For this installment I thought this article by Mike Allison of triple M
fame and contributor of many, many technical articles relating to prewar MGs
may be of interest here. It is a portion of an article entitled "Mike
Allison advises how to tackle a front axel overhaul on your pre-1956 MG."
This section deals with the proper tightening of the k/o spinner.
Seems simple enough, but many of us are guilty of just the methods Mike
advises against. So have a read and file it away for use later. The only
thing I would add is that inspecting the splined hub and the splines within
the wheel hub for wear is always a good thing to do as part of your seasonal
check list. Worn, loose splines will cause a wire wheel to become very loose
and potentially quite dangerous. With Mike’s permission, the article
"The last item on the list is the fitting of wheel nuts. If you have a
14/40 or an M-type just do the nuts up to 40/50 lb.ft. torque, but with the
Rudge pattern wheel, with its "knock-off" spinner, hardly anyone seems to
know the correct procedure for wheel fitting. It grieves me to see people
banging seven shades of something brown out of the wheel nut with a copper
hammer in the mistaken notion that you can give the job too little effort.
Firstly, thoroughly clean both the male (stub-axle) and female (wheel)
hubs, and then coat each with a thin layer of fresh grease, paying
particular care to grease the cone areas on which the wheel sits and slide
the wheel into place: it should slide right home with no great effort. Now
clean the nut and grease the thread and cone areas, and make sure that there
is grease on the male cone of the wheel. Now fit the nut by hand, spinning
it until it is hand tight on its seating. Let the jack off, and allow the
full weight of the car to fall onto the wheel and then with the hide end of
the mallet give the nut two firm blows, and the job is done.
Since I was shown this method by Reg Jackson, who was in turn instructed
by Nuvolari himself, I feel this really is the correct way to make sure the
wheels stay where they should and my feelings are backed by personal
The routine of removing the wheels and regreasing the hubs should be
carried out at each service for all wheels or once every month, and it
becomes more important if you have done a lot of wet weather driving. You
need not worry about the wheel falling off. If you've done the job properly
it cannot because the nut self tightens onto its seating. Hammering the
wheel too tight onto the hub does two things, firstly it spreads the female
cone of the nut damaging this and preventing the cone from seating on the
wheel, and secondly it allows the wheel to float on the splines of the hub
wearing these out and preventing the wheel from driving without a knock."