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Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Ted DuPuis, Aug 3, 2018.
BTW, Just yankin' your chain. I appreciate lopey idles and old school mechanical stuff, too.
Oh I know you are. And even if you didn't appreciate the old school mechanical stuff, that's fine. It's what I'm doing anyway because I don't care what anyone else thinks.
If it’s lope you want, look for overlap. One way to get it is by using tighter lobe centers. The other way is by increasing either exhaust or intake duration, or both.
A good example is an old 1960s grind for a big block Buick called the “Window Rattler”. 107 LC with low lift. The other end of the spectrum is wide LCs and that’s what I run in my BB Buick; 118 LC with 1 degree of overlap. Total sleeper at idle. Great nitrous cam. It was called a cheater cam back in the early 70s.
You’re gonna get your tuning chops tuned, with the carbs, solid cam, and roller rockers. You’re gonna need to put in a points distributor to get the full effect, lol!
Jonesin’ for more pics from you, when the time is right.
Sorry, can’t resist. You’re making me want to build something. Gotta throw theses up...I probably have already...I sold the green one (drag only); white one is street car, bench seat, column shift, I toy with selling it once in a while.
Ted, If you don't want to worry about the vacuum for brakes, just install a 12 VDC Vacuum Pump. That is what Chris had on his 68 Chevelle.
That's part of what I like about this cam that I'm considering. It's got good overlap, duration, and lift, without having too much to be "too big" of a cam for what I want. I want the engine at idle to give the visceral feeling of an engine that is jonesin' to go, and don't want to sit around loafing at idle. With no catalytic converters it should make a great sound.
Yeah, the tuning on it will be a lot of fun and getting everything set up right and tuned correctly. I am going with electronic ignition so I'll at least have that for me, but I do need to decide which setup to go with. I'm thinking of buying a complete ignition kit from MSD since I like MSD stuff and have had good luck with it. Vacuum and mechanical advance is what I'm planning there, but vacuum advance is really probably not required since this isn't a car where I care about fuel economy too much.
Right now there's really not much to show pictures wise. All I've done is pull some parts out of the parts car. I'll probably have some more pics this weekend after tearing apart the engine.
The reality is this car doesn't need power brakes, and if the booster is working right (which it should since I'll be putting in a brand new one) it "holds" a few brake presses from vacuum. So really the thing to do is let it rev enough (or coast enough) to get some vacuum to the booster from a higher RPM and then it should be fine from there. I'm not going to install the electric vacuum pump.
if you really want to make it your own, put an as removed wet vacuum pump from an aircraft in it for your brake booster.
That would be adding complexity for no real benefit. Any engine will make vacuum given the right conditions, and the booster will hold some level of vacuum. The goal is simplicity with complexification only added to achieve a noted benefit.
Also to add on to my response to this, now that I have an engine plan pretty solidly figured out, I'm really getting the itch to start ordering parts and building an engine. Of course the fact that the thing won't be driveable for a good while longer is irrelevant, I want to hear those ponies sing.
I haven’t made any real progress on the car itself, but a few comments.
I’d previously cut 1.75” off the inner tie rod ends per the manual, and there was a massive toe in from that which didn’t look right at all. Turns out the step I missed was that there’s rack extensions that you have to put on. So I need to put those on, easy enough.
A friend of mine also suggested I consider doing a tri-power (3-carb) setup instead of the Webers. My general thought is that is a bad idea. The 6-pack carb setup was more of a big block muscle car thing and while it looks cool and might help with low end torque a bit, it doesn’t do anything for responsiveness and won’t do anything for power. The only manifold I can find that would support that is from Edelbrock and they define it as an idle-5,500 RPM manifold. It would save a good bit of money vs Webers, but if it doesn’t meet the goals then what’s the point? If anyone else has experience using the tri-carb idea I’d be interested in hearing thoughts, and specifically regarding the goal of responsiveness.
This weekend I hope to get some work done tearing into the engine and/or transmission, but I don’t think I’ll do anything else. The E55 got flooded during the recent rain storms and I have to look into that some...
Tri-carb.....if it is the street version that uses vacuum to open the other two carbs, then it just operates as a vacuum secondary carb. Easy to set up and maintain as the center carb is the one to adjust. (once the jet sizes and, if Holley, the metering block sizes are determined) Using the single carb for normal daily driving should be responsive enough for a light car, and help with fuel mileage. And when it is time for fun, the other two carbs will come on as the engine needs them.
My experience comes from the GM side using Rochester 2GC carburetors. Really the easiest, most simple set up ever made. It was on a '75 Firebird with a Chevy 350 engine, aluminum heads, I don't remember the cam specs, flat top pistons and auto trans. We opened up the hood scoops to make them functional and put fresh air to the top of the engine. It ran really well as a daily driver and a red light to red light warrior. (not that the owner ever did that .....) The owners wife could drive it and not have any problems.
Stock photo from the internet. The car I worked on never looked this good, but it looked similar with the same wheels and hood scoops. The hood was fiberglass and was heavier than the steel hood.
Gawd, this is the perfect antidote for the Tesla thread. Thank you.
Yeah, my understanding with the tri-power was that it was really more about having something more streetable for when "the wife" drives it in a production car while having the extra airflow and power from more carburetion when the other two opened up. I'm not concerned at all with mileage and I'll give up some streetability for overall responsiveness. Plus it seems like these days they mainly just make the things for show/looks rather than performance.
Today I started tearing into the donor engine. Found a few interesting things.
The engine does have GT40P heads as advertised, even though it had a standard 5.0 EFI intake.
Rocker arms look stock, but it does at least have roller lifters.
The wobbling flywheel was the biggest question I had. The clutch looks brand new, and the flywheel looks fine too. The flywheel was torqued down properly, leaving me to believe there’s something more internal wrong - either a broken crank or maybe the crank was installed with loose main caps. Tomorrow I hope to get the heads off and maybe the oil pan.
I’m not holding much hope for the block to be salvageable, but we’ll see what I find once I get inside the engine.
One thing advertised was a B303 cam, and it does look like the timing cover was removed not long ago, so there may be something in there.
The T-5 seems tight, not that it matters a ton since I’ll be rebuilding it anyway, but my real question is whether or not the case is usable.
More later (with pics and video) but for now I’ll just say WOW, I’ve never seen this happen before in an engine!
But it may be rebuildable...
Ted, you’re such a tease.
So this afternoon I continued pulling things off the engine. Pulled the heads off and they look pretty decent. Exhaust valves look like they’ve been run lean but nothing too awful. Pistons had some marks on the top that looked like they ingested something, but nothing too huge.
Then I went and pulled the oil pan off and, well... a video is worth a thousand words.
I’m amazed that the thing ran with a cracked crankshaft, but it did.
The bores are original (measured a hair under 4”) and I’m thinking the bottom end is although I’m not sure if Factory Ford pistons had valve reliefs in them or not. He said it had Keith Black flat top pistons, I may be able to tell more once I pull the rods and pistons out, which I’ll probably do tomorrow.
There were no chunks of metal in the oil pan, just bearing material. So hopefully the block is reusable.
Tomorrow I expect I’ll at least get the rods and pistons out. Might get the crank. If the block looks good, I’ll call the machine shop and bring it by.
At least the oil pickup wasn't upside down....
Is there any chance the donor car had a Mustang high speed LOC and went backwards with the clutch engaged.??
Not that I have bent a crank or two by going backwards at high speed and didn't get the clutch pushed down in time....
The one broken crank I had was in a Chevy 358 CID. It happened at Waco at the dirt track. I went high to miss a crash, bumped the wall with the rear tire which bounced me up on the left side tires. I slammed the throttle down trying to stay right side up, slammed down on all 4 and spin into the infield. Later the tell/tale tach showed I hit around 10,200 rpm.
One broke crank, 4 bent rods and 5 bent push rods. Yet the thing cranked up and I drove it off the track. It was knocking like a SOB....
Judging from meeting the guy it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if he had spun the car around or otherwise had some LOC event. To my surprise, all the pushrods seem to be straight! But one of the rods wasn't...
Today I tore into the engine more, and also into the transmission. Before I go there, one thing I forgot to mention was I tried putting on the steering rack extensions. Well, they're the wrong thread/dimension entirely. So I need to call FFR about that one tomorrow. The thread FFR provided is much larger than the actual rack and tie rods is.
I got the rockers out of the engine, as well as the rods and pistons. The pistons don't look to me like they have 160k on them - they look much too clean for that on the sides and bottoms. So maybe the guy was telling the truth about those getting put in. However the bearings on the rods and on the crank looked old. Some of that may be from the crank snapping. Either way, the crankshaft is a factory Ford, and so were the rods. I suppose someone along the line could've either pulled the engine or otherwise dropped the pan and put in new pistons not too long ago, but that seems unlikely to me, especially given that the thing has a stock bore. The bores are in good shape - they even still have cross hatching! I was surprised to see that. The oil pan gasket doesn't look like it's 160k miles old either, which would support that theory of someone just putting in pistons and not boring it out. That person would be an idiot, but given what I've found on the rest of the car, not surprising. The thing was definitely running lean and some detonation may have contributed to the crank failure.
The real question tearing into things was how the #5 main journal would look (that's the one that absorbed all the abuse from the broken crank). The journal needs some deburring around the edges, but doesn't look bad otherwise. The bearings got through to copper, but again, they're still there and they aren't completely gone. So this makes me think the block itself actually might be rebuildable. I didn't have a harmonic balancer puller so I couldn't get the crank out the rest of the way (or the cam), but pulling the #5 main cap was enough to make the broken half of the crank drop right out. Once I get the crank out I can investigate the rest of the block, and of course the machine shop will have to as well before I rebuild it (if I decide to rebuild it). I'm leaning towards reusing the block unless I find something compelling that's wrong with it. I know he didn't drive it that way since he couldn't, so my though is the block is probably ok, although I'm open to opposing views there.
Aside from the crank, the other big thing I noticed was that one of the rear connecting rods was bent in a manner I haven't seen before from the crank snapping. My guess is the bend happened when the crank let go.
The transmission was also in surprisingly good condition from what I've seen so far tearing into it. Parts look clean and not overly worn. The only real problem I've found right now is the race on the rear of the main shaft wasn't sticking in place (there's an anaerobic seal that you're supposed to put on that from what I've read) and so it was able to translate aft and hit one of 5th gear gears. Again, little deburring maybe but nothing too significant. If I go with the upgraded internals as planned the 5th gear gears I believe get reused. The only thing that concerned me on the transmission was that as I pulled off the main case, I saw that some of the bolts that go into blind holes had silicone on the bottom. I've heard that if you put too much silicone on the bolts that you can end up cracking the case when it hydrolocks around those holes. So I'll have to inspect there and see.
As I was playing with the T-5 I do like it better than the TKO for this application. The weight difference is very noticeable from the TKOs I've had before as well as the reduced internal drag spinning the gears. I don't mind the hard shifting of the TKO, but in a car this lightweight and with the goals I have of it being free-revving and light all around, I think a beefed up T-5 is going to be the right solution.
The next plan is to get a balancer puller and tear the engine the rest of the way apart, and then also get some new snap ring pliers (mine got lost...) and take the transmission the rest of the way apart.
Photos of the carnage from today...
As you can see, the pistons really look pretty new on them from the sides. Still some marks on the top that don't belong, but it makes me think they may have been replaced at some point.
Rod and Main bearings... the worst of them. Main from the #5 journal, rod from the rearmost cylinder. As I went further forward they looked better but none of them looked great.
What's wrong with this picture?
You can see the detail where the crank snapped...
Inside the tail housing. The 5th gear shift fork and associated bits all look pretty new, or at least recently cleaned.
I was trying to figure out whether these were casting flaws or cracks, but they protrude into the transmission so they're casting flaws.
The main case. Everything looks pretty clean. Obviously I got the input shaft and gear out. The outside of the transmission was dirty and made me think it hadn't been opened, but internally things look good and the use of Permatex makes me think it wasn't opened by the factory. You can see the bearing race that's coming out of the block at the top of the main case.
Never seen a rod bend that way before...
How many more times in the course of this project are you going to open up an engine and say 'I think its rebuildable' !
It seems to me by the time you pay to get a verdict on the condition of the block, have it machined and decked, buy a crank, bearings, timing chain set, oil pump, buy a connecting rod and pay for machine work on all eight, purchase new pistons, buy rings, purchase a cam and lifters, determine if the balancer is good, pay to have the rotating assembly balanced, etc., etc. the cost to buy a short block and peace of mind would be a better choice. Throw in the cost of heads, intake manifold, and distributor, and a mid-dressed engine begins to look like a good idea.
I get the adventure of building the engine, but you also have a car to build. Add the work on the transmission and rear end, and the drivetrain could turn into a long trip across the desert.
I believe a 110°- 112° LSA should be good for the torque/RPM range I think you're looking for. Duration around 218°/226° will work well, and a maximum .550 lift is about what a basic aluminum head can flow. I'm sure you have ideas about what you want though.
This ATK 347 stroker puts out 415 HP, 420 torque, and it's less than $6K. I realize this is the equivalent of saying "You should buy a Bonanza". I couldn't help myself.
Feel free to completely ignore my advice.
Probably 2 or 3 more times.
I really enjoy tearing down engines.
Those are all good points, and certainly most people go the route of buying a complete engine (BluePrint Engines is partnered with FFR). Yeah, that is definitely the engine equivalent of "You should buy a Bonanza."
I don't really want a hydraulic roller cam as I've discussed before. Roller would be one thing, but I still want solid. Actually since I have roller lifters now (with all the associated hardware, and all of those are in good shape) I could buy just a roller cam without needing the full kit... that's another question.
Either way, I might end up just buying a short block rather than building the bottom end myself, and that is a question. But the long block etc. I'm going to build myself.
That's about the only thing I can type right now, as I'm honestly speechless at those pics.
I would imagine if the bent rod was on the rear section, when the crankshaft broke it may have slid back a bit causing the rod alignment to be off just enough to bend like that. Was that a regular 2M crank, or one of the slightly beefier 2MA/2ME models?
I think your assessment of how the rod bent is exactly right - that's what I was thinking as well.
I'm not sure which crank model it was... I'll check when I get home.
Do you have any idea if that oil pan/pickup is the stock 302 model used on the SN95s? I like that better than the normal front sump the fox body cars had.
Wow, lol, that sucks. That crank looks like it had a casting/forge defect in it. The bearings are smoked, which you know. When that crank went I'm willing to bet huge loads were put on the engine case. I bet he almost won the race. Anyway, I wouldn't trust it. I'd do the short block from a good rebuilder or new if you want to spend the change and build it up. Too many strikes against that engine, but that's me.
The casting/forge defect wouldn't surprise me and would make sense. I did ask the guy what happened when it let loose and he claims that one day it just made that noise when he started it up. I have a hard time believing that so we'll assume he was racing and doing something stupid.
I still have to pull the crank the rest of the way and do some more looking, and I'll also talk to the machine shop. I can agree with the large loads put on the case under those conditions, but I'm not ruling anything out yet. I can say that I'm not going to buy new, but getting a short block from a reputable rebuilder is still a potential. The problem is that I hear a lot of talk on the Factory Five builder groups about people buying short blocks or crate engines from some of the reputable shops and then still having problems with them. So, I'm not 100% convinced that's actually more trouble free at this point. Still weighing options.
At least the transmission looks good so far. Part of me is wondering whether I should actually put in the bigger gears vs. just rebuilding this one as-is. I've read a lot of conflicting reports there. The thing with the transmission is that pulling it out is easy, so it's less of a risk to just do a rebuild and slap it in vs. the engine. That's a much bigger endeavor with more to lose.
The thing about suspecting a casting defect, is that it seemed to have held for 150K miles (or however many were on the engine). So, if it was a defect, it didn't rear its head until later in life. I'd still suspect this engine was built by someone who picked up a parts catalog and threw some stuff together without having built any high-performance engine before (I mean, who puts new pistons in without doing the rods/other easy upgrades). Did they run nitrous, melt a few pistons and just replace the pistons?! As for the front/rear sump, I think all SN95's were rear sump, since the oil dipstick tube on the block necessitates such. The front sump 302's (60's-70's) had the dipstick tube in the front timing cover.
One thing I can say with good certainty is that the guy I bought it from did not do any of the work himself. He was not mechanical and really didn't know what he was talking about. So, it's whoever he bought it from. The car was running GT40P heads with a stock intake, which is stupid. Also claimed 24 lb/hr injectors when it had 19 (that might explain it running lean). Was it running nitrous? Maybe, but I see no evidence of that, nor do I see any evidence of it having been supercharged in the past. I agree a casting defect seems unlikely to have made it 150k before cracking, but overrevving is possible.
The seemingly new pistons without boring the engine out is pretty funny to me, and again shows stupidity. It makes me think the guy pulled the heads off, dropped the oil pan (or something of the sort, pulled the rods, had new pistons put on them, and then reinstalled (these are pressed pins).
I'll agree none of it points to good things for the block, but it still does seem to be a 150k mile block that has good cross hatching in the bores and an original bore. If it was even bored 30 over then I'd say it's definitely junk, but that leaves me curious.
At first glance the bent rod almost looks like it was caused by a hydraulic lock. Hard to tell without holding it in my hand to look at it. The crank definitely hit the bottom of the piston, which would not be the reason the rod is bent. If the previous owner was truthful when he said it just happened after a startup, then that would again lead me to believe a hydraulic lock. But that is pretty much unheard of with an EFI engine. Looks like a cast crank, which could very well be a casting flaw. And that last race was just too much for it.
I would not be afraid of the block itself. As long as there are no holes in the cylinder wall of block, I would use it after a thorough check. I once used a 350 block out of a C-60. The last two rods broke, destroying the cam, oil pump and oil pan. The rods hit the very bottom of the cylinders and knocked off a small pieces on each cylinder, but not getting into the water jacket. After line boring the crank saddles, and then boring the cylinders, I just beveled the bottom where the metal was missing. I ran that block two seasons in a limited late model class on a half mile track. Then I sold the car to a guy that used the block for another 3 years.
Thanks for the perspective, Billy. If we say the guy's story is true, then hydraulic lock could be it, especially if there was a weak crank already from a casting flaw or something else.
I realize the most conservative thing would be to scrap the block, but one never knows. The failure you talk about sounds arguably more catastrophic, although depending on the forces when the crank let go that could've been worse, or at least different.
Since I still don't have the thing apart fully, I really just need to keep on tearing into things and evaluating.
The T-5, given the good condition of what I've found inside, is really making me lean towards rebuilding it as-is. It looks to have the 3.35 1st gear and 0.68 5th gear. Given that, those ratios would lend more towards a 3.55 rear end than a 3.73. I'm pulling apart the rear end anyway, and am thinking that I might use that opportunity to throw in some 3.55 gears since who knows what brand of gears the guy put in in the first place. So that could be a worthwhile trade off. I'd throw in some new synchros, maybe do the bronze shift fork bushings (currently it's nylon) and a higher quality shifter. That should help firm things up a bit more to my liking there. Oh, don't forget the S-10 tail housing for the mid shift conversion.
I sort of figure I can be working all three of these major driveline components in parallel and then be all done and ready to install at some point.
I called Factory Five and I've run into a snag with the steering rack. They provide extensions to move the pivot point of the inner tie rods further out to reduce bump steer. That's fine, but the threads are a lot different than what's actually on my inner tie rods on this rack when I remove it. I know that Rock Auto won't take it back as it's been months since I bought it now and I've hacked up the outer tie rods and removed the bushings that came with it (that weren't the right size at all). Factory Five's recommendation was to buy a reconditioned rack rather than the new one. I'm going to have to do something - either machine new spacers, re-machine these, or get a different rack. I'm not quite sure what I want to do there. Obviously this is something that's pretty important.
Looks like I may have gotten the steering rack issue figured out. I made a post on the Factory Five Builder's Facebook page and someone had a quick ratio manual steering rack with about 1,000 miles on it that he had removed from his car. He made me a really great deal on it and that should get me rolling. The manual racks require a different adapter at the column than the power rack but that's fine, I can work that out. So that seems to keep me moving forward. Not that I actually need a steering rack now, but it'll be good to have that checked off.
Reading this thread really makes me want to take on another automotive project/engine swap. Lately, I've been thinking that a 180-190 bhp Toyota 2ZZ (Celica GT-S or Lotus Elise) would be a ton of fun in a Fiat X1/9 or Lancia Scorpion/Monte Carlo. Years ago, I almost put the 2ZZ in my MR2 Spyder, which came with a 140-bhp 1ZZ.
Just read this one a few weeks ago -- a nice article:
Go for it! These projects are fun and you learn a lot.
I pulled the crank and cam out this evening. The timing chain was definitely original. The cam looks newer, but I don’t think it’s a B or E303 cam. The lift at the cam measures around .270” instead of .300+ and I see no markings indicating a 303 cam. Not surprising. So it seems the rods and pistons were the only real non stock items.
The bores all look good! No visible cracks.
The crank was broken, but I also have the 302 crank out of my other engine. It was surprising how much beefier the other crank looked. This is an E7AE-AA crank which I think is original to the engine. So my guess is some level of extra power, probably running lean and some detonation, poor driving, maybe a hydro lock of some sort...
Next is probably calling up the machine shop and talking to them.
I don't think I would be afraid of that block. A line bore check would be nice to make sure the broken crank didn't waller anything out of round.
I am really interested to hear what the machine shop thinks.
It might be ok, line bore and bearing bore housing sizes and roundness. Make sure none of the bearings spun. Plus no cracks.
The bearings did not spin - I checked. They did all look to be original bearings. Some forward ones were wearing towards copper with some copper showing.
I’m tending to agree with @Zeldman on the block. I am thinking about upgrading the main caps if I use it since that’s a known weak point on 302s, but I’m still thinking. Have to do a line bore anyway. Using splayed caps is appealing to me, or maybe just ARP bolts or studs would be fine.
I’m really interested in why the new/broken crank is so much less beefy than that old one I have...