As a customizer you are always looking for ways to make your customs stand out. Fabrication is a great way as well as good tampo/livery applications. One of the easiest ways is with custom shoes, but they really havent been made available to the amateur customizer until recently. Instead the customizer made his own wheels by frankensteining the heck out of other wheels, which was difficult for sure. Well, times have changed and we now have quite a few choices for custom made wheels. I will go over a few that I use. This is in no way all the distributors, but it is what I have found.
1. Hobby Overhaul - Facebook and Instagram
These wheels are from the Philipines. They are multiple pieces per wheel and are very nice. This is only one wheel type, the white 5star used on the Calsonic Skyline and many others. They produce dozens of different wheels. Price is very resonable and the manufacturing is a tad rough, but just a little clean up on the rubber and its set. These wheels are great as they hide the axle head with a three part rim. Quite genius and very much appreciated.
2. Die Cast Parts - Facebook (online store)
About 2 years ago these guys came out with a resin-cast wheel. Terrible production problems with the castings. They reworked their plan and went diecast wheels. I love these as they add more weight to the casting which I personally love. They keep coming out with new wheels and their QC is much much better. These are 2 part wheels, but you can order them with custom axles, that you will still need to cap. I just make my own axles and caps with .032 brass rod(K&S) and #1 crimp tubes(Beadalon). The rubber still needs some cleanup but the end product is well worth it. Not only do they make wheels but they also make diorama sets. They have a garage set that includes shop tool boxes, lifts, lights and other equipment, all in diecast. They also make diecast engines and get this, a Kool Kombi rocket engine that works! Just add your own home made fuel and you have a rocket diecast! Nuts.
3. Chris Huntley - Facebook and Instagram (@78toy4dr)
Chris has been around since I started customizing and was creating his first sets of resin cast wheels. His first few runs were good but not great as the axle holes never lined up properly and werent centered. Not any more. Chris makes an amazing resin cast wheel. You can tell he loves every creation he makes. His wheels vary from old JDMs to new Euro style wheels and everything inbetween. He truly has become one of the best wheel makers out there IMO. His wheels roll just as smooth as fresh diecast. The next three pics show just a small portion of his many variations. Make sure to check him out as he loves his 1:1 Corolla Wagon and customizing his own cars as well.
4. Monoblock Wheels - Instagram and Facebook (online store)
These guys came onto the scene last year and immediately were a hit. They as of now make only the Watanabe wheel in various colors and limited edition periodically. They currently are working on their next wheel. The wheel is very solid with a nice thick rubber wheel. I like the normal and stretched rubber. There are very similar to the HW version but the rubber feels better and the colors are vibrant and deep. They come with an axle ready to cut to size. Just need to add the axle head and viola!
5. W&R Toys - Facebook and Instagram
These are guys are from SE Asia, Indonesia or Malaysia I forget at the moment. They are not as fast as most others is filling and shipping orders, but the product is well worth the wait. These are resin cast wheels. Some come with custom lettering already. They have many casting to choose from. Their Custom Service is good as far as replying to questions. They come with needles for axles which I dont find useful at all so I make my own axles and add a wheel tube from K&S aluminum tubing.
As you can see there are plenty of options out there now and Im sure way more that I do not know of. The community embraces these creators as its a very desired part of customs. Can not wait to see how these evolve in the years to come.