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Old 06-30-2010, 05:47 PM   #1
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Default Alcohol and sparkplugs

I have a Flying Toilet and it appears the tune is correct. The plugs do not seem to show and difference on the plating. This is a low compression motor 10:1 with NGK plugs. The reason I think the tune is correct with the adjustment of the pill I have come to the best et. I guess the guestion is will the lower compression effect the reading of the plug?
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Old 06-30-2010, 06:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

You can't read alky tune-ups by the plugs.
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Old 06-30-2010, 08:48 PM   #3
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

Here's how to read alcohol spark plugs http://trakcomm.com/841/10601.html Mike Canter wrote a great overview and he's a pretty smart guy. It's also the way I read them and it works. Just practice at it and it will come to you.

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Old 06-30-2010, 09:08 PM   #4
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

I'm sorry but using the plug to tune alky is trouble for sure. I will tell you this it is possible to burn a piston on alky and the plug still look great.

Alky engines get tunned by engine temp and upper rod bearings.....
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:47 PM   #5
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

I guess I've been lucky, but your right at least about bearing telling detonation harshness.

I guess the next question would be, why would a guy like Mike Canter write a story about reading alcohol plugs. He's a high end ProMod racer and many of the tunners go to him for tunning help.
That's my personal experience anyway..............................Blessings..... ........Ron.
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Old 06-30-2010, 11:07 PM   #6
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

All the Blown Alky guy's I know run solid blocks and heads they dont care about engine temp so they use there rod bearings. The guy's I talk with check to see how much they crushed the bearing on a pass.

Now on a standard wet block it's best to use engine temp. You want to see the engine gain 10*F from the start to the strip on the gass (WOT) in a 1/4 mile. Over 10* she be lean and also alky engines can run 10% fat with no H.P. loss so it's better to be a little fat.
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:19 AM   #7
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

I don't think the original poster is going to be pulling rod bearings to tune his engine or probably 99+% of the other posters on this board. I tune a blown injected alcohol dragster and since the car is not running in NHRA TAD I tune by the plugs. Most of us fun racers will not be pulling the pan and dropping rod caps between rounds for tunning.....hopefully.
His questions was, can you read an alcohol plug to tune the car by. I provided the answer for "that" poster.
Happy racing.......................Blessings............ ...Ron
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:35 AM   #8
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

I have read thatyou can use the plug by watching the plating on the bottom of the plug. I believe my tune is pretty close by watching my et I started with a 90 pill went to a 86 and picked up 2 tenths went to 82 pill and lost the 2 tenths. Went back to the 86 and et came back. With that info I am assuming that the tune must be pretty close. When looking at the plugs they look brand new for the exception of the grd strap with color right at the bend. I am getting about a 10* rise in water temp in the 1/8 mile. So that leads me to my original questions, will compression or lack off effect the burning off of the plating.
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Old 07-01-2010, 09:29 AM   #9
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

Less power and therefor less heat so make sure you don't run to cold of a plug.

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Old 07-01-2010, 09:50 AM   #10
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

My suggestion, being methanol is very forgiving start a tad on the fat side and with a tad less timing.
To being only make 1/8 mile passes. I would suggest NGK -8 plugs as you CAN read the ground strap no matter if we are talking methanol or gas ( you are looking for a color change right at the bend). Each pass use 1 or more fresh plug(s) and then look at the ground strap and insulator. Light spots that look like black pepper can either be dirt or signs of detonation starting. Metalic spots means something like the piston is not happy and starting to melt. Keep a log and each pass only change 1 thing such as incresse pill size or timing. It is best if you get towed back so you can shut the motor down after the run. If you run VP M5 the insulator will get a fuel ring.
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Old 07-01-2010, 10:21 AM   #11
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

Right now I am running #9 plug. What happens if your plug is to cold?
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Old 07-01-2010, 10:59 PM   #12
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

if the plug is too cold,you can see those drastic swings in performance like you have , from small pill changes. too cold will make a rich tune up act really rich. sometimes putting out the fire and having a miss or slight pop down track. low compression, no nitrous, i wouldn't be afraid to go with ngk-8, possibly try a set of-7. you cannot hurt it on that type naturally aspirated combo, it will fall flat and run slow if it is lean. been bracket and t-stop racing with toilets for 17 years now.
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Old 07-02-2010, 08:58 AM   #13
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

whats the mph telling you ??? is it gaining mph (MPH IS POWER ) or dropping off ?
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Old 07-02-2010, 10:49 AM   #14
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

When I was running gas I used a FR5 NGK, then went to a BP9ES because the FR's didn't go that cold. Can I go back to the FR's or is thee a difference between the two other than the physical size? I don't have the time slips with me at this time to look, but my daughter (crew chief) said it was the fastest we have ran mph on this track.
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Old 07-02-2010, 02:11 PM   #15
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Default Re: Alcohol and sparkplugs

Rick, how much timing do you run? Car was fun to watch last weekend!!!
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