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Hubcap Question...

 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 16 Jan 2018, 09:41 pm
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Location: Cedar Lake, Indiana
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Default Hubcap Question...

This seems silly, but 3 different times I lost my front driver's side hubcap. Twice I was able to quickly find it (thanks to the front/rear dash cam I have), third time it was gone because I didn't notice it was missing until hours later.

So I go to the local scrap yard to get a pair of hubcaps (the passenger side was somewhat cracked/damaged so I figured replace both).

My original (by that I mean what was on the car when I bought it in 2016) ones just "snap" in with a metal ring. The only ones the scrapyard could find were the type where the "fake" lug nuts actually threaded onto the actual lugs. They looked similar enough (15", 5 lugs, 7 spokes) so I bought them anyway once they threw in the lug nuts I needed with the external threads for the hubcap.

My thinking was, since the "new" hubcaps screw on, there's far less chance of them just "falling off". Unfortunately after I got home, I found they only gave me 9 instead of 10.

Searching every parts store site, I could not find a lug nut for the PT that was designed that way, with the external threads for the hubcap's decorative lugs to thread onto. So I had to wonder, did the PT ever even come with such hubcaps?

I did change out the lugs on the driver's side (better than no hubcap at all), but I'm just curious if there was a specific model/year/VIN where the PT did in fact come with screw-on hubcaps in anyone's experience? Or were these likely aftermarket or even from a different vehicle and the scrapyard just gave me the closest thing they could find appearance-wise?

If you're bored, and I know this isn't the forum for videos, but I threw together a video of my experience...

Note the first time this happened isn't on the video as that time it happened in a parking lot... and I didn't bother to save the footage.



Any thoughts, suggestions, or ideas welcome. Note that I like the looks of the new ones a bit better (I didn't take the time to put before/after pics in the video...) but for the other side (so my OCD doesn't get the better of me) I really want that last lug nut so I can make at least the two front ones the same, short of rotozipping out the hole and putting one "original" lug nut in that spot lol...

PS - I tried not to embed the video since this isn't the appropriate forum but even unchecking "Automatically Parse Links..." it still embeds the video. I hope that's OK, sorry if I'm breaking a forum rule ...
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Old 16 Jan 2018, 09:54 pm
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Default Re: Hubcap Question...

My 2002 has those
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Old 16 Jan 2018, 10:03 pm
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Default Re: Hubcap Question...

Now that I think about it maybe I should go back to the scrap yard and just say "you shorted me a lug nut, just get me one of these that will fit" lol... been dealing with these guys for 25+ years, I'm sure they won't give me a hard time (which is why I won't mention them by name, sure it was just a mistake)...

Even searching for a single lug nut with same threads etc is a pain and they don't seem to sell them individually, only in 5-packs... when it warms up this weekend I'll hit them up for the missing nut and hopefully make my car look a tiny bit better lol...

The year thing probably explains why I couldn't find a set for an '08 online, maybe they cheaped out in later years and used the snap-on type...
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Old 16 Jan 2018, 10:20 pm
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Default Re: Hubcap Question...

My base 2002 had those for about 24hrs after I drove it off the dealers lot.
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Old 17 Jan 2018, 06:35 pm
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Default Re: Hubcap Question...

My 06 has the bolt on hub caps. Only 3 lugs hold the cap on, the other two holes in the hub cap let an installed lug pass through the cap.

These two holes are so you can install the wheel, snap the cap on then install the other 3.

If you had to run with a miss matched nut, use it in a hole that just snaps on.
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Old 17 Jan 2018, 07:49 pm
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Default Re: Hubcap Question...

these are the lugs used with the hubcaps in question.

Capture.JPG

normally the lugnuts hold the wheels on(all 5). the hubcaps have captive nuts on them(again, 5) that are hollow plastic with a chrome tin cap that screw onto the outer threads in the pic. i found it a bit annoying as the tin caps are 1mm larger than the actual lug nuts and when they fall off you need 18 & 19mm sockets on hand to remove the wheel. i don't doubt yours are like that but that is a very oddball setup that makes no sense. maybe 3/5 are simply stuck to the captive hubcap nuts

think about it... people in general are too stupid to do what you describe. how many times would those 2 lug nuts go off and on before the average road side tire changer had them: A-spaced properly, and: B-lined up with the valve stem.
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Last edited by rob302; 17 Jan 2018 at 08:01 pm.
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Old 17 Jan 2018, 08:35 pm
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Default Re: Hubcap Question...

Quote:
Originally Posted by rob302 View Post
i found it a bit annoying as the tin caps are 1mm larger than the actual lug nuts and when they fall off you need 18 & 19mm sockets on hand to remove the wheel. i don't doubt yours are like that but that is a very oddball setup that makes no sense. maybe 3/5 are simply stuck to the captive hubcap nuts
The caps are stainless steel, this capped nut goes back to the mid 70's so it isn't anything new. The steel nut with a threaded plastic cap is a late 80's thing.

The problem with SS capped nuts is rust bets under the cap and expands making a proper socket too small.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rob302 View Post
think about it... people in general are too stupid to do what you describe.
There is a big difference between stupid and non knowing, many just don't know but would get it if shown. Remember, for the vast majority of car owners, a car is what they use to go about their life no their life.
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Old 17 Jan 2018, 11:43 pm
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Default Re: Hubcap Question...

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Last edited by rob302; 17 Jan 2018 at 11:51 pm.
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