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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sombody make the circus clown music stop!

It is really just the small things in life. I thought I would be able to throw this thing together with no issues and so I did not pay to have it short blocked at the machine shop.

First it was hanging the pistons, I did not clearance them correctly the first go and had to take them appart and do that. I thought the spirolocs sucked putting them on. Taking them back off was not as much fun as putting them on. (I could hear something, but was not for sure what it was.)

After talking with an engine builder about my setup it was decided I needed to buy another intake. The one I had bought was probably not the best decision for my application. (That noise is a little louder but I still can't tell what it is.)

I short blocked it this weekend, and had a few more issues. I checked tolerances on everything and decided it was good to go. While putting in the 7th piston I realized the rotating assembly would not turn. I could not figure it out, I had to call it a night and go to bed wishing I had bought some beer to help get this job done. When I got up the next morning to figure this issue out it was absolutely obvious. Half the pistons were hung with the rods pointing the wrong way. You know, all exactly the same. (and from that point on I could not make the circus music stop, you know the music that follows the clown around) I had never even thought of that. SCJ pistons have to be put in a certain way and so do the rods. I am now a spiroloc put in and take out speed champ. Can't believe I did not screw one up, and won't be supprised if one fails. The pistons are all in the right direction and the rotating assembly turns as it should with no apparent issues from my mishap.

One of the final mishaps of the shortblock was as I was putting the fuel pump drive on. I had that jigger covered with assembly lube (you know I put that stuff on everything) and somehow managed to drop it. Even better the two pieces came apart and one roled into a pile of, under the lawn mower, stuff. Just ruined another rag to clean that off and start over.

I guess my point of posting this is just to let those novices that are thinking of putting there own build together know some crap you never thought of is gonna happen. Even if you have done one or a couple different kind of motors in the past.

I can tell you one thing when this thing does fire and run, I will be grinning ear to ear. Even if it does not run as well as it "should".
 

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LOL...


I've always learned more from my mistakes than anything... :)
 

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LOL...


I've always learned more from my mistakes than anything... :)
"Good judgement comes from experience and experience? ... well, that comes from BAD judgement", Ben Franklin

It's amazing that some of the stuff he putt into words will always be true, lol.
 

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Everyone is a beginner one time or another and everyone makes mistakes. The point is that you CAUGHT your mistakes, good!

The very first V8 engine that I ever built by myself was a 302 Ford. When I put the pistons on the rods I put them on numbered like a Chevrolet V8! Fortunately I ended up with four lefts and four rights so putting the engine together wasn't a problem. It's still together and running just fine over 20 years later.
 

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Adding up the cost of parts, the cost of a short/long block and then comparing it to the headaches us beginners have getting all the parts to fit and work together opened up my eyes of the value of having the assemblies already built for me.

As I read, learn, collect necessary tools and knowledge I will venture off to build a future one myself.

Tom
 

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Mistakes

Sombody make the circus clown music stop!

It is really just the small things in life. I thought I would be able to throw this thing together with no issues and so I did not pay to have it short blocked at the machine shop.

First it was hanging the pistons, I did not clearance them correctly the first go and had to take them appart and do that. I thought the spirolocs sucked putting them on. Taking them back off was not as much fun as putting them on. (I could hear something, but was not for sure what it was.)

After talking with an engine builder about my setup it was decided I needed to buy another intake. The one I had bought was probably not the best decision for my application. (That noise is a little louder but I still can't tell what it is.)

I short blocked it this weekend, and had a few more issues. I checked tolerances on everything and decided it was good to go. While putting in the 7th piston I realized the rotating assembly would not turn. I could not figure it out, I had to call it a night and go to bed wishing I had bought some beer to help get this job done. When I got up the next morning to figure this issue out it was absolutely obvious. Half the pistons were hung with the rods pointing the wrong way. You know, all exactly the same. (and from that point on I could not make the circus music stop, you know the music that follows the clown around) I had never even thought of that. SCJ pistons have to be put in a certain way and so do the rods. I am now a spiroloc put in and take out speed champ. Can't believe I did not screw one up, and won't be supprised if one fails. The pistons are all in the right direction and the rotating assembly turns as it should with no apparent issues from my mishap.

One of the final mishaps of the shortblock was as I was putting the fuel pump drive on. I had that jigger covered with assembly lube (you know I put that stuff on everything) and somehow managed to drop it. Even better the two pieces came apart and one roled into a pile of, under the lawn mower, stuff. Just ruined another rag to clean that off and start over.

I guess my point of posting this is just to let those novices that are thinking of putting there own build together know some crap you never thought of is gonna happen. Even if you have done one or a couple different kind of motors in the past.

I can tell you one thing when this thing does fire and run, I will be grinning ear to ear. Even if it does not run as well as it "should".

So many years ago I building a Ford 6 banger engine for a modified.

I had no idea that the rod caps were stamped with a number and they had had to match.

I went way past where you were. I installed the engine and pulled the car for quite a while before determining the engine would not turn over. I then sought the help of a friend who had years of experence and he showed me what I had done wrong. It cost me the lots of cash, a very small amout in the span of things. But at the time, I was a Jr in high School, a huge sum.

I have since built several hundred of engines both street and race engines. I worked as an automotive machinist from my Sr year of HS until I joined the Army in 85.

So the moral is I still triple check that the pistons are on correct and the caps are right. I also have a system of how I lay out the parts before I start the assembly.

SO several centuries later this still impacts how I do things.

It will be funny at some point.

Clay
 

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Makes me feel better hearing these stories. I was lucky to have a dad that overhauled a few engines to help me when I was a kid but even at that I've made my share of mistakes. The most recent was when my brother and I were dropping the 460 in my truck. We had it halfway slid back into the 4 speed when I looked down and leaning against the workbench was the block-to-transmission plate. Had to pull it back out and put that on. How do you forget that????? On the bright side the engine ran good and no cam break-in issues so overall I'm thrilled. Just a few minor things.... and nothing leaked. Got to be some luck involved there!

Ron
 

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isnt engine building fun:)
just be thankful that evil clown from "IT" didnt show up. LOL.
 

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That is the exactly why I have come to realize I would rather pay someone else to put the short-blocks together, cheap insurance if they garauntee the work. If I put it together and make a mistake I pay for it, if I pay someone to do it and they screw it up they pay for it.
 

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That is the exactly why I have come to realize I would rather pay someone else to put the short-blocks together, cheap insurance if they garauntee the work. If I put it together and make a mistake I pay for it, if I pay someone to do it and they screw it up they pay for it.
For some of us it's not awlays about trying to save money as much as it's learning new things. I'm on the bottom side of the learning curve and while it is sometimes very frustrating and sometimes expensive:eek: I really enjoy it!!!
 

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For some of us it's not awlays about trying to save money as much as it's learning new things. I'm on the bottom side of the learning curve and while it is sometimes very frustrating and sometimes expensive:eek: I really enjoy it!!!
X2 I would rather try and fail than never have tried. That is how I learn by trial and error. Always learn from failures no matter how small.:cool:
 

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Yes I been Truck Pulling for 11 years now and I built 9 motors over the years. Blew everyone of them up once or twice. This last one I'm running now has it's 3rd life. Thanks to the Race Shop of Seymour WI for putting this motor together for me this time. It's been the best motor I had Since my 2006 528.

Dan and ShaZam
 

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I enjoy engine assembly BUT, ole Mr.Mistake and his brothers still stick their heads in the door from time to time,but when they visit they always teach me something new. It won't be your last mistake:)
 

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clown school......

Maybe shoulda' spent the clown school $ on a book about engine rebuilding.
I rebuilt my first engine a '70 dodge 318 for my challenger. I spent my allowance on a chilton's auto repair for 1960-71 american autos. It contained a section on basic engine rebuilding. The new books also have this section.
If you plan to do this more in the future, buy the books. I have probally 30 maunals in my garage, some for brands I don't even own.
For the money you spend on books, it will save you 2-4 times the price in mistakes.
The best advice I can offer is---Take your time. Plan the build. Use the proper reference material. And double check everything!
MikeH
 

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I built my first engine at 15, By myself, Spent my own money on it, And its the 460 thats in my bronco right now, I got 4000 miles on it, runs good but I tihnk I need to adjust my roller rockers. I think I had my rings broken in by the time it was assembled though.. damn numbers and arrows, lol
 

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Maybe shoulda' spent the clown school $ on a book about engine rebuilding.
I rebuilt my first engine a '70 dodge 318 for my challenger. I spent my allowance on a chilton's auto repair for 1960-71 american autos. It contained a section on basic engine rebuilding. The new books also have this section.
If you plan to do this more in the future, buy the books. I have probally 30 maunals in my garage, some for brands I don't even own.
For the money you spend on books, it will save you 2-4 times the price in mistakes.
The best advice I can offer is---Take your time. Plan the build. Use the proper reference material. And double check everything!
MikeH
Just think of the parts you could have bought w/money you wasted on CHILTON manuals,they will screw you up more than they will help you.
I will agree that a GOOD engine building/blueprinting book is needed.(Bill Monroes are very good) I refer to my manuals quite often ,just to make certain of all the #'s.My memory sucks ya know:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
I am manual/book poor. I have one for rebuilding a EFI 302, one on supercharging, one of forced induction in general (think it covers nitrous also), one for computer system for generation my 92 mustang has, several to vehicles I do not have any more, one to the harley.

I do not have one for the wifes car! I don't think I'm suppose to do anything but oil changes, brake jobs, and tire rotation to it though.

I do not know why I did not buy a manual specific for the 460. If you search enough to find "good" information the world wide web has all the information you need. Hey wait a minute I may have one. I bought a King Cobra manual that covers all of the motors associated with that outdrive system for the year of the boat, and I believe it does cover motor rebuilds. (do you hear the music?) I read through it last summer when I purchased it, and used it to make sure the system was winterized properly, changed outdrive oil correctly, and diagnosed a bad overheating sensor with it.

I managed to get the inner valve springs off last night uneventfully. The heads are ready for cam breakin now. I am going to put them on tonight.
 
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