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Rocket Racing Deep Angle Spinner Knock-Offs

2/16/2017
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I invested in some new wheels and tires for my 1933 5-W Coupe, and in the process a co-worker talked me into adding some extra style with Deep Angle Spinner Knock-offs from Rocket Racing Wheels. At the time, my new wheels and tires were adding up to a hefty investment, but man I’m glad I also purchased those Spinner Knock-offs. Here’s how you install them:

Make sure you have two Driver and two Passenger spinner caps and threaded adapter bases, four “O” rings (which may already be installed on each adapter base) and one allen wrench. You’ll also need thread anti-lock if it’s not included. You may need to use the allen wrench to loosen the set screws on each spinner cap before removing the adapter.

After I mounted and balanced my new wheels and tires, I placed my wheels next to their intended position on the vehicle. Then I set the spinner caps next to their intended wheels. It’s important to keep your driver side and passenger side spinner caps and adapters on the correct side, as failure to do so might result in the caps not remaining properly secured to the adapter.

The spinner caps come labeled “Passenger” or “Driver” and are paired with an adapter base. The label is important because the threads are different between the passenger side and the driver side, so your installation directions will be different depending on the side of the car:

  • For the passenger side
  • the cap can be installed by spinning it to the right
  • the cap can be removed by spinning it to the left
  • For the driver side
  • the cap can be installed by spinning it to the left
  • the cap can be removed by spinning it to the right

Remembering those directions is REALLY important when I come back to garage to do maintenance on the coupe a few hundred miles later. When I’m in the garage trying to crank a spinner cap off, I need to remember my normal lefty-loosey doesn’t apply to the driver side. I keep it all straight by thinking about the direction the tires spin while on the car. Centrifugal force would spin a cap loose from the wheel if it were installed with the wrong thread direction. So if the driver side tire spins forward (to my left when I’m looking at the wheel), then I want to spin the cap in the same direction to install. And to remove the cap, I’ll spin it to the right.

The instruction sheet provided used terms such as RH and LH, right side and left side, and the actual product was labeled with Driver or Passenger, but they all equate to the same meaning:

  • RH – Driver side
  • LH – Passenger side

The base is installed from the inside of the wheel. Each adapter is held into place with a rubber “O” ring gasket. Make sure it’s seated into the “O” ring groove of the wheel by pushing the adapter into the wheel through the center bore from the back of the wheel. You’ll feel a slight thud as the “O” ring snaps into the groove. The “O” ring is supposed to fit snug, but the instructions say it’s okay to use a small amount of lubricant to get the adapter into position.

Muscle and endurance. That’s what this part takes. I have neither but I had cheerleaders wanting to go for a ride. Remember to follow the star pattern when you tighten down and then torque your lug nuts.

Dig out your anti-seize, as your instructions will encourage you to apply a modest amount to the threads of each adapter unit before installing the spinner caps onto your wheels. You only need to hand tighten the spinners. They will get tighter as the car moves in a forward direction as you drive. Remember your installing directions will be different depending on the side of the car:

  • For the passenger side, the cap can be installed by spinning it to the right
  • For the driver side, the cap can be installed by spinning it to the left

Now tighten the set screw on the side of the spinner with your allen wrench. It locks the spinner cap into place along a special groove on the adapter.

I painted the handle of this allen wrench yellow and keep it in my road tool box. I already have an allen wrench set, but the yellow makes it easy to pinpoint amongst the other tools. You know, because being on the side of the road is already stressful. I don’t need to be rummaging through a toolbox not finding what I need.

Now go out and drive. And in 25 miles or so, check your spinner caps to make sure they’re secure. I got into the habit of feeling over and visually inspecting the car every time I stop for gas. I tug on the spinners as I make my way around the car, also looking at the wheels and tires, steering u-joints, headlight mounts, shock mounts… etc., making sure everything is okay before I blast down the road.

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