Trade show season is always an exciting time for the automotive industry. New vehicle builds are unveiled to crowds of enthusiasts, and the best part is all of the new parts, gadgets, and gizmos that companies debut. Wheels are one of the components that can most drastically change a vehicle’s appearance. We are always happy to see new wheels, and Forgeline was rolling strong at the PRI show with four new wheel designs, including three new beadlock models.
Forgeline is a staple in road racing when it comes to designing and manufacturing high-performance wheels used on some of the fastest race cars worldwide. Over the last 28 years, Forgeline has developed and refined its processes to create forged monoblock wheels that are lightweight, strong, and good-looking.
Recently, the team at Forgeline has focused its experience and design capabilities on drag racing. The goal is to take its existing forged monoblock technology, add a single outer beadlock ring, and give us a wheel that can handle the stresses of drag racing and be driven on the street without the issues typical of some other lightweight drag racing-only wheels. Because let’s be honest, many of us like the look of beadlock wheels on the rear and skinny wheels on the front of a car. However, some wheels meant for drag racing are not designed to handle the rigors of going right and left on public streets or hitting bumps and potholes.
We’ve taken all of our experience and FEA technology from years of racing cars and applied it to wheels that will survive on the street. – Steve Schardt, Forgeline
Setting The Standard
For those unfamiliar with Forgeline and what its forged monoblock wheel is, let’s dive into the details a bit. The engineers at Forgeline use computer-simulated finite element analysis (FEA) to test beyond SAE standards with real-world load variables. This extensive testing ensures that every wheel produced meets Forgeline’s standards for strength, safety, and performance. Each wheel design can be tested to the max within the computer modeling software before the aluminum chips start flying on the CNC machine.
Because of the testing processes used by Forgeline, it can produce wheels that are visually stunning, can handle daily street driving duties, and perform at the highest level on the drag strip without issues. Every wheel begins as a single block of heat-treated 6061-T6 aluminum forged on a 6,000-ton hydraulic press. According to Forgeline, this process creates forgings that are 40-percent stronger, on average, than cast aluminum.
So what does all of this mean for the drag racer wanting some new beadlock wheels? Forgeline’s monoblock beadlocks are lighter than a lot of its competition. Being machined entirely from a single block of aluminum means there’s no welding of the beadlock mating ring to the barrel, as can be found on other wheels. By not needing to weld the beadlock onto the wheel’s barrel, Forgeline saves weight and eliminates a potential stress point that can crack or leak. Another benefit of the monoblock beadlock design is that Forgeline can control and significantly reduce the amount of runout (a measure of eccentricity) of each wheel.
High-Performance Eye Candy
Now that we’ve covered what goes into the making of each Forgeline monoblock wheel let’s get to the bling. For the PRI trade show this year, Forgeline debuted new beadlock versions of a couple of its more popular models. First up, the GS1 Beadlock takes the track-proven GS1R road racing wheel and adds a precision-machined forged-aluminum beadlock ring held in place by 21 titanium bolts. New for the GS1 Beadlock wheel is the solid hub center area that gives the wheel a more traditional appearance compared to Forgeline’s more aggressive open-lug center area found on the GS1R wheel.
Next is the CF1 Beadlock. Forgeline’s CF1 wheel is a concave five-spoke design that allows plenty of room for big brake fitment. The CF1 is an extremely stiff wheel with excellent fatigue strength. It’s a great choice for cars with big factory brakes and large offsets like the ZL1 Camaro and Z06 Corvette. As with the GS1 Beadlock, the CF1 Beadlock also has a solid hub center area.
If you are into something more exotic, you’ll like the new NW105 and NW105 Beadlock. These feature a center-lock hub design for use on certain models of Lamborghini, such as the Huracan and Aventador, as well as some Porsche 911. The NW105 is a split seven-spoke design that fits with the high-tech look of modern exotic sports cars. The non-beadlock version of the wheel is offered in sizes of 18-, 19-, 20-, 21-, and 22-inch diameters, while the NW105 Beadlock is available in 17, 18, and 19-inch diameters. Both wheels can be ordered in a wide range of widths and offsets.
Since Forgeline has focused on making drag racing wheels a priority, it only made sense to design a skinny front wheel to match the new beadlock designs. Enter the CF1R Skinny and GS1R Skinny. These wheels match the design and strength of the CF1 and GS1 wheels and come in 17×4.5-inch and 18×5-inch sizes. While they may be narrow and very light, Forgeline engineered these skinny wheels to be strong and durable for the stresses of daily street driving. Both models retain the same clearances at the original CF1R and GF1R so that customers can still run big front brakes. Forgeline also offers the GS1R Skinny 6-lug and GS1R-6 Beadlock for applications such as the Dodge Viper.
Nothing sets off the look of a car quite like the right set of wheels. With Forgeline’s latest offerings, enthusiasts can add style, strength, and performance to their rides without needing to switch between daily street wheels and a drag-pack set of wheels. You can check out the almost endless fitment and finish options at Forgeline here.