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AC Spark Plug Cleaner/Tester. Worth anything?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by rustynewyorker, Jan 25, 2010.

  1. Got one of these at an auction in the fall - guy bought a bunch of stuff and didn't want to take it all, so he sold me what was left, and I got this thing. Found a similar one in a 1961 Goodyear catalog. A real AC piece, it's not in bad shape but I haven't tried to plug it in. From what the catalog says, it uses some kind of abrasive and air to clean them.

    Just wondered if anyone even uses these things anymore? Just good for decoration or what? I didn't pay much for it, but I don't really have room to set it up, it's in the storage unit. I have about half the stuff to set up a period gas station display.

    Maybe I even asked already and have forgotten, but it just ocurred to me earlier when I was looking through the catalog and saw it there.
     

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  2. Little Wing
    Joined: Nov 25, 2005
    Posts: 7,501

    Little Wing
    Member
    from Northeast

    We had one in high school,,Think it had like a baby sandblaster in it and it cleaned the bottoms of the plug
     
  3. Looks like one sold on Ebay in similar condition for $64 Aus. or $58 usd.

    Its pretty cool
     
  4. rottenrod
    Joined: Jan 7, 2008
    Posts: 159

    rottenrod
    Member

    we have a spark plug cleaner at work rarely use it pretty cool though we put baking soda in ours
     

  5. Also used one in High School auto shop and never used one since. Spark plugs are cheap. It would be a cool addition to a collection of old shop equipment but I doubt many guys would want one to actually use. In shop class we used to fry bugs with the tester part of it.. Are ya gonna sell it ? Might be one of those things I don't need but would want anyway. Could be handy for the Harley plugs I keep fouling. Got a stroker Shovelhead with dual plug heads that eats sparkplugs for breakfast and I always keep spares in the saddlebags.
     
  6. Damn... took 4 tries to post this. Hope the website isn't gettin screwy again...
     
  7. wristpin
    Joined: Aug 31, 2009
    Posts: 48

    wristpin
    Member

    I've got one made by champion that i use all the time. take a compression check of the motor your working on, set compression on plug machine, screw plug into machine hit the button and watch the sparks, my kid loves it. old Harley plug's were rebuildable, were any from ford or chevy?
     
  8. INXS
    Joined: Dec 3, 2005
    Posts: 347

    INXS
    Member

    They work pretty good. We had the exact machine at Dad's service station. You can still buy the abrasive from NAPA. The Champion spark plug line has the abrasive in small bags although they might have to get it from the warehouse cause they probably haven't sold any in years.
     
  9. I've used my glass bead cabinet to clean sparkplugs several times and it does a nice job. I don't see why glass beads wouldn't work in one of these sparkplug machines. The only drawback might be that I don't know of any place to buy small size bags of beads. I believe the smallest I've seen is 30 pounds.
     
  10. I was thinking of sticking it in my eBay store and if someone really wants it, let it go, but I sure wouldn't want to try to ship it to someone. It'll give the clown who emails me about income tax something else to whine about.
     
  11. I regularly use a smaller version of one to keep my outboards, mower, chainsaws, leaf blowers, the old truck, and my motorcycles supplied with clean fresh plugs.

    Since those engines need clean plugs, and they dirty them so quick, it has saved me a good bit of money.

    Plugs may be cheap if you only have a later car or two, but if you have a few engine driven toys, you will save money by not buying so many spark plugs anymore.

    Mine has more than paid for itself a long time ago.
     
  12. N8B
    Joined: Sep 28, 2009
    Posts: 476

    N8B
    Member

    Thats great. I just picked one up a few days ago. I would love to hear more info on restoring mine.
     
  13. junk yard kid
    Joined: Nov 11, 2007
    Posts: 2,719

    junk yard kid
    Member

    Harbor frieght sells a little one and the abrasive. I use it from time to time and like the way it works, wish i had a cool one like that.
     
  14. OldsRanch
    Joined: Feb 18, 2004
    Posts: 185

    OldsRanch
    Member

    I have that same exact machine as well, can't count the number of plugs I've run thru it over the years. Best thing in the world if you have a cylinder pumping oil and dont want to buy plugs constantly.... or if your neighbor insists on flooding his 6v tractor in cold weather.....
     
  15. CONNMAN
    Joined: Jul 19, 2006
    Posts: 1,297

    CONNMAN
    Member
    from Lampe,Mo.

    >>>>>,back in the '50's & '60's ,every full service gas station had one a those ,,sum different mfg's ,,but pretty much the same ,,every tune up we did required cleaning the plugs ,,most also had a place to screw in the plug ,,hook a wire to it ,,turn it on n check the spark ,,no spark ,,we replaced that plug w' a new one ,,,,,the rest went back in after re-gappin' em ,,
     
  16. chieffan
    Joined: Sep 23, 2010
    Posts: 1

    chieffan
    Member

    Hi all. New to the site. I also have on like it and it seems to work fine. How is the dial in the center supposed to be used? I think it may have something to do with the engine compression or something? Any info would be greatly appreciated. I use mine to clean a couple plugs on a Farmall H. #2 fouls real fast if not under load and revved up good. I can clean it about 4 or 5 times before it is fouled out and cleaning don't work very good. Thanks much in advance for the information. You can email me direct if you wish. Thanks again. chieffan@wildblue.net
     
  17. Problem with blasting a plug is it rounds off the corners and edges of
    the electrodes and that is where the spark is produced!;)
     
  18. i have one of those too. and yes, the dial is to turn up air pressure on the plug while testing to simulate compression . you would be surprised how many plugs will spark fine with no pressure but as you increase it the spark goes out
     
  19. 31 5w
    Joined: Aug 6, 2010
    Posts: 119

    31 5w
    Member

    You must clean all blasting material from plug before re-installing plug or the"grit" used to clean plug ends up in cylinder w/o good results!
     
  20. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,757

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    Great shop decoration if you have lots of room but this thing does the same thing and takes up less space. I think this is the tool that killed the big units. It fits in your tool box and works very well. Any tool supplier can get the media for it. I don't know how much is required for the larger versions.

    I have a few old shop tools like this just for decoration but as I said they take up so much room.

    [​IMG]
     
  21. yeah , it takes up room...but it's fun to play with and looks good sitting on my workbench. i'm sure those small cheap ones will clean just as good , but they won't test them


    [​IMG]
     
  22. 100% Matt
    Joined: Aug 7, 2006
    Posts: 2,634

    100% Matt
    Member

    I just picked one of these up. Came with a bunch of different fittings.
     
  23. Thumper
    Joined: Mar 7, 2005
    Posts: 1,610

    Thumper
    Member

    Them things are junk......just send it to me and I'll get rid of it for 'ya !!
     
  24. 100% Matt
    Joined: Aug 7, 2006
    Posts: 2,634

    100% Matt
    Member

    It could be for sale.... send me a pm
     
  25. drpepperdude
    Joined: Nov 29, 2010
    Posts: 29

    drpepperdude
    Member
    from newark DE

    my dad has a high comp shovelhead with twin plugs too, go's through plugs like crazy, made me chuckle to myself when I saw your post
     
  26. bowtie56jw
    Joined: Aug 2, 2010
    Posts: 215

    bowtie56jw
    Member

    i have a champion, i dont think its been used in over twenty years. still has abrasive in it, i got it from a widow lady last year.
     

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