Around three years ago I fitted a male/male adapter into the radiator of my TC in order to accommodate the sensor of a Jaeger temperature gauge. Three years later, I came to remove the adapter, only to find that it had corroded away so badly that I literally could pull it out after just a couple of turns of the spanner.
On thinking back, I remember being surprised that the item was made of steel rather than brass but assumed that it was probably stainless and would therefore be OK. As the adapter was supplied by one of the usual specialist parts suppliers, I phoned for a replacement and added the £16 charge to my already over-burdened credit card.
On receiving the replacement adaptor, again still manufactured in steel, rather than brass or stainless, I decided to see if I could source something better. I took it to my local “Plumb City” where a nice man sold me a 3/8 inch “Nipple” for the princely sum of 93 pence!! In brass!!!
As can be seen from the photograph, there are a couple of differences from the original part. The major one is that the internal diameter is slightly smaller and will not accommodate the temperature gauge sensor. However, if you have the use of a lathe, this can be easily sorted as there is more than enough sidewall thickness to widen the internal diameter to fit the sensor. (Initially, I thought of using a drill to widen out the centre but holding the part securely presents a problem. I then tried filing with a rat-tail file but soon gave up and decided to phone my friend with the lathe!!)
A second difference is the lack of a hexagon area for a spanner to locate on to. All this means is that you use a Mole wrench or plumbers “dogs” to tighten it into the radiator, having first wrapped both threads in PTFE tape. Job done – for 93 pence! …………… and in brass!!
Steve Ashworth (TC3448)