Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Is anyone using tire balancing beads?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3

    Is anyone using tire balancing beads?

    After two events I usually flip my track tires to get the most wear. Hard to balance as they are usually full of track rubber so I was thinking about using tire balancing beads. Actually called one of the vendors and they sent me some for free. Notice that most companies do not market to low profile tires but then they contradict themselves in the answers to faq. I do understand the lateral imbalance issue so I thought I would balance my wheels without the tires first and then add the beads.
    Anyone?
    Thanks
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Las Cruces, NM
    Posts
    293
    My Cars
    BMW M6 M63 V10 6 sp
    Wheel and tire balancing is a poorly understood art... During the last millennium (1990's) there was a very good magazine article on why you shouldn't need to add more than 1/2 ounces of weight in any one spot to any wheel/tire combination: They showed how if the needed weight exceeded 1/2 ounce (15 grams !!), they would deflate, rotate the tire on the wheel by 180*, 90*, 45* increments until the lowest needed weight was found. This only applies to new tires (no flat spots !!) and true to round wheels (no bent edges). If you're trying to extend the life of your tires, some rules may not apply, you make have to make compromises.

    I've seen friends trying to balance wheels where it's obvious the wheel is wobbling because of curb damage. If the tire appears to track sidewinder-snake-like after it's mounted, don't even try using it for street use, let alone racing.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Wadsworth, Ohio
    Posts
    11,126
    My Cars
    BMW
    Never used them on a track car or street car, but I've used them on off-road trucks in the past. They did make a little bit of a difference on the roads over ~40 mph at constant speed/smooth speed changes. But if I had to hammer the brakes I'd often have HORRIBLE vibrations for a few seconds after while the beads redistributed.

    That extra vibration I had after heavy breaking is enough that I'm not really keen on the idea of running them on a track car.

    -James

    ECS Tuning your #1 source for all things German automotive
    Customer Service Hours: M - F 8:00am - 8:00pm EST | Saturday: 10:00am - 7:00pm EST
    Sales Team Hours: M - F 8:00am - 11:00pm EST | Saturday: 10:00am - 7:00pm EST
    800.924.5172 | OEM BMW Part Number Search
    sales@ecstuning.com | customerservice@ecstuning.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3
    Quote Originally Posted by jvsantosmd View Post
    Wheel and tire balancing is a poorly understood art... During the last millennium (1990's) there was a very good magazine article on why you shouldn't need to add more than 1/2 ounces of weight in any one spot to any wheel/tire combination: They showed how if the needed weight exceeded 1/2 ounce (15 grams !!), they would deflate, rotate the tire on the wheel by 180*, 90*, 45* increments until the lowest needed weight was found. This only applies to new tires (no flat spots !!) and true to round wheels (no bent edges). If you're trying to extend the life of your tires, some rules may not apply, you make have to make compromises.

    I've seen friends trying to balance wheels where it's obvious the wheel is wobbling because of curb damage. If the tire appears to track sidewinder-snake-like after it's mounted, don't even try using it for street use, let alone racing.
    Wheels are not damaged. Understand the balance and also think that the further out the weight is the better so beads would make sense. Also think most of what you posted while true, goes out the window if the tires are used and have weight of track junk on them, thus changing as you run them. Please note none of this is meant to argumentative rather a conversation into the thinking of this. Most bead companies do not recommend them for the low profile wheels as they refer to lateral balance, which I think makes some sense. In the other post the comment about breaking would concern me. Not a genius here but I would think at some point the rotational force get overwhelmed by the g force, yes, maybe?
    Keep the thought coming as I am on the fence on this one but have to admit dying to try as one of those hold my beer ideas. Question I have rattling around now is that unless you come to a complete stop how long does it take for the beads to find their happy place?
    Appreciate the thoughts guys!
    Jay
    Last edited by Cobra1956; 05-17-2018 at 11:49 AM. Reason: can't spell
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3
    Quote Originally Posted by ECSTuning View Post
    Never used them on a track car or street car, but I've used them on off-road trucks in the past. They did make a little bit of a difference on the roads over ~40 mph at constant speed/smooth speed changes. But if I had to hammer the brakes I'd often have HORRIBLE vibrations for a few seconds after while the beads redistributed.

    That extra vibration I had after heavy breaking is enough that I'm not really keen on the idea of running them on a track car.

    -James
    How much weight did you have in the tires? Have some inquiries out on the cycle side also looking for data
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3
    Took the tires off to flip them and had the shop balance just the wheels alone. Beads are in and I am off to VIR for the weekend. Hope to get a few runs in in between the rain. Have new tire on my spare wheels so if this is a fail I don't have to worry about not having anything to run until I can take them out.
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3
    Ran three days at VIR. You can feel the wheels balance on the way out on the track. Did seam to pick up a small vibration after hard breaking into turn 12 (Oaktree). Nothing horrible as described by ECS above and I have had much worse from a set of tires I believe moved on the wheels from too much soap. I did mark my wheels and had no movement but I did not set the beads (tire not balance) until I wiped down the wheel lip and let it dry. Would disappear. Running again in 2 weeks and will do more tests including on a new set of Toyo RR's
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    366
    My Cars
    2001 MCoupe
    I know most of the beads are made of a type of plastic, and I’d want to know how well they react to the elevated temperatures of a track tire. Heat soak between sessions probably raises their temperature higher than they were designed to normally see. Not saying it’s be a problem, but I’d want to see some design data to make sure.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3
    Quote Originally Posted by Bobkid View Post
    I know most of the beads are made of a type of plastic, and I’d want to know how well they react to the elevated temperatures of a track tire. Heat soak between sessions probably raises their temperature higher than they were designed to normally see. Not saying it’s be a problem, but I’d want to see some design data to make sure.
    Pleas post some info if you have it. From my research the beads I am using are ceramic not plastic. Glass that is clay based versus plastic that is oil based. Based on tire temps I am not sure where you think this heat soak is coming from and if so you should see an increase in tire pressures. I think that not the case unless tire temp is gathered asap because it is lower rather than higher and more accurate. All of the companies I contacted have been providing these for years. They are very common in the trucking industry where you get tons of miles from those types of tires and cost is important. There are studies done by various mfgrs that have claims to cool tires up to 63 degrees more than their competitors. Not sure if the studies are accurate but fully understand what a heat shield does and if they work like that they would make the tire cooler. As for how it reacts to temp? Ask you mom if she has a ceramic bowl she cooks with? And this from a quick google search:Ceramic glass is best for higher temperature applications. It can withstand constant temperatures up to either 1256 degrees F (PyroCeramŪ, 1/8" or 3mm thick) or 1470 degrees F (NeoCeramŪ, 3/16" or 5mm thick). It is actually not glass, but a polycrystalline, clear ceramic material.

    I will be out again this weekend at CMP and I think this will provide some addition testing for me. Shorter track and more breaking should get me even higher temps. The issue I am seeing, as brought up by ECS is a shift in the beads, I think, under hard braking and you exit the turn with a bit of vibration that dissipates upon acceleration. I did mark my tires and they did not move on the wheels so I know that the vibration was not caused by that. I did balance the wheels without the tires so I know that they are not the issue. I am concerned as to what affect heat has on the inside of the tire and if the vibration is caused but the beads sticking. If that is the case then I think there should not be any vibration as the weight has become static or similar to weights attached to the wheel. Will keep testing and report back. Thank you for posting your comments and ideas!
    Jay
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Wadsworth, Ohio
    Posts
    11,126
    My Cars
    BMW
    Cobra just saw your response, it was years ago and they were 40+" super swampers, soo I'd guess "a lot" lol. My vibrations vs yours were probably due to the size of the tire mixed with tons of weight, mixed with swampers even when balanced perfectly fibrate like crazy.

    ECS Tuning your #1 source for all things German automotive
    Customer Service Hours: M - F 8:00am - 8:00pm EST | Saturday: 10:00am - 7:00pm EST
    Sales Team Hours: M - F 8:00am - 11:00pm EST | Saturday: 10:00am - 7:00pm EST
    800.924.5172 | OEM BMW Part Number Search
    sales@ecstuning.com | customerservice@ecstuning.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    366
    My Cars
    2001 MCoupe
    Like ECS, most of my experience was off-road with large lugged tires that would chunk and upset the balance first time you got into the rocks. Saw people use everything from golf balls to airsoft beads, and they all worked okay in a steady state, road cruising type situation. Radially they work well, but lateral imbalance loads = not so much. I do still use the counteract beads in my trailer tires and it helps them stay balanced as they load/unload resulting in a lot less tire hop.

    My biggest concern in a track tire would probably be valve cores and the chance of getting a particle stuck creating a slow leak after airing down. I know they make filtered cores, but I’ve never used them and just give each trailer tire a quick shot of air to clear the core before letting out any air if I need to.

    What I’ve always thought would be good was a staun-type tire deflator that would automatically bleed off excess pressure as the tire heats up. Don’t know if anyone has ever tried them in a track setting or not though, but theoretically they’d be awesome to keep your contact patch steady from first lap to last
    2001 Steel Gray MCoupe - 140,000 miles and owned since new. Gaz gold suspension, Hotchkiss swaybar, poly bushings all around, cat delete headers with custom tune, 3.73 LSD, and Clownshoe Motorsports rear subframe reinforcement.

    2014 Porsche Cayman S / 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee / 2012 F-250

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3
    I am actually testing with Counteract products. The beads come in various weight and the valve stems come with the kit. They sent me 8 4 oz sets, a bottle and a valve stem tool. I wanted to start with an old set of tires in the event that this does not work. As far as tire temps I have kept logs over time and I always bleed my tires down to what I want to run at hot. The next morning gives me the starting psi and I work from there. Usually I am within 1 psi on a day that might start out @ 70 degrees and get up in the 90's so I am pretty comfortable with that method. I did purchase a set of tires for rain use and they were only run once and moved on the wheel, at least this is what I believe because they were so far off the only other explanation was someone did it deliberate and I am right there when the tires get balanced. In the end this all might be folly but I love to tinker and it seams to make sense to me. I just sent my first report back to them before posting here. I am getting the car ready for this weekend and while rotating the tires, Toyo RR's per recommendation I can still hear the beads moving around in there so I know they did not stick to the tire. Top speed last weekend was @145. I did notice a bit of a vibration out of the pits but it disappeared by the first turn. Also picked up a bit coming out of Oak Tree (VIR) and this was a concern brought up to ECS and you. Still deciding what I think about it. Will be running a much shorter and slower course this week so I should see some stopping and starting and what affect the "sloshing" around brings. So far nothing has been an issue and I have dealt with much worse balancing on track tires over the years. My next set of new Toyos goes on the other wheels and I am going to run those with no weights at all. Hold my beer!
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    West Point, Virginia
    Posts
    728
    My Cars
    2002, 320is, 328is, M3
    Back from 4 days of tracking. Scrubbed in a new set of Toyo RR's on unbalanced wheels with beads in them. Did not like them at all. Never balanced out completely so from what I have gathered , if you go down this path balance the wheels or leave the beads to other forms of driving. Wheels that are balanced were driveable throughout the tread life.
    ME:"I want to make my car faster and lighter"
    THEM:" Get out and let someone else drive"

Similar Threads

  1. custom tire balancing
    By kosta in forum Tire & Wheel Forum sponsored by The Tire Rack
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 03-25-2004, 03:50 PM
  2. how much for Mounting & Balancing?
    By o.e.m. in forum Tire & Wheel Forum sponsored by The Tire Rack
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-09-2003, 06:03 PM
  3. balancing rotors ?
    By M3corey in forum 1992 - 1999 M3 (E36)
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-08-2003, 02:57 AM
  4. Are motorcycle and car tire beads the same?
    By Mpowered02 in forum Tire & Wheel Forum sponsored by The Tire Rack
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 09-17-2003, 05:36 PM
  5. Help with on car wheel balancing?
    By mikey in forum Tire & Wheel Forum sponsored by The Tire Rack
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 10-15-2001, 12:00 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •