[Mgs] Wire wheel convertion

PaulHunt73 paulhunt73 at virginmedia.com
Thu Apr 19 01:46:39 MDT 2018

I opted to change to chrome wires 30 years ago and have never regretted it. 
Yes they take an hour per wheel for a full clean a couple of times a year, 
but the end result is worth it.  Painted wires wouldn't be worth it for me.

Originally I used conversion hubs at the rear on my MGB as they don't push 
the wheels out quite as far on a stud wheel axle as standard rear hubs do. 
But touring fully laden I had severe problems of the left tyre rubbing on 
the arch so eventually changed to a pukka wire wheel axle.  Virtually all 
MGBs have the left tyre about an inch nearer the arch than the right tyre, 
for reasons that have never been fully explained, but seems to be down to 
panel shape and jig tolerances.

I've had a few broken spokes, which some have put down to chrome 
embrittlement, but since I've had at least one breakage on a wheel I had 
switched to all stainless as a trial it can't just be that.  But they are 
replaceable just by pressing the tyre down off the rim so no big deal. 
Never had loose spokes, or needed to have them trued.

One of the complaints about wire wheels is that grease works up the spokes 
and attracts dirt unless the spokes are sealed inside the hub.  Some use 
silver grease, but that attracts dirt just like conventional grease does. 
The trick is not to over-grease.  Each time I have them off I just wipe any 
surplus grease off the inside of the wheel hub and off the axle hub back 
onto the splines, I probably haven't added any new grease in 10 years.

Spline wear is a problem as mentioned, although really only on the rears, as 
unlike the fronts they are continually being switched back and fore between 
accelerating and braking.  If you source a used rear axle then it would be 
advisable to get replacement hubs.  I also agree with getting new wheels.


----- Original Message ----- 
> Having lived with both wire wheels and disc wheels, my personal preference
> is for solid disc wheels. The disc wheels do not require the maintenance 
> of
> wire wheels. Wire wheels are difficult to keep clean and are prone to hub
> spline wear and spoke failure. Of course, it's also a matter of taste, so
> you should do whatever appeals to you.

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