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      01-15-2013, 12:42 PM   #1
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Unhappy APEX Stud Conversion Kit - Observations and thoughts.

I installed the stud kit this weekend since the weather was a little warmer. Outside of the wheels being stuck to the rotors, it went very easy. Very simple installation. Took about 10 minutes per wheel. Used Locktite Red and torqued each stud to 30 lbs.

Thoughts/Observations/Warnings
Overall they look good. I guess. It would be nicer to have ones that actually are the length of a normal stud, but it is what it is. You know going into it they are a little longer. I mention that for a practical reason that will show up later in this.

One thing I will note is the black scratches VERY easy. Don't breath on them. The black WILL scratch off. The ends are pretty rough just from installation and I was very easy on them.

And now for the warning. When installing them I noticed one of my tires had a screw in it. Was a clean, straight in puncture in the middle of the tire tread. So, to save a little time, I just left it since it wasn't losing air. Called in an appointment at Discount Tire and brought it in. After the confusion over the studs wore off they realized they didn't have any torque sockets that would fit. I, however, being a Boy Scout, had a deep socket in the trunk. Unfortunately it wasn't for an impact wrench so they couldn't use it. Apparently with the impact wrench adapter it wouldn't take the torque needed for factory torque specs. So, I had to leave… with a puncture in the tire. Which is kind of due to legal BS, but whatever. The fact is it created an issue for them which in effect made me have to leave without the issue resolved.

So, having done the conversion, would I do it again based on the above… unfortunately no. For $125 ($100 with the Black Friday sale) it's supposed to make things easier and add to the looks of the vehicle. It kind of failed on both. After putting them on and seeing in person, it looks a bit silly, scratches easy and caused a situation with the practical use of the car and for that reason, I would not recommend them.

For anyone considering this modification (I won't call it an upgrade) hope it helps.
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      01-15-2013, 12:45 PM   #2
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And to those still interested in the 75mm kit, you may see it soon in the classified section.
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      01-15-2013, 01:07 PM   #3
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Sorry they didn't work out for you.
A few thoughts/comments....

- they don't need to be torqued to 30 lbs they aren't fastening anything; the locktite holds them in place.
- Unless you take your wheels on & off yourself on a regular basis you wont appreciate what they are designed for.
The 10.9 studs are much stronger that OE bolts and are much safer for track use.
- black scratching off - nut or stud? mine have been on & off MANY times and no such issue. Must be brand related.
- Any shop that uses impact wrench to torque wheels; stay VERY far away from.
- torque sockets ? not sure what nuts you are using, but there are many styles of open ended nuts available including those that fit regular sockets

I agree about the look of the bare stud.
Im not a fan of that either.
I use this style of nut which hides most of the stud.
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Last edited by inTgr8r; 01-15-2013 at 01:23 PM.
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      01-15-2013, 01:18 PM   #4
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"Any shop that uses impact wrench to torque wheels; stay VERY far away from"

Absolutely, avoid that shop like the plague...
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      01-15-2013, 01:21 PM   #5
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Bummer you're not happy with the kit. I like mine. I do think they make wheel changes extremely easy but I agree that they're not terribly aesthetically pleasing - fronts especially.

As for installation, did you put the wheels back on immediately? I had read previously on the internet, though it wasn't mentioned in the APEX install guide, that the car should be on jack stands for 24 hours without wheels on to allow the loctite to cure. I called APEX to ask their opinion on that and they confirmed that that was the best way to do the install.

I also asked them about torquing to 30lbs after I was unable to find an appropriate 5.5mm hex socket anywhere. They said all that was necessary was to thread it in until the threads bottom out then stop - the loctite does the rest.
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      01-15-2013, 01:27 PM   #6
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My goals for them where to make removal and replacement of the tires an easier task. So for that, they are good. However, I ran into my issue when I went to Discount Tire to have a flat fixed. Secondary goal was appearance. And unfortunately the ends scratched. Where the hex fitting is on the end. The bolts seemed fine though.

I'm not completely bashing them. If you are doing all your work in your own garage, then it's fine. If you take them elsewhere, you could run into issues.
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      01-15-2013, 01:29 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itdnwiwbp View Post
I also asked them about torquing to 30lbs after I was unable to find an appropriate 5.5mm hex socket anywhere. They said all that was necessary was to thread it in until the threads bottom out then stop - the loctite does the rest.
I took that from the install instructions from the APEX website. There was no issue there. As for letting the car rest on jack stands, I hadn't heard that anywhere before so didn't do it. If there is an issue I can reset them using this method.
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      01-15-2013, 01:31 PM   #8
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Just want to make sure no one is thinking this was a rant post. It's not. Just a "this is what happened" sort of thing. If you get a flat, you could run into this situation as well. Just be prepared. When you have a flat, your options are limited and have never had any issues with Discount Tire in the past to make me steer away from them.

And the aesthetic observation is with the studs on my anemic looking 16" base wheels. When set against the black wheels I intend to get later in the Spring, they will have a whole other appearance. I am guessing far better. And there are work arounds for the scratches as well.
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      01-15-2013, 01:39 PM   #9
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I didn't think you were ranting and I also wasn't trying to imply that you'd done the install incorrectly. I was just sharing the info I gathered from APEX when I installed mine.
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      01-15-2013, 01:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hogzilla View Post
Just want to make sure no one is thinking this was a rant post. It's not. Just a "this is what happened" sort of thing. .......
No, definitely not.
Its good feedback for those that may be considering them.
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      01-15-2013, 02:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itdnwiwbp View Post
I didn't think you were ranting and I also wasn't trying to imply that you'd done the install incorrectly. I was just sharing the info I gathered from APEX when I installed mine.
No worries at all. The interwebs make "tone" hard to read.

Thanks all for the comments and thoughts on this. One of the many reasons I love Zpost.
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      01-15-2013, 02:29 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inTgr8r View Post
If the look of the bare stud doesn't look good when I have the wheels installed, I will definitely consider this option. The studs aren't going out yet. I'll just have to be mindful of the possibilities. And the advantage of being able to, more easily, swap tires between Summer and the DWSs will probably outweigh the annoyance of a flat once in a blue moon. May just go pick up another socket to throw in the toolbag. Be prepared, that's what I say!
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      01-15-2013, 02:31 PM   #13
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this was probably one of my favourite mods.....
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      01-15-2013, 02:38 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hogzilla View Post
No worries at all. The interwebs make "tone" hard to read.

Thanks all for the comments and thoughts on this. One of the many reasons I love Zpost.
You're right about the difficulty of conveying tone on the internet and text etc etc. As much as I complain about this very thing I should pay more attention to what I'm saying. If I came of with any sort of a negative tone, I apologize.
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      01-15-2013, 02:42 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beedub View Post
this was probably one of my favourite mods.....
yup
The number of times I have my wheels off, I would hate to be w/o them.
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      01-15-2013, 02:47 PM   #16
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IMO I think this review is kinda lop-sided. No offense.

I bought studs (from Vorshlag) as a tool, not something to show off.

Considering that I change my tires every weekend, it's a well investment.




For people that don't understand or can't realize what a stud does, you basically throw the tire on the wheel, then screw one nut in to center the wheel on the hub. After that, you can do to town doing the rest of the nuts, lower the car and torque.


Before with bolts it took me around 45 mins to an hour to do the tires. Now, I can do them in less than 15 minutes with a slow pace. Simply throw the tire on the stud, get it on the hub, take my cordless impact, screw it onto the wheel until it makes contact and centers. Do the other 4 studs and lower the car. STUPID EASY.

As for the black scratching off, eh...it happened on my bolts. I don't care.
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      01-15-2013, 03:08 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inTgr8r View Post
Holy crap those are 200 bucks! I though the pentagonal spacers that beedub linked were bad. BTW I love those spacers beedub, can't wait to get a set when I get some new wheels.
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      01-15-2013, 03:44 PM   #18
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IIRC closer to 160 w/o locks
- hardened floating seat rings; torque much more evenly & they don't damage the wheels. (nut turns on seat ring, not the wheel)
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      01-15-2013, 05:16 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kgolf31 View Post
IMO I think this review is kinda lop-sided. No offense.
It wasn't intended to be a review as much as my experience and something to keep in mind if someone is considering them.

If someone is looking for a show car, may not want the easily scratched finish. And there are some practical considerations.

There is definitely a practical "pro" list as well. I love being able to easily throw up and pull down the tires w/o having to spend, what seems like, an eternity lining things up. It really is a breeze with the stud kit.

So, if I did it again, may not buy them, but since they are paid for and on, eh... I'll probably keep them. Just have to keep some things in mind for it.
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      01-15-2013, 05:31 PM   #20
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I'll second what has been said above, stud conversion kits are designed primarily for people who autocross and/or track their car with dedicated autocross/track tires and wheels who change them often and need to change them easily and quickly. Who cares if the black anodizing is scuffed, they're not for looks.

I bought our stud conversion kits from Motorsports Hardware, owned by a friend of a friend. I put a couple drops of Loctite Blue 242 on the threads, hand tightened with an Allen wrench, waited 10 minutes and then put the wheels on. From the Loctite website Technical Data Sheet for Blue 242:
Sets in approximately 10 minutes and fully cures in 24 hours
This is what I use on my car and my wife's car:



I use it with my Ryobi 18V 1/2" impact wrench. It works great and the protective sleeve protects the wheel. Based on the info here maybe I'll throw one in the trunk for possible future encounters with impact wrench monkeys.

Regarding Discount Tire, I can't believe that they didn't have a breaker bar in their shop that they could have used.
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      01-15-2013, 06:14 PM   #21
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^ This will be on my shopping list. Excellent suggestion! I was incredibly surprised I was sent walking away as well.
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      01-15-2013, 07:17 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SD Z4MR View Post
?....

This is what I use on my car and my wife's car:



I use it with my Ryobi 18V 1/2" impact wrench. It works great and the protective sleeve protects the wheel........
looks good

FWIW, I added shrink wrap over a normal socket, for a penny pincher solution.
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