Engine build advice
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Engine build advice

  1. #1
    Member mcgradypilot's Avatar
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    Default Engine build advice

    Hey guys. Im new to building engines but I'm in the process of diagnosing and rebuilding my olds 455. (Que the replace it with XYZ motor comments) I have two engines with various good parts.

    Engine A Spun rod bearing but good everything else

    Engine B Bad camshaft (rusted). Piston with broken skirt (My fault during disassembly. I dropped it on my foot)


    Option 1 replace crank in Engine A with one from B as well as the rod that had the spun bearing

    Option 2 build Engine B and replace broken piston (possibly from engine A)

    What machining is required for both of these options. What about balancing?

    Im not building a snarling beast. Just a reliable 455 (add more comments here)

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  3. #2
    gn7
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    You didn't mention what your options for the camshaft problem are with engine B.
    Assuming the bores similar wear:
    I would take the entire rotator from B, replace the one piston from A if possible, or even a rod/piston assembly from A, and install it all back into A.
    If one block has better bore weat than the other, then use that block and with the same rotating parts mentioned above.

    forget the balancing. If your just going to swap parts to get an engine running, its not worth the expense.



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    Member mcgradypilot's Avatar
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    Camshaft from engine A seems to be in good shape. The one from B got rusted beyond repair.

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  6. #4
    gn7
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    Put the A rotator in the block with the best bores. If the bore wear is similar, use the A block and cam with ALL the lifters in the very same holes they were in originally, and use one piston/rod from engine A.



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    X2...Keep the same pistons in the same holes when possible although olds blocks don't seem to wear the bores much, you might run a hone down the cylinders to clean and knock the glaze off. If you have to spend any money spend it on the crank. Unless the good one is really nice spending the money to get it ground round and smooth is money well spent. Get bearing from whoever does the crank...you want the clearances between .002-.0025. Get a melling high volume oil pump if you don't have one, mondello marine head gaskets. Swapping....or even running a flat tappet cam can be a pia..I ran General Motors engine oil supplement in mine and cam looks great @ 50 hrs run time. 2 pints in 10qts first time and one pint after that...Run the motor 1700 rpm minimum for first 20 min just like breaking in a new cam. NO CAR oil pans..Olds needs a 10qt...never ever run an olds hard until the oil gets warm..ie 150* and 150* water...

    Make sure your oil pressure gauge works perfect and watch it like a hawk. Balance a stock olds motor? lol.....And don't even think of spinning it faster than 4500 rpm.

    Are the skirts on the pistons damaged at all? Any broken head bolts? Don't mix the rockers and pivots if you can help it and use assemble lube....or EOS when you install them.

    Might be a good idea to have machine shop look at the heads...if it's not in the budget you might get away with pouring a little solvent down each port and see if the valves leak.
    And never be afraid to ask questions..learning the hard way really sucks.
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    Living in a cage of fear thatguy's Avatar
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    Listen to what Sold Honda says. ^^^^^^^^^

    Anyone who can make an Olds run hard in a pink Hondo Hydro, on Lake Havasu knows what they are talking about!
    Tommy
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    "...Run the motor 1700 rpm minimum for first 20 min just like breaking in a new cam."

    I'll confirm that advice, even if you install the same lifters on the same cam lobes. Treat it like a brand new cam break-in, using the GM oil additive (or similar). The voice of a (bad) experience....

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    I lost track of what was going where. But, if the cam and lifters are going into another block, beware. We all know to keep the lifters assigned to the lobe. Problem is the location of the bores Vs. cam in the other block. Lifter XYZ alignment to cam XYZ. Basically, all 16 lifters wont be in the same relation as they were in the other block. $210 new cam and lifters. Worth it!. This is true for any swap out. Further, I wonder if the cam and lifters were produced in the early 2000's. A miserable time in history for flat tappet folks. Carry on.

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    Senior Member ICECREAMAN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcgradypilot View Post
    Hey guys. Im new to building engines but I'm in the process of diagnosing and rebuilding my olds 455. (Que the replace it with XYZ motor comments) I have two engines with various good parts.

    Engine A Spun rod bearing but good everything else

    Engine B Bad camshaft (rusted). Piston with broken skirt (My fault during disassembly. I dropped it on my foot)


    Option 1 replace crank in Engine A with one from B as well as the rod that had the spun bearing

    Option 2 build Engine B and replace broken piston (possibly from engine A)

    What machining is required for both of these options. What about balancing?

    Im not building a snarling beast. Just a reliable 455 (add more comments here)
    No offense intended, but my suggestion is to find an engine builder/machinist you trust and has experience in building marine application BBO engines and take him all your parts. Get his help in doing a budget build, but use their experience on what to use and what to toss. In the long run you'll probably be money ahead doing this. People trying to make candy out of horse shit usually end up spending twice as much money and time when it's all said and done. Marine engines take a substancial beating compared to a car or truck application. These DIY budget builds rarely end well. Either way, Good Luck!

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    Quote Originally Posted by ICECREAMAN View Post
    No offense intended, but my suggestion is to find an engine builder/machinist you trust and has experience in building marine application BBO engines and take him all your parts. Get his help in doing a budget build, but use their experience on what to use and what to toss. In the long run you'll probably be money ahead doing this. People trying to make candy out of horse shit usually end up spending twice as much money and time when it's all said and done. Marine engines take a substancial beating compared to a car or truck application. These DIY budget builds rarely end well. Either way, Good Luck!
    Any engine builder worth his salt won't do it.
    Sorry, but truth is putting a mish mash of parts together on a budget almost always ends the same way. "The machinist fucked it up."
    I always turn these jobs down. Not worth the few bucks. IMO
    Sorry to OP... just to much experience. No reason to lie.

    Wags

  13. #11
    gn7
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    Quote Originally Posted by MACHINEHEAD1 View Post
    I lost track of what was going where. But, if the cam and lifters are going into another block, beware. We all know to keep the lifters assigned to the lobe. Problem is the location of the bores Vs. cam in the other block. Lifter XYZ alignment to cam XYZ. Basically, all 16 lifters wont be in the same relation as they were in the other block. $210 new cam and lifters. Worth it!. This is true for any swap out. Further, I wonder if the cam and lifters were produced in the early 2000's. A miserable time in history for flat tappet folks. Carry on.

    The idea that you kept the lifters in the same holes but in a different block is foolish. I would just as leave take my chances with scrabbling the lifters in the origianl block as swap them into another block. Thats why I suggested he use the block with the good cam and move the rotator plus one piston/rod. You're right though. If he is going to use the block with the bad cam, he should seriously consider a new cam and lifters.
    Quote Originally Posted by wagspe208 View Post
    Sorry, but truth is putting a mish mash of parts together on a budget almost always ends the same way. "The machinist fucked it up."
    I always turn these jobs down. Not worth the few bucks. IMO
    Sorry to OP... just to much experience. No reason to lie.

    Wags
    No engine builder/machinist worth a shit is going to come within a mile of that thing. No way!
    He is 100% on his own here. His idea, his baby.



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    Last edited by gn7; 01-12-2013 at 10:36 PM.

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    Default Where are you??

    You may have an option #3..... If you're anywhere in So Cal, or Az, I have an option #3 for you.... Bring me $1200. and leave with a fresh built 455, (fresh within 15 hours or so)..... We can even run the engine, in a boat, on the river before you buy it so you KNOW it's not going to blow up the first time you wring it's neck......... Carb to pan, ready to rock and roll w/ marine large capacity pan, aluminum intake, Holley vac secondary 4 brl... As I recall it's bored to 461 cu in.... You could use your intake and carb, distributor, etc, but I'd recommend leaving it as is and run it for many years to come...
    I understand you're trying for a low budget deal, but believe me, and a few hundred others, when we say you're headed for an extreme disappointment and you'd be money ahead to grab this one that needs absolutely nothing. Bolt it in and hit the water..... I'll also say you can't build one like it for less than double the sale price, if not more.....
    Ray 805 300 0012
    PS you can buy the entire running boat, 74 Tahiti, for $1900 w/ a Berkley pump and a trailer under it...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moneypit View Post
    You may have an option #3..... If you're anywhere in So Cal, or Az, I have an option #3 for you.... Bring me $1200. and leave with a fresh built 455, (fresh within 15 hours or so)..... We can even run the engine, in a boat, on the river before you buy it so you KNOW it's not going to blow up the first time you wring it's neck......... Carb to pan, ready to rock and roll w/ marine large capacity pan, aluminum intake, Holley vac secondary 4 brl... As I recall it's bored to 461 cu in.... You could use your intake and carb, distributor, etc, but I'd recommend leaving it as is and run it for many years to come...
    I understand you're trying for a low budget deal, but believe me, and a few hundred others, when we say you're headed for an extreme disappointment and you'd be money ahead to grab this one that needs absolutely nothing. Bolt it in and hit the water..... I'll also say you can't build one like it for less than double the sale price, if not more.....
    Ray 805 300 0012
    PS you can buy the entire running boat, 74 Tahiti, for $1900 w/ a Berkley pump and a trailer under it...
    Thats a deal.
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  16. #14
    Senior Member wagspe208's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hass828 View Post
    Thats a deal.
    I agree. MP has been around here fore years. He isn't gonna f you for 1200 bucks. (I think HAHA)
    Most of us value our reputation much more than money.
    I'd do this in a heart beat.
    Wags

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