Where to get replacement central heating radiator valve knobs?

I'm having great difficulty in finding anywhere that sells bog standard knobs for bog standard radiator valves. Caps/tops - loads of them, but of knobs there is no sign. Surely you don't have to buy a complete valve in order to get a knob? Can anyone advise?
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Ian

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On Sat, 1 Dec 2012 21:00:27 +0000, Ian Jackson

By Bog-Standard I expect you don't mean a TRV. So given that, what do you mean by a "top" and how do they differ from a knob. Is a "cap" the plastic part that makes a valve into a lock shield valve?
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Graham.
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No, it's the simple, old-fashioned, turn-it-yourself valve.

Most sites call caps 'caps', but I think I've seen one or two refer to them as 'tops' or 'covers' (like this) <http://www.screwfix.com/p/universal-radiator-valve-cap-white-finish-25mm /35656> which isn't what I want. I want a knob (about a dozen), like the one on this valve: <http://www.screwfix.com/p/angled-radiator-valve-chrome-15mm-x/33920 Hen's teeth seem two-a-penny compared with knobs.
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On Sat, 1 Dec 2012 21:48:03 +0000, Ian Jackson

Admittedly a few years ago, but I got some packs of two universal knobs from Wilkinson's. Each knob came with a selection of metal inserts to fit most valve spindles. I think I had to take a file to one of the inserts to make it fit my valves.
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My local independent DIY store does them, so they can't be that rare.
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I've been looking for one that is basically an outside plastic bit and an inside plastic bit. the outer bit screws into the valve and the inner bit has a serrated hole with a metal bit across that fits into a slot in the valve.
Brian
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On Dec 1, 9:00pm, Ian Jackson

You'll probably have to make/modify one. As many are imported, they are all different nowadays. You will be lucky to find an identical valve to the one you've got even to buy the whole thing.
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I pretty sure that an 'ordinary' radiator valve is (or used to be) pretty well standard, with a 1/4" square spindle. I think that most 'ordinary' knobs will fit.
My CH system is around 40 years old. The plastic radiator knobs are hollow, and like many plastic mouldings, seem to be purposely designed to break or split if extra force is needed to turn them - as will often happen if a valve hasn't been used for some time, and is stiff (or even completely seized).
The simple cure (preferably pre-emptive) is remove each knob, and make it into a hard, solid lump by filling the void with resin. After that, the knob is virtually bomb-proof (even for the most ham-fisted of us who don't recognise a seized valve when they feel one).
However, some of my split knobs - although now repaired - are rather tatty. While I could tart them up with resin, paint them, and make them look like new, there's little point in doing this if I can get some suitable replacements. I can't believe that it's so difficult (if not impossible) to find a supplier. Surely I can't be the only one whose radiator valve knobs are broken or missing?
--
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On 02/12/2012 08:55, Ian Jackson wrote:

The square ones are rare, most have a rectangular fitting maybe 2mm x 6mm?
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In message

I know. I want the knobs for the valve at t'other end of the radiator. However, some of the website pictures of caps look as if they could multitask as knobs.
As my 1/4"square spindles would appear to be old hat, I'll probably have to resign myself to refurbishing the existing knobs. No great problem, but I'm amazed at the non-availability of such mundane items.
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Ian

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On Dec 2, 8:55am, Ian Jackson

Well you should be thinking about getting thermostatic valves. They are not perfect but better than nothing. Stuff is not made to fix these days. 40 year old valves will long have been superceded by a cheaper and nastier design.
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wrote:

Well you should be thinking about getting thermostatic valves. They are not perfect but better than nothing. Stuff is not made to fix these days. 40 year old valves will long have been superceded by a cheaper and nastier design.
It this what you're looking for http://www.radiatorcaps.org.uk/shop/page/3?sessid=tXyKC2ahB5zn0owADeqMXkkARlPi1lDSFJ6lMI0QZw7e2vjrqdXPvD0UVXm3viEE&shop_param
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On Sun, 2 Dec 2012 17:44:39 +0000, Ian Jackson
<snip>

agreed
These show "assorted spindle drivers" but are dearer than complete valves. http://www.inest.co.uk/products/Oracstar_PPF248_Push_On_Replacement_Radiator_Cap.asp
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Dearer indeed. You can nearly get a new radiator for what they are charging!
Thanks to all for the advice and information, but it looks like I've got myself a nice, gentle Christmas project, repairing and tarting up the old knobs one by one.
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On Monday, December 3, 2012 at 10:20:26 PM UTC, Ian Jackson wrote:

I know what you mean. How can it be so difficult to find these things?
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On Sat, 21 Nov 2015 12:43:45 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

That "Oracstar" product looks identical to the Wilco branded product a bought in Wikinsons that I mentioned in this thread three years ago(!) The Wilkinsons price was nothing like that of course.
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For the record Wheelhead and Lockshield have identical valves, normally have different caps (Wheelhead designed to turn, Lockshield design not to).
The Wheelhead valve is the one on the pipe that gets hot first when you turn the system on.
Replacement caps do seem to be exorbitantly expensive.
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On 05/11/2017 16:40, Phil wrote:

That is not always the case.
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Should be - perhaps the knobs have been wrongly fitted. Lockshield adjustment should be on the return.
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On 06/11/2017 09:43, DerbyBorn wrote:

Is there any reason other than that it's the conventional way?
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