Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Camshaft IV

I know it's been a while... again... but I did finish this!

Once I got the cam timing set, it was just a matter of reassembly.  But I did a little extra cleanup on the intake manifold too.  

Per Vizard's book:

Being aluminum and having a spare made this an easy job.

I've already done all the other tricks rto the carb bodies themselves.  Once of these days I need to have a flow test done.

Okay, on to reassembly!

So I'd love to be able to say that was the end of the saga.  But you know the answer to that.

The first problem showed up when I went to start up.  I couldn't get her to start.  I tried checking timing and fuel, but no dice.

Then, I heard a horrible squealing noise when I went to start.  I thought I had done Something Really bad inside the engine.  Fortunately, it wasn't that bad.  The starter bendix hung up and stayed engaged.

I got it unstuck for the time being, but I did end up replacing it with a high torque starter (which works great!) from a 1989 Isuzu Trooper II.  It is a direct fit replacement with no modification required.

Finally, I get the timing set right and she started!  She sounded great and oil pressure came up immediately... but I noticed that the oil pressure was low, like 50psi instead of the 70-80 I expected.  I finished the 20 minute break-in and shut her down, and went to think.  And I had a horrible thought.  I went to look at the main bearings I removed.  The back of the bearing read ".010".  I put in standard size bearings.

Aw, come on!

So that meant I had to do the job over again, except for removing the cam from the block.  It didn't take a ton of time, and I had the whole 'swap bearings in block' routine down pretty well.  It just hurt my pride to have to disassemble what I had spent so much time painfully reassembling.

In the end, post-swap oil pressure came up to 75psi and stayed there.  After another break-in period, I went for a drive.  And wow.  Gidget's got some guts now!  She pulls strongly and really takes off at 3000 RPM.

I've put about 500 miles on her since I finished the work (and went to the 2023 BWOG!), and she still runs amazingly well.  Oil pressure comes up immediately and I have 60psi at hot idle.  She is a little clattery until she warms up, but the sounds of a self destructing camshaft is gone.

And you might notice a little extra bling... she's worth it.

Life is good once again. 

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