Here's an old thread about spare tires for the VS (the blue type is a clickable link).

When Kirk was running Vintage Speedsters, this was what he supplied if you ordered a spare with the car (and if the car had VW 4-bolt wheels):




This is a Nanking 135/15 tire on a narrow, uh, 'imported' rim. This would likely get you to the nearest tire shop, but you probably wouldn't want to autocross on it.

As it is, this just fits, so a normal width road tire would be too tall.

I also carry a somewhat OK compact scissor jack and made up a wooden block to fit on top of that so that I could use it to actually jack up the car. (Best to test it all out in your garage before trying to use it by the side of the road some dark and stormy night.)

These are old photos, BTW. Eventually, I mounted the wheel upside down and now use the hollow of the spare wheel to store tools and spare parts.



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I used to carry a compact spare very similar to Mitch’s, but subsequent “upgrades” to my car took away my spare space.  Now I have a small 12 volt air compressor and carry a tire plug kit and have the Hagerty roadside assistance number handy.

356GS, you eventually build up confidence in your car and will venture farther from home.  In the past couple of weeks, I’ve been to four New England states, but truth be told I can hit three of them within a half hour from my house.      Still, I never think that I might have a flat after I leave.  Never used a spare tire in any car I’ve owned since around 1980.  (Just watch.....Now I’ll need it next week or something.)


"...Never used a spare tire in any car I’ve owned since around 1980..." 

Yeah Gordon, I was going to type something like that, too.

But I've got a Speedster outing to the wine country planned for Friday with the wife and another couple, and the weather is supposed to be perfect, and, believe it or not, there's a town called 'Murphys' not far from where we're going.

So I didn't.


356GS posted:

I have been reluctant to take the VS very far out of town, for the chance of a flat tire.  Do most of you have spare tires, carry a can of Fix-a-flat, or just have good road side assistance with your auto insurance?

I've given up on carrying a spare. The only time I needed help was when we drove from Boise, Idaho to Ottawa, Ontario years ago on what looked like good tires but they didn't last. Spent a long weekend in Spanish Fork, Utah and had new rubber installed. I carried a spare after that but have never used it. I can't remember how far we've gone maybe 50 or 60 thousand miles but we've never used the spare. I have fix a flat ( never used ) two cell phones and good roadside insurance separate from my vehicle insurance. 

Seems that modern steel belted radials just don't pop like the old bias ply tires (or the older tubed ones!) 

I have a spare tire on Bridget which I've never used in a decade's ownership. It fits on a rack on the back of the car which is part of the design's charm, but I'd eliminate it if it wasn't. It's not great for weight distribution.

I've built the Spyder with a spare tire as well, again, for verisimilitude more than practicality. 

I'd seriously consider ditching it on a Speedster.



I've never checked the  front/rear weight distribution differences between Speedster and Spyder, but I'd guess the Spyder is better balanced, since the weight of the Spyder's engine helps push the front wheels down a little. In a Speedster, the engine's weight actually pulls up on the front wheels.

Because of that, the Speedster's braking probably benefits more from the weight of a spare wheel in front than a Spyder would.

Besides, carrying a spare is probably the best insurance that you won't ever need one.


Jimmy V. posted:

Fix a flat, cell phone and good road side assistance policy for me. My road side assistance comes in my Hagerty collector car stated value insurance policy.

Another good one is the AAA Premier membership @ $119/yr. In addition to the "regular" 15-mile emergency tows and every other AAA program benefit, you get an annual 200-mile tow on a flatbed. 

VW made 4 lug 4" rims too (they were on '68 & 69 model year - not certain of other years (assume 4.5J) but size 4Jx15 is stamped on rim).  Be sure to carry a scissor's jack and lug wrench even if you don't carry a spare.  The Fix-A-Flat may die before inflating a tire with the car's weight on it so jacking it up could help  (plus you can remove tire and have it repaired/replaced).  Remember alloy wheel bolts are most likely different than steel wheel bolts.

WOLFGANG posted:

VW made 4 lug 4" rims too (they were on '68 & 69 model year - not certain of other years (assume 4.5J) but size 4Jx15 is stamped on rim)...

I believe Beetle rims were 4 J x 15 (40 mm offset) until March 1972. After March '72 Beetle rims went to 4 1/2 J x 15, 34 mm offset.

The info I have has Karmann Ghia and Type 3 wheels being 4 1/2 x 15 with 46 mm offset. I'm guessing from when they switched to 4 x 130 mm bolt pattern?

I am too anal to not have a spare on board. Here is what I did - a 135 on a 4.5" wheel. Small jack is in a box on the floor behind the passenger seat that is covered in matching carpet. Cant really see it even if you try.

There are 2 small chrome tie downs attached to the floor of the frunk. I made the two straps using a leather belt kit sold by Hobby Lobby and some leather rivets that they also sell. 


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I've never needed a spare for the Spyder in 45,000 miles and 14 years. I had one on the old car but didn't bother on the new one.

A couple springs ago, I hit a killer pothole with my Audi and blew out a 245/45/18 in a split second.

Our tall sidewalls can take a beating on a Speedster or Spyder.

I used to have a 125 /15 doughnut that I lugged around for about 12 years, unused. Before we left for Carlisle this year I replaced the very old, very hard Maypop tires with some new Michelins.  Out with the doughnut and in with 2 cans of Fix-A-Flat, (because the first one is prolly flat) and a small  12 volt compressor.  That left lots of room for more tools, parts and a couple bottles of wine.

We took all back roads round trip, a total of 1300 miles and most of those roads really sucked, condition wise, but were still fun to drive. Hundreds and hundreds of pot holes though, and I thought I would break something.

I steered around a lot of them , but I hit a few too.  Danny is right ,those bouncy tall tires were the least of my worries. I was trying to stay out of the woods , mostly.


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