Well, I have the studded tires now. In the final analysis, given I have 18" wheels there was no immediate price savings to buying rims. I did the math, made the phone calls, shopped around, used websites, junk yards etc etc.
The studs are great, so are the tires they are on. No further problems with winter driving and I can now keep up with the traffic and not worry about getting stuck in my driveway.
Thanks for the comments everyone.