Lotus Elan

14 x 6 minilites knock ons

PostPost by: miked » Sat Jan 08, 2011 4:51 pm

Guys,

Can you help me here on the Plus 2S that I bought about 5 months ago. I have just been right through the 4 corners and found a front left hub with a slight dink on the thread (near end). PO did tell me about a bump here. Only found when I was drifting out the outer wheel bearing. It got stuck in the neck. Only slight damage. Anyway, I cleaned up a spare hub and used that. Looks identical. Today I grabbed a wheel to put on to check if my steering rack spacers are doing the job and are correct. I put the wheel on and tapped the spinner lightly until it became firm. I noticed that the collar was still slack and the wheel waggled.
Tried the wheel on the loose old hub and it does not clamp fully. Still some slight play.
I brought this car straight home and started on it 5 months ago, so could have missed some play.

The wheels are from Spyder in March 2003 from the reciepts. As I recall there were some problems several year back with these wheels. I did a quick check of the hubs and they are nominally the same. Without digging through a lot of old threads it looks like the spinner internal bottoms out on the hub outer edge before it clamps the wheel. I could see the marks inside. It is possible that I picked up a different wheel and spinner (as they are all off). Should have made no difference. I had been out there in the garge for a while, so not really dug too deep. Her indoors was wondering were I was.

Without me trawling can anyone shed any light. It looks like the depth of the wheel is a little shallow in the hub clamping area and not what it shoud be. Hence the spinner bottoming out. Is there a thicker modified spacer or did peolpe take a shaving off the edge of the hub. On Monday I can phone Andy but it would be nice to know before I do.

An after thought.... I cleaned both the old and new hubs really well (acid soak), so probably lost quite a few thou' in rust and old paint etc of the face of the peg drive.



Mike :)
Mike

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PostPost by: GrUmPyBoDgEr » Sat Jan 08, 2011 8:30 pm

Any chance of a couple of photos maybe Mike?
The 14" x 6J wheels that Spyder used to supply were made by "Two Gates" & those wheels were supplied with chrome plated steel adapters (at extra cost) which had a conical shape to suit the spinners.
If you have those wheels & those spacers are missing you're in trouble!

Somewhere in my Alladin's cave I have one spare; the one I bought at the time in order to make stainless steel copies from, which you'd be welcome to.
I also have a sketch for making duplicates.

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John
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PostPost by: rdssdi » Sat Jan 08, 2011 8:46 pm

I have the "Two Gates" manufactured KO alloy wheels that I purchased from Spyder Engineering. I understand that "Two Gates" is no longer in business. I also purchased the "conical adapters" and new spinners. I found reports on the net that there have been problems with cast wheels from "Two Gates".

I would like to know if anyone has encountered problems with "Two gates" wheels.

Bob
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PostPost by: miked » Sat Jan 08, 2011 8:58 pm

Hi John,

I will snap a photo tomorrow. I have got the special inserts that you mention. My feeling is that perhap these are a bit marginal in thickness. Maybe an early version??? As I recall there was quite a lot going on with these wheels 4 or 5 years back (or more), but I did not take much notice, at the time. I had a root through the old Club Lotus mags but could not find the articles. When out shopping I got some of that blue tack type stuff (like pastacine). I will put some on the inside of the spinner face and see how thin it get squashed. I think down to nothing, maybe. The right front wheel went on and nipped up OK. I will put some on the right wheel to see what happens. As I undestand the rear wheels tighten ok. Never felt any play when I have tried them after fully cleaning those hubs to. However, I wonder how close I am to binding on the inside of the spinner and how much actual grip there is on the wheel. For sure I need to know how close the spinner sits against the hub end.

On the positive side I built up the rack today and that is in ready for bump settings. Also got the pedal box out and cleaned up the Master cylinders ready for new rubbers etc.

John, I will measure one of the rings so we can compare with your sketch..

Regards Mike :)
Mike

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PostPost by: GrUmPyBoDgEr » Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:08 pm

Hi Mike,

I don't recall this subject ever being discussed by Club Lotus.
The only references, to my knowledge, were on here.

In any case a set of thicker (relatively easy to make) adapters will provide the result you need :wink:

Seems like a case of Spyder not taking manufacturing tolerances into account; which appears to be a common problem with suppliers of after market parts for historic cars


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John
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PostPost by: CBUEB1771 » Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:32 pm

Mike,
The issue is probably the thrust rings that go between the wheel and the knock-on nut. I bought some Minilites several years ago and had the same problem you described. Minilite has since revised the thrust rings to be substantially thicker. This moves the knock-on nut outboard and allows it to load the wheel properly without first bottoming on the thread. I'll try to put up some photos of the old and revised thrust rings.
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PostPost by: rdssdi » Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:05 am

It appears that the Panasport wheels are available in 13" diameter only. I do see the minilites in 14 x 6. Has anyone purchased either for their Elan +2?

I was considering replacing my "Two gates" KO alloys.

Expensive? High quality?

Bob
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PostPost by: CBUEB1771 » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:05 am

Given the discussion I really don't know whose wheels are involved her. Nonetheless here is my photo of the early and later Minilite thrust rings. The later style is on the right and moves the known-on nut about 0.60" (1.5 mm) outboard to lessen the chance of bottoming on the hub threaded section before securing the wheel properly. Please forgive the noisy background in the photograph, just trying to get it out quickly.
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PostPost by: miked » Sun Jan 09, 2011 11:36 am

Thanks Russ,

Not been out there yet but will measure one of mine and photo. I suppose a good place to start is to ask Spyder about a new set.

Thanks guys.

Mike :D
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PostPost by: miked » Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:17 pm

I measured the ring. The total side depth of the ring is 9.67mm. The little lip is 2.80 mm (approx).

Mike :D
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PostPost by: CBUEB1771 » Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:00 pm

miked wrote:I measured the ring. The total side depth of the ring is 9.67mm. The little lip is 2.80 mm (approx).

Mike :D


Mike,
That may be it. My older "thin" thrust rings are 2.79 mm at the lip while the newer "thick" rings are 4.55 mm at the same location. Overall depth is 13.5 mm for the old and 12.1 mm for the new. You'll still need to determine if the wheels are Minilite or one on the many clones. Mine are Minilite.
Russ
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PostPost by: miked » Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:01 pm

Thanks Russ.

That looks like the answer. I will try Spyder in the morning.

My wheels are Minilite, I believe. I have the invoice from Spyder. Also John emailed me saying abouut the Two gates being flat in the middle. Mine are not, they have a dished area. I emailed him the photos. I seem to be having trouble sizing photos to upload. I am a bit of an IT dummy! I have done it before?

Mike :D
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PostPost by: CBUEB1771 » Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:55 pm

Mike,
I hope the new thrust rings solve your problem. The new ones are also stainless steel whereas the earlier ones were carbon steel with no plating.
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PostPost by: miked » Mon Jan 10, 2011 8:47 pm

Tried Spyder and Minilite for the thicker rings/collar and neither could help. Minilite say these are batch from Tech Del and are no longer supported. Minilite wanted to sell me some new wheels. These have not done 2000 miles. Spyder are not aware of thicker collars.

I just had a deeper look and can see that the two left spinners are not exactly the same. They are identical apart from the internal thread. One is cut deeper. The other is about an 1/8 inch short of the bottom. The short one must have been on the back wheel and I picked it up and put it on the front. The front wheel will tighten now with the spinner with the deeper thread. I tried both spinners on the old hub in the vice with the wheel. One bottoms on the thread but the other does not. Such marginal tolerance!

I think the chances of obtaining 4 deeper ones is quite slim, unless someone on here has a spare set (the 4.55 mm deep type, that Russ measured). I will try and see how an old Plus 2 steel wheel sits on a hub in the vice and just how much thread is used within the spinner. I bet I find a better tolerance of space. If so, I am tempted to take both front hubs off and relieve about 25 to 30 thou off the end, in the lathe. I am sure I can tidy up the thread entry. These collars are a nice job (stainless) with a rounded inner area. Probably cost a few bob to remake. Minilite guy mentioned peolpe fitting a large washer under the collar to pack out. No way!

On the positive side I am glad I found this as it is possible that all the spinners are not clamping the wheels quite as they should. They may be prematurely meeting resistance of the bottom of the thread within the spinner.

NB Then there are the back hubs to check. Bit more difficult to hold.

Mike :D
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PostPost by: GrUmPyBoDgEr » Mon Jan 10, 2011 8:59 pm

Pleased you've got to the bottom of the problem, but disappointed & not surprised at the lack of product support.
As you suggested whack those hubs in the lathe & shorten the threads to cover the worst case, you'll still have tons of thread engagement, it won't cost you anything & you can have a play on your lathe as part of the package :D

Have fun!
Cheers
John
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