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Welch Plugs

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by jkeesey, Sep 26, 2013.

  1. jkeesey
    Joined: Oct 12, 2011
    Posts: 652

    jkeesey
    Member

    So Im working on a 1929 Graham Paige. In other words I cant call around and get parts to fit the car. I just replaced the bushings in the kingpins and the welch plugs were destroyed on removal. The kingpins are roughly the same diameter as ford from 1928-48. Now does anyone know where I could get replacement welch plugs? I have called our local CARQUEST and Napa to no avail.
     
  2. Snot Rocket
    Joined: Sep 8, 2012
    Posts: 122

    Snot Rocket
    Member

    Gotta know the size first. Once you have that, finding plugs is a little interweb surfing away. Check Dorman first.
     
  3. jkeesey
    Joined: Oct 12, 2011
    Posts: 652

    jkeesey
    Member

    That's what Im doing now. The size is 1.055 exact but a little bigger could work. I just looked into the original company that patented the Welch Plug and found they are still making them but have a minimum order of 100. I really don't think I need 96 extra.
     
  4. jkeesey
    Joined: Oct 12, 2011
    Posts: 652

    jkeesey
    Member

    After some careful cleaning of the old ones I found a Dorman part number. The only place that had them was rockauto so we'll see how that goes.
     
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  5. TagMan
    Joined: Dec 12, 2002
    Posts: 6,029

    TagMan
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I'll be back home on Friday and I'll check my stock of misc. Welch plugs. If I have any the correct ize,I'll contact you.
    -Bob
     
  6. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547

    stimpy

  7. Flatheadguy
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 2,037

    Flatheadguy
    Member

    "Welch Plug" (British treminology)...also known as freeze plug. Now keep in mind that this is an elderly citizen relaying this information. A few brain cells have died through the years. So, take it with a grain of salt, but I'm pretty darn sure this is correct. Oh, yeah, the diameter is likely going to be 1.00". It will expand when installed. The plug is placed in the bore, convex side up (that's the humpy face toward you) and then tapped (beaten soundly) with a drift so as to expand the outer diameter thus securing it in place. For this bashing, I usually use a ball peen hanner as a "drift" and then use a bigger hammer to beat it in to submission. A bit of Permatex or whatever around the outer diameter is likely not necessary as these are not being used as a coolant passage plug.

    ATTENTION: PLEASE correct any misinformation included Above by replying here or by PM
     
  8. TagMan
    Joined: Dec 12, 2002
    Posts: 6,029

    TagMan
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    Flatheadguy, I don't believe the Welch plugs will expand anywhere near that much. As I recall (and I may very well be wrong), Welch plugs will only expand a few thousandths of an inch.
     
  9. jkeesey
    Joined: Oct 12, 2011
    Posts: 652

    jkeesey
    Member

    Welch plugs are as American as it gets. They were invented by the Welch Bros in Pontiac Michigan. They owned the Welch Motor Car Company. Apparently cars used to have screw in freeze pugs which would come out while driving. They took a large coin and hammered it into the hole and later made the patent. The had production done by the Hubbard Spring company and they still make them today but only in large quantities.
     
  10. GOSFAST
    Joined: Jul 4, 2006
    Posts: 251

    GOSFAST
    Member

    The plug you need is most likely a 1.062" flat disc style. This is based on your 1.055" dimension above.

    Thanks, Gary in N.Y.

    P.S. Pioneer has the correct plug, the part number is EP-9-25. This is 25 pcs per box if you can't find them individually, but the box of 25 is probably $10.00 or less. Should fit with no issues??
     
  11. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 26,967

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    You can probably have them in the mail from Rock Auto faster than you can run around and find a set but if there is an old mom and pop style parts house around that has been there forever they might have an assortment of different welch plugs. One local chain here has huge Dorman assortment cabinets in one of their stores that have produced some hard to get items for me a few times.
     
  12. Flatheadguy
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 2,037

    Flatheadguy
    Member

    I stand corrected by TagMan, Post #8. I have thought that the term "Welch Plug" was in fact, British. I don't know why. Even at this advanced age we can still learn something new. Although, I am likely to not retain this bit of information for long.
    Now, where the heck did I leave my evening meds?
    (Thanks TagMan for correcting my post)

    Edit....just found this....http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Welch_plug

    Interesting
     
  13. jkeesey
    Joined: Oct 12, 2011
    Posts: 652

    jkeesey
    Member

    I called all the mom and pop shops and no one had anything even remotely close. The closest I got was a tractor shop but they were either way to small or way too large. The ones from Rockauto are 1.06. With shipping it was $8 for 4 and they are supposed to arrive in 4 days.
     
  14. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,122

    The37Kid
    Member

    Thank you for the history update! I never connected the two, the plug and the automobile. The Welch was a VERY HIGH CLASS automobile, and may hold the history record for having the first HEMI designed combustion chamber back in 1901. Bob :)
     
  15. Johnboy46
    Joined: Nov 10, 2012
    Posts: 88

    Johnboy46
    Member

    Here in England Welch plugs are known as Core plugs. I've always wondered where the American name came from as my surname is Welch. I knew about the Welch car that was taken over by Buick/ Durant.
     
  16. Johnboy46
    Joined: Nov 10, 2012
    Posts: 88

    Johnboy46
    Member

    This was taken from an English car site.

    Brief History of the Welch Plug by Nevin Hubbard of www.hubbardspring.com

    A brief bit of totally obscure history that I am one of the few living persons who knows.

    My family business, established in Pontiac, Michigan in 1905, is the original manufacturer of the "Welch" plug. The Welch brothers had a motor car company at the turn of the century that was later bought by General Motors - the Welch Motor Car company. They would run the cars around Pontiac to "break them in."

    At that time core holes in the engine blocks were fitted with pipe plugs. During one of these run-ins a pipe plug backed out. In order to get back on the road one of the brothers drove a quarter or half dollar into the hole. From this they developed the Welch plug, some with the help of my Great Grandfather Martin Hubbard. They then patented the plug and the M.D. Hubbard Spring Company become the sole manufacturer of the Welch plug for the life of the patent. To this day we have the largest range of sizes available anywhere.

    So the Welch plug in origin is an American innovation and name.

    Best Regards,

    Nevin Hubbard
    M.D. Hubbard Spring Company
    www.hubbardspring.com
     
  17. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    For weird stuff you cannot cross ref, go to a place like MSC industrial supply. They will show pages of every variety of plug, bushing, etc. and you can just shop by dimensions.
    So far, MSC has served me well on piddling little orders that probably cost more to wrap than the parts are worth, even though their obvious role in the world is supplying the stuff in huge quantity to factories.
    They also have all those odd size machine screws and unusual thread counts that appear in 1930's machinery...the range of small parts is staggering.
     
  18. McMaster-Carr is another good source for oddball stuff.
     

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