You and I understand what we are talking about, and am not wanting to start an argument either. My only point is that the term "off-set" and what it represents is confusing to a lot of people, and that confusion is not necessary.

Here's the confusing part. You say, "If they say a 4.5" back spacing will work for a particular vehicle and that the wheel width should be between 8" and 10" then they are saying that you cannot have an off set greater than negative .5" or less than positive .5". So you are just using different measurements to get the same answer." Not quite.

For the record, I can't keep up with which is negative and which is positive as far as off set is concerned, so if the following in incorrect in that regard, the premise will be correct if you substitute the correct term. Another reason off set is confusing.

Here's the point. You just said, "cannot have an off set greater than..." Will use 2 off sets to make the point, neg .5, and pos .5 - both within stated limits. Armed with the info that his Jeep can live with anything between neg .5 and pos .5 off set and knowing that he has the choice of 8" or 10" wheels (also within specs) our newbie goes to xxx tire and wheel shop and finds some beautiful black steel wheels. They are 8" wide, and he has the choice of 2 sets. One has a neg .5 off set and the other a pos .5 off set. Knowing that both are within specs and knowing that the 8" is also within specs, he just points to the closest set and says, "Put 'em on."

Knowing from experience that newbies (speaking for myself here) will ALWAYS make the wrong choice the first time - it's a rule of Jeeps, I think - Anyway our newbie picks the set that actually has a back spacing of 3.5". Yep, they will work. But because the tires now stick out an extra inch, the flares will no longer cover them.........oh well, the plan was for new Xenons at some point in the future anyway. If he had chosen the 10" set instead of the 8" set and had the same choice of 2 sets, he would be in real trouble by picking the wrong one. The 5.5 inch back space causes real clearance problems with those 35 inch Swampers he picked to put on his D35/D30 axle setup. /wwwthreads_images/icons/tongue.gif /wwwthreads_images/icons/shocked.gif (You make moon guys by using the square brackets on your key board with the correct word between them, tongue and shocked in this case)

WHEREAS: had our newbie been armed with 4.5" back space and 8" or 10" wheels, that's all the info he would need. He could have picked the right set to begin with and not been confused by pos vs neg off set. If you know the off set limits and wheel width limits, you still must do some math to figure out which back spacing to pick. You know 2 numbers and have to compute the third number to make a choice. If you are armed with back space and wheel width limits, nothing else is needed. You don't have to compute the off set. Why bother? If you maintain proper back spacing and stay within wheel width limits, you never have to deal with off set. Any wheel you pick will work. If you stay within off-set limits and wheel width limits and DO NOT compute the back space, you can get wheels that will not work. Why use a demension that can cause the wrong wheel to be picked if you don't do extra calculations and/or can't keep up with which is neg and which is pos?

Doug '97 TJ

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