The Lotus spinner has a coarse male taper that beds onto a female taper on the wheel, drive being provided by the pegs. The 42mm splined (52mm on a Jaguar) Dunlop wheel/Rudge splined wheel is located by an inner taper on the wheel that mates with a taper on the hub, and an external taper on the outside that mates with an internal taper within the spinner. Basically the tapers are the opposite way round in the two systems. Somebody in the Lotus factory, developing these wheels, must have worked out why the threads should be opposite to the splined type wheels. Perhaps they found out the hard way? Anyone ever rebuilt an Elan and got them on the wrong side of the car? Did the wheels come off? I can't really see why the sense of the tapers should make any difference.
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They were designed that way on purpose, exactly as you stated. People have indeed swapped the hubs to opposite sides in error. The wheels will loosen very quickly and exit the hubs.
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