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Hot Rods Sometimes it's simple! Stuck flathead

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by metalman, May 13, 2017.

  1. metalman
    Joined: Dec 30, 2006
    Posts: 3,280


    Had a guy bring me the flathead out of his 51 F1 to fix and upgrade with some heads, intake and such. Biggest problem and his biggest concern was it's stuck, wouldn't turn. The story is he had it rebuilt locally at one of our shall I say "budget" engine shops. He said it ran good, put 800 or so miles on it then pulled it out to dress it out but that was 8 years ago and now it's stuck. I was expecting the worst, thought maybe water had got in a cylinder or 2 (possible cracked block) which I warned him could be real bad, maybe if I'm lucky a stuck valve. Pulled the intake, everything looks good and clean, bonus, has adjustable lifters. Pull the heads, hmmm....everything looks great, new .060 pistons, cylinder walls are clean, a little excess carbon on the pistons but not seeing anything to keep it from turning. I put a big bar on it and it did turn but with WAY too much effort. I'm sitting here scratching my head when my buddy watching noticed scrape marks on the flywheel. Damn, engine stand (customer brought it in on his stand) bolts are tight against the flywheel! Take the flywheel off, everything spins just fine. Waiting now for the customer to come in and get the verdict on his motor, I bet after feeling stupid he's going to be real happy!
    Oh, another good surprise, got a 4" stroke.
    Wurger, 39cdan, Kan Kustom and 2 others like this.
  2. yes, sometimes it's simple and/or overlooked...i know a guy that has messed with many cars/motors in his life and did the same thing with a sbc. the flexplate tight against a storage stand
    Last edited: May 13, 2017
  3. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 4,188

    rusty rocket

    What do they say -Sometime its better to be lucky than good. When I was younger my bosses elderly father had bought a nice late 70s Ford f100. One day he comes to the wood shop and says the transmission had gone out on the truck. Come to find out he had set the parking brake and had forgotten about it
  4. oldolds
    Joined: Oct 18, 2010
    Posts: 3,153


    Had a customer one time tell me his truck was jerking badly in corners, sometimes no power pulling out. He suspected transmission or rear problem. He dropped it of one evening, next morning I went to move it and it wouldn't move. Took it out of four wheel drive and it was fine. He had been driving it on dry pavement in four wheel drive for about a week. He did agree that he was an idiot when I told him what the problem was.

  5. borderboy1971
    Joined: Oct 20, 2008
    Posts: 743

    from Canada

    When I was working at the shop, a guy pulled up concerned about the brake dust on his left front wheel. The dust was only on about 1/3 of the wheel in a strange pattern. The right wheel was clean with a very light dust over the entire wheel. I realized right away the cause of the stain and why the dust was so heavy in the strange piss.
  6. the-rodster
    Joined: Jul 2, 2003
    Posts: 6,766


    Been there.

    I bought what looked like a freshly rebuilt late flathead, with an attached 39 tranny.

    Would NOT turn over, errrrrrrr.

    Turned out it was an early flywheel on a late motor and the mounting bolts hit
    the block.

    I picked up a late flywheel and all was good in the world.

  7. 2935ford
    Joined: Jan 6, 2006
    Posts: 3,601


    But a nice simple
  8. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 26,639

    Jalopy Joker

    metalman - hope that you did not already tell customer about solution to problem - first give him story about cracked block, etc
  9. metalman
    Joined: Dec 30, 2006
    Posts: 3,280


    Yeah, I'll give him a sob story about how the motor is junk first;).
    I had a similar situation when a customer brought me a 48 Chevy he had pulled it out of another shop he was having trouble with that was building it for him. They had already bought him a new clutch, it was still in the box, they told him the clutch had "seized". He didn't understand why the clutch was good before but now you couldn't push the pedal down. Seems they had used a long bolt on the clutch pedal, said bolt was against the firewall brace! Made me happy, work is work but I wasn't looking forward to pulling a clutch in a stock 48 with the torque tube.
  10. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 5,639


    Lucky for me, my "Stupid Story" concerns an O/T car so I can't tell it here.:)
  11. Johnboy34
    Joined: Jul 12, 2011
    Posts: 1,387

    from Seattle,Wa

    If it's a rear mounted stand he's lucky the bolt bosses didn't break off. Flatheads should be on a side stand.
  12. metalman
    Joined: Dec 30, 2006
    Posts: 3,280


    Early motors with the extended bell, yes, I have a stand that bolts to the side. I never worried much about the later blocks, no different the most engines.
    Johnboy34 likes this.

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