New Tires and Wheels

The Jeep needed new tires bad. The ones it came with where dry rotted, leaked, and even one exploded on the previous owner with it just sitting in there driveway!

What to get? Well I want to keep the look of the Jeep as stockish as I can for the wheels and tires. These Jeeps had really thin tires and wheels.

Here is what the factory service manual said the Jeep came with. Tire size is E78 x 15 and Wheels are a 15″ 5.5″ K.

Well these are not modern sizes at all! But this makes sense. These jeeps came with bias ply tires with tubes.

Lets try to find new wheels first. The bolt pattern on these Jeeps are 5.5″ x 5 pattern with a 4.25″ center bore. Common CJ Jeep pattern so that is good. Width is 5.5″ and 15″ diameter. The wheels the Jeep came with fit the Jeep but are actually 6″ wide. I know its only 0.5″ but i want to keep it skinny wheeled. I also don’t know what “K type” is as well? I have found some links on some old forums about the different type of wheels Jeep had but the link was dead.

I found this seller on Ebay that has original reproduction wheels for CJs that are 5.5″ wide and are for tubeless tires. Perfect!

Now on to the tires. E78 x 15 is an old school bias ply tire size.

This chart says the tire should be around a 6.4″ wide tire. Modern size says P205/70R15.

The modern tire is ~27″ diameter and ~8″ wide. That is way to wide! No wonder the turn stops on this jeep where jacked way out. The wider modern tires where rubbing at full steering lock.

I looked at some CJ-5 forums for tire sizes and found that 7.00-15 bias ply tires fit well and look the part. I found a set of Power King Extra Traction – Lt7.00x-15 on ebay.

These tires are a bit taller then the stock ones that came on the DJ Jeep but atleast they are near the same width and look the part.

Here is how these 7.00-15 bias ply tires stack up next to my TJ Jeep’s 35″ x 10.5″ tires.

After mounting the tires and setting the pressure in the tires. 18psi in the front and 24psi in the rear.

Tires and wheels look great on the DJ!

With the proper width of the tires, I adjusted the steering stops as far inwards as I could. Sometime in this Jeep’s previous life, someone welded the adjuster nut to the bolt so I could only adjust it so far. These are 3/8-24 fine thread bolts so next time I am at the hardware store I will pick up some so I can gain even more turning radius.