Repro hubcaps and headlight trim rings - review - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums

 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 09:29 AM Thread Starter
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Repro hubcaps and headlight trim rings - review

In the last few months I purchased a headlight trim ring and set of hubcaps.

Problems abound.

The trim ring came from OKP, which is normally a reliable source for 102 parts. Christian has one (of the only 10 remaining in the world!), so is aware of what we have. In general, the ring looks OK, with only a tiny variance from the shape of the original. If changed in pairs, it would not be noticed.

The problem is that the inset dimension of the inner locating ring is different than the original. This results in the ring standing out from the fender profile by a couple of millimeters. If you'd never seen the originals that perfectly butt up against the body, you might not care. However, the original Touring fit is too nice to willingly surrender. Christian said he'd take it back, but I've decided to keep it to investigate what might be done to sort it out. Not many nice NOS rings loose in the wild.

I bought four repro hubcaps from Ricambi Nuvolari. I had seen a set on doggadave's car in Oz. His looked OK, except for a noticeable wrinkle in the metal around the outer circumference. As the caps were insanely tight on his wheel mounting studs, I assumed they had been unwisely forced into place causing a deformation in the thinner than original metal.

Nope. All four of my caps arrived with various degrees of wrinkle in the outer circumference. Additionally, the net ID of the outer edge is measurably smaller than the original. Thus, installing them will certainly require a force sufficient to inflict further damage in the thin metal

I've notified Nuvolari, and await their reply. Shipping new caps with such unsightly wrinkling hints strongly at poor business practices. These should have been rejected during production. It is possible that the tight ID could be addressed, but there's no point in that if the end result is unacceptable.

I've been collecting original hub caps hoping to get a good set I could have rechromed. However, this is never as nice as original chrome. I'm still looking. I hope Nuvolari takes care of things.

Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 09:45 AM
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I was told that Giulietta hub caps should be available later this year. The reproduction hub caps that I purchased last year used larger diameter plastic inserts. I do not know if the new reproductions will use larger diameter inserts or not. I have chrome plated original hub caps without inserts and wonder if anyone reproduced the original diameter inserts.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 09:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DPeterson3 View Post
The problem is that the inset dimension of the inner locating ring is different than the original. This results in the ring standing out from the fender profile by a couple of millimeters. If you'd never seen the originals that perfectly butt up against the body, you might not care. However, the original Touring fit is too nice to willingly surrender. Christian said he'd take it back, but I've decided to keep it to investigate what might be done to sort it out. Not many nice NOS rings loose in the wild.
Don, on my 106 Spider I also found that the Cicognani rubber seals are not very precise with respect to diameter, thickness and firmness, which made it difficult to get the inner lamp housing installed in such a way that the outer trim ring would fit snug but not so loose that it would fall off when someone sneezes nearby -- and installing it without distorting the rubber seal on the fender too much. I solved the problem by using plastic standoff spacers from an electronic store between the lamp housing and the fender. BTW, the parts catalog for both 102 and 106 Spider headlights don't show the rubber seals in correct sequence: One seal is between the fender and the lamp housing, the second one between the outer trim ring and the installed lamp housing. Both affect the fit of the trim ring with respect to the fender line and therefore its appearance.

-Ruedi
'63 2600 Touring Spider (AR 191437, the car that started the 2000/2600 International Register, reassembly in progress)
ex-'65 2600 SZ (AR 856043, now a restomod in Austria)
Maintainer of a private 2600 SZ register (not the one in the Netherlands).
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 10:18 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tubut View Post
Don, on my 106 Spider I also found that the Cicognani rubber seals are not very precise with respect to diameter, thickness and firmness, which made it difficult to get the inner lamp housing installed in such a way that the outer trim ring would fit snug but not so loose that it would fall off when someone sneezes nearby -- and installing it without distorting the rubber seal on the fender too much. I solved the problem by using plastic standoff spacers from an electronic store between the lamp housing and the fender. BTW, the parts catalog for both 102 and 106 Spider headlights don't show the rubber seals in correct sequence: One seal is between the fender and the lamp housing, the second one between the outer trim ring and the installed lamp housing. Both affect the fit of the trim ring with respect to the fender line and therefore its appearance.
The 102 and 106 trim rings are different. I don't think the 102 is intended to have a rubber gasket that shows between the fender metal and the trim ring.

Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kuni123456 View Post
I was told that Giulietta hub caps should be available later this year. The reproduction hub caps that I purchased last year used larger diameter plastic inserts. I do not know if the new reproductions will use larger diameter inserts or not. I have chrome plated original hub caps without inserts and wonder if anyone reproduced the original diameter inserts.
I recently spotted an ad for 102 hubcap inserts. No idea where, however, or whether they are dimensionally correct or not.

The inserts on the repro 102 caps mount via some sort of rear-fit retainer through a hole in the middle of the cap. Looks OK from the outside.

Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
DPeterson3 is offline  
post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-26-2017, 11:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tubut View Post
...the parts catalog for both 102 and 106 Spider headlights don't show the rubber seals in correct sequence: One seal is between the fender and the lamp housing, the second one between the outer trim ring and the installed lamp housing.
Ruedi is 100% correct on the above and yes Don, neither gasket shows, especially the one between the outer trim ring and the installed lamp housing.
The correct gasket is very 'three dimensional' and covers the installed lamp housing.

See post 14 and the 4th photograph down in this post...
Touring 2000 headlight chrome ring removal

Mark

Last edited by IRONBLOCK; 02-26-2017 at 12:02 PM.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2017, 07:06 AM Thread Starter
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I had a chance to work on the new, repro headlight rim yesterday.

I originally thought that the problem was due to the inner spacing ring being too rearward inside the rim. It is about 0.5mm more rearward than the original. Also, the upper "hook" is fabricated as part of the spacing ring rather than as a separate piece mounted forward of the spacing ring.

After much study (ponder twice, cut once), I realized that the original rubber ring behind the bucket had swollen to fill the original space, had developed a "lip" from squeezing into the crevice between the original spacing ring and rim, and was somewhat harder than when new.

Carefully using my Dremel, I sanded off the lip that had formed around the outer edge of the rubber gasket. Voila, the rim now butts up nicely against the body. Perhaps 90% as well as the original, anyway. Perhaps more fiddling would reach 100%, but maybe not. It's completely acceptable now.

I'll add to my report on the hubcaps later.....

Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
DPeterson3 is offline  
post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2017, 09:25 AM Thread Starter
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Update on Ricambi Nuvolari repro hubcaps.

I had a civil and professional exchange with Nuvolari, (copied below). They informed me that the hubcaps were made by a vendor that is no longer is business, and that they had been an OE vendor for Alfa. If these facts are literal, then the world supply of repro hubcaps for 102 Roadsters is likely to dry up. It is hard to imagine anyone tooling up for the few (less than 10! ) cars remaining.

The gist of their reply confirmed that they knew of these defects prior to advertising or shipping them. This makes me think that they are selling the remnants from the manufacturer, who had quite possibly pulled these aside as not meeting quality specs. I am disappointed by this. I asked them to explain how to install them, but they have not replied to this, in spite of telling me that it was possible. I will ask them again before I decide whether to send them back, or not. I'll update if and when I hear from them.

Good morning,

we saw your photo: these defects are due to the production and bending sheet metal.
These are stock funds, a company that is now closed. The same company, operating for 30 years, directly provided the 'Alfa Romeo. The measures that you see do not affect the assembly of the cups, if you want we can send you a video to show you how to mount them. However other cups are not available, as are all the ones you've sent.
However if you are still determined to return, we can accept and refund.
Please let us know

regards,

Andrea

Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
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