Jim Smart
January 5, 2016

If you’ve been paying attention to our daily restoration tips and tricks, you’ll note that this is the twelfth one we’ve done in the last week or so. As we said in the first few tips, we’ve been horsing around with classic Mustangs for more than four decades and have come to the following conclusion: we’ve never stopped learning from our mistakes nor have we stopped making them. When you’re restoring a classic Mustang or building a hot restomod it is important to see the pitfalls before you find them, not after stumbling and falling into them. Silly stupid mistakes we make time and time again. Whatever your reason for screwing up, we’re here to remind you we have been there ourselves and know how not to make the same mistakes again.

How many times have we ordered up a set of wheels and tires and discovered they don’t fit or they rub the fender lip and wheel well? Rarely will a wheel or tire manufacturer accept the return after a tire is mounted and you wind up stuck with them—an expensive mistake you don’t want to make. The key is to never guess on wheel fitment, and never take a buddy’s word for it. Measure backspacing and pay attention to what wheel manufacturers tell you. Poor wheel and tire selection is an expensive and permanent decision you will have to live with.

Some wheel manufacturers offer a wheel fitment template, which can be very helpful when you’re making such a large investment. Wheel and tire fitment must also be ascertained with your Mustang on the ground at proper ride height. There are also several tools on the market that take the guess work out of the equation, such as the Percy’s WheelRite tool shown, which is available from Summit Racing (http://www.summitracing.com/parts/php-01201)

Sit over here, the tire rubs my fender lip…