What causes plugs like THIS??

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jagwit
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#1 What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by jagwit » Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:17 pm

They come out of a '65 4.2.
20180409_094116_Richtone(HDR).jpg
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Engine front on the left, bulkhead side on the right.
20180409_094017_Richtone(HDR).jpg
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Last edited by jagwit on Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Best Regards
Philip
71 E-type V12 Coupe,
80 XJS (EFI by Megasquirt & EDIS-6 + 5sp manual overdrive)
73 Jensen Interceptor
74 Interceptor (EFI by Megasquirt + overdrive 4sp auto)

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Gfhug
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#2 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by Gfhug » Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:18 pm

More info, please.
Was the car running? In storage? Running but rough?

Geoff
S2 FHC Light Blue

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christopher storey
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#3 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by christopher storey » Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:25 pm

That looks to me - at a very rough guess - as though there has been an intake fire while the engine has been running and a fire extinguisher of the bromofluoroethane type has been discharged into the intake . Certainly , in my view there has been a contaminant sucked into the engine

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#4 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by jagwit » Mon Apr 09, 2018 3:19 pm

Gfhug wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:18 pm
More info, please.
Was the car running? In storage? Running but rough?

Geoff
I had installed a 123Ignitions BT distributor and the car was driving fine - for less than a week. Then the report came in that the car is jerking when driving up a hill (obviously under heavier load).

I thought that some HT wires pulled out the dissy cap but this was not the case. That's when I pulled the plugs and found as above.

The owner roped me in to help with his car as none of the usuals here were able to sort it out. I did not think to check or change the plugs because the car was going very nicely indeed. No jerking, even well below idle speed.

Up until now the car has been driven most infrequently due to the issues I was called in for (mainly overheating). The overheating was the result of wrong thermostat, bypass circuit not shutting down (wrong thermostat), coolant short circuit in header tank via sensor hole directly to top RH radiator connection and a "radiator" fan that was mounted IN FRONT of the stone guard leaving a 2" gap between fan and radiator for fan air to escape through.

Cooling system was severely neglected: No antifreeze, much of that rust coloured paste in the water.

So, what I don't know how long it took for the plugs to become like this.

Could it be coolant leaking into the intake manifold?
Best Regards
Philip
71 E-type V12 Coupe,
80 XJS (EFI by Megasquirt & EDIS-6 + 5sp manual overdrive)
73 Jensen Interceptor
74 Interceptor (EFI by Megasquirt + overdrive 4sp auto)

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#5 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by jagwit » Mon Apr 09, 2018 3:20 pm

christopher storey wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:25 pm
That looks to me - at a very rough guess - as though there has been an intake fire while the engine has been running and a fire extinguisher of the bromofluoroethane type has been discharged into the intake . Certainly , in my view there has been a contaminant sucked into the engine
This is certainly not the case :wow:
Best Regards
Philip
71 E-type V12 Coupe,
80 XJS (EFI by Megasquirt & EDIS-6 + 5sp manual overdrive)
73 Jensen Interceptor
74 Interceptor (EFI by Megasquirt + overdrive 4sp auto)

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Landcrab
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#6 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by Landcrab » Mon Apr 09, 2018 3:50 pm

Could it be some kind of additive in the fuel that has been mixed in totally wrong proportion? Or oil/water from the crankcase breather pipe?

Regards Johan
1965 fhc

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#7 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by Paul71a » Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:43 pm

Blimey! Never seen anything like that before.
Paul Brazier. S2 FHC 1970, silver with blue leather. Oh, and a S1 prototype Lotus Elise and a Ferrari 488 GTB

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#8 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by mgcjag » Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:49 pm

Ash deposit caused by oil and or fuel addative....just google white powder on plugs...lots of info.. Steve
Steve
1969 S2 2+2 & Building a C type replica

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#9 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by Heuer » Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:49 pm

Could be:

1. dried out anti-freeze so a head gasket or inlet manifold failure allowing coolant to the plugs
2. aluminium oxide caused by deterioration of the ally cylinder head
3. electrolysis causing build up of aluminium oxide
David Jones
S1 OTS OSB; S1 FHC ODB

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#10 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by cactusman » Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:02 pm

I would agree with David...especially as you say the car was already suffering from overheating issues I would suspect coolant has somehow been drawn into the intake. What ever the malaise just replacing the plugs won't address the root cause. Maybe a head gasket failure. Maybe a leaking water rail on the manifold....
Julian the E-type man
1962 FHC
1966 MGB....fab little car too

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#11 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by jagwit » Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:55 pm

The idea of coolant scares me a bit...

So it has new plugs in now. I'll get the owner to drive it a bit keeping a close eye on coolant level and then I'll pull a plug every now and then to monitor their condition.

It has been losing coolant, but there has been rather significant leaks, so it's hard to tell if coolant loss is causing the condition of the spark plugs
Best Regards
Philip
71 E-type V12 Coupe,
80 XJS (EFI by Megasquirt & EDIS-6 + 5sp manual overdrive)
73 Jensen Interceptor
74 Interceptor (EFI by Megasquirt + overdrive 4sp auto)

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#12 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by abowie » Mon Apr 09, 2018 10:56 pm

Something's getting into the combustion chamber that shouldn't be.
Contaminated fuel. Coolant additive. Silicone brake fluid.
Andrew.
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#13 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by cactusman » Tue Apr 10, 2018 5:38 am

I would not run the engine until in had established what the contamination source is and fixed it. The plugs are covered in white powder. I'll bet the valves are too and very likely the piston tops. If it is burned silicone brake fluid or decomposed aluminium head material it will be silica or alumina which are very hard and abrasive and will do serious damage to the valves, seats and bores if you run the engine. What ever it is it should not be there. A fix is required or you could do serious damage to the engine in a worst case scenario.
Julian the E-type man
1962 FHC
1966 MGB....fab little car too

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#14 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by jagwit » Tue Apr 10, 2018 6:12 am

abowie wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 10:56 pm
Silicone brake fluid.
The car does have silicone brake fluid (I do wonder why....). The owner was not complaining about brake fluid loss. I'll ask though.
Best Regards
Philip
71 E-type V12 Coupe,
80 XJS (EFI by Megasquirt & EDIS-6 + 5sp manual overdrive)
73 Jensen Interceptor
74 Interceptor (EFI by Megasquirt + overdrive 4sp auto)

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#15 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by Heuer » Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:13 am

Ingesting silicone fluid via the Reservac is likely then. That dust is abrasive so it may have attacked the valves and bearings. Check the Reservac for fluid, fix the problem drain the oil, flush the block with proprietary fluid, refill and try running. Check the compression and hope you got away with it.
David Jones
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#16 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by chrisfell » Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:36 am

Am I the only one shouting at my laptop screen, "Stop stop stop! A '65 4.2 deserves better than this."

A well sorted '65 must be worth at least £100k (unless, of course it is a 2+2 like mine). It should be treated accordingly. There is at least one thing seriously wrong with this car. Do not drive it until it is sorted, it wont get better by driving it. Take the car to someone who knows what they are doing and pay them enough to strip and rebuild the engine+carbs+ignition properly. And while the engine is out, go over the rest of the car, cooling system, drive train, brakes and suspension, and replace repair restore as required.

Just me? I really must go and lie down in a dark room.
Chris '67 S1 2+2

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#17 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by mgcjag » Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:45 am

Have a look at this chart....its usually in Haynes manuals somewhere.....

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Steve
1969 S2 2+2 & Building a C type replica

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#18 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by jagwit » Tue Apr 10, 2018 8:01 am

jagwit wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 6:12 am
The car does have silicone brake fluid (I do wonder why....). The owner was not complaining about brake fluid loss. I'll ask though.
So, I asked. He reports no brake fluid loss.

More facts:
He recons the spark plugs may not have been replaced in the last 20 years.... :roll:
The 3-way vacuum valve is broken and has a vacuum leak. Can clearly be heard and an attempt was made to repair it with epoxy glue and tie wrap (not me though...). New one is on my list of purchases of the car.
chrisfell wrote:Take the car to someone who knows what they are doing
You really don't have much confidence in me Chris!! :lol: Well, I must frequently remind myself that I am blond with blue eyes.... :scratchheadyellow:
Best Regards
Philip
71 E-type V12 Coupe,
80 XJS (EFI by Megasquirt & EDIS-6 + 5sp manual overdrive)
73 Jensen Interceptor
74 Interceptor (EFI by Megasquirt + overdrive 4sp auto)

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#19 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by jagwit » Tue Apr 10, 2018 8:09 am

Heuer wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:13 am
Ingesting silicone fluid via the Reservac is likely then. That dust is abrasive so it may have attacked the valves and bearings. Check the Reservac for fluid, fix the problem drain the oil, flush the block with proprietary fluid, refill and try running. Check the compression and hope you got away with it.
Yep, the car has clearly been neglected - although the owner does love it. The main issue is that the car was not driven much because of cooling problems (which I have now sorted). The engine has not seen anti-freeze for a long time (now corrected) judging by the colour of water drained from the engine and amount of rust coloured residue in the cooling system.

I'll do an oil change and check compression - although the car feels very perky/healthy to me, starts on the "first spark".
Best Regards
Philip
71 E-type V12 Coupe,
80 XJS (EFI by Megasquirt & EDIS-6 + 5sp manual overdrive)
73 Jensen Interceptor
74 Interceptor (EFI by Megasquirt + overdrive 4sp auto)

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#20 Re: What causes plugs like THIS??

Post by chrisfell » Tue Apr 10, 2018 9:25 am

"You really don't have much confidence in me Chris!!"

It's just me, Phillip, just me.
Chris '67 S1 2+2

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