I have my fathers 1926 model t and wondering what spark plugs to use and what oil. thank U
I have Champion 525 plugs and cheap 5W30, both were decisions I made for myself based on the wide variety of opinions posted on this forum.
is the oil non-detergent?
Oh Robert, you don't know what sort of Pandora's box you opened with BOTH questions!
Expect about as many answers as there are posters here!
In my business, it's like asking "What's the best way to tune a piano?" Answer: "Depends, how many piano technicians are in the room?"
Of course, they all (mostly) get to pretty much the same results!
The T engine benefits from modern oils, which are much better than what they had "in the day." Granted, that isn't true of much else; like tires, they used to last longer. Spark plugs? Some swear by Champion Xs (a bit pricey new), others by 525s, some folks even put in adapters and use modern plugs--others only use what they find at swap meets and rebuild. Interestingly, each owner has better results (for them) with different plugs.
If you stick with standard plugs, you pretty much have to buy what fits the 1/2" pipe threads in the head. That narrows down your choices considerably.
Oh boy here we go!
Robert Welcome to the affliction! the only thing I will say is don't put anything heavier than x-30 most will recommend 5-20 because Ford recommended light weight machine oil.
Robert go to Auto Zone, The Dollar store, Wal-Mart or etc. and get the store brand,(usually the cheapest) 5W or 10W-30 Motor oil. Its a LOT better than was ever available when Model T's were in their day.
They help keep a T engine cleaner than non-detergent oil ever did. NO need to use exotic or high dollar oil. Use the money you'll save on some new spark plugs if you think you need them.
What kind of plugs do you have in your T already?
They may just need a good cleaning up. And if they are some older brand they may be worth more than the new ones you'll buy.
5w30 oil might be a good choice for Tim because he lives in Canada...doesn't hit 100F in summer too often up there I think.
Buy cheap 10w40 or 15w40 and change it every 1000 miles. I disagree with Mr. Cheshire, given a choice I would not touch 5w20 oil with a ten ft pole unless I was driving in Arctic Russia in winter. Zero evidence and plainly wrong that "Ford light weight machine oil" is as light as 5w. 20w50 is not too heavy; that's what almost everyone uses in Australia.
For plugs, no need to use adaptors to avoid 1/2" pipe size unless you have a special racing engine. Original 1/2" NOS plugs are plentiful or buy the new X plugs (don't pay more than $30 each).
"Tough Guys" like multi-electrode plugs like this:
True enough Constantine, it doesn't really ever get what I would call hot here plus I don't have enough time driving my car to decide if I really like the choices I've made anyways. I can always re-evaluate after some trial.
I think what's more important here for Robert is to take in all of the varying experiences and opinions and try to read between the lines to find the best answer for his particular situation. I went for a combination of cheap and period correct-ish but maybe your preference is to make concessions for unstoppable reliability, easy availability in any town, or to go with fanatical originality. The T is a lot of different things to a lot of different people, a Universal Car indeed.
From another Minnesotan-
Buy house brand (cheapest) conventional oil - not synthetic - from the auto parts store, Walmart, Menards, Fleet Farm, etc.
10W30 detergent will more than suffice in Pequot Lakes, MN if you are driving spring through fall.
You can also use single weight SAE 30 detergent (aka HD 30 or 30W, etc.). Readily available because it is still common for use in lawnmowers and other small engines.
I use the 5-30 super tech Wal-Mart in every car I own and have used the champion 525 plugs but have started changing over to the two piece champion plugs. Just what I am using. Tim
Walmart super tech 5w30. Or, if I get 10w30, I substitute 1 quart with Marvel Mystery Oil. I just like the way that mix makes the bands feel.
I have tried both 525s and new X's and can't tell a difference.
The 525s do just fine for me too. I added the two piece for the looks but they run the same and the cost is way more for the champion x.. Tim
I once bought a new Champion X plug just to see what they're like, but I wouldn't spend the big bucks for a full set to use in a car. Good originals are easy to find much cheaper at swap meets and on eBay.
If you don't care about being authentic a good, cheap, modern plug is Autolite 3095.
My 2¢ on oil: http://dauntlessgeezer.com/DG103.html
OK, I guess I get to be the divergent opinion. If your car's engine is an old gusher, use cheap oil. If you paid a king's ransom for a high dollar rebuild like I did, use good lubricants. Besides, my car doesn't leak much at all. As or plugs: I've tried Champion 525's and the new Champion X plugs. Haven't had the chance to get my hands any originals yet. I use Motorcraft F-11's as they seem to run best in my car. Other's experiences may vary.
One important (relatively speaking) point about oil. Do not use oil with graphite in it! The conductive graphite can raise holy #e!! with the magneto and/or timer. Heavy zinc oil might maybe have a similar effect. (I have not heard of troubles with the zinc in oil, but???) The resistance (low and variable conductivity) of graphite oil can cause weird and intermittent issues with both the timer and the magneto, and drive you crazy trying to figure out the why.