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Hot Rods do I need to run breathers on both valve covers?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by firstgear, Mar 9, 2016.

  1. firstgear
    Joined: Jun 11, 2011
    Posts: 112


    I have small block Chevy stroked to 383. I dont race the car nor run it I need to run a breather on both valve covers or can I get away with one?

    I ask because I will need to make some modifications to my wire loom that will then get rather close to my steering knuckle....uncomfortably if I could get away with just one that would be great. The engine does not have an oil filler, I add oil through the valve big deal.

    thoughts? Comments?
  2. It only needs one breather, I run two on my driver side cover and my oil fill hole ( with a 710 plug) and PCV valve on my pass cover. But it would work well enough with one breather.
  3. firstgear
    Joined: Jun 11, 2011
    Posts: 112


    perfect, by the way, I dont have a PCV valve nor an oil fill tube with the breather on top, just what I have on the valve cover. Previously I tried to make a really cool breather that would mount in the fuel pump area since I have electric pump, but there is so much action in that area it didnt work....I have enough to do getting ready for the upcoming show in Cleveland, I didnt really want to have to tackle engineering this even more.....I had to engineer was it was. I used the old aluminum script Corvette valve covers and didnt want to put a hole through the top so I found some breathers I liked that went on the side, but to use the wire looms that I had which I liked I had to remake new standoffs for it to clear the breather...that moved it out slightly and I have about 1/4" clearance as it moving the wire loom out would be bad on the drivers side....until I have more this time next week I will already have the car set up and in place......and my list of things to do is rather lengthy at this time including getting a 57 vette out of the trailer....the car is completely apart and when I saw completely, the body is on a stand in the trailers with lots of boxes and the frame is on some roller floor dollies.....grrrrr.......thanks for your thoughts!
  4. I run a PCV valve in one cover, a breather in the other.
    Montana1 and Dooley like this.

  5. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 6,695

    Member Emeritus

    I think if you can, you should run a PCV valve; it helps to actually REMOVE built up crankcase pressures that lead to oil being forced out of breathers, and blowing gaskets out over time. I know it's not "traditional', but it's also one of those things that helps keep your engine clean, INSIDE and OUT. There are plenty of ways to make them hard to see, and not detract from the "look".. JMO. I am Butchy/56sedandelivery.
  6. i.rant
    Joined: Nov 23, 2009
    Posts: 3,389

    1. 1940 Ford

    ^^^^^^^^^^^ X2 :D
  7. Nick O
    Joined: Feb 16, 2010
    Posts: 120

    Nick O
    from Ohio

  8. Lil32
    Joined: Apr 4, 2012
    Posts: 2,343


  9. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    Member Emeritus

  10. chevy57dude
    Joined: Dec 10, 2007
    Posts: 6,698


    X7, and is there room to drill the back of the VC for a PCV? Or on the intake manifold into the lifter valley? Stock SBCs have a PCV and only one breather into the air cleaner. So the single one seems like the right way on your 383 if you can work it out.
  11. Russco
    Joined: Nov 27, 2005
    Posts: 4,196

    from Central IL

    There is no reason to not run a PVC it will keep your internals cleaner and help prevent leaks due to pressure build up.
  12. RainierHooker
    Joined: Dec 20, 2011
    Posts: 2,018

    from Tacoma, WA

    In anycase, you need an "in" and an "out". Stock SBCs had a breather in the oil fill along with a road draft tube in the rear on early ones, and a pcv valve in the oil fill and a breather in a valve cover on the later ones. Its a ventilation "system" that needs flow from one end or side of the motor to the other to effectively work.
  13. These items should be addressed, but take care of them after you're done with the show. Driving it from the trailer to show floor is not going to be a problem.
    Remember, they're never done.
    Good luck with the show. Have fun. Phil

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using H.A.M.B. mobile app
  14. Does way more the keep you from popping gaskets, crank case pressure leads to ring flutter or oil passing the rings. Also leads to blow by. If the car gets driven off the trailer and parked then breathers and PCV valves are not necessary but if it is something that actually gets driven both are a must have.

    I guess if someone didn't want to run a PCV valve they could run a vacuum pump like the big dawgs do. On blower motors we don't use a PCV valve we use a vac pump, you can go expensive or you can get an air pump from a Ford they make an excellent vac pump and are durable.
  15. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,901


    Beaner, "710 Plug"! Funny! I got one of those on the hemi in my dirt car. I tell the great unwashed that ask that it's the HP of the engine; most buy it!
  16. atch
    Joined: Sep 3, 2002
    Posts: 4,912


    Would those of you who are still reading this thread please look at this other thread?


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