Frederick Goes Nuts!

Three stud Renault 5 Gordini alloy wheels will fit a Renault 4 , but you have to pay special attention to the wheel nuts.

If you have the original Gordini nuts you have nothing to worry about.

The Gordini wheel nut is an oddball with a 45 degree taper (most alloy wheel nuts have a 60 degree taper or no taper at all and are centered on the hub).

Gordini wheel  nut  

The standard steel wheel Renault 4 wheel nut is completely the wrong shape. It starts off with a promising taper, but ends up with a wide flat. These nuts will not center the Gordini wheels correctly, and might damage the soft alloy or allow all the wheels to fall off.

Frederick the Frog has issued the following safety advice: "If the ride height of your car suddenly reduces by more than 200mm, then your wheels have fallen off. You should immediately stop driving and contact your local amphibian."

Renault 4 wheel nut

All is not lost! Frederick has a lathe in the living room.

Frederick driving a lathe

The standard wheel nuts can be machined to work on the Gordini alloy wheels. The taper is 45 degrees, and if the minimum of metal is removed there is no loss in thread depth when machining the nuts.

Cutting a taper on a lathe

The diameter of the Gordini wheel nut is 21.4mm, although it's not a critical dimension. The important thing is the flat of the taper continues for about 6mm to spread the load against the alloy wheel.

Cutting an edge on a lathe

With 12 wheel nuts required it's not a quick job for your local machine shop. Frederick spent about 2 hours machining all the nuts (might have been less if Fred had a sharp tool).

Renault price the wheel nuts at £6 each, but don't seem convinced they can actually supply them. If they can it would probably work out at about the same price as machining. If they can't then hopefully there is enough info on this page to help.

If anything else is required: bolt head size 17mm AF, thread M10, pitch non standard (fine) - probably 1.0mm, but I don't have a pitch gauge so I'm guessing.

Frederick and a load of wheel nuts

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