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We put Centramatic's continuous wheel balancers to the short-term test on our Project TJ.


Balance Your Tires!

Several things typically occur when owning a set of tires. First, you go out and spend a grand or two on that great new set that everyone says is going to get your rig over every obstacle that stands in it's way. Secondly, after a while, you realize that those cure-all tires are wearing imperfectly, and your ride is getting more uncomfortable. You also realize that your tread is disappearing at an alarming rate. The third, and last, thing that happens, is that you re-evaluate your tire choice as you prepare to buy another set of tires.

WheelSo what can you do? When we bought our BFG Mud Terrains for the Project TJ, we also purchased a lifetime balancing and alignment agreement from the tire retailer. This was great for a while, anyway, as each time we'd do a major run, we'd come home and take the Jeep for balancing and maybe alignment.

But after a while, we realized several things. First, was that since we do not have a tow rig, the TJ may have driven a thousand miles or more just to get it home. Even if we were vigilant in removing all of the mud and other cruddy nasties, there still had to be an imperfect balance situation for the whole trip home.

Once we did get it home and drop it off at the tire shop (for the whole day), we had to beg that their "best guy" did the balancing work and that the best guy, was, in fact, worthy of doing the job in the first place. Remember, tire shops don't pay these guys enough, so the care-factor isn't always there.

So now the tires are balanced (in theory, anyway) and we would go on several other local runs, etc. and the tires would go slightly out of balance due to hitch-hiking mud, stones, or maybe even weights that got slung off on the trail. After a while, the tires would wear unevenly again, and get even worse, while we sat back, knowing that the best guy did his best work...a month ago.

The rest of the story...


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