[Healeys] Philosophy of Sealing WW spoke heads

BJ8Healeys sbyers at ec.rr.com
Sat Dec 8 08:57:36 MST 2007

Actually, the grease is to prevent fretting between the highly-loaded metal
surfaces.  Fretting occurs when there is slight movement between highly
loaded surfaces and metal transfer  and wear can take place.  Fretting can
cause metal fatigue as well.  There is always going to be some slight
relative movement between the hubs and wheels, no matter how tight the
knockoffs are.  Having just replaced a tire and cleaned and regreased the
splines this morning, I had a good look at the hub cone surface behind the
wheel.  Even though I have always used plenty of grease, there is still
evidence of fretting going on on that surface (pitting).  Fortunately,
nothing obvious yet on the wheel or hub splines, but the splines really only
carry the acceleration and braking loads.

I have always had a problem with grease working its way out past the spoke
heads onto the spokes, both with the original painted wheels and the Dayton
chrome wires I installed in 1990.  Even when I am very meticulous in
cleaning the surfaces and sealing them, the grease will still come out
eventually.  Of course, it's dependent on how much the car is driven between
cleanings.  Even though I am liberal with the grease, I do wipe off the
excess.  I use wheelbearing grease for spline lubrication because I buy it
in a tub and it's convenient.

Steve Byers
BJ8 Registry
Havelock, NC  USA

-----Original Message-----
From: healeys-bounces+sbyers=ec.rr.com at autox.team.net
[mailto:healeys-bounces+sbyers=ec.rr.com at autox.team.net]On Behalf Of Bob
Sent: Saturday, December 08, 2007 7:36 AM
To: Steve B. Gerow
Cc: Healeys Newsgroup
Subject: Re: [Healeys] Philosophy of Sealing WW spoke heads


AFAIK, the purpose of the grease is only to keep the inner and outer
hubs from rusting together.  It's not there for "lubrication;" if there
is any motion between the splines one or both of the hubs have to be

Since the grease is only there to prevent rusting, I think any good,
persistent grease will work.  Anti-seize seems particularly
persistent--I've got the stains on my jeans to prove it ;).   Have heard
that anti-seize contains highly-ground glass--that's what leaves the
silvery coating.

I use a clear RTV (Permatex) on the spoke heads and have never had any
problems with it.  Without it, I always got a little smear of grease
where the spokes exit the wheel hub.


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