"I Need To Borrow A Bead Stretcher"

Illustration for article titled "I Need To Borrow A Bead Stretcher"

What do you do with a pile of 15" tires when you have only 18" wheels? You get a bead stretcher of course. This week's troll asks NASIOC for help finding one. We always find 'em near the blinker fluid.


Trolls are always coming up with new and nonsensical inventions to get a rise out of the enthusiast community. We've all heard of things like muffler bearings and blinker fluid, classic gag items, but what in the heck is a bead stretcher. We'll let our troll explain:

Need to borrow a bead stretcher!
As the title states, I need to borrow a bead stretcher! I'd even be willing to pay a deposit or rental fee if needed.

I have a bunch of 15" tires left over from my Honda days and I'd like to use them on the 18's that are currently on my wrx. I've been looking all over and no local stores are willing to loan one to me for anything less than $500. (I'm sure its because they just want me to buy tires from them instead of saving all that money by stretching out my old tires so they fit on the new wheels )

I'm sure I could stretch out all the tires in my garage in a day or two so I wouldn't need it for too long! I'd appreciate any leads or anyone who can loan/rent/lend me one!

This "bead stretcher" is a misinterpretation of the tuner fad of stretched tires, where a tire is forced onto a much wider wheel than it was designed for. It provides an aggressive, low profile look, like this:

Illustration for article titled "I Need To Borrow A Bead Stretcher"

What the troll is asking for is a machine which changes the inside radius of the tire, something that's an impossible feat since the bead is not flexible in that direction, being thoroughly reinforced with steel rings. Notice how the troll here doesn't make the classic novice mistake of asking if such a thing exists. No, he jumps right into assuming experience with this mythical bead stretcher and going so far as to estimate how long he'd need one. Quite clever really, but not clever enough.

The fellows at NASIOC have seen enough shenanigans with all their Subie love to know a troll when they see one and call it out pretty quickly. The real fun comes as the troll keeps up the ruse. Carefully ignoring statements of reality and taking leaps of stupidity that leave you chuckling. For instance, in a reply to Luke@Tirerack, an actual Tire Rack employee, our troll says:

Originally Posted by Luke@tirerack
aren't those on the shelf below the boost fluid ... and we know how important that stuff is. Did you know many cars even have gauges to monitor the level of boost fluid.

Luke, you seem pretty smart, and you work for a tire company, do you guys rent out bead stretchers or could I send my old tires in and have them stretched? I've looked all over and can't find anyone who will loan/rent/etc their stretcher for anything short of 500 bucks!

I know you guys heat cycle tires, do you have a stretcher?

And it goes on from there. It's the above and beyond dedication to the art of trolling which makes this entertaining. As always, keep your eyes peeled, forum fan-boys. Without proper vigilance you may fall into a troll trap, especially if it's less obvious than this one. (Thanks for the tip Dan!)



(Auto Forum Troll Of The Week is Jalopnik's public service to the auto forums, helping them rid their threads of trolls lurking about. Do you have a nominee for "Auto Forum Troll Of The Week," send an email to tips at jalopnik dot com with "Auto Forum Troll Of The Week" as the subject line!)
Photo credit: InMyGarage



I kept reading "bread stretcher."