I found three Champion X plugs and three Champion Ford plugs among the items that came with my '14 T. They look like they could be usable, but I think they would need some work. Is there anyone out there that restores these plugs?
Bill, do a search and find Steve Jelfs pics of all the parts, and do them with that crew in your profile picture. I did several,they are pretty easy to do. Jim Derocher, AuGres, MI
Other than a thorough cleaning, there's not much restoration to do. I don't know of anybody doing "professional restoration" of plugs. I think it's pretty much everybody for himself.
Thanks, guys, I didn't realize you could do it yourself so easily! Great article, Steve! Can you give me any suggestions/advice on restoring them? Also, do you gap them like you would a normal spark plug using the same sizing? I have the later, crimped on hat style plugs.
For the steel parts (base and collar) I've used Evaporust, then cleaned them up with a wire brush. Bluing bought from a local gun shop will make them look pretty.
Note the electrode position shown in the advertising pictures. The idea is that the angle will take any drips of fuel or oil away from the gap. Not all the surviving plugs have enough electrode left for the full angle, but they still work. I've seen different recommendations for gap setting, but .025" has been working OK for me.
What a great page! I have a set of the new Xs in my flivver now but will see if I can find some of these to work up. It looks like a great little project.
There are differing opinions on this (as with pretty much everything involving model T's ), but I like A .030" gap better than .025". And with high-compression pistons or a high-compression head, I open them up to .035".
Hey, Steve; have you ever heard of a Champion in black? I have found three different types of early spark plugs in my collection; three brass hat red Champion X, three brass hat red Ford plugs and one early style Champion in black writing but nothing else is on the porcelain. Are any of the plugs more desirable to restore and put in my '14?
The more expensive (when they were new) Champion "Heavy Stone" plugs simply say Champion or Champion Toledo on the porcelain. They are fairly rare, I only have a pair of them. They predate the Champion X brass top plugs by a couple of years.
I have no idea why they were called "Heavy Stone" or why that made them more expensive.
You ask what are "Heavy Stone" plugs and why are they more expensive than the X...their name gives the answer.
"There have been several materials that have evolved as insulation materials. Some materials that have been used are mica, stone and several different kinds of improved porcelain. A lot of early forms of porcelain were not designed to handle the extreme hot and cold changes that engines demanded. Some insulated materials were very porous and would absorb oils and soot easily. This would make for a short life as they would foul out quickly. Gasoline in the early days wasn’t as refined as it is today. It contained more oils and was closer to today’s kerosene.
In 1915 a major improvement in porcelain was “775” porcelain, by the Frenchtown Porcelain Co.. This new formula produced porcelain that would hold up to heat changes with less absorption of oil. Since that time improvements have continued on porcelain designs. Dr. Joseph Jeffery’s discovery of silimanite in 1933 gave spark plugs a longer life. This was a major improvement in the porcelain design."
copied from the spcoa website
"Faulty spark plugs are the cause of nine-tenths of all motor troubles."
Well then -- That certainly simplifies it. Whenever you have trouble with your engine, just clean the spark plugs and nine times out of ten, you're good to go.
Early porcelain plugs would crack easily. Mica and stone plugs were stronger so therefore considered better quality. Therefore more expensive.
Who knows of a source for the copper 'O' rings for the insulators?
See Steve Jelf's link above.
Nice ads Constantine!
This is a photo of a magazine that belonged to my departed friend Bud Scudder showing the "Heavy Stone" 1/2" pipe plug costing 25 cents more than a regular Champion X. That 25 cents would buy a gallon of gas, or a hamburger, with enough change to buy a cup of coffee and a Hershey bar in 1921.