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Projects: "Barn Find" Mugen Wheels unearthed for the Tealtoe2

  • Posted: 03-06-2019 11:58 PM
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When you need wheels and you are on a budget your best bet is to stumble across something that someone forgot they had. In this case, that someone is me.

Tealtoe2 got an injection of new energy when I brought my son in on the project last January. The response from that announcement was really very encouraging and so we've decided to take a long, strong look at getting some nicer wheels for the Tealtoe2 Civic. Actually, it seemed like a really natural and obvious decision. The boy was squarely focused on getting a new set of rollers.

So the search for wheels began. At first the natural idea was to get something that was cool, and quality looking. We looked for an appropriate performance wheels because, let's face it, performance is what it is all about. I tried stripping cost away from the equation at first as I attempted to teach Aiello some form of "values" in wheel-selection.

We looked at Enkei wheels, Gram Lights, and even knockoffs like Rotas in an effort to get a hot look at a discounted price. There are so many wheels out there! When he decided some Gram Lites 57CRs were the way to go--and I cringed-- I was able to redirect him to some 949Racing 6URLs in 15x7 size.

It was about the time that tire research began when I realized that my kid with toothpick-arms may have to muscle-around this car with grippy 205 width tires in a car with no power steering. As much of a character builder that would be it seemed impractical, especially since the car is used for all kinds of weather...

Plus, I'm feeling really particularly budget conscious on this car. Spending a modest $700 on wheels feels a bit oppressive. So I naturally procrastinated on placing the order, feverishly hoping that something more attractively-priced would materialize.

And then I remembered that I had just the perfect thing to solve this need!

A bunch of years ago I was on a mission to collect Mugen MR-5 wheels in 15x6" size with a 38 offset. I brought them in from Japan a few here and a few there, whenever I could find some with center caps and lug caps. These were destined for the #OGiantKillerCRX project but that car since got some fancier Volk TE37s.

That makes them fair game for Tealtoe2!

Yeah these were just stashed in the garage for at least 5 years! All complete, in various condition. We even found one of the special "keys" for removing the lug caps.

The kid was having fun removing the caps. I got a little nostalgic myself; they just don't make cool stuff like this any more!

So there we have some wheels for the Civic! I really do need to order tires now. Something in a sporting all-season variety, in the 195/50-15 size. Should be easy enough to drive, grippy-ish on the road but slidey enough to be fun!

More on tires to come, along with some refinishing work. I've never taken MR-5 wheels apart before. That's should be pretty interesting as well! Stay tuned for more on that in a future installment.


About the Author

Marcus di Sabella Marcus is the founder of Heeltoe Automotive. He's been working with cars (mostly Honda cars) since 1996, and has been providing enthusiasts with excellent products, services, and web experiences since 2002. He's been published in Honda Tuning, and holds a degree in Engineering Technology.

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