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Joined: Dec 14 2018
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OK guys-- no one warned me about swollen lug nights on the Hurrican wheels-- let alone that you need to pound on a socket to get them off-- and ----the wheels will be rusted to the hubs.

Went for my first ride today hoping I will not have much of a coolant drop (I did and just hoping it is a final burp rather than going somewhere where it should not) and I hit 51 mph and what I think is the right front tire starts to imitate a paint shaker. It eases off at about 65 mph so I am hoping it is an out of balance tire. I figure a flat spot will show up at every speed.

So go to take the wheel off and find the magic swollen lug nuts. Great design for a truck designed to go off road and through streams. I had to pound on an SAE socket which was a hair larger than my 27 mm socket. My air hammer almost could not release them-- kept tightening and loosening and finally all came off. I went ahead and removed all of them on the four wheels. I had to cut off the stainless cover on two of them.

Then came BiG LEAD HAMMER TIME. I tried the push-pull method to maneuver the rims off and it laughed at me. Got on my back and hit with my feet-- zero movement. Pulled out the 20-pound lead hammer and after 10 minutes pounding the tire sidewalls from side to side and top to bottom, I got them all off.

Check the right front on my balance machine and it was only off a small amount. Looked like there was a small flat spot but normally with large cross section tires you do not feel them. So could this be another P38 front end gremlin I need to learn about?

If not the tire or rim- can I assume that when something is worn in the front end you will get a shake at a specific speed with these trucks? Everything seems pretty tight-no movement I can feel. Probably will need a small crowbar to work the ball joints to detect movement- but with my arms doing the lifting and pushing I feel nothing.

I wonder what the next fight I am going to have with this truck as we become acquainted.

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Joined: Jul 12 2016
Posts: 747

I'm not sure what you mean by swollen lug nuts. Whenever I take my wheels off I use a socket over the chrome cap. I don't bother taking them off except on the locking wheel nut.

I'll check what size socket I use tomorrow.

The shaking you feel might be the common "death wobble".

https://goo.gl/PNC8bq

Mine sometimes does (but not always) around 55-60mph. When it happens I can see the passenger seat visibly shaking and I can feel it through my own seat.

There seems to be a few different "cures" suggested but I'm not sure anyone actually has a definitive fix for it.

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Joined: Feb 24 2017
Posts: 90

Agree 100% with Rutland re the wobble. Happens on my 3 P38s.... That death wobble is a common P38 fault... you can throw good money after bad money trying to solve it but my suggestion is to power through it....
Re the lugniuts... horrible design but they should come off like any normal lugnut although with how they appear to be loose it can create some uncertainty as to how they should be removed. I put copper grease on all my lugnuts before putting wheels back on. The wheel not budging off hub is due to the differential hearing of two metals... again copper grease where the wheel and hub meet makes next removal easier...

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
Posts: 76

RL-- My wheels use interesting lug nuts. They are steel and have an outer shell/cover made from stainless steel. When the steel lug nuts rust when water gets between the lug nut and the SS shell they produce scale and swell up larger. This swelling expands the SS shell across the flats so a 27 mm socket will not slip on as it should. Just too big but too small for the next larger socket-- so I had to pound on the socket to get it on-or cut off the shell with a Dremel.

The lug nuts themselves are interesting in that their mushroom head is huge- at least twice the diameter of a normal lug nut. The mushroom end of the lugnut is made from some aluminum alloy since it turns white when it corrodes. The hole diameter around the studs in the Hurricane rims are at least 1.5"-2"-- I did not measure.

My shake/bounce could be in the same family as this Death Wobble. Mine is consistent- ride down a smooth rode and as you approach 50 mph things begin to shake-- and yes- the first time the passenger seat did a small dance. As the tires warmed - less bounce and the seat did not react.

I do not have to hit a bump or an imperfection in the road for it to happen--- just roll up to 50 mph and it disappears when you roll down to 45 mph.

I need new tires anyway. Got Mitchlin on it now-- not sure what type--heavy as sh**t.

Any favorites to suggest?

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Joined: Jul 12 2016
Posts: 747

Ah, I think I understand the nuts issue now. You're doing it with the silver covers still on as I suggested but the flat sides are no longer flat?

That does sound tricky.

I've pretty much just lived with my wobble for the last three years or so. It seems to have improved over time and doesn't happen nearly as often. You've found that it goes away if you slow down but it also goes away if you speed up. Above 65 or so it's fine.

A friend of mine has broken his for spares so I'm picking up a full set of suspension arms (all four radius arms, panhard rods etc) and plan to refurb them to fit.

I've also bought a set of upper and lower ball joints for the front hubs.

It'll be a while before that lot is on the car but if you don't mind a wait I can let you know :P

Other common things I've seen people mention as cures are wheel balancing, good branded tyres and - if you have aftermarket wheels or ones from a different Land Rover - the correct spigot rings.

I'd also check to make sure your harmonic dampers are in place (big steel wheel type things bolted to the axles). I've seen a lot of people saying they're useless and take them off but LR must have out them there for a reason, right?

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
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The wheel nuts can corrode under the stainless covers which usually means hammering a socket onto them as you have found. Once off you've got a few options, cut the stainless covers off, squeeze them in a vice to get the flats back or buy new ones. Wheels corroded to the hubs is also not that uncommon and getting them off can take quite a time. Once off, use a wire brush on the hubs and inside of the wheel to clean the layer of corrosion off (I've found a cup type one in a power drill works best). Make sure you clean out the centre hole in the wheel too. Simply doing this can stop, or at least reduce, some vibrations as the wheels will be running true.

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Joined: Sep 13 2016
Posts: 418

Check wheel balance first. That usually appears at a given speed and goes away if you speed up or slow down. Its simply a resonance between the out of balance wheel and its RPM. Sounds like what you have to me.

Death wobble was common on older landrovers with loose/poorly adjusted swivel bearings. I guess worn balljoints might cause a similar effect. Generally once it starts its really quite scary and the car becomes hard to control, which is not the same as wheel balance causing an annoying vibration. Its also usually triggered differently, rather than just speed it might be set off by a pot hole or similar.

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Joined: Jul 12 2016
Posts: 747

"Death wobble" has always seemed a bit melodramatic to me.

It is more of a slight vibration that just happens to be throughout the car.

Mine has only ever done in relation to speed though. I don't get it over bumps.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
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Death wobble is more like a motorcyclists tank slapper and does make the car almost impossible to control and is caused by slop in steering and suspension. A slight vibration through the seat of your pants is something at the rear end, rear wheel balance, prop UJs, wheels not seated properly, etc. Although the harmonic damper was fitted to the later Classics, it wasn't fitted to very early P38s but there was a TSB issued recommending they were fitted to any where the owner complained of vibration and shortly afterwards they became standard on all. I know of one owner (MikeinFrance) who left his off as he was in a hurry, couldn't see what it achieved and was bloody awkward to fit on his own. Found the car tried to remove his fillings at anything over 60 mph!

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
Posts: 76

Thanks all--- yeah those lug nuts are strange. My P38 came from the Wet side of Washington state-- no snow/salt- but lots of dampness. I bet a one that spent time in the salty states must be a total mess of rust.

My first drive when I just got the P38 this wobble did not show up-- I either did not get to 50 mph or it was not there. That is why it surprised me when it consistently happened this ride--- up at 51-60 mph a shake-- over 60 highly damped but still there-- below 50 mph nothing.

Since the speed limits up here is 55 mph and we seem to have state/county/sheriff cops all competing to write tickets-- powering through and driving over 65 mph it is not really an option-- I can only go slower to avoid if this wobble cannot be reduced. The sweet spot if you need to get anywhere is 55-60 mph-- right in the wobble zone for my P38.

The interesting thing is that the only change I made between my first ride and this second ride was to fill that tire to the specified 38 psi-- it was at 28 psi on my first ride with no wobble.

I pulled off the right front wheel which felt like the problem child (could be wrong) and checked it on my balancer. I set it to static balance and had to add only .5 oz on each side.

During the spin, it looked like there was a small flat spot so even though I rebalanced it I decided to put my right side back tire on the front and will see if the wobble happens. If it happens then I know it was not due to a flat spot and I will drop that pressure to 32 and see what happens. If dropping the psi does reduce the wobble I will then balance that tire and check it again.

In the meantime, I have ordered a stock steering damper.

Track rods seem to be the next logical replacement. Can you remove and replace the track rods with the tires on the ground (to prevent movement) to at least get an in-the-park sizing of the new rods rather than back and front tire measurements for toe-in?

I am thinking about staying with some type of Michleins---Latitude tour Hp or other all season. Only have to go up steep gravel roads so no need for AT tires.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
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MarkTr wrote:

The interesting thing is that the only change I made between my first ride and this second ride was to fill that tire to the specified 38 psi-- it was at 28 psi on my first ride with no wobble.

I pulled off the right front wheel which felt like the problem child

If it's a front wheel it should be at 28 psi, it's 28 front, 38 rear.

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
Posts: 76

Gil------Must have had a senior moment-- I only saw 38 psi which made more sense to me then 28 psi in this heavy of a truck. I stand corrected-- could be part of the issue.

I did drive with the rear tire moved to the front--- still slight shake on the passenger seat when cold but seemed to dampen out when tires warmed up. Still had 38 psi since I put that in all of them. So perhaps a flat spot and 38 psi gave me the big shakes.

Now I will drop the pressure to 28 psi and see if the shake will go away completely.

Thanks Gil-- not sure how I missed the 28 psi for the front-- my lizard brain must have blocked it out.