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What are Wheel Spacers Made of? How to Choose right Material?

There are different types and sizes of wheel spacers available in the market. You should not only focus on what type is suitable for your car. This is because there is a chance that the material may not be suitable for your need.

You should also pay attention to the material of these wheel spacers. The choice of material is very important when choosing a safe wheel spacer. Typical materials used for automotive wheel spacers are steel, 6061 aluminum, 6061-T6 aluminum, and 7075-T6 aluminum.

Which one is suitable for your vehicle modification and easy to purchase? It's time to choose the right wheel spacer to enhance your driving experience.

Differences between steel and aluminum wheel spacers

Technically, steel has higher strength and hardness than aluminum because the high concentration of carbon increases the overall hardness of steel. This also results in steel being heavier than aluminum for the same volume (typically steel is 2.5 times denser than aluminum). Higher strength also means poorer ductility and stretchability. Aluminum with better ductility can be perfectly extruded or forged into a specific shape without fracture.

In general, steel wheel spacers are more durable, but they are more expensive because they are more difficult to make. Because the durability of steel wheel spacers is based on the premise that they have a good anti-corrosion coating. If there is a hole in the anti-corrosion coating, the service life will be greatly reduced (unless you take care of them and maintain them regularly). That's why we recommend that you choose aluminum wheel spacers.

Most of the wheel spacers on the market are made of 3 types of aluminum, 6061 aluminum, 6061-T6 aluminum and 7075-T6 aluminum. We recommend that you choose wheel spacers made of 6061-T6 aluminum. By recognizing the difference between them you will understand why we recommend you to buy wheel spacers made of 6061-T6 aluminum.

Aircraft-Grade Aluminum Alloy CNC Machined in Solid Blocks

What is the difference between 6061 aluminum, 6061-T6 aluminum and 7075-T6 aluminum?

 

6061

6061-T6

7075-T6

Ultimate tensile strength

18000 psi (125 MPa)

42000-45000 psi (300-310 MPa)

74000-78000 psi (510-572 MPa)

Tensile yield strength

8,000 psi (55 MPa)

35,000-40,000 psi (241-275 MPa)

63,000-69,000 psi (434-503 MPa)

Fatigue strength

8800 psi (61 MPa)

14000 psi (96 MPa)

23000 psi (160 MPa)

Hardness (Brinell)

33

93

150

What is T6 aluminum?

6061-T6 aluminum is 6061 aluminum in T6 condition. The "T6" means that the aluminum has undergone solution heat treatment and artificial aging treatment. Which greatly improves structural strength, toughness and corrosion resistance. It also has good finishing characteristics and responds well to anodizing (including clear, clear and color dye, and hard coat).

6061-T6 is made up of aluminum, magnesium and silicon, plus small amounts of iron, copper, manganese, magnesium, chromium, zinc and titanium. It is highly ductile, which means it can be forged into a specific shape while maintaining a very hard strength. Because of this ruggedness, 6061-T6 aluminum is used for a wide variety of aircraft parts, automotive parts and more.

Why 7075-T6 aluminum spacers are more expensive?

Compared to 6061-T6, 7075-T6 aluminum has zinc as the primary alloying agent and a higher magnesium and copper content.

This alloy mixture gives 7075-T6 aluminum a hardness comparable to steel. But much lighter in weight and stronger and tougher than 6061-T6 aluminum.

7075-T6 aluminum is also much more expensive than 6061-T6 because of its superior performance. And 7075-T6 is used in aerospace aircraft manufacturing and shipbuilding. For wheel spacers in automotive 6061-T6 is sufficient.

aluminum wheel spacers for automotive

Comparing the characteristics of these 3 materials, you can easily understand why I recommend you to choose 6061-T6 aluminum wheel spacers. It is cheap and has high hardness and corrosion resistance. Orion Motor Tech's wheel spacers are made of a strong block of T6 aircraft aluminum alloy. So these spacers are lightweight, yet durable and strong enough to easily enhance your driving experience.