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Thread: 1990's LTC wheels... Will they fit properly on my '87?

  1. #1
    Member ZackN920's Avatar
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    Default 1990's LTC wheels... Will they fit properly on my '87?

    Hey guy's. I've never really cared for the wire wheel covers on the steelies. If they were real wire wheels, then that'd be alright... But fake's? No. They are also a pain to deal with if you want to take the wheels off for any work or even changing a tire, if necessary.


    So, local junkyard has some 1990-96/97? Town Car's with a wheel design that I like. I don't know right off hand what it's called but I believe they are an aluminum wheel. I have not found many pictures online of them on any 1980's Town Car's but did find one. They look good on it, but I want to know if anyone here has used them and have any spec's.


    Do they have a different offset compared to stock 1987 TC wheels? Would there be any rubbing issue's? I'd run stock sized tires. Probably swap the tires on my steelies over to them since (I think) they are another 15" wheel. Also, would anyone know the weight difference?


    Here's my car as it sits.
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    Here's another 1987 with the 90-97 wheels im thinking of
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    Here's an up close view of the wheels in question
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    I also have a set of 1980's turbines available to me as well from a later 80's grand marque that they have, but I wouldn't have any center caps for them if I were to go that route. Though, I think I actually like the above design a little better than the turbines...
    1987 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series-98k miles- LOPO 302, AOD, open 3.27, Dual exhaust w/ Thrush Turbo mufflers

    the others...
    1926 Dodge Brothers Business Sedan- 212ci I4/3 speed/crank start
    1987 Dodge Dakota- 3.9/A999/3.90/2wd (storage)
    1990 Jeep Grand Wagoneer-AMC360/727/NP229/3.08/2" lift(daily)
    1994 GMC Burban L05 350/4L60e/241/3.42
    2001 Jeep Cherokee 4.0/AW4/231/3.73 (limbo)

  2. #2
    2 decades of DDing Box Panthers, now in a Whale VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Wheels from 1979-2002 panthers are interchangeable. 2003+ have different offset so not so easy to swap, and '98+ panthers have bigger brake hardware making it not possible to swap pre '98 (less than 16 inch) wheels onto a '98+ car.
    Vic

    ~ 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS - new DD
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - returning summer 2020, I finally have an engine
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic

  3. #3
    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    You might not be able to run center caps on the front. Big might. The bearing and hub area is larger on the stock setup than the later sealed bearing setup.

    I am a fan of a the Lincoln lacy spokes from the 80’s: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Wheel-15x6-...-/303437764446
    1988 Crown Vic Wagon - daily
    1990 Country Squire - weekend cruiser, former lawn ornament
    Other: 95 Ranger, 74 F250, 68 Mustang, 94 Mustang
    Sold: 1982 LTD and 1987 Crown Vic

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  4. #4
    2 decades of DDing Box Panthers, now in a Whale VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Good point on the center caps.
    I'm running '98-'02 steel wheels with '98 Mountaineer center caps. In my case the dust cap on the hub was too tall, but I modified the dust caps and then was able to get the Mountaineer center caps to fit. I ended up sqeezing the top of the top of the dust caps down making the dust caps a 1/4 inch (at most) shorter. There is a lot of room between the inside top of the dust cap and the hub center/spindle/nut/cotter pin.

    Unless the car in the last two pictures Zack posted is not running stock hubs, it looks like he might be fine with those center caps.
    Vic

    ~ 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS - new DD
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - returning summer 2020, I finally have an engine
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic

  5. #5
    Member ZackN920's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VicCrownVic View Post
    Wheels from 1979-2002 panthers are interchangeable. 2003+ have different offset so not so easy to swap, and '98+ panthers have bigger brake hardware making it not possible to swap pre '98 (less than 16 inch) wheels onto a '98+ car.
    I've seen that here on the sight before, I just haven't seen anyone run these on an 80's town car (or other "box") And even though they are technically interchangeable, I didn't think that automatically meant that the specs would also be the same (such as backspacing and ect.)


    Quote Originally Posted by Tiggie View Post
    You might not be able to run center caps on the front. Big might. The bearing and hub area is larger on the stock setup than the later sealed bearing setup.

    I am a fan of a the Lincoln lacy spokes from the 80ís: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Wheel-15x6-...-/303437764446
    ...and Maybe that's why I haven't seen them on an 80's TC. Hmm, so they changed the front bearing assemblies between the 2 generations... interesting. I'm not interested in changing my front bearings(they're good and I re-packed them last summer) but I wonder if they are swappable?

    Ya know, I kind of like the Lacy spokes too. They look pretty good and are much better than what I got. My main thing though, is that I'm more so looking for a set of wheels that are close to me. I don't want a set shipped, i'd be spending more money than necessary so I'm trying to stick with my options at the local junkyard, and it's somewhat slim pickin's when it comes to 1980's TC's.


    Quote Originally Posted by VicCrownVic View Post
    Good point on the center caps.
    I'm running '98-'02 steel wheels with '98 Mountaineer center caps. In my case the dust cap on the hub was too tall, but I modified the dust caps and then was able to get the Mountaineer center caps to fit. I ended up sqeezing the top of the top of the dust caps down making the dust caps a 1/4 inch (at most) shorter. There is a lot of room between the inside top of the dust cap and the hub center/spindle/nut/cotter pin.

    Unless the car in the last two pictures Zack posted is not running stock hubs, it looks like he might be fine with those center caps.
    Yea, I have no clue about the car posted. I found that one night when trying to google 80's TC's with those 90's wheels on them and that was the only one that came up. The pics came from some dealership website that had sold the car.
    1987 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series-98k miles- LOPO 302, AOD, open 3.27, Dual exhaust w/ Thrush Turbo mufflers

    the others...
    1926 Dodge Brothers Business Sedan- 212ci I4/3 speed/crank start
    1987 Dodge Dakota- 3.9/A999/3.90/2wd (storage)
    1990 Jeep Grand Wagoneer-AMC360/727/NP229/3.08/2" lift(daily)
    1994 GMC Burban L05 350/4L60e/241/3.42
    2001 Jeep Cherokee 4.0/AW4/231/3.73 (limbo)

  6. #6
    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    You stand a chance at them fitting like Vic said. I doubt that seller would have swapped hubs just to run the wheels. That wheel design does have a center cap that gives you space. Car dealers have also been know to pop off the dust cap and let it roll...

    Best bet is to find a junkyard that has a box and a wheel donor and will let you try them on the box in the yard.

    If there was a clearance issue, a small spacer could solve the problem, using otherwise stock parts.

    You can swap the hub design. You need spindles and rotors from a 92/94 CV/GM (maybe 90/94 TC, not sure). That retains your stock brakes. You could also use the 95/97 parts to get slightly larger brakes.
    1988 Crown Vic Wagon - daily
    1990 Country Squire - weekend cruiser, former lawn ornament
    Other: 95 Ranger, 74 F250, 68 Mustang, 94 Mustang
    Sold: 1982 LTD and 1987 Crown Vic

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  7. #7
    2 decades of DDing Box Panthers, now in a Whale VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Info at www.wheel-size.com seems to be pretty accurate.

    For 1987 LTC there are two wheel sizes listed, both 15 inch wheels, 6 inch wide and 6.5 inch wide. I believe the 6 inch is the steel wheels and 6.5 is the aluminum/alloy wheels, but I could have that backward. offset is only listed for the 6 inch wide listing.

    For 1997 TC there are two stock wheels sizes listed, 15 inch wheels and 16 inch wheels.

    Center bore for both model years is 70.5mm (the same for 1979-2011 panthers). The bolt pattern 5x114.3 is also the same for both years (also the same for 1979-2011 panthers).

    The stock tire sizes between 15 inch and 16 inch are negligibly close. 215/70R15 vs 225/60R16, I didn't notice a difference when going by roadside speed monitors. Also I like to use https://www.rimsntires.com/specspro.jsp for comparing wheel and tire sizes. www.wheel-size.com also has a Rim & Tire Size Calculator, but I haven't used it before just now.

    The stock wheels often have width and offset stamped on them (at least the newer models do). Usually it's on the backside or under the center cap.
    Vic

    ~ 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS - new DD
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - returning summer 2020, I finally have an engine
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic

  8. #8
    Gonna buy me a Mercury BoulevardRide's Avatar
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    I had 2 of those rims that look like the ones the OP pictured above, kind of hard to tell, they were marked 97 and came off a 97TC, ran them on the front of my 88 no problem
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    Also ran a full set of rims off a different 97LTC all around no problem
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    96 MGM

    Cruisin up and down the road...

  9. #9
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    The only ones that are a maybe in the center cap department are types where the center cap only covers the center hole. Ones that don't rely on the bore in the middle of the wheel to attach should be no issue at all. HPP wheels are a problem, I doubt the Lincoln wheels would be. The center cap on those goes outside the lug nuts, nothing in the middle for the fatter hub to hit.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

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  10. #10
    Member ZackN920's Avatar
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    Thanks guy's for the info and links. Glad to also see the pics BoulevardRide posted. The color of your old car looks quite similar to mine... Gadget, good info. Looks like I should be good to go. Well, sometime when it stops raining and dries up some, I'll check out the wheels up close on the proposed donor car. I should tromp around the 2 yards they have sometime to see if they have anymore older model cars, but they are gunna be muddy... They got 2 early to mid 90's Lincolns up front, and that late 80's MGM with the Turbines.
    1987 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series-98k miles- LOPO 302, AOD, open 3.27, Dual exhaust w/ Thrush Turbo mufflers

    the others...
    1926 Dodge Brothers Business Sedan- 212ci I4/3 speed/crank start
    1987 Dodge Dakota- 3.9/A999/3.90/2wd (storage)
    1990 Jeep Grand Wagoneer-AMC360/727/NP229/3.08/2" lift(daily)
    1994 GMC Burban L05 350/4L60e/241/3.42
    2001 Jeep Cherokee 4.0/AW4/231/3.73 (limbo)

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