Our new Cummins-powered swamp buggy is built right on top of the factory Dodge chassis and its 1-ton axles. These budget buggies are easy to build and a great way to get your rusty old work truck out of the yard and into the mud. When we picked up this project from the White City Boyz the wheels were bent just enough so air would slowly leak, which caused flat tires in just a few days. The wheels had literally been through hell and back. We could have fixed the leaks by adding cheap inner tubes, but a new set of killer custom wheels and tires sounded a whole lot cooler.
Once Rob Pigue from Plan B Fab heard we had a new 1-ton buggy build he jumped on the phone and offered his time and wheels once again. Rob has been getting quite a few requests for 1-ton rims, so when the opportunity came up he was ready and willing to step up. Most of his customers own late-model lifted diesel trucks with newer body styles and 1-ton axles. Guys are buying up wheels and tires to use at the mud events and then bolting on their factory wheels for commuting during the week.
The overall rim height for our new wheels will stay at 24 inches for both the front and rear wheels. However, the rear wheels are much wider since our buggy is built from a dualie truck. Adjusting the rear wheels' offset (the measurement from the rear lip of the wheel to the back of the mounting plate) will ensure that the wheels have the same track width from front to back. Once we slapped on another set of Superior Traction 14.9x24 tires, we never noticed the difference. We also had the wheels a very cool silver thanks to Ace Powder Coating in Rivera Beach, Florida.
Now it's time for some testing in the mud! Be sure to stay tuned for the pictures from the torture test we put them through. We fully expect to break an axle or two, but that's just another fix and upgrade tech article.