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OBS Ford (96 F350) Rim widths and tires questions

Discussion in 'Ford Trucks' started by Flyboy77, Jan 9, 2015.

  1. Flyboy77

    Flyboy77 Senior Member
    Messages: 139

    I have the stock 16" aluminum? rims on my 1996 F350xlt 4x4 standard cab gas 460 v8 with mud tires. We got our first chance to salt and plow a little and the tires are not good in the snow or rain, wide gaps between the tread. So while searching and researching replacement tires, the tire sites recommend little tires for the stock rims. OBS=old body style or maybe old, old BS

    1. In searching, someone said the rim is only 6.5" wide, so I'm guessing this is why tirerack.com doesn't recommend the 265 or 285 and only auto-choose the 215/85-16 (2400/2700lbs rated).

    Should I buy new rims that are wider, if so, what's the cheapest route to wider rims for winter only tires for this truck? How wide should I get?
    If not new to me rims, what's the preferred size on the stock rims.

    2. I want load E and 3000+ weight rating as I carry a pallet of salt(2500lbs), snow blower, some ballast and a hitch salt spreader.

    I was considering these Firestone WinterForce LT265/75R16 which are studdable and only $138 each from tirerack.com. They are 3169lbs / 3472lbs rated.
    I've also seen mostly good reviews and references to the GoodYear DuraTrac's. TireRack has the 285/75 16 E-rated for $208ea, that's more than I want to spend now and would have to wait on upgrading tires.

    What tires do you recommend for a good combination of value and winter traction? I don't use it for work in the summer so winter only tires are fine.

    :help: Thank you much in advance, I've learned so much on this site.
  2. Flyboy77

    Flyboy77 Senior Member
    Messages: 139

    Here's the stock rims I have. I can post a better picture later if needed.

  3. tjctransport

    tjctransport PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,390

    the 265 should be fine on a stock rim.
    i run 285's on stock 7 inch rims on my 02
  4. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 9,092

    I'm running the same truck as you with stock steel wheel with BFG Commercial Traction TA's that are studded for the winter. http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires...Commercial+T/A+Traction&partnum=385QR6COMMTAT . For a dedicated winter tire skinny and preferably studded is the only way to go. Cooper makes a nice winter tire too and they're even skinnier http://www.discounttire.com/dtcs/ti...e.do?v=010114|1997&r=COBINT|pc|80513&pc=27539 there's a guy on here named Linckel or something like that from Ct that runs them and has good things to say about them.

    You also have the option of siping your current tires, a guy named Dogplow Dodge has mudder type tires on a 92 Dodge, he bought a tire siping tool off of amazon for less than $150.00. he siped his tires in about an hour and just posted today what a world of difference the tires are.


  5. FordFisherman

    FordFisherman PlowSite.com Addict
    from 06611
    Messages: 1,613

    Best size snow tire for that truck is a 235/75/16 studded
  6. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,272

    from the factory a 96 f350 came with 235 85 16 tires. this is the ideal size for plowing with a 1 ton or 3/4 ton truck. but you could go wider. the stock rims will handle a 265 without issue, i've even seen 285's, but i think that's pushing it.

    like buff said, i run the cooper discoverer m+s, but its a dedicated snow tire and i wouldn't recommend it for year round use.
  7. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 9,092

    Well I guess I butchered your name........:laughing:

    I pull my studded BFG's for the summer and run a set of 265/75/16 GY Dura's that used to be my winter tire on a 8"wheel. The beauty of having an extra set of wheels is when you're dedicated winter tires aren't good for another winter but have plenty of tread for summer driving you have the option to get the most out of them.
  8. rob_cook2001

    rob_cook2001 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,192

    235/85/16's are your best bet for plowing in that truck!
  9. MK97

    MK97 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,057

  10. mrfiestas

    mrfiestas Member
    Messages: 61

    I have 3 of the reg cab F350 OBSs and have seen most of the tire combinations over the years.
    The OE rim width is 6 1/2 with the optimum tire width being 235, which is what FORD matched it to.
    Anything smaller like 215,225 or larger like 265, 285 is less than ideal.
    One of my trucks has the OE 235/85 16s and another has the 265/75 16s and I see very little differences in performance but the 265s look a little larger of course and are a little more money .
    Id stay away from anything that deviates from those 2 sizes as either of those work the best and you don't need to go bigger as you then have clearance issues on the front as well besides looking a little silly IMO.
  11. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 9,092

    I will say if you plan to or have to run Chains in front you better be running 235's.
  12. Flyboy77

    Flyboy77 Senior Member
    Messages: 139

    BUFF, Do you ever run or need chains when you have studded tires?
    I guess maybe if they are required on the mountain passes in CO.

    Also do studs tear up the asphalt of your customers parking lots?

    Thanks ALL for the tremendous responses, so many aspects that I hadn't considered. I will follow your advice on my tire purchase.
  13. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 9,092

    Seems I have to run chains every couple of years, it's weather dependent so it's hard to really put an amount on it.

    Running studs you have to be easy on the throttle especially when stacking otherwise you can scare the pavement/concrete.
    We got a very unusual ice storm last night and the stud where a happy thing.
  14. mpriester

    mpriester Senior Member
    Messages: 424

    i run 265/75/16's on my 97 f250 hd OBS with no problems. It's the same truck with stock wheels.
  15. Flyboy77

    Flyboy77 Senior Member
    Messages: 139

    Thanks for all the awesome input!! Thumbs Up
    These were on my doorstep when I came home tonight(Ordered Sat; delivered Tue). Lots of siping, good load capacity and still recommended for 6.5" wide rims.
    General Altimax Arctic LT
    Size: LT245/75R16


    I'll probably keep the current set for summer/off road tires for a couple years and use these exclusively for Winter. These are studdable if I need to in the future, my plow boss recommend against the studs.
    Now to find a spare set of rims on Craigslist, junk yard wanted $65ea for steelies. I'm thinking finding some for $100 or less for 4.

  16. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,272

    that tire size will be fine.

    the stock tire is a 235 85 16 which is 9.25" wide and 31.7" tall

    245 75 16 is 9.65" wide and 30.5" tall.

    your speedometer and odometer are cablibrated from the factory for a 31.7" tall tire. if running a shorter tire, your speedometer will read faster than you are actually traveling and odometer will read a higher mileage than you actually traveled. will be great when calculating your miles per gallon!!!

    but a 1" difference in tire height will not really produce any noticable or material differences.
  17. Flyboy77

    Flyboy77 Senior Member
    Messages: 139

    Thanks, I think/hope it will work well for me. It's tough finding exactly (size, weight cap., winter) what you want at a good price. The local shops around me wanted $50+ more per tire plus I would have to pay for shipping since they don't carry winter tires normally. Finding 235/85-16's with the high capacity I wanted was difficult and the 265's were a wider tread and slight oversize for the rims.

    There are always compromises, I'm glad for all the support that was given to me from this site so I could make an informed decision. All the help was very much appreciated! Now where's the snow, or even where's the cold?!?