The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Budget36, Oct 10, 2020.
All I could find locally, anyone use it?
Yep, works great. Years ago, Fel-Pro used to include it with a gasket set. My local NAPA had to order it because no one builds engines anymore.
My local NAPA had a little bit left....but it wasn't FelPro, it was Sealed Power, I think. It is sold under several different brands.
Ya, I had to go a town over to get it. The counter lady was saying “ I only sell about one a year”.
I know I have some, just can’t find it. Lol.
Almost sure what I had , did have “ Plastigage” on it as a brand. All good.
Who'd have thunk Plasti-gage would become obsolete?
I have a couple lengths, but good luck finding them.
I even routinely use it on modern stuff when I have the oil pan off.
Auto parts stores used to give that stuff away when you bought main and rod bearings.....
Lots of it for sale on auction site.
I bought some early this year. Got it at Advance Auto parts. They had it hanging on the wall
Hard to find? Try finding Metric Plastigauge!
used to get it thrown in when you got rod and main bearings....at least the local parts place did, anyway. used ta' get free naked lady calendars too. Always thought them freebies was to make up for the ration of shit the counter guys dealt out all year.
I don't think there's too much demand for metric plastigauge amongst traditional hot rod hoodlums.
But, the last plastigauge I bought had the metric measurements on one side of the sleeve and the decimal on the other.
Metric hammers are more in demand than metric plastigauge
Mine came with metric and sae strips
Its reasons like this that I keep an SAE and Metric crescent wrenchs hanging beside each other above the work bench !
And metric pipe wrenches are damn near impossible to find too!
I needed some this past spring. I had to order it. Metric gauge on one side and real measurements on the other side.
Are those anything like mexican adjustable 5/8 socket wrench ???
or a Bohemian speed wrench (adjustable wrench)
My buddy tells about going into Autozone a while back with an old string of plastigauge to show the dude at the counter what he needed. The "counterman" told him they didn't carry dental floss to try the drug store
I found an adjustable wrench on the Bay. Looks just like a 'crescent adjustable', 10" long.
BUT: It has stamped graduations on the jaws! Like a mechanical caliper...Left side is SAE, right side metric.
It was a lark. I HAD to have it...Looked down the columns and found 4 or 5, one was a 'but it now'.
I bought it. Steeped in my precise ways of measurements/practical application of precision measuring tools, etc., my wife gave me a condescending glance when I showed her this (borderline silly) otherwise 'usable' tool!
She said, "Michael..." (much laughter)
Accurate, easy to use, and very inexpensive measuring tools are now within reach of every single statistical outlier that still works on engines themselves, outside of a business operation.
Why would anyone use one-time-use disposable measuring tools, and more so why would any auto parts store stock them? They are a waste of shelf space. Every square inch of shelf space is real estate. Every square inch has to produce revenue. If a product, or product line does not sell, it has to go. It is a waste of resources to train a minimum-wage-earing counterperson on what this obsolete product is, so they can sell it once-a-year, if that.
Your local parts store is not going to carry what statistical outlier customers want to occasionally buy. The automotive customization industry is now bolt-on, or shop-installed.
The math is pretty stark. The average age of a car un US roads, as of 2019 is 11.9-years-old. There is nothing from circa 2008 that is not disposable. There are no statistics for the HAMB-era, but we could consider it from 1900-1964, in terms of vehicles that could become a rod or custom. The mid-point of that data set is 1932. That's 88-years ago. Even the newest is 56-years ago.
Let's face it, gentlemen, our moment in the sun has passed.
If you must have Plastigauge, you can always buy it online. That is where the market went. You can go there to, or not.
I probably would have bought it online, but got off work yesterday a bit earlier than planned, weather was good, no wind, decided I wanted to start on the bottom end right then and there.
Plastiguage is absolutely not a measuring tool nor was it ever meant to be, it’s purpose is a final confirmation of measurement. As in you measured everything accurately and upon assembly are confirming you didn’t make a mistake. I have built more than a few engines never using it, because everything was measured a couple times before assembling, as should be done.
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Is "customization" a real word?
Yes. It is in my Oxford English Dictionary.
Or even worse, the difficulty our friends over in Britain have finding Whitworth Plastigage.
Well I use it when checking bearing clearances on an engine that is still in service. Accurately measuring rod big ends, bearings and journals in an installed engine is way too much hassle.
I consider it an approximate measurement to help one decide whether bearing clearances need further inspection.
Also, it avoids the "stacking" error of measuring three items to get a clearance dimension.
I bought my son a 59 Ford to drive to college. He gave it back after he became a Certified Jeweler but 20 years later he has fond memories of that car, as does his wife and he wont let me sell it. To him, its still his car.
I prefer to use my own O.D. micrometers and Sunnen bore gauges borrowed from work or use my own bore gauge set... That and a trusty calculator...
I bought some a few years back at Autozone. Of coarse nobody working there knew what it was, but it showed on their computer that they had some in stock. Took them about 1/2 hour to find it.
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