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Question to those running the same vehicle wheels on your trailer..

rebar

Adventurer
I'm not sure where I read more than once that this was a advantage, but Ive had this idea stuck in my head but wonder if I'm getting carried away or how much merit it has..

To the folks who are actually running the same wheels on your vehicle on your trailer too.. Did you do it so that you only needed one spare, and was it worth it? Any regrets?

Thanks!
 

Louisd75

Adventurer
I'm not sure where I read more than once that this was a advantage, but Ive had this idea stuck in my head but wonder if I'm getting carried away or how much merit it has..

To the folks who are actually running the same wheels on your vehicle on your trailer too.. Did you do it so that you only needed one spare, and was it worth it? Any regrets?

Thanks!
I did it with my trailer and have no regrets. You can look at it from the view point of needing only one spare, but I prefer to look at it as I now have two extra spares (for three total spares) since I can always drop the trailer and come back for it after getting the tires repaired/replaced. Knock on wood, I've never had to use this capability.

FWIW, I also matched the trailer track width to the truck's track width so that the trailer follows pretty much in the truck's footprints when going straight and on gradual turns.

Worth it? I'm not sure... as I've said, I haven't had to use that capability yet. It was definitely more work than just going with a trailer axle as all of my wheels are aluminum and hub-centric. Trailer hubs are typically set up to be lug-centric and I had to use an adapter to get it all to work properly. This likely won't be an issue if your tow vehicle and trailer are lug-centric.
 

NatersXJ6

Explorer
I did it. Let’s be honest, aesthetics plays a role, I think the trailer looks better when it matches the Jeep, but the ability to rotate relatively unmolested tires onto the Jeep in case of failure plays a role too.

I’ve never needed to do it, and in reality, over 25 years driving off road, I’ve only gotten maybe 3 flats, 2 of which were related to being poor. I doubt I’ll ever actually swap a tire from Jeep to trailer or back...

so it’s really about looks, with a technical backstory!
 

old_CWO

Well-known member
My little off road trailer is set up with matching track width and wheels to the truck. The trailer is small, so not having a spare on board is convenient and I can see the super wide fenders in my side mirrors. It has "the look" too which of course doesn't hurt.

If I were to do it again however I would probably just run standard five lug trailer pattern and carry a spare. The whole thing would be simpler, lighter and not matter what the tow rig happened to be. To keep it looking cool I'd shamelessly mimic Vintage Overland's vibe by using skinny smoothie wheels, baby moons, 7.00-15 mud or NDT tires and round 9" wide fenders.
 

FosterWV

Baller On A Budget
I’ve done both but.... After 4 years I’m ditching the trailer spare. It took up way to much space. Matched the bolt pattern and tire size to the Jeep but the wheels tires don’t match.

E0F2B069-1D7A-4130-A7F2-D29BF66B6F49.jpeg
 

4000lbsOfGoat

Active member
I've got matching wheels and tires on my truck and trailer for all the same reasons noted above - looks better and provides extras in the event things go really poorly. As noted above, I also needed to use wheel adapters to fit the hub-centric (TRD) wheels.

While E-rated tires are massive overkill on a trailer with a 3000 pound GVWR, that overkill gives me just that much extra peace of mind. I don't have to think too much about a blowout on the trailer regardless of the terrain.

I carry one spare on the truck.
 

billiebob

Well-known member
I'm not sure where I read more than once that this was a advantage, but Ive had this idea stuck in my head but wonder if I'm getting carried away or how much merit it has..

To the folks who are actually running the same wheels on your vehicle on your trailer too.. Did you do it so that you only needed one spare, and was it worth it? Any regrets?

Thanks!
Yes, so I only have to carry one spare and also so if needed I can drop the trailer and have 3 spares.

No regrets but increasing the unsprung weight will make the trailer ride rougher. I run 31s that are pretty light. My trailer does not ride as smooth as with the factory tires but thats the trade off. 33s/35s/37s will really affect the trailers ride.

If you can, set the axle track to match the tow vehicle track too. The trailer will follow better and if you are dodging rocks and potholes the trailer will track in the same path.

I dont have a picture with the camper but this is the trailer.

DSCN2533.jpeg
 
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Kmrtnsn

Explorer
My little off road trailer is set up with matching track width and wheels to the truck. The trailer is small, so not having a spare on board is convenient and I can see the super wide fenders in my side mirrors. It has "the look" too which of course doesn't hurt.

If I were to do it again however I would probably just run standard five lug trailer pattern and carry a spare. The whole thing would be simpler, lighter and not matter what the tow rig happened to be. To keep it looking cool I'd shamelessly mimic Vintage Overland's vibe by using skinny smoothie wheels, baby moons, 7.00-15 mud or NDT tires and round 9" wide fenders.
i love that smoothie wheel, chrome center cap look!
 

Roaddude

Long time off-grid vanlife adventurist
I've seriously thought about it for my trailer; priced the adapters, was set to order two more tires to match my van's, and ended up deciding to roll with what I had.

It's a thing the military did extensively so they could swap out identical wheels and NDTs with the tow vehicle if needed. No idea how widespread the practice is now in armed services, but I'll assume they still do.

I've towed my trailer all over hither and yon for years without having same wheels and tires. It would look great, you bet, and be more practical in case of a flat or damaging one of the steelies on my van and I really needed to get out from somewhere way back country.

I'm not a real fan of adapters though (my tow vehicle wheels are 8 lug) or changing the track width (it's been terrific the way it is) and my van tires are E-rated LTs, which would be gross overkill for the trailer. That'd be nice too, though I can't justify the expense.

So, because it has presented no problem for thousands and thousands of miles in all kinds of terrain and weather over a period of almost 4 years, and because I have a spare for each already, I'm keeping it the same for the foreseeable future.

offroad-vannxv2-900.jpg
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Though I would like to find a good, steady, low-cost arrangement to get my van spare onto a simple swing out like the trailer has, so I can reclaim that underbody space where it is now, as a 'basement' accessible from inside the van.

.
 
I have matching Jeep Hard Rock rims and BF Goodrich MT tires on my Jeep and my trailer, including trailer spare, just because I want to. Why not?????
 

emulous74

Active member
Let's face it, most of us would never leave our trailers stranded unless it was a serious life and death situation, when I first got my trailer I did switch to matching wheels and tires as my truck. I have since upgraded my truck's wheels and tires (larger size tire), but I didn't follow suit on my trailer. My truck and my trailer each carry a spare tire. The way I see it, as long as the wheels on your trailer have the same bolt pattern as the vehicle towing it, you can always use the trailer's wheel/tires in a bind. It's insurance, plain and simple, so depending on your philosophy on insurance, that should make your decision for you.

 

Porkchopexpress

Well-known member
I can somewhat understand the benefit even if it's a rare occurrence and carrying a spare isn't that big of a deal to me, but I'm guessing 90% of the people who match wheels do it for looks. Again, I understand as I want to drive a cool looking rig as much as the next guy.

I would definitely choose not to match for the following reasons:
-Costs more and requires extra effort.
-Truck wheels are usually alloy and larger diameter to fit brake rotors, trailers have smaller brakes, (or no brakes) and typically have small steel wheels with tall tire sidewalls that are more practical.
-Trailer tires have thicker sidewalls and are designed for the forces trailers experience which should improve performance.
-Truck tires with knobs serve no purpose on a trailer except to potentially cause more sway at speed.

This is just my opinion and since none of you are spending my money on your trailers, I don't judge and hope you enjoy.
 

Louisd75

Adventurer
I can somewhat understand the benefit even if it's a rare occurrence and carrying a spare isn't that big of a deal to me, but I'm guessing 90% of the people who match wheels do it for looks. Again, I understand as I want to drive a cool looking rig as much as the next guy.

I would definitely choose not to match for the following reasons:
-Costs more and requires extra effort.
-Truck wheels are usually alloy and larger diameter to fit brake rotors, trailers have smaller brakes, (or no brakes) and typically have small steel wheels with tall tire sidewalls that are more practical.
-Trailer tires have thicker sidewalls and are designed for the forces trailers experience which should improve performance.
-Truck tires with knobs serve no purpose on a trailer except to potentially cause more sway at speed.

This is just my opinion and since none of you are spending my money on your trailers, I don't judge and hope you enjoy.
You raise good talking points, but I don't agree with your take on it :)

The cost difference and effort can be more, but I feel it is negligible if you're starting from scratch. Like everything else though, it definitely costs more if you're replacing an existing setup.

I'm not following your argument about the size/composition of trailer vs truck wheels and practicality. I do feel that all trailers are better off with brakes. I think it's silly to have the ability to easily improve the braking power of your entire rig (truck and trailer) and not go that route, especially if the tow vehicle is smaller. I don't see how it's a disadvantage having a taller, stiffer rim that provides a lot of clearance around the trailer brake, or lacking a brake, the trailer hub.

I think that trailer specific tires are necessary to deal with the forces that the tires experience in a tandem or triple axle situation, especially when turning. I don't feel that they are necessary for a single axle trailer provided that the tires have the appropriate load rating.

Truck tires with knobs are a requirement if you want your trailer brakes to effectively slow the trailer (vs just skidding the tires) offroad in lower traction situations. I'm not personally an advocate of mud terrain tires, I've found that AT tires suit my needs. I do know from personal experience that street oriented treads don't work well for me offroad.

I do admit that I like the way my trailer looks with matching wheels/tires. My setup has been solid for me, both on and offroad. I'm currently working on trailer #2 and will be matching the wheels/tires again.
 

Porkchopexpress

Well-known member
You raise good talking points, but I don't agree with your take on it :)
.....
I'm not following your argument about the size/composition of trailer vs truck wheels and practicality. I do feel that all trailers are better off with brakes. I think it's silly to have the ability to easily improve the braking power of your entire rig (truck and trailer) and not go that route, especially if the tow vehicle is smaller. I don't see how it's a disadvantage having a taller, stiffer rim that provides a lot of clearance around the trailer brake, or lacking a brake, the trailer hub.
Most of your counter points are value judgments and my intention was not to imply there is something wrong with how you decide to equip your vehicle.
The paragraph I quoted is a misinterpretation of what I posted. I absolutely think trailer brakes are practical. My point was that trailer brakes are smaller than most truck brakes and don't need the same wheel clearance. A taller tire sidewall rather than larger diameter wheel will be lighter and have more give before denting the wheel. Trailer wheels also don't really benefit from the stiffness of lower profile tires because they aren't used to steer the vehicle into corners.
Again, we are kind of splitting hairs here and it's not like one choice will be vastly superior to another.
 

Peter_n_Margaret

Adventurer
I have the trailer and truck wheels and tyres identical.
Apart from the ability to move spares around to suit any situation, (including moving a badly damaged tyre from the truck to the much lighter loaded trailer) it provides an opportunity to wear the trailer tyres out on the truck, otherwise they would go in the bin because of age with almost no wear. That provides a tyre cost reduction.
06w01 (60).JPG
Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 motorhome
 
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