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Why 6 lug?

Discussion in 'Dakota, 1998-2013 Durango and Aspen' started by JamesInParts, Oct 25, 2017.

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  1. JamesInParts

    JamesInParts New Member

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    My question is simple. Why does the Durango have 6 lugs?
    What the rumor mill has said.
    1. Dodge engineers are sadistic.
    2. The Viper engineers are the real creators of the Durango.
    3. Because the Durango tow and payload place it between a 1500 and 2500.
    4. Because Dodge hates me.
    5. No one knows.
     
    Shane Estabrooks likes this.
  2. GLHS60

    GLHS60 Well-Known Member

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    6 lugs have more load capacity than 5.

    Chrysler isn't the only one using 6, I've seen them on Cadillacs and Kias in recent years.

    Thanks
    Randy
     
  3. JamesInParts

    JamesInParts New Member

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    I understand 6 lug has a higher load capacity. I am wondering if that is the actual reason. Are the Durango specs such that it was required or was it something else. The Durango only has a 200lb higher payload but 500lb lower towing.

    2000 Ram 1500
    payload 1716.0 lbs
    towing 4650 lbs.

    2000 Durango
    Payload 1,900 lbs
    Towing 7,300 lbs

    2000 5.9 Cummins 2500
    payload (4x4) 3370 lbs
    Towing 9450 lbs

    By the numbers it makes sense but it is not dictated anywhere. I was just wondering if anyone had solid info on this.
     
  4. JamesInParts

    JamesInParts New Member

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  5. valiant67

    valiant67 Rich Corinthian Leather
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    That is backwards. Durango came from Dakota which had 6 lugs. Viper came later after 6 lug Dakota.

    I’ve had 6 lug Dakotas and a Durango for years. Never had an issue.
     
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  6. valiant67

    valiant67 Rich Corinthian Leather
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    You can increase the “clamping force” for lack of a better term by adding another lug nut (Dakota/Durango) or increasing the bolt circle (Ram).
     
  7. GLHS60

    GLHS60 Well-Known Member

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    Exactly, I'm thinking 6 lug hubs are somewhat based on 5 lug hubs.

    EG: Dakota 6 lug hubs are still a 4.5" bolt circle.

    Way back in time Dodge 1/2 t bolt circle increased from 5 on 4.5" to 5 on 5.5"

    One possibility is it's more cost effective to add a stud rather than increasing the bolt circle.

    I believe Kia followed the Dakota in retaining the 4.5" bolt circle.

    Thanks
    Randy
     
  8. page2171

    Level 2 Supporter

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    It could be worse. Anybody remember the light duty Ford F250s from the late 90's-early 2000's that had 7 lugs?
    [​IMG]
     
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  9. AllanC

    AllanC Well-Known Member

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    The reason that Dodge engineers changed the # of lug bolts on Dakotas and later Durango (Dakota based) was for avoidance of product liability. When the Dakota was introduced in 1987 standard wheel size was 14 inch rim with 15 inch optional. In 1991 the load rating on the Dakota was increased. Standard wheel size became 15 inch but the bolt diameter remained at 114.3 mm. Engineers did not want the 14 inch wheels from the 1987 to 1990 era to be fitted to a 1991 and later Dakota (inadequate load capacity and potential legal liablility) so the easiest and cheapest solution was to install 6 wheel lug nut bolts.

    All wheel hubs have a circular center lip that mates to a center bore in the wheel rim. This is what carries most of the weight. Wheel lug bolts just keep it in place so 4 would be sufficient to keep a wheel in place to carry the load.

    In 1994 Dodge Ram 1500 had a major styling and engineering make-over. It used 16 inch wheel rims with a 5 lug bolt pattern with bolt circle diameter of 139.7 mm. Larger truck with greater payload but it used only 5 bolts, not 6 like the lighter Dakota.

    And I am pretty sure GM for a while used 6 lug bolts on the wheels on its 1500 series (1/2 ton) Chevy and GMC trucks in the late 1990s and into the early 2000s. Wheel bolt diameter was not changed but load capacity increased. Engineers were concerned about earlier era wheels with lower load capacity being used on later model trucks. Solution: use 6 lug bolts and that prevents different era wheels being used.
     
  10. GLHS60

    GLHS60 Well-Known Member

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    I remember those, thought it was an illusion at first!!

    They were actually hub centric, not lug centric.

    Thanks
    Randy


     
  11. pt006

    pt006 Active Member

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    Little Red Express wheels have a plastic bullet shaped center cap. This cap will rattle sometimes. A few pieces of tape or dum-dum will stop the rattle. The wheels are held in place by the taper of the wheel lug nuts, not the center hole.

    The old 1/2 ton Chevy Blazers used 6 lugs, but the studs were only 7/16" diameter.

    The old D 100's and W 100's used a 5 by 4.5 bolt pattern. These were bigger trucks with more payload. So the strength of the wheel studs [5] is at least adequate. The strength of the flange and the wheel itself should be considered. Also, the GVWR of the Dakotas increased over the years. Maybe the engineers just wanted a little more safety factor. I think they went to a 9/16" stud dia. on the newer trucks.

    After decades of abuse, I've never had a 5 lug Dodge wheel or stud fail. The old 440 Imperials fully loaded were well over 6000 lbs.
     
  12. Glopart

    Glopart Active Member

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    My 06 Dak 4X4 has only 5 lugs on 16" wheels and it's bigger than the older ones ???
     
  13. GLHS60

    GLHS60 Well-Known Member

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    The bolt circle is increased from 6 on 4.5" to 5 on 5.5" like the full size Ram.

    As mentioned, the diameter of the bolt circle is an important factor.

    Thanks
    Randy
     
  14. MPE426HEMI

    MPE426HEMI Well-Known Member

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    Yup, odd as hell and it didn't surprise me, among other things ford has done.
     
  15. Bearhawke

    Bearhawke Things happen for a reason

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    Yet Ford also went with six lug wheels starting 2004 on it's F150 but, it has a small bolt pattern, the exact size escapes me.
     
  16. Richard1

    Richard1 Member

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    My Renault has 15" wheels with 3 lugs.
    [​IMG]
     
  17. Shane Estabrooks

    Shane Estabrooks Active Member

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    It could also have something to do with where they buy axles.. AAM... the availability of parts at a given spec for there requirements is the a 6 bolt that AAM also sells to GM. Same as the axles shared in HD trucks, even though there are slight difference between makes ...mostly the same.
     

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