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help! these hubcaps just wont stay on!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by bloodandwhisky, May 2, 2007.

  1. bloodandwhisky
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 181

    bloodandwhisky
    Member
    from DFW Texas

    Got some cool old custom hubcaps from kiwi kev, bought some 15" wheels and tires so that I could put them on the thunderbird, and every time I drive the car, I end up chasing one down the road, and then later hammering out the dings!
    is there some way i can keep them from coming off, before they are completely ruined?!
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. bloodandwhisky
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 181

    bloodandwhisky
    Member
    from DFW Texas

    Oh and yes I do know that they look like giant chrome nipples.
     
  3. Goztrider
    Joined: Feb 17, 2007
    Posts: 3,066

    Goztrider
    Member
    from Tulsa, OK

    I wonder if you could use the welder to add a bead or series of beads around the wheel inside where the hubcaps mount to help hold them on?
     
  4. might not be the caps. I had a 65 T-Bird Convertible running a 428 Cobra Jet with Tri-power (has nothing to do with the story I just like saying it!) never could keep caps on the front, finally found out the rims were flexing on corners and throwing them off. the only car I've ever had problems with
     

  5. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 49,513

    squirrel
    Member

    if you'd take a pic of the backside of the hubcaps, so we can see the part that is supposed to be holding them onto the wheels...and also take a pic of the wheels, so we can see where the hubcap is supposed to be gripping them...we might be able to help you.

    otherwise we'd just be guessing at what the problem is!
     
  6. bloodandwhisky
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 181

    bloodandwhisky
    Member
    from DFW Texas

    MAN! sure wish i could get ahold of a tri power manifold carbs and intake, for a decent price!
    well the rear right has popped off three times. the front popped off once tonight.
    welding would probably work if it wasn't so difficult to get them on allready!
    i was thinking of drilling holes and safety wiring them. but then i was thinking "what if the kind of pop off and only the safety wire is holding them on" I think it'd end up slapping my car at 70 miles per hour. wouldnt be good.
     
  7. bloodandwhisky
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 181

    bloodandwhisky
    Member
    from DFW Texas

    Allright. ill go take photos right now. might be shitty though. its dark.
     
  8. Here's what I did on mine-

    I turned the arc welder way up, and scratched an arc to make heavy spatter all around the wheel where the hubcap clips would scrape the wheel. That gave the caps something to grab on to. You can do that with the tires in place. The wheel will not get the tire hot because you will not be slowly running a weld bead, just a fast travelling spatter. Not too fast tho, so you get a hot spatter that stays put on the wheel.

    If you are running old wheels made before the "radial tire era", and have radials on them, the older thinner wheels may be flexing too much.

    If your wheels are from the 70's and later, they will usually be made of a thicker metal than the older wheels.

    I read a manufacturers' warning posted in a tire store long ago about putting radials on older wheels that were thin- made for bias ply tires. It said that radials let the wheels flex more than the bias ply tires did, and that tire stores should not install radials on standard steel wheels that were thinner than "xxx".
     
  9. bloodandwhisky
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 181

    bloodandwhisky
    Member
    from DFW Texas

    heres the photos
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    And since i was out there, check out the new scallops!
    they are red metal flake with cream pinstripe on satin black.
    cool? gay?
    [​IMG]
     
  10. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 49,513

    squirrel
    Member

    did you try carefully bending the "teeth" out? sometimes they just get kind of tired and need to be bent out again just a bit to help them grip.

    take it slow and careful, don't bend them far, just a little on each one.
     
  11. bloodandwhisky
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 181

    bloodandwhisky
    Member
    from DFW Texas

    I kind of tried that. It wasn't slow, or careful. it was with a small rubber sledge. I bent them all out, tried to put it on.. failed. bent them back a little. tried to put them on.. etc. i think it has something to do with the wheel flexing. but these are not the old style wheels.. I'm stumped.
    I wish I could try out the welding idea, but im no welder.
     
  12. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 49,513

    squirrel
    Member

    you might try using pliers to bend the teeth out straighter, instead of just bending the whole tabs outward
     
  13. Kustomz
    Joined: Jun 7, 2006
    Posts: 555

    Kustomz
    Member

    Those wheels look more like something you would put a small dish type hubcap on. Doesn't look like it has enough of a recess around the edge to hold a full cover.
     
  14. Jimmy
    Joined: Dec 11, 2002
    Posts: 137

    Jimmy
    Member

    I tend to go along with the wheel flex theory. My son had a falcon that kept losing its full wheelcovers. Radials on original rims. I put a set of dog dish caps on it and never had another problem with it.
     
  15. 55special
    Joined: Feb 19, 2007
    Posts: 17

    55special
    Member
    from NC

    You might try running a bead of silicone caulk on the wheel where the hubcap tabs contact. Let it set up for a few hours and drive it.
     
  16. bloodandwhisky
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 181

    bloodandwhisky
    Member
    from DFW Texas

    but then when i install the caps. it will just scrape the caulk off, right?
    i sure hope i didnt buy some 15 inche wheels for these hubcaps and them not fit! that would suck!
     
  17. flathead4d
    Joined: Oct 24, 2005
    Posts: 889

    flathead4d
    Member

    Had the same problem with my 50 Ford and 55 Olds hubcaps. It's the rim flex with radial tires that loosens them up. Switched the rims to later model rims (actually 87 Bronco II rims) designed for radial tires and no more problems. With the old original rims you coud see where the hub caps would walk around the rims by lookin at the valve stems. I tries some of the above methods before but no luck. Change the rims.
     
  18. Silhouettes 57
    Joined: Dec 9, 2006
    Posts: 2,791

    Silhouettes 57
    Member

    I kind of agree with the recess theory as I have run '57 Caddy caps on the stock wheels of my '52 Kaiser that I was running radials no problems. The stock wheels of my '60 F100 would not accept '55 Buick caps because of the recess. I run 14" stock '63 T-Bird wheels with radials and still run my '57 Dodge Lancers. I think if your rims are flexing that much you have a problem. I had a '62 F100 and I keep loosing my right rear '55 Ford full caps upon a closer look I had stress cracks on the inside of the wheel.
    By the way I've been running different caps on different wheels since 1961 along with all my pals and some of these issues never came up.
    Good Luck
     
  19. ne'erdowell
    Joined: Nov 30, 2005
    Posts: 445

    ne'erdowell
    Member

    Those are great looking covers. From the back they look like they started as Plymouth??? On my son's dirt bike I have taken a grinder to the footpegs to sharpen the points for more grip. Maybe something along those lines... I realize there isn't a lot of extra material. Dave
     
  20. warning!!!robbing thread!!!!!!:D
    okay a year ago or so, i lowered my car. it had 2 newer wheels and 2 org wheels..one on the frnt and one on the back. i never put my lancers back on cause i was waitin to get it alligned and my new www's on. so last week, [yes imma slacker] i got the whites on it. put the caps back on, and the skirts again.! [note] i got 2 more org rims so now they all match, and before lowering i drove with the caps for ever with no troubles!] so i get them on, take a pick and drive it 20 feet out the yard and the fronts ones were layin on the ground!

    i thought it was cause my large nuts [lug that is:p ] so i put the lil ones back on. they snapped on hard...did the same thing agian...they popped off within 30-40 foot! what the hells goin on? they clear everything fine and the bias tires raised my car back up 2 friggin inches!
    HELP!:eek:
     

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  21. Bluto
    Joined: Feb 15, 2005
    Posts: 5,113

    Bluto
    Member Emeritus

    J.C.Whitney, Pep Boys, HUB CAP LOCKS jeeeeeezzzzzzzzz:eek:

    A bead J.B. Weld also works
     
  22. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 15,236

    Squablow
    Member

    That's wierd, I had a '65 T-bird too and it too would puke the
    hubcaps off every once in a while.

    My theory is that the offset of the rim on the T-bird makes it so
    that the center of the wheel (the part that would hold a dog
    dish on) is touching or close to touching the cap, making it come
    off whenever some sideways force is put on the rim.
     
  23. BigRed390
    Joined: Mar 21, 2007
    Posts: 484

    BigRed390
    Member

    Don't have an answer for your hubcap question, but I LOVE the t-bird!!!!
     
  24. caddylakman
    Joined: Nov 22, 2004
    Posts: 333

    caddylakman
    Member
    from USA

    suggestions.. first of all...to keep your caps.. write the your name, address, and phone number on them!!! secondly.. to keep em on the rims.. use some silicone caulk. makes it kinda hard to take em off, but not impossible because silicone never fully hardens. :)
     

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