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Bored Worker
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Yes to both. You will need hubcentric rings for 5 series wheels on your e38.
 

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Which 5 series? The e39 and the new f body 5 series have different center bore or wheel off set range. The 7 series also uses a larger tire size diameter/circumference versus the 5 series. So even if you get 5 series wheels that have the same center bore and offset range...if tires are mounted to the wheels...those tires will be too small for your 7 series:

 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the chart. yea i could make the wheels fit but it would be different from just getting e38 wheels. Ill probably just look for another set of e38 stock wheels for cheap.

p.s. the reason i need wheels fast is because i hit a patch of black ice while turning on a side street and my rim hit the curb, taking a 5 inch chunk of metal off it. Car has been running on a full size spare that came with the borbet rims but it ruins the appearance of such a beautiful car.
 

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Certifiable BMW Whackjob!
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From Q's chart above, let's say you have a set of E34 wheels you want to put on your E39. The 72.56mm bore of the E34 wheel will not fit on the 74.1mm hub of the E39, so the solution is to get the wheels drilled out (precision is important here or you will get vibrations).

Now let's say you wanted to go the other way. The 74.1mm bore of the E39 wheels leaves a bit of play over the 72.56mm hubs on the E34 meaning the wheels could mount on the car off center so you need a thin ring to fill the gap and center the wheel - hub centric rings. They aren't usually so much of a sleeve fitting inside the bore as they are just wedges fitting into the area that is usually just "relief".

So to answer your question, bagodonuts, yes it will make those wheels work!
 

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Thin spacers are not much of a problem but the thicker they are the less they are recommended, especially if they are thicker than the hub protrusion that slides into the wheel bore. Hubcentric rings are about the same. Ideally you should put on wheels that fit correctly as they are without modifications, but if that isn't possible just remember that the bigger of a mis-alignment you have the more vibration you're going to get.
 

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...but not advisable?
If you were starting at scratch...where you were looking for wheels to mount to your e38...then my personal suggestion would be to look for hub centric wheels that fit right on the car without any additional components.

But since you already have the wheels and they aren't being used...in this case you're putting something to use that you already have.

The issue now becomes one of awareness. The fact that you have hub centric rings need to remain in your cognitive awareness when others are removing & remounting your wheels. The rings required (74.1mm to 72.5mm) are on the thin side...and can either remain in the wheel when removed...or sometimes one or more may remain on the hub. If people working on your car aren't aware that the rings are there...they can either damage or loose them.

Again, it's not un-advisable in your case...but you do need to remain cognizant they are there and let it be known to anyone working on your car that will be removing the wheels to look out for them. :)

The pic below is 74.1mm to 72.56mm hubcentric rings. I used rings to mount some 17" e39 wheels I already had on my e32/e34 for winter set-up & for some summer wheels for a short time. The use of hubcentric rings (in this case) was cheaper than buying new wheels since I already had wheels that were being unused.

 
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