A decorative item to add some style to the ends of the suspension tube.
I don't want to seem like I am trying to teach people to 'fit stalk caps' here, yes the axle caps
are easy to fit but the main reason for this page is to show that they also fit the new smart
fortwo (451). Axle caps are quite an old mod so may have been lost to the new owners.
Types Of Axle Caps
The original design axle cap, usually comes with 6 or 8 holes around the outside.
Axle rings where quite rare in the UK, most people went for caps (above).
These are the new smartmods ones in black plastic.
Where Can I buy Them?
There are various types and designs, from various suppliers, they come in aluminum versions, to newly released superior plastic ones over at smartmods.co.uk What Do They Fit?
Axle caps and axle rings will fit all smarts except the Forfour. Here's the proof.
Smart Fortwo 450
Smart Fortwo 451
Smart Roadster 452
All the axle caps shown above are exactly the same size and type from the same supplier.
Fitting The Axle Caps.
Clean up the inside of each tube, push the decorative addition in place and tighten the allen headed grub screws up nice and tight. Usually there are 3 grub screws to tighten.
Most axle ends will come with the correct allen key.
Are They Going To Cause Problems?
Some people worry that water is going to be able to collect in the tube, this won't happen.
They are a fairly loose fit and they stand slightly away from the axle tube.
This allows water to drain right out. The only problem I can see is they don't tend to look very new for long and the metal ones tarnish quite badly. Once you have fitted them they are staying there.
It is a good idea to laquer them or paint them before fitting. As standard they are raw aluminium with no protective coating. Bi-metal corrosion can occur between the cap and the grub screw as they are dissimilar metals. Copper grease on the grub screws will reduce this effect. This isnt a problem with the smartmods ones
Corroded caps can be improved with a wire brush and some emery paper.
Some people have experimented with putting lights and LEDs in the caps, have a go yourself.