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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After getting my winter wheels and tires and putting them on, I noticed a small vibration in the steering wheel and in the seat at 70-80 mph. Both wheels and tires are brand new and I am using the plastic hubcentric rings that discounttiredirect shipped with my wheels. My wheels are konig oversteer and tires are vredestein wintrac pro.

I've already taken it back to the place I had them mounted and balanced at and they found one wheel that was off by half an ounce. I watched them do it and the hunter balancer says "OK" if the wheel & tire are balanced. It doesn't read out what the actual balance is. The one that was off by 0.5 oz said "0.5 oz" specifically.... Anyways, the problem persisted after that.

I decided to do an experiment yesterday:

  • Replace front winter with OEM - problem gone
  • Front winter back on. Replace rear winter with OEM - same vibration.
  • Replace front winter with rear winter. Left OEM in the rear. -same vibration
So, it appears that all of my winter wheels have some kind of issue.

The only thing I haven't done, is try running it without the hub centric rings.

Anyone have any thoughts or suggestions on what I should do?
Thanks!
 

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Three words; "Road Force Balancing," have it done to each wheel/tire combination.
To be fair, Road Force is part of the Hunter brand. OP mentioned Hunter, so I'd be curious if the balancing done was on a Road Force machine already.

Can those machines fall out of calibration somehow? Could you get the wheels balanced by the same machine in different shops or at different times and get different results? Or is that not a thing?
 

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Most of the time you have to specifically go to a shop that has the machine available and request it. Certainly not by the indiciations of the OP either.

"Road Force Balancing," is a general term that is applied to a specific process of balancing wheel and tire combinations and is not necessarily indicative of just one machine manufacturer. Hunter makes all sort of tire balancing machines and most certainly isn't the available manufacturer for commercial and public means. There are a plethora of
Plenty to read about the process in general, take your pick.

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Anything is possible when it comes to man apparatus it's not perfect in anyway. However, personally I tend not to be a "Doubting Thomas" or come up with opposed reasoning, not to do something that may be beneficial.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Three words; "Road Force Balancing," have it done to each wheel/tire combination.
So in looking for a tire shop, I was specifically looking for a place that has touchless tire mounting (and road force balancing as an extra bonus). I found integrity tire in dover de. I felt like I hit the jack pot since the only other place I know that has that equipment is bimmerworks in west chester (a very reputable bmw performance/race shop), and they wanted $200 to mount and balance the tires vs the $120 I spent. In hind sight, if I went to bimmer works, maybe I wouldn't have the issues I'm having and would have just been $80 poorer. Penny wise, pound foolish?

So at integrity, I watched them mount and balance the tires.. When it came to balancing them, they did not use the road force equipment that puts a simulated load on the wheel. When I asked the main guy there, rich, why he doesn't use the road force portion, he said it's really only for dealing with issues with older wheels and tires. Said something about wheels loosing true over time or something to that regard. Me not knowing much other than touchless and road force balancing = good, did not question what was said. BTW, I asked this after Rich and the other guy were talking about the weight the equipment said to add, which was a sizeable amount. Some of my wheels have a whole bunch of weight on them.

I hate confrontation, but it sounds to me like what I have to do is go back yet again and ask them to force balance my setup. Or be more subtle, tell them the steps that I took, and and see if they will do the force balancing.

At 90 mph, as I discovered today, the vibration gets really bad. I definitely have an issue...
 

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I've dealt with this exact headache before and nearly lost my mind. Short version - save yourself the trouble and find a good speed shop to help you. I'd venture about half of the tire shops out there have no clue what they're doing and much less with some of the more complicated tech like the Hunters.

The tire shop dude is saying a bunch of nonsense - the fact that you have to explain what you want them to do is worrisome and that's enough for me not to trust that they know what they're doing. At best they're batting 50% accuracy with your winter set but they're probably all out of whack. Also, unless your wheels have runout or the tires are out of round, any competent tech should be able to get you balanced with minimal weight. If I see a long string of weights that's a sign they have no clue what they're doing.
 

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We all live and learn. Hopefully it without much cost.

Rich the tire guy, is wrong and most likely isn’t qualified to run the Road Force Balancing machine.

Road Force balancing will solve 90% of all vibration issues. There are issues that require rim replacement.

When balanced properly, the weight string will be minimal. The amount of weights used to balance the wheel combination are a
Sure clue they didn’t know what they were doing.

In all seriousness, go to someone else and have it done if you are able.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks guys... I really was thinking my next option was to go to tire rack and complain about my tires and see if they would let me swap em out. But then I thought, what are the chances that 2-4 tires from a reputable brand would be defective?

I'm giving these guys one more shot. I've got an appointment for 4 on thursday. This will be trip 3 when all it should have taken was one trip... unless something was wrong with a tire or wheel. I talked to Rich and he said he will road force balance them.

I'm just surprised that I had this issue. First off, they have the equipment. They are a tire and wheel place and I'm sure they get all sorts of cameros, mustangs, and corvettes. A few miles away is the Dover Monster Mile.

...wish me luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
So I went back and the operator road force balanced all 4 wheels & tires. He had to reposition 2 of them. One was like 1/3 out and the other was about 1/10 out. By that, I mean, the tire was rotated 1/10 rotation from start for the one and 1/3 rotation for the other. The balancing machine wanted the other two to be rotated by an inch or less and the operator said that this wouldn't make enough of a difference. But I believe on all 4 wheels, extra weight was added. I failed to pay attention to if the ones that needed rotating were in the front or back... would have been good to know since the experiment I did showed that at least one front and one rear wheel & tire were causing a vibration. I didn't notice the operator removing any weight. Being the perfectionist, anal type that I am, I would have started from scratch and removed all the weights before doing the road force balance. Before taking off, I was charged $30. No explanation. Just the extra cost of getting it done right I guess. sigh...
At least on the short drive on the highway back home, I didn't feel any vibration between 60 & 85. But I want to drive some more before I put it to rest.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Drove up to PA yesterday. 100 or so miles of highway and feels really smooth. I feel pretty confident that the road force balancing did it. Thanks guys for steering me in the right direction! Until going through all of this, I wasn't sure if road force balancing was worth it. Now I'm a believer!
 
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