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Jaguar V12 H.E. Spark Plug Socket

Jaguar V12 H.E.

Spark Plug Socket

Getting the spark plugs in and out of a Jaguar V12 H.E. without unbolting and shifting the A/C compressor requires just the right tool.  One idea is the Jaguar spark plug wrench.  Another idea is to use a standard 5/8" spark plug socket, suitably modified.  The idea here is to start with a spark plug socket that has a hex at the top, which most of them do.  Cut away at the socket until it can be slipped alongside the A/C compressor and onto the 1A spark plug, and then use an open-end or box-end wrench on that hex to turn the socket.  Although the socket is typically designed for use with a 3/8" drive ratchet, this feature is ignored; you can't get a drive in there, and even if you can manage to get a swivel joint in place, the torque required at the angles involved usually breaks the spark plug.

Of course, using a 3/8" drive ratchet, extensions, and swivel works just great on several of the other spark plugs.  So, you need to obtain two 5/8" spark plug sockets, one to hack on and one to leave as is.

This particular socket is a Thorsen, the brand sold at Discount Auto Parts.  Such sockets are common, though, and presumably any decent one will do for this job.

Sorry, haven't actually completed this mod yet, so more pictures will have to wait.  However, it's easy enough to describe the plan: put this socket on a plug, and cut away all of the bottom end of the socket that extends beyond the flats on the plug.  Then cut the top end off as well, leaving only enough of that hex to get a box end wrench on.  Then try it on the plugs in the car, and if necessary grind a little more off one corner or some such.


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