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Often when we are fortunate enough to acquire an engine with an igniter, we find that the original platinum-alloy points are so badly burned that they must be replaced. An inexpensive substitute is readily available-iron nails. For the average igniter, select some nails from the hardware store that have heads about 3/16' in diameter and about 1/8' thick. Drill out the old burned points with a drill size barely large enough to clean the holes. Then chuck each nail by its shank in a lathe or electric drill and turn the shank for about 3/16' to a diameter close to the drill diameter. Cut off the remaining shank and rivet in place, being careful to get the nail head on the correct side.

Iron nails provide a splendid electrical spark with formation of many little incandescent flying particles that ignite fuel vapors with vigor. They probably won't give the long service that platinum did, but they're far cheaper and will be quite satisfactory for the light, intermittent service most of us require of our engines.