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Underbody braces, turbos and more!

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 02, 2004 3:59 pm 
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Location: Chilliwack, BC, Canada
i was just wondering how important it was...
i see a spark plug gapper at the counter at lordco for 1.50 every time i go there.. it calls to me.. so i started wondering about my gaps and if they were done.. i'll look, I'm retarded do my gaps today actually but i was just wondering...

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 02, 2004 4:42 pm 
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it's definately worth the $1.50 .. i have a couple of them .. i just buy another if i can't find mine ..
however, most of the platinum or other exotic plugs are not designed to be gapped ..
best to stick with good old ngk copper plugs just like the sticker on the hood says, then gap them to the recommended distance.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 02, 2004 4:45 pm 
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really? not designed to be gapped?
also is it worth it to get those fancy 4-prong spark plugs?

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Do you know any other 1.0L cars that do "K" on their speedo?


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 02, 2004 6:21 pm 
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get the normal dirt cheap ngk copper plugs .. i haven't heard anything to back up the claims of all those various plug makers .. the coppers work great in our engines .. some plugs like the splitfires work well, but usually break down quite quickly .. regular ngk's are easy to read if you pull them out once in a while to check on the condition of your engine, eg, burning oil, running lean, running rich, etc...
if you want to spend your money somewhere .. go to aurora electronics in abbotsford, they make the aurora stainless steel leads a lot of us use on our gt's, but they also make them for the 3cyl. cars along with cd boxes & other ignition goodies :)

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2008 9:41 pm 
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I just bought a set of ngk spark plugs and through em in. I assumed they would already be at the right gap. Do I need to pull them out and see what they are gapped to?

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2008 9:48 pm 
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jba205 wrote:
I just bought a set of ngk spark plugs and through em in. I assumed they would already be at the right gap. Do I need to pull them out and see what they are gapped to?


Does it run any worse than before?

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Once you get the cars dialed-in (compression, leaks, bearings, alignment, brakes) swap in new rubber and glass, you've got something which should last for years!


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2008 11:25 pm 
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Yeah I think it does, but I do not have a finely tuned shopman's ear. Pretty sure it doesn't sound that good, but I also adjusted the timing that was way far advanced (like over 30*) down to 10*.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 3:20 am 
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jba205 wrote:
Yeah I think it does, but I do not have a finely tuned shopman's ear. Pretty sure it doesn't sound that good, but I also adjusted the timing that was way far advanced (like over 30*) down to 10*.


Oh you got me on that one. :D But I deserved it for calling 94 Fly a butterfly. Meant to call him a 'fine young grasshopper', but getting old, and forgot all those asian movies.
Next time, just change one thing at a time. If you are re-doing your timing belt, just change that, set the timing, and drive it. Then, change the spark plugs, and see if that helps or hurts.

Smart money is on your timing adjustment messing with the way your engine runs, rather than a spark plug change.

But I agree with the above; your best bet is the cheap, aforementioned plugs. Probably gapped correctly, so borrow a timing light, make sure you disable the advance. If it is a later model, you've gotta jump some wires.

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DIY Wheel Align: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=42479
Once you get the cars dialed-in (compression, leaks, bearings, alignment, brakes) swap in new rubber and glass, you've got something which should last for years!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 3:27 am 
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to get right to the point, gap is extremely important. I would never tell someone to not at least check the gap. Spark plugs usually come pre-gapped, but it is possible that the gap is wrong. If the gap isnt right, it can result in incomplete combustion, which results in more oxygen in the exhaust which the O2 sensor will pick up and ultimately result in using excess fuel. Unevenly gapped spark plugs will also result in poor power ballance which means the motor will run a bit rougher

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 8:40 am 
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metro92_05 wrote:
to get right to the point, gap is extremely important. I would never tell someone to not at least check the gap. Spark plugs usually come pre-gapped, but it is possible that the gap is wrong. If the gap isnt right, it can result in incomplete combustion, which results in more oxygen in the exhaust which the O2 sensor will pick up and ultimately result in using excess fuel. Unevenly gapped spark plugs will also result in poor power ballance which means the motor will run a bit rougher


Plug gaps were critical back in the days of Charles Kettering - too large a gap and there was insufficient voltage to jump it, no spark occured and the engine misfired, too small a gap and the resulting spark was too small to ignite the mixture and again the engine misfired - we had to clean, file (to ensure square edges - easier to get a good spark) and gap the plugs about every three months to prevent misfiring, and also maintain the breaker points, keep them clean, filed, gap adjusted correctly (this affected the ignition timing more than anything else) and smear a little grease on the cam to prevent the heel of the breaker points from wearing too rapidly.

Everybody and their brother offered all sorts of ways around these problems - optical sensors, reluctance pickups, capacitor discharge, inductance amplifiers - I've lost track of how many different products I've used, and none of them particularly effective or reliable - all except the Lucas Opus - which I remember only because if you held it at the firing point, it was capable of a frightening continuous arc discharge - a fat blue spark over a 0.25" gap - note that's 0.25 and not 0.025 - your normal 25 thou.

Modern automobiles, and that includes these fifteen year old cars, all come with breakerless electronic ignitions, lots of spark voltage, and they'll fire the plug almost without regard for it's condition - and that includes the gap - which has moved over the years from 0.025" to 0.030" - inspection intervals have changed from every 3000 miles to 12000, replacement intervals from 12000 miles to 24000 (btw - those figures come straight out of the Swift FSM)

No plug gaps are no longer as critical as they used to be.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 11:08 am 
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Well, I'll check the gaps. How do I measure this? With a gap gauge? And then how do I adjust them if I need to?

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:05 pm 
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While it isnt as critical, it is still something to be concerned about, and as I said I would never not at least double check it. Consider the points I made, they would still apply to modern day engines

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:52 pm 
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i wonder if I installed my boost gauge incorrectly. The turbo sounds a lot different now. A lot more whiny. We attached it to the hole coming out of the EFI thing. I attached a picture of where we attached it (but the pic is not of my engine, i have a 3 cyl)


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boost.jpg [ 151.46 KIB | Viewed 2660 times ]

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2008 11:19 am 
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get a set of ngk iridium and you will be fine

a set of good wires from 3 tech and be good enough =)

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:43 am 
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as told buy a old mech for every .010 gap over spec there is a 2 deg timing change,so change the plugs if they have a lot of miles....


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:18 pm 
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Are you sure your old mechanic wasn't talking about breaker point gap?

Changing the spark plug gap has no effect whatsoever on ignition timing, however, changing the gap on the old contact breaker style ignition does.

Also - mileage and the spark plug gap are not necessarily related - I'll be changing the plugs on my car this weekend (for no other reason that the book says to do it every 24 months or 24000 miles) and I'm willing to bet that the gaps are still within spec.

Plug condition and gap are just not as important as they used to be before the advent of breakerless electronic ignition.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 4:13 pm 
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:goodpost:

NGK's are gapped perfectly fine straight out of the box, just stick em in and run as is, the other thing to point out is with modern fuels once you foul up plugs you pretty much have to throw them away and use new plugs, in the old days you could clean them up with a wire brush, file the tips and regap them and they were almost as good as new, these days cleaning plugs is a waste of time as they never run properly again even once they are good and hot.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:47 pm 
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Dattman wrote:
NGK's are gapped perfectly fine straight out of the box, just stick em in and run as is.


I've noticed that - I check the gap before install them, I do it out of habit, but I don't recall the last time I had to adjust one. Back in the days when I used to use Champion plugs, I'd have to regap them but not NGK.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 7:07 pm 
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for pete's sake! i hope you don't try to run iridium plugs in that turbo3. :twisted:

i run the ngk power groove plugs and pretty much replace them every spring. most of the time i would clean and gap those and swap them to my hoopty for another turn. :D

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