460 Ford Forum banner

Oil analysis, I may have problems

2138 Views 8 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Phantasea466
When I drained my oil last, I let it set in the pan and then looked at it. There were an amount of copper flakes in it, so I used a small magnet and it attracted enough metal to make the size of a bb. No slivers, just dust or very tiny flakes.

I then cut open the oil filter, and it had trapped about the same amount of stuff. The metal the magnet picked up was very fine and flaky. The few larger copper flakes were no larger than half the size of a pin head, most much smaller, but a lot of them.

Cam has been fine, motor is running fine, but i will say that when I assemble this motor, getting the cam into it was hard, and then it did not turn real freely. Oh yeah, oil pressure is good, between 25-30 when idling and about 55-60 from 2500 RPM on up with Melling HV pump. No knocks or pings when running or idling right now.

I would be interested in knowing what to look at. The parts the magnet picked up somehow worries me more than the copper.

What do i look at first....and how much trouble am I in for?....this engine has only 2,500 miles on it since total rebuild. Should I just run it and monitor this?
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Sounds bad. The copper is from bearings. The metal? Could be the cam, crank, or rods. The entire engine needs to come apart.
Check your distributor drive gear if it is bronze.
Cam gear is steel

and I have been looking at it because of what I have read about them failing. This one seems to be holding up OK.
I will pull the oil pan this weekend and take off the mains and rod bearings to check them all.

Question - Without pulling the camshaft, is there any way to tell if there is a bad cam bearing before it totally fails?

I will post what I find on the bottom end bearings.

Thanks for the help!

Flakes etc in oil- this is what I found

I ended up pulling the engine about a month ago to give it a good going over.

What concerned me was that the metal particles in the oil were not just aluminum and copper, but steel/iron as well, since I got about 1/4 gram worth of small particles on a magnet.

What I found was the #7 rod bearing had gotten some trash particles in it and it was galling and grooving well into the copper. It was on the way to fail for sure. No damage to crank.

AND, I had just put on a set of "good deal" new stainless roller rockers. They looked just like Comp Pro Magnums. It turns out they were some inferior Chinese junk that galled around the sides of the poly locks, and got flat on the roller tips after just 200 miles of use, and this with a mild cam with reasonable spring rates....about 120 lbs. on the seat. This explains the steel in the oil. Cleaning out the block, changing the rockers and bad bearing would probably have been all that was needed to fix it.

Well, since the engine is such a pain the A#% to get out, I decided to stroke it to 521 with all new internals and new cam.

Moral of the story.....you've seen it before....don't use Chinese parts that have any moving parts to them!!
See less See more

Talk about a happy ending. Fixed the problem and got some stroke!
Yeah, i am lucky I caught the problem early enough. So if my 521 keeps the lobes on the cam this week during break-in all will be good.

Should be fine with 120 seat pressure springs, Rotella oil with EOS added, not to mention the well-smeared lobes and lifter bottoms.
Well, since the engine is such a pain the A#% to get out, I decided to stroke it to 521 with all new internals and new cam
Heal Yeah!!

FYI - Don't buy chinese junk :lol:

Good Luck with the break in!

1 - 9 of 9 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.