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    Thread: Minilite Wheels and All Other Likewise Variants Mega Thread

    1. 03-23-2020 02:24 AM #26
      Quote Originally Posted by d-rew View Post
      Since you said just wheel pics are okay! Here are my r-types that I bought recewntly. Wanted a set for over 10 years so stoked to finally have a set. Haven't had a chance to put them on but got tires and everything.


      It's very cool to make the dream come true.

      Watanabe are super super high quality.

      A shame that there are lots of poorly made replicas out there though.

      The genuine Watanabes are so valuable that it's worth the time for a crappy outfit to counterfeit them I guess.

      When I bought my car, the previous owner had installed 16x7 Konig Feathers and I really dig them --- although they're copycats they seem to be well made and to my eye they're like a hyper-modern take on the classic 8 spoke --- they're basically replicas of the Volk CE28N which are quite expensive...

      ...but I couldn't resist going retro and getting the Rota RB's, also 16x7.
      I'm pretty happy with them considering the low price and they're fairly light at 16.25lbs

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    3. Member sicklyscott's Avatar
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      Jun 24th, 2002
      Metuchen, NJ
      2018 Tesla P3D, 2012 S60, 1991 Miata, 2007 RX-8 LFX, 1965 Cutlass
      03-23-2020 08:27 AM #27
      I've always been a fan of this style wheel, specifically on roadsters. When I bought my MG it came on these wheels:

      And when I had my BRG Miata I opted for the Chaparral wheels:

      Full force wallet weight reduction, my Miata build:

    4. 03-23-2020 08:57 AM #28

      Came across a listing on the 'bay of a NOS set of Panasport:

      Panasport wheels 5.5 JJ x 13 Set of (4)

      Can anyone here decipher the date code in the quality control sticker?

    5. 03-23-2020 09:56 AM #29
      An assortment of oddments:




      an awesome Opel


      bildemontering bortgången: blå spöke,
      spegeln på förlorad tid


      eight spoked Scimitar


      very cool dude
      - Paul Newman -

    6. Member Karl_1340's Avatar
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      Sep 1st, 2017
      2018 ATS 2.0T 6 speed manual, 2014 RDX, 1989 VW Cabriolet
      03-23-2020 10:30 AM #30

      Konig Rewinds are high on my list to replace the snowflakes on my cabriolet.

    7. 03-23-2020 12:27 PM #31

      A few more odds & sods...

      ...found a pic of an actual COOPER CAR CO. wheel --- I wonder if they ever made them for street application?

      It is a small pic though --- can anyone find a bigger image?

      That particular variant is known as the "rose petal" style:


      True beauty:


      Carmona-made variant was named Mistral.


      Superlite from Australia has a popular following.

      They look nice.



      Mopar with minilites by Shelby

      On the same tip,
      found a pic of vintage Saab-Shelby box.

      And here's a good lookin' nice clean set of Saab-Shelby Goldvanes with rare early style center-caps:

      Last edited by stiggy-pug; 03-23-2020 at 12:30 PM.

    8. Member MkIII's Avatar
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      Aug 10th, 2000
      Newberg, OR
      1971 Austin Mini. 2002 Subaru Legacy GT
      03-23-2020 12:44 PM #32
      Quote Originally Posted by stiggy-pug View Post
      And Aaron my goodgod I love what you've done --- sportpack look and the color combo just bowls me over, I totally dig the black bonnet and how it fits so perfectly along with the arches, plus excellent choice of wheel color to make everything *pop*, and speaking of color I've always been partial to that tone of green like avocado mist somethinglike - is that a factory color and if so, what is it called?

      I visited your blog and on your first post you wrote: "One thing is for certain, it's going to be a proper Austin Mini when it's done."
      Mission accomplished.
      Totally jealous here.

      In that same post you posted an image of a Mini wearing some Revolution 4 spokes:

      Well thank you very much, I had initially thought I was going to repaint the car at some point, but in the end decided the green had grown on me. The previous owner painted the hood satin black in an homage to Mr. Bean's Mini and the rest just sort of fell into place. Someone told me once that the color was called Harvest Gold, but it's not a very good harvest if that's the color. It's definitely more avocado than gold, but the gold wheels really worked well with it.

      I really did think I was going to put revolutions on. There's a Mini up in Portland that makes frequent appearances at the various races that had some and they looked fantastic, but then I got a bug for the Minilites again (mine originally came with some Minator's installed).

      I should have said so in my first post, but thank for putting all the work into this. I've learned a great deal.

    9. Member Chris_V's Avatar
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      Jun 18th, 2009
      Pikesville, MD
      '13 Volt, '20 Bolt, '02 Suburban 2500LT
      03-23-2020 01:09 PM #33
      here's a set that I can't find much info on. They are out of the UK and by King (not Koenig). Had this one set on the MGB but I've never seen another set.

      "Like a fine Detroit wine, this vehicle has aged to budgetary perfection"

    10. Geriatric Member BRealistic's Avatar
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      Dec 16th, 2005
      2018 F150
      03-23-2020 01:50 PM #34
      Weren't these magnesium wheels back in the day?
      Not something you should run today (old set of magnesium wheels, that is).
      Vehicles owned (*=automatic):
      Chevy: 82 Cavalier Type 10, 94 Cavalier Coupe* | Chrysler: 96 Town & Country* | Ford: 73 F100, 88 F150, 18 F150* | Jeep: 78 CJ-5 | Mazdas: 83 GLC, 85 RX7 GS, 86 323, 90 323, 90 B2600i, 92 Miata, 97 Protege, 01 B2300, 01 B3000, 04 RX8 | Nissan: 90 240SX SE | Plymouth: 88 Caravan* | Pontiac: 84 Grand Prix* | Toyota: 84 Celica GTS, 02 Tundra*

    11. 03-23-2020 02:44 PM #35
      Quote Originally Posted by BRealistic View Post
      Weren't these magnesium wheels back in the day?
      Not something you should run today (old set of magnesium wheels, that is).

      What me worry?


      I am add lightness holes don't you know.

      Magnesium is beautiful.
      If brightly polished aluminum resembles chrome plating, polished magnesium is more like nickel plating, with just a hint of gold to it. No other metal looks like it. Magnesium that has been brightly polished is unique and striking.

      Magnesium is strange stuff.
      After you polish it to a beautiful mirror finish, as time passes it will gradually turn gray, and then dark gray, with a bit of green.

      Magnesium is extremely difficult to weld.
      Generally speaking, the more someone knows about welding, the less likely they are to want to have anything to do with repairing magnesium castings.

      Magnesium is dangerous.
      If it ever catches fire, throw a bucket of sand on it and run for your life. When magnesium burns, it virtually can't be stopped. Small quantities of magnesium are used to make photoflash bulbs. Larger quantities are used to make bombs.

      Magnesium is exotic.
      In the world of vintage race car parts, there is no other metal that is so tough to deal with. But many of the most desirable drag racing parts were made out of magnesium, including blower housings, end plates, manifolds, and pulleys, fuel filters, fuel injectors, late Hemi timing covers, oil pans and valve covers, Ford and Olds differentials, quick-change rear end center sections and covers, and some really neat wheels.

      Magnesium is a pain.
      But its use plays an important role in hot rodding, and we deal with it.

      The biggest challenge in taking care of magnesium parts is preserving them. With exposure to humidity, magnesium oxidizes, and tiny craters that are commonly called pits are formed. When magnesium parts are left unprotected and exposed to moisture, these pits eventually can grow to over an eighth of an inch in diameter.

      I've seen a pair of magnesium racing wheels that were left lying outside in a field for many years. They had craters as big as three-eighths of an inch across all over them.

      The twelve-spoke wheel pictured below is on an old Willys Altered that has sat outside for several decades.

      This stuff is alive.



      Last edited by stiggy-pug; 03-23-2020 at 02:47 PM.

    12. 03-23-2020 05:57 PM #36

      Forgot to mention these --- the Scimitar pictured earlier in the thread is fitted with Compomotive ML,
      ML of course standing for MiniLite.

      A highly regarded brand.

      They've been making them for a good long while.

      Looks great in gold...

      ...especially if:

    13. Member blimey's Avatar
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      Nov 12th, 2000
      2015 GTI SE,2008 3.2 TT(sold) ,1992 16V GTI(sold),2010 A3 TDI(sold)
      03-23-2020 06:21 PM #37
      Nearly forgot my MGB(sold last year)

    14. 03-23-2020 08:45 PM #38

      Another oddball here.

      Ally Cat

      Although more famous for their geometric star mesh design...

      ...they also made a minilite-style 8 spoke:

      Gnarly gravel rally tires specc'd on this set -

      Really dig the logo they used.

      Currently, repops are being made under the brandname Alley Cat.

    15. Member Vettes, Volvos and VWs's Avatar
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      Sudbury, ON
      Five Germans and a Japanese Misfit
      03-23-2020 10:03 PM #39
      OMG I already love this thread! So much eye candy
      Quote Originally Posted by Baconator14 View Post
      vettes, volvos, and vws for president
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    16. Junior Member OneSloVW's Avatar
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      Ottawa ON/Maryville TN
      2006 Polaris RMK900, Dogsled team, Golf Country
      03-24-2020 10:04 AM #40
      Quote Originally Posted by stiggy-pug View Post
      A shame that there are lots of poorly made replicas out there though.
      Quote Originally Posted by GreenandChrome View Post
      because F**khole, Canada isn't a real town.

    17. 03-24-2020 10:12 AM #41
      Another sidenote:

      doing all this casual research on minilites has had me bouncing all around interwebs and I bumped into and discovered a theretofore unknown fact to me regarding the famous Lotus wheel design,
      they are known as wobbly-web wheels.

      I love that name!

      deepmining has other benefits as well,
      like seeing something unexpected:

      here's a bit more Watanabe love...

      ...a neat video:

      a killer pdf showing the sand cast process at the Watanabe factory:


      Kewl AF.

      Last edited by stiggy-pug; 03-24-2020 at 10:46 AM.

    18. 03-24-2020 10:15 AM #42
      Quote Originally Posted by OneSloVW View Post

      I'm not banging my head too much because I don't consider the Rota's poorly made,
      there are much worse counterfeits out there.

      They were only $550 for the set.

      Finish is actually excellent,
      but top quality?
      No, not really --- one of my wheels in particular was wildly off balance and required a shizton of weights to correct.

      All in all though, they are acceptable for being such a cheap option.

    19. 03-24-2020 10:22 AM #43
      In the 'likewise variant' category, one of my all time favorites, Roger Bolliger's Trans Am:

      496ci of Pontiac awesomness:

      2017 Chevy SS | 1977 Trans Am

    20. 03-24-2020 10:32 AM #44
      Quote Originally Posted by Pushrods View Post
      In the 'likewise variant' category, one of my all time favorites, Roger Bolliger's Trans Am:

      Those are indeed killer!

      Bonus points to you for posting about them and including that awesome hillclimb video too.

      If I were to make a guess, I'd say they might be made by Smoor

      A very popular wheel in Germany and surrounding areas.



      scratch that,
      according to this:


      the wheels used are made by Image out of the UK.



      Last edited by stiggy-pug; 03-24-2020 at 10:42 AM.

    21. Member hexagone's Avatar
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      Dec 19th, 2007
      San Furcisco
      Clown Cars and P-Cars
      03-24-2020 12:06 PM #45
      Surprised no one has posted this yet - but clearly a lot of inspriation in the 997 carrera sport wheel:

    22. Member
      Join Date
      Nov 16th, 2000
      03-24-2020 01:44 PM #46
      BWA Sportstars - they are more commonly found on Alfas as shown here, but my dad had them on his Mk1a Tiger.

    23. 03-24-2020 02:08 PM #47

      Another Japanese variant.

      I'm not well-versed in JDM car culture, so it came somewhat as a surprise to me that Bridgstone actually made wheels.

      Their version of the minilite was called the Spoke-6 for some reason,
      full name I reckon would be Bridgestone Zona Spoke-6.


      You can find a good number of examples for sale...

      ...bit slim pickins to see a set actually installed.

      Russia had hits for them:



      Bridgestone also makes a modern version,
      named the Fortis.

      Not much info out there at all regarding those and one of the few hits is a classified from the Vortex,
      from 2010 with no replies:

      Bonus pix:

      I love this center cap design, it was for their 4 spoke design which were similar to the BSA Sportstars that MatchStick posted.

      Potenza has more name recognition in the West though,
      and I like this pic.

      Their 5 spoke was named the Texas,
      very appropriate methinks!

    24. Geriatric Member Air and water do mix's Avatar
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      Aug 5th, 2004
      Southern Indiana
      '66 Beetle (X2) '08 Fit
      03-24-2020 03:20 PM #48
      Quote Originally Posted by stiggy-pug View Post
      Their 5 spoke was named the Texas,
      very appropriate methinks!

      Huh. They did a good job differentiating the hub area from the spokes, which is required for a 4 bolt pattern!

      Thanks for the info, I had no idea that Bridgestone made wheels either.
      Quote Originally Posted by Boyz in da Park
      Proletariat, Bourgeoise - Everybody smellin' my potpourri...

    25. 03-24-2020 03:23 PM #49
      This thread has me considering some Rota RKRs for my truck. They come in the right size and offset and bolt pattern as well.

    26. 03-24-2020 09:06 PM #50

      Further into the weeds --- in the posted Watanabe video, he talks of the factory works Nissans using an 8-spoke of their own make.

      It has proved difficult to find period photographs of those wheels.

      This #73 car is of some historical significance, but I couldn't find out exactly why.

      They were available for purchase from Nissan and listed in a catalog:

      More info seen here:


      Same site on another page says:
      (poorly translated by google)

      The 14-inch 8-spoke mag wheel used by Nissan Works was other than the position, the shape is indistinguishable from Watanabe. Speaking of eight spokes, Nissan race mag,

      In addition to Watanabe, Hajiro Shoji's Mag Road, Bridgestone's ZONA SPOKE-6, Enkei's Competition and Rally Competition, Limited Competitions are all the same.

      The situation at the time was like a torrent, rather than it may be that it was an era with such momentum that was advanced.

      Z cars also used them, here's a great period shot:

      Another pic -- even tho you can't see the wheels, I love halftone dots.

      And also,

      Factory works car which was outright winner of the 18th East-African Safari Rally in 1970.

      Last edited by stiggy-pug; 03-24-2020 at 09:21 PM.

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