Today I started getting parts ready to assemble some new wheels. I have the right rims and hubs. New bolts, joining plates, and rivets are readily available. But apparently nobody is producing the metal part that goes around the valve stem. I looked through all my catalogues from Anderson to Snyder, and didn't see it anywhere. Anybody know of a source? Maybe this would be another good project for Randall, Bob, Glen, or one of the other parts makers.
make your own, copper tube. and flaring tool. charley
Steve, I'm confused. I thought you were going to
"pick your battles" and send your wood felloe wheels off to be redone professionally. Wouldn't the wheel rebuilder replace the stem grommet with a new one that he obtained or fabricated?
Yes; the wheel builder does this. At least Bill Calimer does.
The problem with making these and other parts is: which one do you make? The correct one to fit original stems, or a larger one made to accommodate today's large stems?
That grommet comes with a new re-wooding job, part of the process for wood felloe.
Wheel by Anderson's Wood Wheels.
Very good. If they're installed at the wheel shop I won't worry about it.
Stutzmann always installs new tubes that are big enough to fit today's metal valve stems. I think they are made from 5/8" OD copper tube, which has a hole inside about 1/2".
They are way too big for the original metal stems, but perfect for rubber stem tubes..
Royce - Between what you just said, and Charlie Shaver's idea in his post above, and, knowing Steve Jelf's ability as a "fabricator" (and photographer) I can see this thread becoming another lesson in do-it-yourself creativity!
George Garrigan showed me how to do it on a lathe with copper tubing and a tool bit that flared the end. By moving the tool you got the correct shape. Probably the same as what Charlie does.
Here's a simple roll crimp tool I made for 9/16" tubing. It puts a roll flare on the tube.
As I mentioned above, I'll let the wheel shop do it. But the comments about the new metal stems being too big made me curious. So I tried a new brass tube stem for fit in that original grommet shown in the first picture. It slips right in. No problem.
Here is a picture of Model T teens era valve stems. Front on the left, rear on the right: