|The MGA With An Attitude
SPACE-SAVER SPARES - WL-202
The pictures should tell the story. Space-saver spare tire from SAABs pre-87 fit the MGA and MGB perfectly. This makes for a lot more room in the boot too! Cost at local salvage yard $11.
The problem is a little different for a wire wheel car, as it would be difficult to find very narrow wire wheel with compatible splined hub. But original MGA 48 spoke wire wheels are only 4" wide, so this is more a problem of overall tire size.
At 10:38 PM 5/22/06, Jim Ferguson wrote:
>"To solve some space and fit problems with the 165sr15 spare, I got a space saver compact tire mounted on the wire wheel rim. It is for "limp-home, repair" only. I would not use it in the West where a repair was more than 25 miles away. (I don't want to damage my differential.). The tire dealer said the old tube was ok since it was ONLY for very temporary use at low speed and very limited distance. The tire used was a T125/70-15. The overall diameter was reduced about 4" and the width 1.5". The top folds better and more space in the trunk."
A word or warning here about the tube. It is definitely taboo to use an oversize inner tube. If the tube has a fold or wrinkle it will rub and chafe on itself and will fail with only a short amount of driving. Click for larger picture. An antique tire dealer may have a tube small enough for this application, as some older cars used much smaller tires.
Another possibility could be to seal the spoke holes in the rim and run this one tubeless. The original 48 spoke wheels are not too difficult to seal, as all of the spokes go along one edge of the rim in the bead area of the wheel.
The difference in tire diameter should not bother the differential significantly for a short run. The 15% difference in tire diameter, makes the smaller tire turn less than two revolutions per second faster than the larger one at 50 MPH. As long as you are not running at higher speed or towing a heavy trailer or climbing steep mountain roads, this should not overheat or wear out the differential. Of course it is not recommended to make a habit of running long miles with the small tire. Most space safer tires are rated for 50 miles at 50 MPH, and may have 3000 miles total tread life expectancy.
There is another approach for welding a splined center hub from a wire wheel into the center of a modern space saver (bolt-on) steel wheel.
Since the srandard 48-spoke wire wheel rim is only 4" wide, this appears to be more an issue of the tire size than the wheel. I don't know if it gets much smaller than the space saver spare on the wire wheel shown above. So perhaps the welded hub may not be worth the effort (or cost).
See next page for Twin Cam/Deluxe space saver spare.