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Old 12-18-2003, 11:48 AM
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Exclamation Beware Coddington Wheels!

[Caution, this is a long post. If your in the market for wheels and are even considering buying Boyd Coddington wheels, take the time to read this, you may thank yourself in the end]

I just wanted to post my story for others to benefit from the pain I have had to endure. I bought a set of wheels from Boyd Coddington for a street rod project I am working on.

I chose the wheels initially because I liked the look, and so I bought a set for my car. After recieving the wheels, all 4 of them had what I would consider an unacceptable amount of weld splatter and polishing compound on the seam of the wheel where the centers are welded to the barrels. It was so much in fact, that you could see all this gunk from the front side of the wheel. After talking to them about it, its "by design" and thats as good as they polish it before they send it out to customers, so I was left to deal with it myself. Great I thought, and pressed on.

After getting them and mounting tires on them, I could tell on the balancing stand that there were some serious issues with the rear wheels. The fronts had been fine and required less than .25 oz of weight per wheel with the tire on. Not only were there several visual defects in the barrel of one of the rears , both rears exibited a visual out of round condition while spinning on the balancer (causing the wheel to appear to rise and fall at the rim lip while spinning).

Both rear wheels took in excess of 4 ounces of weight to true up with the tire. It was so much in fact, we could not conceal all of the lead behind the spokes just to keep the wheel looking good.

Floored by all of this this, I e-mailed Coddington Wheels with all of this and got to Chris Coddington who said he would be interested in addressing my concerns. Delighted by this, I sent them back and waited for thier return (even paid for the shipping out of my own pocket).

When they showed back up, the visual defects were removed, but the structural problems remained...

I sent mail back to Chris, and talked to him by phone this time around. He said he had gone back and looked at the paperwork from the re-work that had been done and that both of the rear wheels were within his allowable specs for "runout" (the measurement indicating the roundness of the wheel. The lower the number, the more round the wheel is.) He indicated that the max acceptable amount of runout for them was .040. On the advice of the rod shop that I ordered the wheels from after telling them my saga, I called all of the other billet wheel suppliers in the hobby to see what thier tolerances were and what they personally considered acceptable runout values for customer's wheels were. I called:

Billet Specialties
Colorado Custom
Intro Wheels
Budnik

Nearly all of them stated they considered 0.015 to be the maximum acceptable limit with one of them (I cannot remember which) indicating that .020 was the max tolerance for them on runout. I was also told by nearly all of them that .030 is the industry standard for for aluminum wheels, and that .040 was the industry standard for steel (stamped) wheels. Since Billet wheels can be so closely controlled in the manufacturing process, this is why all of them shoot for way below the standard limit.

So, I called Chris back, and explained this to him. He stated he felt like the discrepency between his data as measured from the first return of the wheels and what I was seeing was due to an out of adjustment balancing machine at the tire store I was visiting. I explained that I would take the wheels to another tire store in my area and have them checked, knowing that there was another location that was less than 6 months old in the city over from me.

I had a new shop measure the wheels, and there was some change in the values, but the net result was still that the wheels showed in excess of .030 of runout (enough to be a visible deformity in the wheels to my eye watching the wheels spin) and that even WITHOUT tires, the wheels required over 1.5 ounces of weight to make them true. I explained all this to Chris again, and he offered to personally inspect the wheels, and his story changed, in that his NEW tolerance for runout was now .030...

So I sent the wheels back out... again... and waited again...

At this point I could tell that Chris was getting tired of hearing from me (Exactly what you want when your trying to get your 3k worth of wheels to actually be "round"). A week and a half went by with no response. I e-mail Chris to find out if the wheels showed up, and I get a response they had and he had looked at them the Friday before (This is on Tuesday I hear this) and he is busy and will call me in an hour.

5 hours roll by... fed up and tired of getting blown off and run around, I call him... Only to hear him once again say he considers them "within spec" and as far as he is concerned, there is no issue with the wheels.

The best quote out of the whole ordeal, which I heard several times from Chris was "I don't have an issue with wheels having these problems..." He says this to me in spite of the mountain of evidence to the contrary (As if saying there is no problem will somehow WILL it to be true) Finally, I had to agree to disagree with him and will be just returning the damn things to them and paying a hefty restocking fee (Thanks guys for the great treatment and service!).

So the short of the story is, if you want nice looking wheels, get you some Boyds. If you want them to actually be round like a wheel is supposed to be, don't give them your hard earned money!

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Old 12-18-2003, 12:03 PM
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Coddington Wheels

I really hate to hear/see someone get ripped off. However, Im glad that you did the right thing by posting this and letting others be aware of issues like this from suppliers.
My only advice and it wont help you get your money back is to send your post to " The Discovery Channel " They are doing a special featuring him building a car. Also. post your note all over the internet. For $ 3,000.00 wheels a guy should EXPECT perfection. No, not expect it DEMAND it.
Lots of luck
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Old 12-18-2003, 12:32 PM
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I guess he is too busy making shows for the Discover Channel to take care of customer service. I know one thing, based on the one show I saw about his shop building a rod, I would not have them do one for me.

If I paid $3000 for a set of wheels, they would have to be pristine. I would have filed an issue with my credit card company and let them deal with it. Glad you were able to return them, at least you were not out the total amount.

Vince
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Old 12-18-2003, 12:34 PM
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The Boyds Ninja wheels on my Henry J were similar when the company used to be all 'Daddy's'... I had to send them back four times with similar complaints- weld splatter, bad polish, dented, etc. After receiving four seperate sets of wheels (all the time with me stating they were for a specialty vehicle) they finally seemed to want me off their backs for good (ie. no response to any calls or mail) I had to make do and do extra polishing and use extra weight on a front just to keep tread on the tire. It all came out 'okay' but I am less than pleased with the Coddington name and products.
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Old 12-18-2003, 12:35 PM
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BOYD'S wheels are all made off shore now due to his bankruptcy history. He stills owes money to many people, but will never repay it. His name will always bring him business, a shame.
I had a similar issue with junk HALIBRAND wheels after the new owner moved the business to KS from CA. (The former CA owners were a good company to deal with) I spent lots of money, waited for months, got wheels that were not what I paid for. I called and complained and somehow the fact the wheels I ordered got incorrectly drilled for Ford instead of Chevy was "my problem", even though I had receipts for 5x4 3/4" specs. Their customer service rep was rude and arrogant.
I waited for two more months before I got the correct wheels. I have badmouthed HALIBRAND wheels every since. Thankfully, the word has gotten out...I heard that HALIBRAND is now out of business! That made my day!

Last edited by hotwheels55; 12-24-2003 at 04:26 PM.
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Old 12-18-2003, 12:44 PM
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Learn the lesson for staying in business children;

Rule 1 - THE CUSTOMER IS ALWAYS RIGHT.

Rule 2 - WHEN THE CUSTOMER IS OBVIOUSLY WRONG, REFER TO RULE #1.
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Old 12-18-2003, 03:24 PM
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I always tell those type people this......... "you know the old saying, If you got a problem tell us & if you dont tell everyone... well how would you like me to tell everyone my problem"... I would not only post on every web site I could find that had to do w/cars & trucks, but I would also write the mags, the newspaper in the companies town & call the BBB.... nothing like a little PR work ..........joe
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Old 12-19-2003, 07:54 PM
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Have you tried balancing the wheels without tires? If the rims were 4 ounces out of balance then I would use that as a reason to return the rims. If they meet spec and balance then your kinda left without recourse. 0.030" out of round is the standard of the industry for as long as I can remember although I prefer much less. The sad fact is most tires you buy will be more out of round than that unless you buy a short sidewall stiff "racing tire". You should be trueing your tires mounted to your rim so that you can rotate the high side of your tire to the low side of your rim. Sometimes it take one remounting to get it close. Aluminum wheels are usually right on the money because they are machined in one setup on the same machine, steel wheels are fabricated and are usually warped because of the welding needed during fabrication of the wheel.

I don't know how many times I have had to tell tire jockeys to match low to high side on rims instead of adding weight to the low side, what seems like common sense isn't always what a teenage tire installer thinks is common sense.

If the appearance of the wheels is good and they balance with under 2 ounces of weight by themselves then I would install the tires and go with it, you will never be able to tell the difference. Tires are far from accurate moldings and are out 0.030" at least when new.
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Old 12-23-2003, 08:36 AM
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Your not the first to have problems with his JUNK. They do work fine for us however. LOL The runout seems not to be a problem LOL Tossed about 3 sets of his junk out allready. Oh this wheel is one of Daddys wheels so he sucked back than also. Little expensive but have had no problems so far LMAOF.
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Old 12-23-2003, 09:23 AM
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Hey Phat, Don't you have any of the custom billet ashtrays? I've got a complete set of 4.
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Old 12-23-2003, 09:40 AM
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Didīnt Coddington work at Disneyland before doing hot rods?
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Old 12-23-2003, 01:46 PM
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Food for thought!

If you put a 3500 pounds automobile on four tires filled with 32 lbs of air in each tire, How can you tell if the wheel/tire is .030 of an inch out of round???
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Old 12-23-2003, 06:25 PM
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You ever driven a car that never had the wheels and tyres balanced ?
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Old 12-24-2003, 02:06 PM
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Codington is not alone

I have never dealt with Codington and now I never will, but crappy hotrod parts are flooding our hobby. I have been dealing with Scott's Hot-rods for over 2 months. I ordered a complete front-end for a customer and parts for my own car. I've already sent the complete frontend back for a complete work-over and when it came back it's still not right. For my car I just ordered front spindles, ball-joints, and polished Wilwood brakes ($1,500.00). When these parts finally came yesterday the brakes were not polished and the caliper brackets didn't even fit Scotts spindles, they were for a Mustang II. I have talked to Justin (the owner of Scotts) on numerous occasions about these problems and it seems to fall on deaf ears. Oh by the way half of the times that I have called him he was dealing with the Discovery Channel for his shoot with them. When I received everything UPS yesterday and saw that things were still screwed up I got right on the phone and tried to talk to Justin and a day later he still hasn't called me back. I realize that it's Xmas eve so I'll give him a little slack but I'm kinda pissed. Fatman is another whole story and I'll never buy anything else from him. One company that has NEVER screwed me up is Heidt's Hot-rods!!!!!!!!
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Old 12-24-2003, 02:42 PM
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Do a search on this site - there are people who have a contaract out on Heidt's too!
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