Ewarts fuel tap cork
I have just obtained a Ransomes Marquis Mk 4a. after 5 years storage is started after 3rd pull.
It will need re-commisioning but my first problem is that, as I expected, the fuel tap cork has disintegrated. Does anyone know the dimensions of the cork I need. The ones on offer are 10mm long and 10.5 mm wide and advertised for motorcycle taps. Did Ewarts offer different sized tap corks?
There are a couple of eBay sellers offering the correct corks but the quality is a bit variable. You can also buy complete plungers.from Meetens , Villiers Parts and The Hailsham Mower Centre.
I believe that George st Villiers Parts offers a modified tap with an O ring rather than a cork.
If you are unable to obtain replacements corks, it is possible to repair these taps yourself using some cork gasket material. I've done this a couple of times now and it seems to work very well. Use a punch to cut out disks from the sheet of cork which are slightly larger than the barrel size of the tap then use a small punch to cut holes in the centre of each disk for the small brass rod which holds everything together. Reassemble the tap with sufficient disks to give the length of cork you require then using some fine sandpaper reduce the diameter to give a good fit in the tap barrel. If you have access to a lathe or pillar drill you can use this to rotate the tap (chuck holding the part you would grip with your finger) to make the sanding step much quicker. I find the advantage of this approach is that you end up with a perfectly fitting tap plunger and no leaks.
Thanks for advice, I bought some cork inserts off ebay and they have done the job admirably.