Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Escondido, California
There is so much bad information in this thread on the legalities of bead lock wheels that it's not even funny. The DOT does not approve any bead lockwheels and wheels that are marketed as "DOT approved" are simply misleading people. Sorry to bring this thread back from the dead but another thread linked to it.
Here's a letter from the DOT replying to an individual who asked for a clariification on whether the DOT had a position on the legalities of bead lock wheels on the street.
And so far, to the best of my knowledge, no one (!) has come up with a specific state law that specifically says bead lock wheels are illegal. Certainly the DOT doesn't care as evidenced by their letter, a copy of which is below...
"Dear Mr. Cxxxxxxxx,
I received this message from NHTSA this morning:
There are no performance or design requirements for rims covered under Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 120. However, there are rim marking requirements in S5.2 and rim selection requirements in S5.3.2. Note that in S5.2, a reference is made to rims of multi-piece construction, and this implies that these multi-piece rims are allowed. The bead lock rim appears to be a multi-piece rim and there is nothing that I’m aware of that would prohibit them from being used for on-road vehicles. I have attached a copy of the standard. It may be that some State DOTs are regulating them.
Hope this helps some
National Transportation Library
Bureau of Transportation Statistics
Research and Innovative Technology Administration
U.S. Department of Transportation"
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