I am changing the spark plugs in my car and find myself without my spark
plug gauge. The gap is supposed to be .045" or 1.14 mm.
Is there any way I can simulate this gap (thickness) of .05" by using
standard items in my garage, like nails, wires, drills bits, etc?
Thanks for any help. Would save me a long trip to the nearest supply house.
This may be OT, but people in the group are familiar with tools and
Well a 3/32 drill would be real close. Don't 'spose ya have one handy. A
lose fit on a sawzall blade (~0.035) might get ya by but don't think I'd do
18 gauge wire is 0.040 something
16 gauge wire is 0.050 something
copper wire will deform...
maybe somebody else will get closer
In umpteen years I don't think I've had a plug I've checked out of the
box be off by enough to fool with.
But if you have a full set of bits, 3/64" is 0.046... I don't recall
which numbered bit would be roughly right, but one of the smaller number
sizes will be as well...
I had that same problem once. I took out some nails and found one
that fit in the gap of one of the old plugs, since they should have
been gapped to the proper gap. (of course they tend to burn a little
wider). I found one that fit well, and used that. I believe it was a
3 or 4 penny finish nail. (of course my gap may have been different).
Normally the gap is close out of the box, but once and awhile one is
way off. Until you can get the proper tool, see if you can find a
I don't see anything "paranoid" about it -- w/ fuel prices they way they
are, I don't make needless trips, either, plus there's simply the
nuisance factor. And, who knows what OP's "long trip" actually is?
Granted, it's a little overkill to ask usenet about 0.045*64 = 2.88 -->
3/64" is closest fractional drill bit, but seemed a little overly harsh
reaction to me. Of course, I probably should have just let it ride,
You weren't exactly Mr. Nice to Doug either.
Driving to the auto store for a spark gap guage is an irritation even to me
and I can ride my bike cause it's only 2 miles away where I'm at - but I
wouldn't drive or bike to it unless it was a dire problem. Picking one up
at the store the next time he needs groceries or a half-rack of beer seems
reasonable and it's not like the OP can't just put the old ones back in the
holes or put the new ones in the holes and not worry about it. Either the
engine won't be impacted or it will run badly - but it will still run.
Spark plug gap is NOT that critical if the need is great. They should be
properly gapped, but they don't have to be if you don't mind poor
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