The Rolls Royce Silver Ghost fitted a 33x5 tyre (please click on the tyre sizes to see details).
In this size Longstone Tyres are pleased to announce that we will shortly have available a 33x5 Longstone with the very popular 3 block tread pattern.
Silver ghosts were originally fitted with 895X135 beaded-edge tyres. Unfortunately, beaded-edge tyre technology is very outdated. When these cars were built the majority of road surfaces were loose; tyres didn't suffer the side-forces to the extent they are having to today on modern, tarmac road surfaces. Nevertheless, beaded edge tyre failure was very much an issue in period as it is today, as beaded-edge tyres regularly just went 'bang' and came off the rim damaging what was an expensive tyre but hopefully nothing more!
In the early '20s Rolls-Royce started to look to the new wired-on tyre technology, fitting 23" straight sided wheels with 33X5 tyres. This is the more sensible tyre fitment for these cars. (Though we appreciate that in having pre-war cars being sensible is clearly not the most important thing to us!) As a result, Longstone Tyres have concentrated their efforts on making a new tyre in the size 33X5 with a period tread pattern. It has taken some time but the tyres you see in these pictures are the first pair of test tyres fitted to a beautiful 1914 Rolls Royce Silver Ghost. This car has 2 Beaded edge wheels for the front and straight sided wheels for the rears, as it is the rears that do all the work. However, using the art of Photoshop we have made it look like all the wheels have the new Straight sided Longstone 33X5 tyres fitted. We have driven the car with the tyres on the front and on the rear and are very satisfied with their performance; we were pleasantly surprised that the steering did not become dramatically heavier when they were fitted on the front.
Our new tyres also complement our existing Longstone Austin 7 tyres.
It is fair to say that the majority of silver Ghosts were fitted with beaded edge tyres and it is a shame to change them from original specification. Longstone would suggest that the ideal would be to have two sets of wheels; a set of beaded edge wheels to make the car look just the way it should with tall spindly wheels and a set of straight sided wheels for driving on. Although they look a little heavier they are much more reliable. This may seem like an expensive solution, but at Longstone Tyres, we recommend what we know to be the best tyre options for your vintage car, while leaving the customers, to look after their own wallet.
More details to follow........
The Rolls Royce Twenty mainly fitted 525x21 tyres, of which the Firestone gives the lightest steering feel and the Dunlop the best stability and longevity. Some Rolls Royce Twenty cars were equipped with 32x4 1/2 tyres (please click on the tyre sizes to see details).
Rolls Royce Twenty
Rolls Royce Twenty History
The Rolls-Royce Twenty built between 1922 and 1929 was Rolls-Royce's "small car" for the 1920s and was produced alongside the 40/50 (Silver Ghost) and Phantom models. It was intended to appeal to owner drivers but many were sold to customers with chauffeurs.
A new in-line 6 cylinder overhead valve engine was designed for the car of 3127 cc. Unlike the Silver Ghost engine, the cylinders were cast in one block and the cylinder head was detachable. Both a coil and magneto ignition system were fitted. The early cars had 3 speed gearboxes with the gear lever in the centre of the car but this changed in 1925 to a four speed unit with traditional right hand change. A torque tube was used to transmit the power to the rear axle.
The substantial chassis had rigid front and rear axles suspended by half elliptic springs, with braking initially only on the rear wheels. Four wheel brakes with mechanical servo were introduced in 1925. The traditional Rolls-Royce radiator with triangular top was fitted and early examples had enamel finished horizontal moveable slats, later changing to a nickel finish and finally becoming vertical.
In 1920 a chassis cost £1100 with, typically, a complete tourer bodied car costing around £1600. With coachwork to the factory recommended weight the car could reach 60 mph but many owners had large limousine bodies fitted with the inevitable detrimental effect on performance.
The Rolls Royce Phantom 1 fitted 700x21 tyres, of which the Michelin gives the best grip and most comfortable ride and the Dunlop the best stability and longevity.
Rolls Royce Phantom 1 History
Like the famed Ghost, the Phantom 1 was constructed both in the United Kingdom and United States, with the USA model trailing the UK by one year on introduction and two in replacement.
One major improvement over the Silver Ghost was the new pushrod overhead valve straight-6 engine. Constructed as three groups of two cylinders with detachable heads very modern and state of the art technology for the time, the large engine produced excellent power to pull the large heavy car. The engine used a 4¼ inch bore and long 5½ innch stroke for a total of 7.7 Litres of displacement. Aluminum was substituted for cast iron in the cylinder heads in 1928.
Semi-elliptical springs suspended the front, while cantilever springs were used in the rear. 4-wheel servo-assisted brakes were also specified, though some initial US models lacked front brakes.
Differences between the US and UK models included available wheelbases ? both were specified with the same 143½ inch base length, but the UK long-wheelbase model was longer at 150.5 inch than the 146.5 inches American version. Other differences included the Gear box, with UK models using a 4-speed and American models using a 3-speed Manual Gearbox, both with a single dry-plate clutch.
UK models were built at Rolls' Derby factory, while US Phantoms were built in Springfield, Massachusetts.
The Rolls Royce 20/25 mainly fitted 600x19 tyres, however 650x19 tyres are sometimes fitted dependant upon body style (please click on the tyre sizes to see details).
Rolls Royce 20/25 History
The Rolls Royce 20/25 was launched in 1929 and replaced the 20hp as Rolls-Royces small car. This car used a virtually unchanged Twenty chassis, but 6 cylinder overhead valve engine was enlarged from 3.1 litres to 3.7 litres, giving a significant increase in performance. Improved power had become a necessity because owners often insisted on fitting elaborate and heavy coachwork, which severely affected the performance. This was an important change considering owners didn't like to be overtaken by what they believed to be inferior cars!
This model was the car of choice for some of the most famous people of the day. Tommy Sopwith owned one, as did the racing driver Prince Bira of Siam and racing driver and record breaker Sir Malcolm Campbell. Praise indeed!
The 20/25 kept the Rolls-Royce tradition of a two-model policy, being sold alongside of the Phantom II. It was offered as a more economical car and was smaller than its big brother. All of the 20/25 chassis were fitted with custom coachbuilt bodies from legendary names such as Vanden Plas, Freestone and Webb, Brewster, Gurney Nutting, Park Ward, Coachcraft, and Thrupp & Maberly.
With nearly 4000 chassis built it is one of Rolls-Royce's best selling models, lasting from 1929 through 1936. During the life of the 20/25, the vehicle received numerous updates. The ignition system, brakes, clutch, and carburetors were just a few of the mechanical areas to receive modifications and improvements. On most cars the radiator shutters are opened and closed to control engine cooling by hand, later cars had the luxury of automatic thermostatically controlled shutters!
The Rolls Royce Phantom 2 fitted 700x21 tyres, of which the Michelin gives the best grip and most comfortable ride and the Dunlop the best stability and longevity.
Rolls Royce Phantom 2 History
The Rolls Royce Phantom 2 shared the 7.7 Litre pushrod over head valve straight-6 engine from the Phantom 1, being the last large six-cylinder Rolls Royce. The engine was unitary with a 4-speed manual gear box. Synchromesh was added on gears 3 and 4 in 1932 and on gear 2 in 1935.
Semi-elliptical springs suspended the front and, in a change from its predecessor, the rear. 4-wheel servo-assisted brakes were also specified.
281 Continental Phantom II's were also produced, including 125 left-hand drive versions. In all 1,281 chassis left the factory.
The Rolls Royce 25/30 mainly fitted 600x19 tyres, however 650x19 tyres are sometimes fitted dependant upon body style. We have found problems with 700x19 Firestone tyres not fitting due to clearance problems (please click on the tyre sizes to see details).
Rolls Royce 25/30 History
The Rolls-Royce 25/30 built between 1936 and 1938 is an updated version of the 20/25 with larger engine to provide more power, as often, over-large bodies had been fitted to earlier models leading to complaints about its performance.
The in-line 6 cylinder, overhead valve, engine is similar to that used in the 20/25 but increased in capacity to 4257 cc. A single stromberg downdraught carburettor replaced the Rolls-Royce item and magneto ignition was no longer fitted but a standby coil was provided. Synchromesh was fitted to third and top gears.
The chassis still had rigid front and rear axles suspended by half elliptic springs with hydraulic dampers. Braking is on all four wheels assisted by a mechanical servo. Separate rear brakes are fitted for the handbrake.
Only the chassis and mechanical parts were made by Rolls-Royce. The body was made and fitted by a coachbuilder selected by the owner.
The Rolls Royce Phantom three is powered by an aluminium-alloy V12 engine of 7.32 litres, having a bore of 3.25 inches and a stroke of 4.5 inches. It is a pushrod engine with overhead valves operated by a single camshaft in the valley between the cylinder banks. Early cars had hydraulic tappets or, rather, a unique system of eccentric bushings in each individual rocker that was actuated by a small hydraulic piston; the eccentric bushing ensuring zero valve-lash at the rocker/valve interface. This system was changed to solid adjustable tappets in 1938. The Rolls Royce Phantom III is unusual for its twin ignition systems, with two distributors, two coils and 24 spark plugs. Fuel is provided by a twin SU electric pump. Wire wheels are fitted as standard, but many cars carry Ace wheel discs.
The car features on-board jacking and a one-shot chassis lubrication system, operated by a lever inside the driver's compartment. Independent front suspension by a coil spring-based system is complemented by a carryover semi-elliptical spring unit in the rear. The car has a 4-speed manual Gear box with synchromesh on gears 2, 3 and 4. Overdrive was added in 1938. The car has 4-wheel servo-assisted brakes applied by cable (using a servo made under licence from Hispano-Suiza). The radiator shell is of Staybrite steel.
The sheer bulk of the car is reflected in its performance figures. An example tested in 1938 by The English Autocar magazine returned a top speed of 87.5 mph and a 0 - 60 mph in a time of 16.8 seconds. The overall fuel consumption quoted from that road test was 10 mpg.
The Rolls Royce Silver Wraith from 1945-1950 fitted
650x17 tyres and from 1951-1959 they fitted
750x16 tyres. Only the 1951 and 1952 models had the option of either size.
Rolls Royce Silver Wraith History
The Silver Wraith was the first post-war Rolls-Royce model and was made at the Crewe factory from 1946 to 1959.
The first cars had a 127 inch wheelbase chassis based on the one from the pre-war Wraith with coil sprung independent front suspension and semi-elliptic rear with a live axle. The engine was also based on the Wraith, but had a new cylinder head with overhead inlet valves and side exhaust valves and initially a capacity of 4257 cc. From 1951 this was increased to 4566 cc and in 1954 to 4887 cc on the long wheelbase models. The braking system was a hybrid hydromechanical system with hydraulic front brakes and mechanical rears using the mechanical servo from the pre-war cars, patented by Hispano-Suiza and built by Rolls-Royce under licence.
The long, 133 inch , wheelbase chassis was announced in 1951, and 639 were made until 1959. The last short wheelbase cars were made in 1953.
Initially only a four speed manual gearbox was offered, but this was supplemented by a General Motors automatic option from 1952.
This was the last Rolls-Royce model to receive a wide variety of bespoke coachwork designed and made by a rapidly declining number of specialist coachbuilders.
The Rolls Royce Silver Shadow from 1966-1974 fitted an 815x15 cross ply tyre. The radial alternative is a 205x15, in either Avon Textile or PIRELLI CINTURATO ™. Both options will make the car more useable.
The Rolls Royce Silver Shadow II from 1974 to 1981 fitted a 235/70x15. Click here to see the options available for your Rolls Royce Silver Shadow II. Avon was the original equipment, but Michelins will improve the handling.
The Rolls Royce Camargue fits a 235/70x15. Click here to see the options available for your Rolls Royce Camargue.