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OK, the continuing march-of-time has forced a decision to go ahead and order new rubber. However, the thought of faulty, splitting inner tubes continues to haunt, big time.

Asked a West Coast supplier about the faulty tube situation and have been assured that his heavy duty, metal stemmed tubes are "very reliable" and no issues have been communicated to him by his customers. [What else would he say?] They are ECC Small Combo tubes, having a 3" brass metal stem.

My experience with metal stem tubes is limited. Mostly from being friendly with guys who owned early Model T's. Remember stories of metal stem tubes failing at the point where the metal stem joined the rubber. The failure rate was high, but being purists, they bragged about their willingness to live with the original appearance of metal stems.

To the point --- I'm searching for experienced opinions concerning rubber vrs metal stem tubes. Any and all comments are eagerly sought.

Many thanks for reading this request and a big good-on-you to those who post their thoughts.

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If you decide to go with rubber stems there is a cheat available. Snyders (Model T suppliers) have long screw on dust caps which give a fair impression of the Schrader caps used with metal stems. I have a set on my '25 roadster which certainly look better than the bare rubber stems.

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The Model T fellows were referring to the original clamp in style of valve hardware. Back in the day when this type of hardware was used the inner tubes had alternating layers of rubber and canvas at the hole through which the metal stem was inserted and securely clamped. Today all of the inner tubes use vucanized tire valves be they rubber or brass. The only way that you will see original clamp in hardware is if someone cut off the rubber stem off and and put in the clamp in style valve. If you are fitting out a driver, you would be best to use the rubber stemmed inner tubes and top them off with the reproduction caps as mentioned by TonyAus. Good luck

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  • 2 years later...

I don't want to restart a past controversy, but I need new tires and tubes for my 1932 Dodge DL. Any recommendations from someone who has bought tubes in the last two years and had good luck with them. I intend to drive this car and want to be safe.

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TonyAus,

I was just looking at those brass screw on covers for rubber stemmed tubes yesterday. Do they fit well are is there a noticeable gap between the bottom of the brass and the stem base? or does the brass cap have enough thread that it could work on various stem lengths? Could you tell me how long the tire stems are on your car, so I could compare to mine?

Thanks in advance, but would hate to shell out $70-80 just to leave them on the shelf....(I'm not cheap, I'm frugal)

Richard

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Richard...I bought a set awhile back from Universal Tire (same as Snyders).They are 2.5" long and have an internal brass insert (which the stem screws into) that is adjustable up/down using a 3/8" allen wrench.The tube stems on my '27 (wood wheels) protrude the wheel by 1.25". The covers fit on perfectly with no adj. from the as bought setting.If you go on Snyders site they have instructions for installation which are a little confusing as it states they will not fit if stem is more than 1.875" then they say more than 2.5"?I would say the 2.5 may be correct but I have not tried to adj. them that far. They come in brass and nickel plated (which cost more but a more correct finish for '27).

Bill

Edited by Texacola (see edit history)
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I thought I'd throw my 2 cents in here. I've been restoring a 1931 Ford Model A Town sedan for the last 16 years. Not actively, but Have a rolling chassis with a set of Goodyear All Weather Diamond Treads, 4.75 X 19's. I bought the tubes and tires from Universal in 1999 with the correct metal "clamp-in" Schrader valve stems. I restored the wheels and mounted rubber, inflated them, (5), to 35 lbs. THEN stored all of them in a cool dark place until 2012. I found two completely flat! De-mounted those two and found the bridge clamp nut was not tightened enough. Put a wrench on them and re inflated to 35 lbs last spring. All 4 tires on chassis haven't lost one lb. as of today. My '25 Dodge I found last spring has ORIGINAL brass valve stems still on it. None of them leak. The tires are so bad, the cords are showing through cracks in rubber big enough to put your finger in. Bottom line here--- I trust the old and old style metal stems, and they look great too.

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