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L-120 series 16" tire options

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pippin

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Curious what you guys run on your '49-'52 L-120 series 3/4 ton trucks. I just got a '50 L-122, and it needs tires.

Also, how wide are the factory 16" rims?

Thanks
 

pippin

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Looking at these 750-16 tires


& these


My current tires are 7.0-16. it looks like these 750's will fit (32.5" tall)
 
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rwk

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I have some 235/80- 16 tires on my non running 53 R112, they are just rollers now (trailer tires), but the size fits well and looks good, My rims appear to be approx 5.5 wide x 16, not sure if they are the same for your truck.
 

George Yingst

Binder Driver
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depending on what you want to do with the truck, the NDT tires are not really your best choice.
They are usually fairly soft so they wear fast, and if you are thinking they will be good in mud and snow they are not. They pack the voids the first time around and then its just a smooth surface with no grip.
And if that isn't enough, they tend to ride on the center rib which is basically a solid ring and are terrible on wet roads too.

On the other hand they look really cool and tough.
My opinion is that other than a restored military rig, I'd avoid them.
Look for a good 7.50x16 traction tire like the old goodyear xtra grip. Still tough looking and they actually grip.
 

pippin

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Thanks for the info.
I have another question on my factory rims. I've learned here that they are split / 2 piece. Can a tire shop mount tires as they normally would? Also, do I need to use tubes, or can I run tubeless tires?
 

mongocanfly

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Most auto tire stores wont touch multi piece wheels..some will...most truck tires store will do them
They are dangerous if not handled properly
And yep....you'll need tubes and most likely a rim liner
And I'd also steer clear of the military tires
 

GNIKK

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I had good luck with the michelin radial XZA model tire, 32 inch. After using bias mud & snow tires that didn't stop or steer well. Mine are a different size, 8RX17.5. Also single rim, tubeless. The pitch on the radial and bias tire are different, I was told. Never had a problem, lots of miles. I got them in 2000, load range E.
 

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pippin

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Can you install a tubeless tire with a tube installed?

Also, regarding the NDT military tires, what's the actual issue with them? Also, I don't plan on driving this truck in the winter, nor off roading it. They aggressively salt the roads around here.
 

George Yingst

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Your not supposed to do it but yes you can put tubes in tubeless tires. Most shops probably will refuse so you may have to mount them yourself. Yes the lock ring wheels can be dangerous but like many other people here, i've done lots of them over the years and never had any issues. If you've never done one, I guess I wouldn't recommend it unless you can find somebody local to walk you through the first one at least.
If you can find any tubeless type wheels for your bolt pattern, you will likely pay more for the wheels than the truck. They are out there, but hard to find and very expensive. If you stumble into a set that is great.

I think I outlined the issues with military NDT tires pretty well before. They do look good and if you are just playing with the truck they will be fine as long as you don't get into real mud or snow. Handling probably not the best but again for a play truck that won't be going very fast they will work. Its just that there are much better tires out there for traction and handling.

Good luck with it, whichever way you go.
 

pippin

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Yeah I've been looking at you tube on split rims. I think I want to tackle it myself. I understand why they made split wheels now too. A farmer can replace his own tires with a couple of pry bars & a hammer. Pretty cool. I also can understand the explosive risk as well.

Also, I will probably get the rims sand blasted & powdercoated while I have them apart...

Still undecided on the tire type tho, but have decide on a size - 7.50-16, which is around 31-32" tall. I want to keep this truck stockish.
 
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mongocanfly

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Look into powerking tires..they are bias ply, but for putputting around, they would be ok ,and they are a period correct looking tire..
20211008_232555.jpg 20211008_232611.jpg
 

pippin

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Kinda looks like the current tires on the rear of my truck

rear tire

I was going to air it up, but the valve stem is no longer there
 
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George Yingst

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The top picture is the style I was suggesting in my first post. Very good tires.
Looking at your picture, why not just put a new tube in what you have and run them. It looks in pretty good shape. What little cracking I see most likely will not bother a thing for a runabout play rig. I seem to find the older tires can be all cracked up and still run just fine and even carry a decent load. The newer stuff seems that once it starts to crack, they fail soon after.
I'm guessing one of your reasons is bringing up the size a bit. Maybe put a tube in those and run them for a bit. Gives you a chance to break down a lock ring type wheel and see if the tires will work for you after you get it going. Then if you want to up the size a bit, you'll have some knowledge of what needs to be done.
Just a thought.
 
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