The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by kscarguy, Jul 14, 2014.
Wing. . . ,
I am not sure that TDC is an issue with a rattle can rebuild.
Hey be nice...This "rattle can rebuild" as you call it, is 1973, 2 bolt main, 400, bored .040, with 5.7 rods, SpeedPro pistons, Crane Cam, Cloyes double roller chain, and balanced engine (I saw the balanced setup). It was line honed, zero decked, squared and bored of course. It has all new bearings, oil pump and such. It has an Edlebrock performer intake and a Quadrajet carb (purchased new and put on my previous 350 engine, but it sat dry for a few years in St Louis). The engine had a nice set of polished Mickey Thompson Valve covers on it. It has a new balancer, flywheel, oil pan and timing cover For the heads I chose to use these 882 castings until someday I could afford a nice set of aluminum heads like all you rich guys. When I got these heads, I was told that they had been given a recent valve job and the engine builder told me he checked the valve seats with a vacuum test and that he check the guides and in fact loosened a few valves because they were too tight and would gall. Even the crummy distributor hold down clamp was new. The only used part was the HEI and that came from a race car buddy of mine, and that was just replaced with a new HEI. SO virtually all the parts are new...well, ok, I used some old paint from my stockpile.
As for TDC...easy. I can see the piston with the heads off. I just need to set up a stop and rotate it in each direction to ID the zero mark.
This time when I paint it, I'll use a brush. and paint it red so the blood from my scraped knuckles will match.
Now that it is all torn apart, maybe I should put my throttle body on it after all...yeah, that will simplify everything!
Seriously...what could go wrong? except for the 20 pages of HAMB'ers telling me not to do it, and 20 pages of other HAMB'ers telling me to do it. And probably 20 more pages of suggestions for a bigger better induction system so I can go 6.7 seconds in the quarter mile...ha!
Some people just aren't happy unless they are frustrated and mad
If your front cover was an aftermarket chrome-plated one that is your problem. Never saw a factory cover that was off center but the reproduction/replacement ones are awful. They've made millions of units out of tooling designed for probably 10-100 thousand decades ago. This has been a prolem for a couple decades at least. At least they are cheap so you can throw them away without crying much.
I didn't know you knew my wife !
Oh Yeah, we go way back
Check the cam for flattened lobes. You can use an indicator and measure the lift or eyeball the movement of the intake /exhaust rocker arms comparing one with the others as you manually rotate the engine. All intakes should have the same amt. of movement
You might be using a PCV that is rated too high vacuum, causing too much vacuum, sucking oil. You could have a collapsed lifter ( s). Re-adjusting the lash, you could have over tightened one or more. It's easy to over tighten them and cause the valves to not seat.
You won't believe it, but I have yet another broken part!!! The cheap, new "Made in Taiwan" HEI distributor broke the electric plug that connects to the distributor cap. I barely pulled on the locking tab and "snap", it instantly broke off. I even asked the performance part store guy if they had issues with that (since the reviews on Summit Racing catalog said their distributer has that problem). I was assured these were good...good for nothing.
Blue...tell your wife I said "hi". LOL!!!
Got a new GM HEI with coil off a crate motor , never used. Pm me your add as I lost it and I'll send you an early x-mas box. It's yours .
Wife says ola and love and kisses from me ?
Mike it's the big cap unit but should fit ok?
Kan. Only couple of days on UPS ,and I can get it out Monday pm . Blue
Thanks for the offer, but I actually have another good used to use. I even ran it on the engine and it worked great, but I decided to install a brand new one so I wouldn't have any issues..."yeah that idea worked out just great "
FYI - If I do decide to install the TBI, I have yet another different distributer that I will need to use.
Offer stands if you need it , got a couple . Blue
You can get a adjustable timing light at sears. They are not that expensive.
sounds like your heads are off being gone through now. so you might think about pulling the cam out and checking it while your heads are off. and your push rods for straightness. nows the time if heads are off.
edit... if you pull cam put the lifters back in the same hole.
I plan to check lifters and cam as suggested. I am just going to look down the lifter hole. I have an adjustable timing light. I am seriously thinking of pulling the oil pan and checking the rod bearings since it did get low on oil between the leaks and the PCV valve sucking it out. The oil pan still leaks anyway, so since I am this far into checking everything...what the heck.
installing the timing tape is good, but make sure you are using correct balancer and or timing cover. I've seen guys use a cover with pointer in different place for their particular balancer, so the timing is way off due to mismatched parts. I'm not really a chevy guy so I don't know how to identify the correct matched parts perhaps someone else can.
Of course this may not be the issue at all but since no one else mentioned it I figured I'd shoot a guess out to you.
Since you are blowing oil out of the crank seal, plugs are oily, and you are sucking oil into your pcv valve, I would say you have a vacuum leak. It doesn't take much mismatch of the angles of the intake and heads to cause a leak. That can pressurize the crankcase. Make a template of the angle between the block and head, compare that with the intake manifold. A very small difference can be cured by gluing two thick intake gaskets together each side. Use silicone on the ends not the stock gaskets. A big difference in angles will require either the heads or manifold be machined to correct the angles.
A vacuum leak on the bottom of the intake manifold does not cause pressure to build in the crank case.
Please think that thru and post the theory behind your thoughts for correction.
When you floor any car, the vacuum should go down to close to 0 whether ported or non ported. I'm still thinking you your issues may be carb related as far as running and high compression created by can or bad gauge.
Maybe this a dumb question but your engine is a stroker, are you running the correct balancer?
Not a internal balanced one?
This wouldn't create all your problems but it would be some of them.
I still think you have a pile of different causes creating your issues but you are getting through them one by one.
Keep it up, you'll have it.
Can I replace the flexplate on the 400 and can a engine shop balance the new one to match the old one?
How you making out?
dorman sells the replacement plugs for them , but if you get the new "free unit " it is good to have a spare .
Long road trip today to take the heads to the machine shop. They tore them down and completely checked them out. Summary - the exhaust valves stems are worn out....that's the good news. Unfortunately these are Mexican truck heads with a weird 3/8" tapered valve stem and the valves were not in stock anywhere in St Louis, 'Aye Carumba'...! So eight new valves at a higher cost - $14 (that's $181 Peso's) each are being shipped in tomorrow so they can put them back together.
They also used the one "reasonable condition" exhaust valve to check the exhaust guides and they said the guides appear to be good, but if they are bad, they will replace them. Luckily the machine shop is taking care of the labor cost.
Now I have to make yet another road trip to pick them up. But at least they should be like new when they are done. Of course they were supposed to be "like new" the first time.
FYI - I also asked about matching the balance weight of my "out of round" flex-plate to a new "true running" flex-plate. It can be done, ($50 - $150). I might just leave mine alone. It starts easy enough and I don't think it is so far out as to cause starter issues.
Sounds like your making good progress.
Hey KS, I'm in StL, if I can help in any way.
I may have missed it in all the comments but if the heads are off use a dial indicator to find top dead center on the #1 slug. Then look at the balancer and the pointer and they should line up to read zero.
That will find when the piston is at the top, & great for measuring clearances and such. ButThe "dc" part of TDC is the "dead center" of the piston dwell degrees at the top. A dial indicator won't measure or split your crank degrees.
If you want to use a dial indicator, you still need a degree wheel and follow a process that involves the same process as a positive stop or piston stop.
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