNCa View Post
                  I now have 7" for the front and 8" for the car and am going to run 245x60 up front and 255x60 in the rear. .Rusty, I have 265/50/15's on the rear of my '60. Unfortunately my backspacing (3 3/4") wasn't enough so I have clearance issues around turns. Double check your backspacing


                  Currently working on getting the rear of the car lowered a bit.


                  What are you using to lower the rear end, blocks?

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                  • #10
                    I got 14x7" wheels and put 225-75 tires on. The car rides great.

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                    • #11
                      My 1960 T-Bird with 430cid has the stock wheels/hubcaps and some 225/75R14's I bought years ago from AutoZone. They are a 1" whitewall Bias-Ply tire, and they were under $100 a tire back then. They looked great on my Bird, which had the 8.50X14's as standard equipment.

                      I see where Diamond Back Tire has a '60s looking tire in the P225/75R14 coming out soon & in steel-belted design!!! I'm going to need new shoes on my "Beverly" when she rolls out of the garage..... Hmmmm.
                      sigpic
                      The 1960 Ford Thunderbird. The WORLD'S most wanted car....

                      VTCI Member#6287.

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