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Old 02-17-2013, 06:47 AM   #31
gsweave
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinj View Post
Hi everyone,

there's been some interesting discussion on the thread, and I'm still amazed to be offered so much help. Many thanks to everyone on this thread.

I bought the extractor thing; it was $3 or $4, almost nothing. But in the end I decided to have the dealer take care of it anyway. From what most of you describe on this thread, it's unnecessarily cautious. It was fairly expensive (less so if I succeed to bill my insurance for the tow as "roadside assistance" - don't know if they'll bite). But the bike is alive again after just a few hours.

Another reminder for me to take it slow and be very careful in the future. I'd expected that this whole home mechanic business would be fairly easy once I had the right tools and watched the instructional DVDs. Turns out it's harder to learn than I thought. It's frustrating and discouraging at times like today. I hope the investment of time and money will pay off eventually.


Goodnight everyone, and enjoy the long weekend,



Kevin

Don't give up on the home mechanic business.

Just know when to stop, step back have a coffee, get advice.

ya done good
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Old 02-17-2013, 12:35 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by gsweave View Post
Don't give up on the home mechanic business.

Just know when to stop, step back have a coffee, get advice.

ya done good
I've f-ed up more stuff than I can or care to remember. It's the f-ups that teach you more than any DVD. If you can, pal up with someone near you who's been spinning a wrench for a while. Their experience and judgement on what needs a new tool vs. what needs "professional" attention is invaluable.

If you ever meet a mechanic who says he's never made something worse he's flat out lying. And we all get that queasy feeling every now and again when something doesn't go according to plan.
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Old 02-17-2013, 12:49 PM   #33
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If you don't use a proper torque wrench to tighten spark plugs into aluminum heads and choose to just do it by feel don't grab the handle of the ratchet wrench. First hand tighten, then put the ratchet wrench on and grab the ratchet at the very front part. If you have reasonable sized hands you will cover part of the neck of the handle. This will allow you to get enough force on the wrench to tighten the plug but you'll have to really try to over tighten it because you don't have the leverage advantage of using the end of the handle. Tighten carefully and you can feel the little compressible ring compressing. And you can feel the resistance build as it becomes compressed. It's like a Zen thing to be able to visualize what is happening through what you feel in your hands. But you lose that if you use the mechanical advantage the full length of the ratchet handle gives you.
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Old 02-18-2013, 11:26 AM   #34
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I've been changing plugs in engines for over 40 years and never broke one until last year. I was surprised at the little bit of force it took to break it. It was barely seated when the wrench suddenly had no resistance. A large bladed screwdriver with slight pressure was able to unscrew the threaded portion.


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Old 02-18-2013, 03:58 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Boatman View Post
I've been changing plugs in engines for over 40 years and never broke one until last year. I was surprised at the little bit of force it took to break it. It was barely seated when the wrench suddenly had no resistance. A large bladed screwdriver with slight pressure was able to unscrew the threaded portion.


Any chance someone else over-tightened it when it was installed? Looks like a used plug. Or do we have some inconsistantant manufacturing here? Or like me, getting a little nueropathy, arthritus, etc and not the hands of a surgeon I once was?
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:31 PM   #36
Boatman
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Originally Posted by concours View Post
Any chance someone else over-tightened it when it was installed? Looks like a used plug. Or do we have some inconsistantant manufacturing here? Or like me, getting a little nueropathy, arthritus, etc and not the hands of a surgeon I once was?

This was my Super Enduro I bought with 1000 miles on it and the first time I had removed the plugs. I doubt they had been out before but possible I guess.

The one thing I'm always concience of with reinstalling plugs is that the washer is already crushed. When it's tight I stop,,,, not like the uncrushed washer where you gradually build up resistance.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:01 PM   #37
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I was 15 years old and learned on my Suzuki TS125 that using a torque wrench can strip out the spark plug. At that time, a new head for the 2-stroke was $18.00. Since then I have always finger tightened until the plug seats - and if the plug does not seat take it out and find out why. After finger tight, tighten lightly with a 3/8" drive ratchet. Not having the plug come loose is all that matters. Learning from experience is often worth the aggravation - but learning from others experience is preferred.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:11 AM   #38
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1+

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boon Booni View Post
In had the same thing happen to my Vstrom last year. I think is was a defective plug because I really didn't put a whole lot of torque on it. I always use a stubby ratchet just to make sure I can't wring something off.

I went to sears and picked up a square style extractor...



... Like this. Just lightly tapped in into place with a small hammer and it didn't take hardly and torque to remove the stuck bit of plug. There's nothing for the remaining bit of plug to be torqued against so it should come right out unless the threads are boogered.
1+ used a faucet seat tool that looked similar to remove a broken plug from my '94 Dodge Ram back when it happened to me. Tapped it in until it bit , then turned t out w/ a crescent wrench.
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Old 02-19-2013, 11:45 AM   #39
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I have seen this twice in my life, broken plug while going in that is. Once back in the 80's with a Chevelle. The other a few months ago with a Honda. Since the plug was new and the threads were not stuck they just unscrwed once you got something to bite them a little. Both cases bad parts, not bad installation.

Now a spark plug that breaks while trying to remove, that is a COMPLETELY different story. Generally you are really screwed.

Ford has a few other issues with the spark plugs. Blowing the threads out of the heads is common on early 2000's 5.4s. And the 2-piece spark plug on the 3-valve motors sounds bad on paper and is worse in real life. I refuse to touch them.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:01 PM   #40
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Hey, spark plugs break. It happens..


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