Wheel Bats/Cones Completed!

“Holy progress Batman, that was a productive day!”

Things got started around 10am and rolled on through until about 7:30pm with grinders whirling and welders zapping.

Yesterday I was in the groove and managed to make a ton of progress.  The goal… finish the wheel-cones and wheel-bat fabrication.  Mission accomplished 🙂

I picked-up where I left off on Friday by cutting out the tops of the 3.5″ tubes which will be used to hold everything together.  First step was to weld on some nylon lock nuts which was a tricky affair.  I could only do a couple of spot welds at a time before the nylon would start to melt on me.  So it took a bit of time going back and forth and waiting for the metal to cool between welds.

In between the wait times on welding the nuts, I took some rough measurements and cut some more 3.5″ tube for the other three wheels and welded them onto the spacers.  Again, a little bit at a time so that the spacers wouldn’t warp.

Once the nuts were welded onto the top plates I was able to take one of them and weld it to the top of the finished post from Friday to complete the fabrication.   The finished assembled front wheel can be seen at the top of this blog post.

You can see from the picture above that I numbered each of the posts.  I also numbered each of the cones to make sure that there were matching posts and cones so that all of my measurements matched.  Each cone is slightly different in thickness of material which can throw off your measurements.

I finished the second front post and then started the same process on the rear wheels.  I always forget just how big the rear wheels are until I take them off the car.   I figured I would take a picture of one of them next to my BMX to give you an idea of scale.  Momma-Mia!!

The rear wheels are also a lot deeper than the front wheels so they have a longer cone and post as seen below.

Now that I knew that everything fit properly on both the front and rear wheels I took the posts/spacers outside to give them a bit of paint around the spacer that I had to grind of for welding.  I also taped off the rest of the pipe since it’s such a tight fit.  A layer of paint may cause me problems.  I’ll end up painting the post the same color as the wheel once the wheels are ready for final installation.

Last up was fabricating some bolts onto the center of the wheel-bats.  After a bit of measuring I cut out some small strips that would fit on the back of the bats and drilled three holes.  The center hole is for the the 3/8″ bolt that will thread into the post, and the other two are for two small lag bolts that will secure the plate to the bat.

I then marked the center of the bat and used the plate as my guide for marking the location to drill pilot holes for the lag bolts.  I also started threading the lag bolts a little bit just to get them going.

Next was cutting off the head off a 3/8″ bolt and squaring it up in the center hole followed by welding it in-place and grinding away any of the excess.

The last step for the wheel-bats was to place the plate on the back of the bat and screw in the lag bolts.  Once I had them threaded almost all the way in I chopped their heads off and welded them to the plate.  This ensures that there’s no way that the lag bolt can back out of the bat.

Welding needed to be done quickly because the resin would start to melt under the high heat.   These steps were then repeated for the other three wheel-bats, and as you can see from the picture at the top of this post they worked out quite well 🙂

Here’s a picture of two of them drying after receiving a couple coats of primer.

One thing that I’m not 100% sure of is how these will affect the balance of the wheel.  I’ll likely bring the front wheel and cone/bat assembly to my local tire shop to see if they can give it a spin to see just how much they affect the balance.

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2 thoughts on “Wheel Bats/Cones Completed!

  1. Hello Tim,

    Been watching you site very intently and I’m always excited to see new updates. Your work is very inspiring. It’s actually keeping me going with my project.

    I am ready to order my tires and I can find only Mickey Thompson Sportsman Pro only. Are these the same as the Pro Street/Strip? They are also bias ply, is this correct?

    Thanks,

    Dave Boboc

    1. Hi Dave,

      Mine are Sportsman Pro tires. I did have another Batmobile builder say that they did have those tires and then switched to more of a street only tire. Their comment was that they would get flat spots when the tires sat for a while that were annoying at speed. But I don’t think I’ve seen that so far with mine. Now I haven’t had the car moving beyond my driveway yet though either 🙂

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