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Why am I not getting oil to the top end on my 460?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by hudsoncustom, Jun 3, 2007.

  1. I've been building this damn Hudson for 9 years, and I'm at the point where I'm wired and ready for engine break in.

    The engine is a 460 Ford.

    I pulled the coil wire, and turned the it over to prime the engine with oil. I noted that there was no oil pressure at the gauge. I checked the oil filter, and it was full of oil, so I know that the pump is working.

    I pulled the valve covers, and see that there is no oil coming through the pushrods....I'm just not getting any oil up to the top of the engine.

    A friend suggested one of the oil gallery plugs may have been left out of the engine on assembly. I had the plugs installed along with the cam bearings at the machine shop, but honestly, I built the engine 7.5 years ago, and I can't remember for the life of me if I saw the plugs in there.

    I figure that if one of the plugs was left out, the oil would just bypass the top end and fall back into the pan? Is this correct? From what I know, there are 6 plugs...2 at the front of the block, 2 under the intake, and 2 at the rear of the block. If one of the rear 2 were left out, the thing would be puking oil on the floor I it must be under the front cover or the intake.

    Anybody had any similar experiences, or is there something else I should be checking before I pull the whole damn thing apart?
  2. AnimalAin
    Joined: Jul 20, 2002
    Posts: 3,414


    If you are a Ford guy, you know that the distributor (and oil pump) rotates opposite of one of those brand-X motors, right?

    I only point this out because I have screwed it up myself.......
  3. Yeah, counterclockwise. I don't see how the direction of rotation would make any difference though. The problem is not that I can't get the car to run, it runs. The problem is that the oil is not getting to the top end.
  4. 1950ChevySuburban
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,210

    Member Emeritus
    from Tucson AZ

    cam bearing not clocked right?
    Just guessing................ ?
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  5. jc
    Joined: Nov 12, 2005
    Posts: 16

    from arkansas

    those big block fords uses a special oil galley plug, they are rounded on the end to allow oil to flow,if regular pipe plugs were used, no oil, I just built a 460 and had to point this out at the machine shop, a lot of people aren't aware of this..........
  6. Direction of pump rotation does make a difference, & depending on the style of pump (generally speaking), you may not get much of anything if it's turned in the wrong direction. It may work (inefficiently) enough to fill the filter, but not much else.

    Of course, once the distributor is installed, the pump would be turning correctly. I'm guessing by the way you worded it that you DID NOT remove the dizzy & turn the pump directly, but are simply turning the engine over with the starter?

    I'm a little confused by your posts. In #1, you are pre-oiling it for initial oil to top oil pressure as indicated on the gauge. In #2, "it runs". So did you try/succeed in starting it in spite of the oil pressure...or, does it have indicated pressure now on the gauge...but still no top end oil? Emphatically NOT trying to be a smart-ass, just trying to clarify.

    I'm also assuming that you did all this long enough to fill the galleries, lifters, pushrods, & so forth, & that the oil level is high enough to do the job.

    Keep in mind that due to the 385 series oiling system design, the cam/top end normally gets oil as a if it does not, it generally means there is an assembly problem, or the pump is not providing oil. Also, what filter are you using?
  7. old beet
    Joined: Sep 25, 2002
    Posts: 5,751

    old beet

  8. Roupe
    Joined: Feb 11, 2006
    Posts: 719


    Try this web site, they should have all the answers you need.
  9. Homespun -

    The oil pump is rotating in correct direction (counterclockwise). This is a Ford truck specific oil pump for the rear sump truck pan.

    I did not remove the distributor and turn the pump directly, I only turned the engine over with the starter.

    In post 1, I pulled the coil wire, and turned the engine over with the starter to try and get some oil throughout the block. In post 2, I put the coil wire on and started the motor, but shut it off after 10 seconds because I had no oil pressure indicating on the gauge.

    As for the filter, I'm using a remote filter assembly, and a NAPA gold oil filter.

  10. So I went out to the garage yesterday morning to work on the car.

    I pulled the distributor, and I can see one of the front cover oil gallery plugs is installed, the other I can't see as it is hidden by the timing cover. I know the two in the back of the block are installed, and I know the two on the top of the block are installed, so I doubt I'm missing one.

    I picked up a junk distributor and pulled the cam gear off of the thing, and I'm going to use that to try and prime the oil pump with a drill today.

    Another thought, is I'll also have to double check my lines to the remote oil filter to be sure I don't have them crossed. I'm sure I hooked it up correctly (out on the block goes to in on the filter mount, and out on the filter mount goes to in on the block), but it won't hurt anything to check that.

    In speaking with some folks yesterday, the general concensus is that I just don't have enough oil throughout the block yet for it to be coming out the pushrods...

    Hopefully this is the case.

  11. Well, it turns out that I am a complete bone-head.

    I had the lines on the remote oil filter crossed. So the oil pump was pumping oil to the filter, but then the oil had nowhere to go and never cycled back into the block, which means no oil on the top end.

    Simple fix...hopefully we'll break in the thing tonight!
  12. AnimalAin
    Joined: Jul 20, 2002
    Posts: 3,414


    Only too often, it is something embarassingly simple. Hope your motor isn't hurt from turning over too much without oil pressure.
  13. HOT40ROD
    Joined: Jun 16, 2006
    Posts: 963

    from Easton, Pa

    There are a number of thinks that could be doing it. 1. Are cam bearings in the right way. 2. Is the cam to lose in the bearings. 3. The pressure relief spring broken in the oil pump. 4. Were the right plugs used in the oil galleries. 5. Are the rockers to lose. They should be postive stop. They need to be torqued. 6. Is the screen sercured to the pump. no air leaks. 7. Is the oil pump secured to the block. No air leaks. Usually the 429 and the 460 get plenty of oil.

    Try using the drill for about 10 minutes if there is no oil. Try taking a line from the front sending unit port to the rear sending unit port with is at the rear of the block closer to the D.S. Then try running the drill again. If you get oil then it is something restricting the oil inside.

    Were the plugs installed in the lifter valley area. Its located right in front of the last set of lifters. Should be two plugs. Some blocks have two sets. The second set is right behind the first set of lifters.

    If you donot get any oil at this point. There is a leak somewere.
  14. I got the problem fixed.

    I had the lines to the remote oil filter crossed.

    i don't think any damage has been done to the bearings yet. I pre-lubed everything fairly heavily when it was assembled, and the motor only turned over a total of about 30 seconds so far...

    I switched the remote oil filter lines, put a drill on the oil pump, and had TONS of oil flowing through the pushrods within 10 seconds.

    I feel so relieved.
  15. 1950ChevySuburban
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,210

    Member Emeritus
    from Tucson AZ

    You'll be just fine............. Lettuce know when it runs!:D
  16. Good soon as I saw you mention the remote filter, that's where I was gonna head. :) Fire that mother up!
  17. 54chop
    Joined: Jul 12, 2005
    Posts: 167


    Long ago, I installed a new solid lifters and cam in a 460. Couldn't get any oil to the top end(thru the pushrods). Turned out the solid lifters they shipped out with the cam were for an FE motor. Those motors oil thru the heads to the rocker shafts. Took awhile to figure that one out. I see your oiling problem is solved, but no one made mention of this possibility. 54chop

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