Throughout production here were six basic wheel styles used for the AA’s. The AA wheel styles gallery below shows examples of these six styles. Two of the wheel styles had more than one design giving a total of nine possibilities. Refer to the AA wheel table for a description and the usage dates of these nine different wheels. Additional wheel identification can be found in the AA wheel notes and AA wheel dimensions following.
|AA-1015 d1||20” steel spoke (rounded center hub)||thru early 1928|
|AA-1015 d2||20” steel spoke (ridged center hub)||mid 1928 thru January 1929|
|AA-1015-B||20” disc (concave face – six openings)||February – December 1929|
|AA-1015-C d1||20” disc (convex face – five openings)||January thru March 1930|
|AA-1015-C d2||20” disc (convex face – five openings)||April thru December 1930|
|AA-1015-C d3||20” disc (convex face – five openings)||January thru April 1931|
|AA-1015-C d4||20” disc (convex face – five openings)||January 1931 thru production end|
|AA-1015-E||20” steel spoke (larger bolt pattern)||1931 for some body types|
|AA-1015-F||18” disc (convex face – one opening)||option starting July 1931|
AA-1015 – This steel spoke wheel had two designs as shown in the Notes Gallery below. This gallery also shows the Firestone stampings found on the rim. There may have been other manufactures.
AA-1015-B – Firestone and Cleveland Weld stamping have been found on this wheel (see Notes Gallery below). There may have been other manufactures.
AA-1015-C – This wheel had four designs as follows:
d1 – January 1930 – Initial design was stamped with Budd part C-18596.
d2 – April 1930 – Made heavier in the bolt flange area and was stamped with Budd part C-18596-H.
d3 – January 1931 thru April 1931 – The wheel offset was increased by 1/8″ (giving 1/4” additional distance between dual tires; also stamped with Budd part C-18596-H.
d4 – January 1931 – Reinforcing bead was stamped around the outside of the hub bolt holes (see notes gallery below); stamped with Budd part C-23596. This wheel had the same offset as d3. AA’s have been found with a mix of d3 and d4 wheels during the changeover time.
For all designs of the AA-1015-C wheel, the production month and year was stamped on each wheel (like “2-30” for February 1930). The Budd part ID was stamped above the date. “BUDD WHEEL CO.” over “DETROIT U.S.A.” (on C-18596 and C-18596-H wheels) or “BUDD WHEEL CO.” over “MADE IN U.S.A.” (on C-23596) was stamped between the next pair of hub bolt holes. See the notes galley for a stamping example.
AA Wheel – Notes Gallery
AA-1015-E – This 20” steel spoke wheel was used as optional equipment for body types 270-A, 275-A, 280-A, 285-A, 290-A, and 300-A. They required special hubs and drums due to the larger bolt pattern. This wheel may have been made standard equipment for some of these body types at some time in 1931.
AA-1015-F – This 18” disc wheel was used from July 1931 to the end of production as special equipment. It allowed for single rear wheel use with dual wheel load capability. It was used to replace the rear and spare wheels only.
Note that an adapter plate was made available through service for early 1930 single rear wheeled trucks which had “scalloped” hubs. This adapter plate was introduced to help prevent wheel breakage on these trucks due to the initial rear hub design. Dual wheel inner nuts were used to attached the adapter plate to the hub and dual wheel outer nuts held the single wheel against it.
Following are four measurements which can be used to define the AA wheels:
- Rim Diameter – This is the actual diameter of the wheel at the point where the tire bead seats (not the outer lip). 18” for AA-1015-F and 20” for other wheels.
- Rim Width – This is the distance from inside-to-outside of the rim at the tire bead seating points. 3-1/2” for the 20” wheels. Unknown for the 18” wheel.
- Back Spacing (wheel offset) – This is the measurement from the inside of the wheel at the point where it contacts the hub to the inside edge of the wheel. The offset is 2-1/2” for AA-1015 and AA-1015-B wheels. The AA-1015-C wheels have a 6” offset. Offset is not knows for the AA-1015-F and E wheels.
- Bolt Pattern (wheel bolt circle diameter) – For the AA (with its five wheel bolts) this is the distance from the center of one wheel bolt to the outer edge of the wheel bolt diagonally across from it (gives an approximate value very close to the bolt circle diameter). 8” for AA-1015-E and 6-7/8” for other wheels.
A TT carryover part, the demountable wheel rim flange (i.e. split lock ring) for the 20″ AA wheel was part AA-1099 and became part AA-1099-A with the introduction of the 18″ wheel with its AA-1099-B flange.
The flange for the 20″ wheel had three designs involving changes to the removal tool notch at the split of the flange as shown in the photograph to the right. Note the overlap in d1 and d2 production dates indicated in the photograph. Flange stampings for each design were as follows (the top half of the stamping was sometimes not visible due to poor stamping):
d1 – “HAYES 30/5”
d2 – One of two identifications:
“FIRESTONE ☆ 30X5 ☆ DT ☆☆☆”
“☆FIRESTONE ☆ 20X5 * DT ☆☆☆”
d3 – Stamped the same as design #2
The design of the flange for the 18” wheel had the same notch design as the 20″ wheel d3 flange. Stamping information is not currently known.
All wheels were dipped black enamel as the stock finish. The wheel flange was cadmium plated. Fleet owners could special order any color (even non-Ford colors) of wheel if they were willing to pay for the service. These wheels were painted over the standard dipped black enamel. The June 1931 Indianapolis Service Letter establishes a uniform price list for any commercial paint requests. Painted wheels were to be charged $1.00 each. Fleet owners could have the cadmium plated wheel flange painted over with special colors as can be seen in various Ford archive photographs.
Commonly called “lug nuts” today, Ford parts lists first used the name “wheel bolt nut” and then switch to “hub bolt nut” for the 1928 and 1929 AA’s. The name “disc wheel nut” was used for the 1930 and 1931 AA’s. The name “Wheel Nuts” is used here except when listing a part from the Ford parts lists.
All wheel nuts were originally cadmium plated. Until mid February 1929, AA wheel nuts were all right hand threaded and therefore were not stamped with an “R” or “L”. Starting mid February 1929, wheel nuts were right hand threaded on the right side of the AA and left hand threaded on the left side of the AA.
The wheel nuts plus any wheel carrier nuts, carrier lock nut, and carrier check nut all had the same wrench size. Consequently, the Ford supplied AA tools could have been used for changing out a flat without the need for additional wrenches.
Wheel Nuts, Carrier Lock Nuts, and Carrier Check Nuts Gallery
Note that most AA’s built prior to mid February 1929 were converted to the, then, new AA front spindles and bearings based on a Ford recall. These AA’s originally had A-3105 front spindles and corresponding A bearings. This recall was announced in the April 10, 1929 Indianapolis Service Letter. The changeover was to occur when trucks were brought in for regular service at no cost to the customer. It resulted in the following new parts replacing original parts:
AA-1206 front wheel inner bearings and AA-1216 front wheel outer bearings
AA-1102 RH hub/brake drum assembly and AA-1103 LH hub/brake drum assembly
A-21943 spindle nuts
AA-1120 RH hub bolt nuts and AA-1121 LH hub bolt nuts
AA-1197 grease retainers, AA-1195 grease retainer washer, and AA-1190 dust cap
AA-1118 RH rear hub bolts and AA-1119 LH rear hub bolts
In addition, for those AA’s with original 15/16″ wrench size wheel nuts the following parts were to be changed out:
wheel carrier nuts
wheel carrier lock nut
wheel carrier check nut
starting crank/wheel nut wrench tool
These parts were to be replaced with corresponding 1-1/8″ wrench size parts. This insured that all wheel and carrier nuts were of the same wrench size.
So, given this recall (free to the customer), it is likely that few AA’s built prior to mid February 1929 have original parts. Finding original parts is a problem for those AA’er doing assembly line type restorations.