Hagerty.com

Why Cragar S/S wheels are timeless

Also the American Racing slotted aluminum wheels. There should probably be two categories, one for OEM and one for aftermarket. I’ve never been an Oldsmobile fan, but they had some amazingly good looking OEM wheels for the Cutlass Supreme back in the day.

I cleaned your photo up for you. Enjoy!
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Tom that Avanti of yours is just too cool! I have to hand it to you for building a very unique eye catching ride.

Sorry guys I am one that has never been of fan of the Cragers. Where I came from they seemed to be on a lot of wrecks / shot rods and screamed Grand Auto or Kragens. I mean no disrespect; just saying.

I have never liked the Cragers but they look nice on your Corvette. I think a black car sets off any decent silver wheel. I bought a new car with Metallic Red paint and it came with black wheels; not very cool looking. I think a black car with black wheels is the worst: looks pretty grim.

Have S/S Cragars, but also Keystone Klassics which are awesome too!
Klassics look good on ANY car, and you also have the option of changing the black paint to match or accent the paint on your car.
These are also timeless and should’ve been on the list!

Thanks Joseph. The original was washed out. At least now the wheels are more defined. Cheers!

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I am surprised that so few mentioned the Keystone Klassics! The contrast of the black and chrome looks much nicer to me although both are nice. When the sun hits the SS it’s design kind of gets washed out and even in the shade the chrome looks kind of like tin due to thin chrome. The Keystone is just awesome for most American muscle. Big fat deep dish on the rear and 70’s on the front! Awesome on vans as well.

I loved the design of the keystone but they were so extreme I don’t think they looked good on all cars. Never liked them on Corvettes. Excellent on vans.

Funny. I was thinking the same thing. For being so popular back in the day (I was stupid enough to buy them so I speak from experience) Cragar SS wheels had very disappointing quality. Just goes to show just because something is a pretty, iconic design doesn’t mean they’re worth a darn. Reminds me of all these old slow, poorly built, poorly engineered muscle cars from the 60s that are so lusted after nowadays. It is actually hilarious how everyone romanticizes the past.

In 1974, I bought a 72 Opel GT with 12k miles. The previous owner had installed Cragar Mini SS chrome wheels on the car. Resembled the 4 spoke wheels on the Sunbeam pictured above.

If anything, it made it look even more like a Corvette.

I do recall the wheel being a two piece design. The center spyder was Aluminum and was rivited to a Steel hoop. Even somewhat minor exposure to road salt was causing significant corrosion to the center spyder. The steel rim looked fine, no rusting.

When I was a young man working in a Service Station for $1.25 an hour I never could afford a set. Moving forward to an more mature person and retired from a thirty year job. I retired and restored a 1973 Buick Riviera, while in the process a friend gave me a Buick 430 made only for three years then the 455 took over. So found a 1980 El Camino to put it in. That process a friend wanted to sell me a Set of Cragar Wheels I knew I needed them and paid double what I would have when I was a Teenager. I have had several offers to buy them but will never sell them. The El Camino is a retro mod with new and old parts made to my idea of what I wanted in it.

komzik99 here’s a 21st century restorationcolorCamaro

Bought my '76 Vette new in May 1976 & in 1980 bought my Cragers with the 3 spoke spinners ( no longer available) from Pep Boys in Philly. They’re still on, look great, don’t take a lot of maintenance & get plenty of compliments on them. They are the best!

Thanks Kevin. Now if I only I could find that car, I would buy it back and restore it. I sold it after high school and bought a 1967 911S Porsche for college. That car is worth $200k now but I sold it as well. Yes, I’m an idiot. Haha. Thanks for the photo edit!

They are a classic great looking wheel for your hot rod. Certain cars look great with them installed. Here is my 70 Nova

Cragars were the rim of choice, or the 3-in-1 option on so many model kits back in the day. Don’t see them on many cars around my area today though.

I had Crager SS wheels on my new 1971 Camaro SS (still have that car) and, up close, noticed that the center hubs weren’t as shiny as the spokes. Since no one can see the backs of the wheels, the lack of chrome plating never bothered me. I wouldn’t want to pay extra for something you couldn’t see.

I had that exact tire / wheel combo on my Chevelle! Ah, memories!

I think Hagerty left the Cragar S/S off the list to drum up conversation…can’t think of any other reason. Cragars were used across more vehicles then their “most popular” list combined! Why Design, versatility…pupularity! Please…3 spoke wheels popular, where? What other vehicle have you ever seen those on that would make them more popular then Cragars? Even the Honeycomb wheel was not used on hardly any other vehicles except “maybe” as a spare in the most extreme case that no other GM wheel was available in a pinch. Well, Hagerty, you sucked me into joining the conversation :slight_smile: Cragars far exceed the popularity of the list you put together…hands down!