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Classic XK Forum

On putting spats / skirts on wire wheel XK's ...

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baloo Avatar
baloo s y
Louisville, KY, USA   USA
We like the look of the rear wheel fender skirts/ spats on the 50's XK's. BUT, also like the front wire wheels.
This car is not a restoration, nor will it ever be such. Too many major modifications were made to the car prior to our ownership, such that resto would be in a league beyond our energy level.

Saw an XK120 on EBay, with wire fronts and spats on the rear (see attached pic).
TWO basic areas of questions:

1) Wheels:
In order to use spats, is it as simple as swapping out the spinners on the rear wires and using flat, non-spoked hex nuts in order to clear the spats?
If so, what nuts to use? Where to purchase? Etc.
If not this simple, what does it involve.

Otherwise, do we have to change to rear steel disc wheels?
Does this involve changing axles for a lug bolt pattern?

2) Spat fitment:
I see that there is a bead along the edge of the rear fenders, and I was told that this is not present on the spat-style cars.
Is this bead easy to remove, or is it welded on?
Are there any other modifications needed in order to convert non-spat to spat fenders?

LASTLY, anyone have any old spats to sell, and or the replacement wheel nuts to give the needed clearance for the wire wheels?

Thanks.



1968 Jag 420G
1976 MG Midget, BugEye nose conversion
1987 Porsche 911 Carrera Turbo conversion
1956 Jag XK140

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Attachments:
xk120 with skirts, wires.jpg    52.7 KB
xk120 with skirts, wires.jpg

baloo Avatar
baloo s y
Louisville, KY, USA   USA
Might as well provide an update on this, as no one has responded....

We did buy a pair of spats, and we got 2 non-winged spinners (octagonal wheel nuts as well as 3-sided spinners that SC Parts states in their catalog also fit the classic XK axles -- see attached pix of these types).

1) Putting on non-winged spinners on XK wire wheels does NOT provide axle clearance when mounting spats (see attached pic of "non-winged spinner"winking smiley. Looks like even these spinners still press against the spats (did not need to fit them to see the problem.
It will require either a cut-out of the spats (see attached photos found online, showing others' solutions to this clearance).
Or, it will require a wheel/axle change??? This I do not know.
I personally do not like the cut-outs on the spats.

An alternative might be to recurve or indent the spats outward to provide clearance, but I think it might destroy the smooth lines of the body. BUT, I think this might be the route we take, as it would be easier than replacing axles (if that is what is needed for clearance).

2) The bead along the wheelwell that is found on wire wheel cars is brass and is brazed on. We removed it. It also looks like a piece of foam rubber moulding is fitted to the lip to buffer the metal of the spat and the body. Have not tried looking for this yet. per some experts, this is glued to the body, while others state they have glued it to the spat.
Also, there are two notches, one each at the front bottom and rear bottom of the spats, that fit over pegs at corresponding pegs in the bottom lip of the body, front and rear of the spat. (See attached pic showing notchedpieces.) We will probably simple use bolts/nuts thru the body lip to attach to the spat motches -- and possibly use stainless wingnuts in order to be able to easily remove the nuts in case the spats must be removed for servicing the rear tires.


BTW, there is a great discussion of spats at http://www.jag-lovers.org/xk-lovers/library/spats_attatching.html .
Also, another great expert on fitting (and actually MAKING) spats is by Gary Grant at https://forums.jag-lovers.com/t/xk-spat-update/296345 .



1968 Jag 420G
1976 MG Midget, BugEye nose conversion
1987 Porsche 911 Carrera Turbo conversion
1956 Jag XK140



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018-02-09 08:27 AM by baloo.


Attachments:
Car with modified spats.jpg    23.5 KB
Car with modified spats.jpg

Car with modified spats-2.jpg    69.7 KB
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s-l500 (6).jpg    21.7 KB
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Octagonal spinners.jpg    37.1 KB
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baloo Avatar
baloo s y
Louisville, KY, USA   USA
Anyone have any input regarding ways to change REAR wire wheels to DISC wheels, in order to use spats?

With the many CNC-manufacturers out there, who are making custom wheels, there would be a wheel design that would circumvent any fitting problems, no?
I was hoping that others' experiences would shine a light on this conversion.

Thanks for any ideas.



1968 Jag 420G
1976 MG Midget, BugEye nose conversion
1987 Porsche 911 Carrera Turbo conversion
1956 Jag XK140

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baloo Avatar
baloo s y
Louisville, KY, USA   USA
Just to bring this topic back up from the past....
Turns out that the rear hubs with drums have to be changed to fit steel disc wheels in order to clear the spats -- a task that appears formidable (at least according to experiential postings on Jag forums) because the problem is pulling the stuck hubs after all these years, and getting replacements that have not been distorted due to pulling.
According to various inputs (none verified), hubs from Mark 5-7 should fit.
Further research might show that other hubs will fit -- just might have to redrill for the correct wheel circle pattern, which is a rather simple problem to overcome.
At the same time, might as well convert to rear disc brakes (front ventilated discs already installed).
Also, finding an aftermarket wheel with the proper clearance is no longer a problem, given modern machining and plentitude of wheels (No more scavenging for rare OLD parts)

BUT, still really welcome anyone's input regarding experiences in doing this conversion of rear wires to discs. I have grown to dislike hammering my thumbs and forehead figgerin' things out.



1968 Jag 420G
1976 MG Midget, BugEye nose conversion
1987 Porsche 911 Carrera Turbo conversion
1956 Jag XK140



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2019-01-29 04:53 PM by baloo.

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