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Alloy Gators Rim Protection (Pics and info)

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by NJTestla, Mar 24, 2013.

  1. scaesare

    scaesare Well-Known Member

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    And, having done it myself on my car, I'm happy to answer any questions about my installation experience (and provide pics of my install if you need references regarding hte quality of my work, lol).
     
  2. bagu

    bagu Member

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    Belgium
    Hi Scaesare, my gators are on order, so is my car. I would love to get some pics from your install, could you post them somewhere?
     
  3. scaesare

    scaesare Well-Known Member

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    The pics of my Alloy Gators are below. I included pics from several different distances form the car, to get a perspective of how they (dis)appear in general, as well as what the installation itself looks like close up.

    I don't have any in-process pics, but here are some general observations about the installation task:


    • The first rim took about an hour, as I was going slow and deliberately. The remainder only took about 20 mins each once I had it figured out.


    • Installation requires a rubber mallet, cutters/shears that can deal with plastic (I used "tin snips" and a pair of electrical "diagonal" cutters), a tire valve removal tool (recommended to have as part of your on-board repair kit anyway), a Sharpie (optional), a small screwdriver (optional) a jack, an air pump, and a method to chock the wheels.


    • The car manual specifies jacking points and method - put the jar in jack mode and suspension high. The front tires freewheel easily (greatly easing installation). The rear wheels wanted to go back in to park from neutral when I left the car seat. Solution: place in neutral and power off the car. (Make sure to chick the other wheels).


    • I got a suspension error when leaving "jack mode" after jacking and lowering the car. Driving a few feet fixed this and the car once again auto leveled.


    • The Alloy Gators come with metal retaining clips, and a guide for where to place them for each your wheel size. What wasn't clear to me is that you place them in every numbered slot UP TO the slot specified for your wheel size. A small screwdriver is helpful to seat the clips after applying the glue and setting them.


    • Follow the instructions to set, trim, and then fully seat them. Observe the instructions to partially inflate the tire and give them another good whack before the final seating when the tire is fully inflated. Don't be afraid to whack them hard... a rubber mallet won't hurt them or the rim.


    • A thin-tipped Sharpie comes in handy for marking where to cut them to fit.

    Pics of the completed install:
    IMG_20130717_145917_536.jpg

    IMG_20130717_145939_515.jpg

    IMG_20130717_145952_879.jpg
     
  4. B-Chicago

    B-Chicago Member

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    Appreciate the offer. Hopefully I can find something closer to home, but otherwise might take you up on A&L (or your tools).
     
  5. bagu

    bagu Member

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    #85 bagu, Jul 18, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 18, 2013
    scaesare, thanks for all the details! Now just the short wait for the car ;-)
     
  6. scaesare

    scaesare Well-Known Member

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    You are certainly welcome... you'll love the car. :)

    If you end up with any specific installation questions, I'll help if I can.
     
  7. gnelson

    gnelson Member

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    The hardest part is putting the metal clips into the Alloy Gators.

    I had a 12 volt air pump because I replaced the run flats on my Corvette with regular tires and wanted to be prepared for flats. This same compressor is in my Model S along with a tire plug kit. It takes about 10 min to re-inflate each tire.

    Installing the Alloy Gators was easy with a rubber mallet.

    I used a cutter for plastic sprinkler piping to cut the Alloy Gators after installation.

    I didn't even need to leave the car in neutral with the emergency brake off. Installation was easy with the rear wheels stationary.

    I used a small flat aluminum plate between the bottle jack and the pad on the Model S. I gave my floor jack away when I moved to a high rise; so, I bought a cheap bottle jack.

    I purchased black Alloy Gators because I have grey 21 inch wheels. I think the look is better after the installation.
     
  8. JoshG

    JoshG Member

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    So gnelson, are you saying you were able to install the gators without jacking the car at all? I'm sure it's less convenient since you can't rotate the tire as you thread the gator in, but is it doable if I don't have a jack and chocks to raise and secure the car?

    And following up on an earlier question, in case I wimp out, anyone found a provider in the Bay Area to install these? I confirmed that Tesla will no longer install these... Menlo Park said it's now a national instruction from corporate to stop installing all third-party items.

    Thanks all,
    -josh
     
  9. gnelson

    gnelson Member

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    I jacked the car, but I didn't worry about keeping it in neutral. It was easy enough to install the alloy gators with the rear wheels stationary. I would not think about deflating the tires without jacking it up.
     
  10. scaesare

    scaesare Well-Known Member

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    Agreed... you have to deflate the tires, and you don't want to do that without the car supported.
     
  11. gnelson

    gnelson Member

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    The bottle jack that I bought at Lowe's was less than $15. I did have to drive the car onto a board to get enough clearance to get the jack between the concrete and the jacking pad on the car. I also used a flat metal plate between the jack and the Tesla jacking pad to prevent damage to the Tesla. The rubber mallet was less than $10. The cost of the jack and the mallet was much less than the cost to install at a tire shop. I also was leery of a tire shop jacking my car since they may not know to put it in jack mode. I also had a 12 volt compressor to re-inflate the tires. I think it is good to have one of these since the Tesla has no spare tire. I have a plug kit in the rare event of a flat tire.
     
  12. JoshG

    JoshG Member

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    Thanks much for the followup.
    So I assume you already had the suspension on the "very high" level and you still needed more clearance?
     
  13. ocstig

    ocstig EV Modifier

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    Thanks for the pics and rundown scaesare. Can't wait to get mine.
     
  14. gnelson

    gnelson Member

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    I was able to get enough clearance with the high setting. The first time I jacked it for the first Alloy Gator I used very high
     
  15. TampaLiam

    TampaLiam Secret Agent

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    Location:
    Tampa, FL
    FYI - Tesla Service received an email this week stating that they are not to install Alloy Gators as they cannot guarantee that they will not interfere with the seal.
     
  16. scaesare

    scaesare Well-Known Member

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    You are welcome... sorry I didn't have the foresight to take pics during installation...
     
  17. andrewket

    andrewket Well-Known Member

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    I scraped a wheel for the first time on Thursday after 2300 miles. Then AGAIN on Saturday night. Sigh. The protectors are sitting in my frunk....


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk 2
     
  18. Oreo

    Oreo Member

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    Location:
    Trondheim, Norway
    Hi, has anyone put a set of silver Alloygators on the 21" gray rims?
    I'm just about to order a set and think I'd go for a set of silver and a set of black. I hope the discount (TESLA10) would still be active, even if it was suppose to be until July 31st.
    I'm waiting for my P85+ with gray rims and will put the silver on my 19" winter tyres.
    I'd still try to see how the gray rims will look like with silver Alloygators.
     
  19. jammerdjc

    jammerdjc S Owner/Member

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    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    I had the Alloygators put on my rims on Friday. I had them removed on Saturday.

    I found a tire shop that was willing to put them on, but they were a little concerned as these sit where the bead is supposed to be touching the rim and having these on there really increases the risk of leaks. I discovered this myself. My front left was starting to leak and the TPMS system alerted me to it.

    After talking to the tire guy for a while I decided that the risk was just not worth it. He said he didn't believe the risk was worth is and having experienced an issue so soon I decided that I didn't want to take the risk of additional leaks later. If needed I can get the rims fixed can be done at the same shop. the guys were really nice about it. They didn't charge me to remove them.

    If anyone in the south bay is looking to get it done California Wheels on Winchester will put them on for you. Expect that Tommy will warn you about doing it though. They don't recommend it because, as my experience shows, the Alloygators can cause problems with the integrity of the tire bead. The guys at the shop were very nice and know their tires. (Thanks to Jeff for the referral to them.)

    Additionally, my wife and I decided we weren't really that thrilled with the look when they were on. The plastic clip that holds the ends together looked very plastic and diminished the nice look of the rims.
     
  20. swegman

    swegman Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
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    Installed them about 3 months ago. No air leak problem, and it protected my wheel from a curb rash yesterday. Glad I have them. I have the black AlloyGators on the gray 21 inch wheels.
     

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