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The community here at 355nation.net urges you to please use caution and seek professional assistance when performing modifications to your vehicle. Before attempting any modification it is advised that you refer to your Colorado or Canyon service manual or contact a certified mechanic as not all GMT355 trucks are the same. The staff and the associated members are in no way responsible for any damages, injuries or other harm inflicted to your vehicle or yourself which may result in attempting these modifications. The posts and content presented on this site reflect in no way the views of 355nation.net or it’s ownership.




A 355nation How To presented by
burn

Project Description
Bore aluminum wheels

Skill Level
Advanced

Project Vehicle
Make: Chevrolet
Model: Colorado
Year: 2006
Engine: 3.5L
Transmission: Auto
Power windows: No
Sun Roof: No




Please be aware that although this is a fairly straight-forward process, its very easy to damage a rim beyond repair. I infact screwed up while boring out the first rim - but by learning from my mistakes was able to bore out the other 3 wheels flawlessly. I was able to salvage the first rim that I screwed up on by over-boring the hole. This left me with 1 wheel that the bore depth is 11/16" whereas the other 3 wheels have a bore depth of 1/2". It will have no impact on the usability of the wheel, it will just be a few grams lighter than the other 3. The shop I got these from are giving me a 5th wheel for free as compensation for having to go through this. I will bore the 5th wheel correctly then keep the buggered wheel in the attic in case I bust a wheel on a pot-hole.

Anyways, moving on........




I picked up a set of RTX Blackhawk 20x8.5" wheels. The RTX wheel search said that these wheels would fit, but when I got them in I found that the centre bore was too small. It was only 75mm:



The stock bore on the Colly is 101mm. I have marked out what 101mm would look like:




I picked up a Freud rabbiting bit. It will cut up to 1/2" width, as well as 1/2" depth. It has different bearings that you can swap out on the tip to give you different width's. I had to use the smallest bearing to give the widest cut of 1/2":




Back of the packaging for the model number incase you want to get the same one. I got this from Home Depot for $38:



Be sure to use lots of WD-40 to keep the bit lubricated while cutting:




I figured out (after screwing up on the first wheel) that its best to cut the bore in 2 steps. Set the bit in at half-dept to cut out the first 1/4":



Then put the rim face down on some carpet, and slowly & carefuly work your way around the opening, gradually opening it up. The bearing will limit you so you cant cut the width beyond 1/2" more than the stock bore. Just keep going until it stops cutting:




Here is a finished wheel bored to 101mm (4"), cut 1/4" deep:




Then adjust the router to give the full 1/2" deep cut:



Now this is the rim that got screwed up - but I was able to salvage it. The bore in the top half of the pic is cut to the full depth, and the bottom half of the bore is nearly complete. You just have to keep whittling it down:



Once its all done, you can measure the bore and will find that they are all now the necessary 101mm bore:




And when you are all done cleaning up you will have a snazzy shop-vac full of aluminum shavings!:




Any questions - post em up!
 

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¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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Nice write-up. I did this to my wheels last year and I'll add that I had best luck moving the router around the wheel clockwise when cutting. The reason being that if you go counter clockwise it will be harder to control and it will try to pull the bit into the cut, and it will likely take too big a cut and break it. If you go counter clockwise you're pushing it into the cut instead of the tool pulling it into it, so it's easier to control. When I did mine I didn't realize this at first and broke a bit halfway through the first wheel. After I realized what I did wrong I was able to finish that wheel and do the 3 others without problem.
 

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Bagged Bomber
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10,954 Posts
I did one of mine and 4 of LaColorados the same way. Its really easy. We busted a couple bits though. Probably should have used some WD40. We also had the bearing unscrew itself from and the bit broke. Make sure you have the right size alen wrench and tighten the bearing after every wheel.
 

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US Army 19yrs and ......
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Damn Burn, two excellent and useful write ups today!!! And these can save the members here some money!

Two gold stars for you:thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Nice write-up. I did this to my wheels last year and I'll add that I had best luck moving the router around the wheel clockwise when cutting. The reason being that if you go counter clockwise it will be harder to control and it will try to pull the bit into the cut, and it will likely take too big a cut and break it. If you go counter clockwise you're pushing it into the cut instead of the tool pulling it into it, so it's easier to control. When I did mine I didn't realize this at first and broke a bit halfway through the first wheel. After I realized what I did wrong I was able to finish that wheel and do the 3 others without problem.

Thats actually the reason the first wheel got a bit messed up - the bit dug into the aluminum and pulled it in. when I went the other direction it didnt happen again.

Damn Burn, two excellent and useful write ups today!!! And these can save the members here some money!

Two gold stars for you:thumbup:

Thanks man; but this how-to is over 2 months old ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
yes - i found going clockwise easier to do. If you go counter-clockwise then the router bit wants to dig in and jerk the router out of your hands.
 

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shaved of course
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just what i was looking for
 

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nice burn. might want to add, what rpm you ran at if your router is adjustable. motor oil will also work.

strongly suggest wereing safty glasses, and or sheild.

totally agree with the clockwise direction(climb cut) verses c. clockwise(conventional) of cutting.
 

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maniac mechanic
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this is scary being a machinist completely wrong way of doing things this could lead to stress fractures because of the roughness of cut, if your routers one speed or adjustable and wrong it will heat the aluminum in an adverse way which will make it more likely to stress crack, and not to mention that will be horribly off center if you ran an indicator over it. We have this stuff at my shop that's a die penetrant it shows all the cracks and minor flaws that can occur from improper machining if I put it on that wheel you would cringe from what you saw. when your talking rims guys, that if one fails it could kill you, you don't want to cut corners pay someone to do it right, especially since this is maybe an hour of labor for any decent machinist and most are hurting for work so they would probably do it for whatever you reasonably offer.
 

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not to disagree, but i too am a machinist. and people are going to do this no matter what. so i think all we can do is give them the best advise possible for the situation. i agree, having a shop is best. but most shops charge to much.

and what is a radiused tool??????
 

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¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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I assume he's talking about using a boring bar insert with a nose radius.

I'm a machinist as well, and the cut I got out of my router doing this was actually pretty smooth. I've seen rougher cuts by people using the right equipment. Yes, a boring bar on a mill would be ideal but the likelyhood of someone actually causing stress fractures in their wheel from doing this are rather slim.
 

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maniac mechanic
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5,779 Posts
correct brakenit not much of a radius maybe .015-.030

at my job we do die-penetrant testing on almost all parts and parts that come back for overhaul and repair you'd be surprised how one small flaw can cause a real big stress crack down the road, you have to remember this is a rim which is getting torqued to a surface then hammered with stress everyday of it's existence. Yes it's slim odds it would cause an issue that could be catastrophic to your truck, but do you really want to take a chance when its over a small amount of money compared to purchasing a router bit and the time you will spend to do it? if you think about it that router bit and your time spent is probably only a little less than what it would have cost to have a shop do it.
 

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¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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i use an endmill, spinning 11500 rpm. hehehehehehehe
They make endmills with a radius on them, or if you're good you can grind them into them freehand. I'm sure you know this though. :kiki:
 

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maniac mechanic
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i know we are on topic, but this is a how to, not, whats best and what we use. sorry burn
just wanted whoever goes to do this to read my statement before they go through with it because they are taking a risk and when taking a risk you should be aware of it.
 

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Premium Member
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Fixxer, if you lived by me, I'd pay that $10 per wheel. I routered my wheels and if they kill me, they killed me because I made them do that and not somebody else. Not everyone can afford "machined center bores" and for you to interject in a How To thread designed to help the commom man do his wheels, its just inane in your part. Keep your machine shop knowledge to yourself! Go make a How To "Machine your wheels with shop machines thread" if you feel the need to share.
Respectfully,


Freewood
 
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