Hi all. I have Campy 8's and 10's on my Pantera with the original aluminum valve stems installed. I'm due for new tires and thought about replacing the valve stems as well since they've probably been on there for 50 years now. They don't leak at all but seems prudent to get new ones installed. Are these something special or will my local performance orientated tire installation shop have them? I see the vendors sell them but not sure if they are standard parts a tire pro could get/install. I did a search on the forum but didn't find many hits Thanks!
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If you could, would you post a pic of those valve stems?
They have replaceable rubber washers that one goes on the inside of the tire and one the outside.
When you do the tires you need to be vigilant with the mechanic that they don't opt to put regular stems in there behind your back even after you tell them to reuse the originals?
Some of these guys I think that you just have to hit them with a hammer to make them do what you tell them to do?
I actually don't do that any more. The Judge made me promise to stop that as part of the court settlement, but admittedly I am tempted to resume the practice.
Frogmike, I’m sure those are not the original valve stems. In the 1980’s, I bought a bunch of wheels directly from Campagnolo (Technomagnesio) and the valve stems they supplied with the wheels were 100% aluminum. They were sealed by a single O-Ring on the inside and had a knurled aluminum cap. I’ll see if I can find a photo. Manufacturers like Speedline, OZ Racing and BBS all used the same valve stems, presumably because they were so light. I’ll see if I can find a photo and perhaps a source.
Update: looks like Wilkinson sells them. If I find another source, I’ll update this posting.
Thanks @davidnunn. Yeah, they may have been replaced at some point. They only have an O-ring on the inside of the wheel and are aluminum. The caps are newer and not aluminum. I have an appointment Monday with my local tire installation shop to have the old tires removed and to check out the valves. It's a good independent shop that is well known in the local car community. From there I'll see if I need new valves and then get some tires ordered.
Use anti-seize on the aluminum retaining nuts AND the aluminum caps when installing. Larry Stock has them F/S and says that seizures during removal often damages perfectly usable stems.
Only other weak spot I know of is the fact that they're aluminum! One owner on a cross-country trip at night had to wait his turn for gas, so with nothing else to do, he went around and kicked each tire to verify pressure (instead of using a gauge). On one of his 10" rears, he kicked the aluminum valve stem right off the car.
A tire store opened up a few miles away only 5 hrs later and fixed his Campy....
An update to close this out. Appreciate everyone's comments. I ended up going with short EPDM (Ozone resistant) rubber stems (TR412) after some research and talking with my tire installer who has a strong reputation with local car enthusiasts. I ended up having to drill out my aluminum valve stems on two of the rims as the aluminum mounting nuts were seized on the aluminum valve stems. I was surprised by how small and thin the rubber seal was in this type of stem. One of my other stems was actually heavy chromed metal version with an additional outside washer which was probably put on by the retail tire shop I went to years ago. I know there's some debate on rubber vs. metal valve stems and each have their pros/cons. (Some good videos on valve stems: short video and long video from Konig wheels). Rubber was highly recommended by my shop, and I like the simplicity of one part with some flex. I don't drive triple digits in my Pantera any longer and I run BF Goodrich Radial T/As on my Campy 8's and 10's so I felt the rubber stems are the best fit for my application. I'll end up replacing my tires in about 6 years due to age and will replace the stems as well at that time.
Now on to an alignment with the new tires and after replacing my steering rack boots, one of which was leaking.