Steel Rims

The "Pimp my Ride" section for Soviet bloc bikes. Everybody seems to have their own custom add-ons, modifications & accessories. Share your tips and post pictures of them here.
Forum rules
This is the place for topics concerining modifying and accessorizing your Ural or Denpr.
User avatar
Lmo
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 5037
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2015 3:19 pm
Location: Pismo Beach via So. Indiana

Steel Rims

Post by Lmo » Thu Nov 07, 2019 4:19 pm

I searched back through the site for aluminum rim alternatives, not much there.

I spoke with Chris at Woody's Wheel Works (pleasant, helpful, familiar with Ural wheels (and has done several)); in 'general terms' * a new, 40 spoke steel rim, new spokes, laced and trued is roughly $450. $50 more gets you an aluminum wheel.

Disintegrating aluminum rims aren't a problem on my old Dnepr, but I'm considering new rims because my old steel rims are a) not round, and b) starting to get pretty raggedy (pitted, rusted, etc.).

* if the old spokes are still reusable, then price would be somewhat less.
Lew Morris
Dnepr w/ '06 Ural Drive Train
C5 Power Arc
125/42 jets
Drilled slides/
.030" shims

1973 BMW R75/5 (original owner)
1947 HD FL (long gone, forever regretful)

User avatar
bratmanxj
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 168
Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:24 am
Location: Munster, IN

Re: Steel Rims

Post by bratmanxj » Fri Nov 08, 2019 2:15 pm

I've got a local "old school" Harley guy I grew up by who just trued up a rather nasty front wheel for me. I've done some research on this forum but haven't found any clear answers. Is there any aftermarket rims (19" hoop) to be found that fit our bikes? I've seen some mention that fatter HD wheels can be fitted, is there any benefit in tire choices with different sizes?
1999 Yamaha Royal Star Venture
2007 Ural Tourist - The Big Red Brick
Chinese Knock off Honda Trail 70 rescued from the in-laws shed
1984 Suzuki LT125 Quadrunner
Boats, Jets Skis and other fun stuff.

Who's Ur Grandaddy ?
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 354
Joined: Sat May 18, 2013 7:02 pm
Location: oregon

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Who's Ur Grandaddy ? » Fri Nov 08, 2019 2:28 pm

Have you tried Buchanan's ? I used to use them back in my /2 days. I think that they are in El Monte Ca.
john
2013 FF gear-up
Mr Cob bulletproof skid plate
Powerarc ignition
Raceway titanium carb needles 4th notch from top
132 1/2 main ... 42 pilot ... air/fuel 1 1/2 turns out
7/64 drilled slides
Leftka III type airbox
Modtop mufflers

User avatar
Snakeoil
Order of Suvarov
Order of Suvarov
Posts: 4392
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2014 9:45 pm
Location: Upstate NY

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Snakeoil » Fri Nov 08, 2019 8:11 pm

Lew, don't give up on your old rims yet. Take them apart and have the rims powder coated with a color you like. I had a set of steel shouldered rims from a 305 Scrambler powder coated silver because they were too pitted to rechrome. They look great and many think that they are aluminum. I bead blasted the spokes and zinc plated them in my basement.

I'm amazed at the price of a laced wheel these days. I suspect that cast wheels have put a major dent in the volume equation.

If your spokes will unscrew, I'd suggest that you bead blast them and zinc plate them yourself. I can give you the procedure to do it in your house. Very safe, cheap and holds up well. The other choice is to blast and paint them with a good rattle can paint. I did the spokes on an S90 that way before I started zinc plating. They still look like new and that was at least 10 years ago. And the bike gets ridden. Bake the paint in your oven if you take that path.
Regards,
Rob
Proud member of the Peanut Gallery
2000 Ural Tourist
40 Pilots, 122 Mains
Before you say something stupid, always ask yourself, "What would Harpo say?".

jeffsaline
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 246
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2015 12:04 am
Location: Rapid City, South Dakota

Re: Steel Rims

Post by jeffsaline » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:56 pm

If you are going to try to remove the spokes and nipples intact instead of cutting them with a bolt cutter... maybe give each spoke/nipple a dose of Kroil Penetrating fluid. You can get Kroil from Kano Labs if it is not available locally. I find it is easy to apply using a small syringe and 18ga needle with the tip dulled on a belt sander or grinding wheel. Kroil works well and if you give it a chance to work and maybe a couple of applications over a few days it works even better.

Best,

Jeff
Jeff Saline
2010 Gear Up
-Good, Fast, Cheap. Pick Two
-Just because something isn't true, no reason you can't believe it. Hub McCann Second Hand Lions
-Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.

User avatar
Lmo
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 5037
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2015 3:19 pm
Location: Pismo Beach via So. Indiana

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Lmo » Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:16 pm

I'm done with these rims Rob, they're WAY out of round (heart shaped, almost). A friend of mine operates a metal polishing business and has de-chromed and polished out parts for me in the past, but these rims are trash; if I'm going to spend the money I'd just as soon replace the rims. But given the HUGE spokes used by Dnepr/Ural finding rims might be an issue. I have time now, so re-lacing them myself is what I'm thinking.

I had Buchanan's rebuild the wheel on my /5 about fifteen years ago; stainless spoke & nipples. At the time I think I paid around $300 each; they turned out great. Didn't think to ask Chris, at Woody's, about the large(r) spoke size.

Kroil is best purchased by the case.
Lew Morris
Dnepr w/ '06 Ural Drive Train
C5 Power Arc
125/42 jets
Drilled slides/
.030" shims

1973 BMW R75/5 (original owner)
1947 HD FL (long gone, forever regretful)

User avatar
INSUBORDINATOR
Order of Suvarov
Order of Suvarov
Posts: 3547
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2014 2:13 am
Location: North Georgia Mountains

Re: Steel Rims

Post by INSUBORDINATOR » Sat Nov 09, 2019 1:09 pm

Lmo wrote:
Thu Nov 07, 2019 4:19 pm
I searched back through the site for aluminum rim alternatives, not much there.

I spoke with Chris at Woody's Wheel Works (pleasant, helpful, familiar with Ural wheels (and has done several)); in 'general terms' * a new, 40 spoke steel rim, new spokes, laced and trued is roughly $450. $50 more gets you an aluminum wheel.

Disintegrating aluminum rims aren't a problem on my old Dnepr, but I'm considering new rims because my old steel rims are a) not round, and b) starting to get pretty raggedy (pitted, rusted, etc.).

* if the old spokes are still reusable, then price would be somewhat less.
DNEPRS imported by NEVAL in the 1980's had CAST ALUMINUM 5 spoke (Russian Star) wheels. I had a set on my NEVAL DNEPR, & painted the star RED.
They were surprisingly handsome (in a Vintage LOCOMOTIVE way) I loved them, They stayed true. I should have hung onto that bike.
I've seen URAL photos from Russia with what appear to be riveted flat steel painted spoke wheels. I'd trade all 4 of my pretty spoke wheels for a set - in a heartbeat.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Current Motorcycles: Improved 2002 Ural Tourist.

"Be who you are & say what you feel. Those that matter won't mind, those that mind - don't matter."

User avatar
Lmo
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 5037
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2015 3:19 pm
Location: Pismo Beach via So. Indiana

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Lmo » Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:23 pm

I love locomotives, and DO find these attractive ...

edit - I also can't find squat about these wheels.
Last edited by Lmo on Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Lew Morris
Dnepr w/ '06 Ural Drive Train
C5 Power Arc
125/42 jets
Drilled slides/
.030" shims

1973 BMW R75/5 (original owner)
1947 HD FL (long gone, forever regretful)

User avatar
Snakeoil
Order of Suvarov
Order of Suvarov
Posts: 4392
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2014 9:45 pm
Location: Upstate NY

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Snakeoil » Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:28 pm

Yikes!!! Those wheels look like they came off a vintage traction motor.

The large spokes should not be an issue if you reuse them with new rims. Assuming the dimple in the wheel will accept the bigger head of the nipple, you should be able to simply drill them to fit.

Harley's ran sidecars for years and used standard HD spokes, same as used on all the solo bikes. I would think if you laced up a new rim using spokes of the same gauge HD used back then, you'd be fine.

Do the new Ural wheels with aluminum rims use the same sausage sized spokes that older steel rimmed models used? I've never bothered to look.
Regards,
Rob
Proud member of the Peanut Gallery
2000 Ural Tourist
40 Pilots, 122 Mains
Before you say something stupid, always ask yourself, "What would Harpo say?".

User avatar
jaybird
Order of Suvarov
Order of Suvarov
Posts: 2520
Joined: Thu Jul 01, 2010 4:41 am
Location: The foothills of the Forked River Mountains, West Barnegat NJ (Do It In The Pines!) 08005

Re: Steel Rims

Post by jaybird » Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:07 pm

I’m pretty sure the wheels on that red motorcycle are home built.
IIRC, either the RAMCO Dneprs or the NEVALS came with Acront aluminum rims, you might try looking for some of those. I have one I bought on eBay many years ago, nice wheel, I’ve been saving it for the front of a solo I’m planning to put together.

Happy trails,
Jaybird
2005 Gear-Up, Mr. Nat_ural 108,000+ Kilometers and counting
2013 Retro, Black beauty, AKA Lucky "13"
1995 Olive Tourist
1975 Enfield Diesel Bullet
2008 Enfield Bullet 500
1974 BMW R 75/6
Etc.

User avatar
Snakeoil
Order of Suvarov
Order of Suvarov
Posts: 4392
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2014 9:45 pm
Location: Upstate NY

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Snakeoil » Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:29 pm

Buchanans has un drilled, un dimpled, Akronts. Assume they are made by Morad. But might be NOS. $207 each.
Regards,
Rob
Proud member of the Peanut Gallery
2000 Ural Tourist
40 Pilots, 122 Mains
Before you say something stupid, always ask yourself, "What would Harpo say?".

stagewex
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 6790
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2012 10:45 pm
Location: New Rochelle, New York

Re: Steel Rims

Post by stagewex » Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:03 pm

+++1 on Buchanon whether you leave the rims as-is, have them powedercoated like I did or simply paint them. A no-brainer:

GS2081909969_165448144_61633_640_480_SD2.jpg

11-8-10 038.JPG


These are Polished Stainless-Steel, not Chrome. But they do have Chrome too if that's your thing. After 10 years the powdercoat gets a bit duller but I assure you the spokes look exactly the way they did as in this 1st day picture.
Tough as nails strength for sidecar duty compared to the factory spokes. At least the ones from 2007. Are the newer ones better?
11-8-10 039.JPG
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Stagewex

Current Herd all running amok:
2008 Vespa 150S (Elec & Kick Start)
2007 Ural Patrol (2WD, Elec & Kick Start)
2006 Honda "Big Ruckus" PS250
2006 Yamaha TW200 (Elec & Kick Start)
1995 BMW K75 (Elec Start)
1991 Honda XR250L (Kick Start Only)
1986 Yamaha BW200ES (Elec & Kick Start)

User avatar
Bilgekeeldave
Commissar
Commissar
Posts: 3588
Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2007 12:04 pm
Location: Western Washington

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Bilgekeeldave » Sun Nov 10, 2019 2:14 pm

RAMCo wheels were chrome plated steel Dnepr export wheels. RAMCo got them from the Dnepr factory. They were made by a Russian aerospace company. RAMCo looked into having more made but the manufacturer wanted a very large order to set up production again and RAMCo didn't need that many.
Dave

RAMCO-Dnepr MT-16

Who's Ur Grandaddy ?
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 354
Joined: Sat May 18, 2013 7:02 pm
Location: oregon

Re: Steel Rims

Post by Who's Ur Grandaddy ? » Mon Nov 11, 2019 2:33 pm

On /2 BMWs , a purposely built for a sidecar bike ( complete with welded on sidecar mounts.) .. The factory recommended that the aluminum wheels were to be swapped out for factory STEEL wheels for the stress that a sidecar rig produced. The Buchanan cost in 1987 for lacing 4 steel BMW rims with heavy-duty stainless spokes was $250 each.The factory steel wheels were , I believe , a taste wider also.
Perhaps the reason for most cracked and split Ural aluminum wheels is that Ural strayed from their BMW roots and went with aluminum wheels over steel wheels for sidecar use.
Lou , I would recommend that you re-lace some round steel wheels , if you can find them. I would be a shame to invest all the money on aluminum wheels , only to have them fail.
Maybe you can find some old stock BMW steel .They would be 18" though. Not a bad thing off the line , but will shave a tad off top speed. Hills will be easier. NOS /2 stuff can be spendy though.
john
2013 FF gear-up
Mr Cob bulletproof skid plate
Powerarc ignition
Raceway titanium carb needles 4th notch from top
132 1/2 main ... 42 pilot ... air/fuel 1 1/2 turns out
7/64 drilled slides
Leftka III type airbox
Modtop mufflers

stagewex
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Hero of the Soviet Union - 2019
Posts: 6790
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2012 10:45 pm
Location: New Rochelle, New York

Re: Steel Rims

Post by stagewex » Mon Nov 11, 2019 2:43 pm

I can't remember the name/brand of this particular rig that I saw a few years ago at the Motorcyclepedia upstate NY.
Pretty sure it's German. It's steel-wheels remind me of the ones that were pictured earlier:
IMG_4445.JPG
IMG_4446.JPG
IMG_4447.JPG
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Stagewex

Current Herd all running amok:
2008 Vespa 150S (Elec & Kick Start)
2007 Ural Patrol (2WD, Elec & Kick Start)
2006 Honda "Big Ruckus" PS250
2006 Yamaha TW200 (Elec & Kick Start)
1995 BMW K75 (Elec Start)
1991 Honda XR250L (Kick Start Only)
1986 Yamaha BW200ES (Elec & Kick Start)

Post Reply