<VV> Concentric wheel spacer necessary?

Hugo Miller Hugo at aruncoaches.co.uk
Wed Nov 29 02:14:32 EST 2017

#### That is amazing! The UK government has commissioned university studies 
to try to find the cause of "wheel loss syndrome" and they're still 
scratching their heads about it - and you've just summed it up in one neat 
sentence. The back wheels of my coaches have EIGHT surfaces all clamped 
together with one set of lug nuts (you have the outside face of the hub 
flange; two faces on the brake drum; two faces of a spacer they have fitted 
for some reason; two faces of the inner wheel; one face of the outer wheel). 
If you have .010" of rust, dirt or worse still, paint, on each of those 
surfaces, you end up with almost a tenth of an inch gap, once the constant 
heating & cooling, braking and acceleration have taken their toll & rubbed 
it all off. No wonder they fall off!
    My solution is to thoroughly clean all the faces, and to spray them with 
cavity wax rust preventative or similar (this is the UK where we use a lot 
of salt on the roads), and to grease the studs. Then I fit Ric-clips to make 
sure the nuts don't come loose (they're a figure-of-eight spring clip in 
case they don't exist in the States - equivalent to Zafety-lug clips or 
whatever they're called). I never use a torque wrench - just do them up by 
feel. Never had a problem.
    The reason this was never a problem with the old-style fixings is that 
the wheels were located by cones on the studs and on the nuts, and weren't 
in contact with anything else.
    That system you describe, with the square end on the stud or whatever it 
is, I've seen that on American trucks, but it does not exist in the UK. 
British coaches have 1+5/16" lug nuts, only we have to call them 33mm now. 
European commercials, on the other hand, have 32mm nuts!
    One thing that does concern me is that I've watched the tire fitters in 
the US truck stops do the lug nuts up (dry) with an air gun, then just let 
the jack down & drive off. I like to feel the nuts going up.
    As an aside, I  recently bought an old car as a runabout for a friend 
here in the UK. It was advertised as having a collapsed wheel bearing, which 
had been diagnosed by the AA (=AAA). I drove it back & I thought it sounded 
like the wheel nuts were loose, but I didn't have a jack to test them, or a 
lever to pry the wheel trim off. I drove it about thirty miles home and sure 
enough, when I popped the wheel trim off, the nuts were all loose! Nothing 
else wrong with it! It had damaged the holes in the wheel, but the studs 
were still ok - just a slight mark on them.
    The reason I tell this story is to illustrate just how much it takes for 
a wheel to fall off a car. I reckon I could have done another hundred miles 
before they fell off.

-----Original Message----- 
From: Joel McGregor via VirtualVairs
Sent: Wednesday, November 29, 2017 4:05 AM
To: Virtualvairs at corvair.org
Subject: Re:  Concentric wheel spacer necessary?

I read up on the wheels falling off and it's a problem with too many 
surfaces being clamped together.  Note that the front single wheels don't 
fall off.
You've got the hub surface then the brake drum and then 2 wheels that all 
have to be clamped together.  Any rust, dirt, paint or whatever on that many 
surfaces is too compressible to overcome with the maximum clamping force of 
the studs.  They are fine if you re torque after the recommended 150 miles. 
The previous lug piloted system used a nut for each wheel instead of one for 
the pair so they had one less pair of mating surfaces to clamp but twice as 
many nuts to torque.  My truck has the old system and torqueing 20 on each 
dual is a real beating.  That system also uses 4 different lug nuts.  As 
Hugo mentioned they are LH thread on the left side and RH on the right.  The 
front and rear outers are 1-1/8"  The rear inners are much smaller  IIRC 
3/4.  The nuts for the inner are the studs for the outer hence the size 
Joel McGregor

-----Original Message-----
From: Hugo Miller [mailto:Hugo at aruncoaches.co.uk]
Sent: Tuesday, November 28, 2017 2:34 AM
To: Joel McGregor <joel at joelsplace.com>; Virtualvairs at corvair.org
Subject: Re: <VV> Concentric wheel spacer necessary?

#### I've owned & operated large buses & coaches in the UK all my life. The 
old British coaches, as with all cars of that era, had conical lug nuts & 
countersunk holes in the wheels. The wheels were located solely by the studs 
& nuts. They also had left-hand threads on the left side of the vehicle.
Then they changed to the European system of having a register on the hub to 
locate the wheel, and flat lug nuts. Right-hand threads all round. Now we 
have a thing called "Wheel-loss syndrome" where the twin wheels on the left 
rear keep falling off. That's progress, I guess, - if it ain't broke, fix it 
till it is.

-----Original Message-----
From: Joel McGregor via VirtualVairs
Sent: Tuesday, November 28, 2017 5:43 AM
To: 'Virtualvairs at corvair.org'
Subject: Re:  Concentric wheel spacer necessary?

Big trucks use either hub centered or stud centered on disk wheels but not 
both.  They carry a lot of weight so I'm guessing that using normal Corvair 
studs and tapered seats is more than good enough.
When I bought my '64 Spyder I ran it pretty had before really looking it 
over and it had a nut missing on a rear wheel.  3 held it together fine so 
I'm thinking 4 is plenty.

Joel McGregor

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