| | Banded Steel Wheels
Greetings to all.
Ever since 2013, I have been following The Automotive India. The versatility of knowledge that I gain from this Site is tremendous, be it new car review, ownership review, travelogue or technical help.
Going through the technical threads of an international forum, I came to know about a thread especially for “Banded Steel Wheels”.
I searched for such kind of thread here also, but it was not available. That is why I am starting a new thread.
Banded steel wheels are quite popular in international circuits and I was also interested in getting one of these for my Maruti Gypsy. Though they were very much available on E-Bay but the sellers were asking a very high price for the same. I have a technical background in manufacturing forged and pressed steel scaffolding products. I started to gather as much knowledge and information regarding these wheels and the first and foremost question that came into my mind was regarding the safety and reliability of these wheels, the welding, alignment and balancing issues. The answer that came frequently was that these wheels are as safe as any other standard steel wheels IF THEY ARE FABRICATED THE RIGHT WAY. Banded steel wheels are often lighter than alloy wheels (less unsprung weight = better handling), wider tires can be fitted which can increase levels of grip.
While in search of an expert fabricator, I came across a small workshop which does petty machining job works for larger manufacturing units. There I met a very knowledgeable person who was very curious in doing such kind of work.
He has made Banded steel wheels for my Gypsy.
These wheels are Shot Blasted, Metal Inert Gas (MIG) Welded, Pressure tested, baked powder coated and tested on wheel balancing machine as well.
I have been using these rims on my gypsy for quite some time and have done some hardcore off roading, the results are satisfactory with regards to wheel balancing, reliability of welding, driving dynamics, vehicle stability and tire fitment.
Impressed with my wheels and with the looks of the vehicle, one of my friend and a relative also ordered him to make wheels for their vehicles.
I believe that these wheels are an economical way to give a vehicle a beefed up stance and are any day better than majority of Chinese made Alloy Wheels available in the market, without worrying about the P.C.D and bore size of the wheel.