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Old 07-21-2007, 15:25   #1 (permalink)
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352-390 Oil passage blocked

I just opened up my mercs top end to install an Edelbrock intake and 4bl carb. Everything was really clean and I thought I took the right steps to keep slicone/crap out of the valley. I layed down several layers of paper towels in the valley and then wrapped it all up to close it up. she ran about 5 minutes then quit. I tried to restart her and heard metal to metal. Pulled the pan find some aluminum flakesat the rear of the pan. Rods 4 & 8 were completely dry and thier rod cap bearing were shot. didnt seem to scar the crank.

1) is it possible to clear out the oil journals without removal and tear down?

2) bought a new meliing hivolume and wondering if I should do any other mods b4 installation.
3) what do I do about replacing the bearings/
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Old 07-21-2007, 17:36   #2 (permalink)
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Exclamation Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

Quote:
Originally Posted by 64merc/mustang
I just opened up my Merc's top end to install an Edelbrock intake and 4bbl carb. Everything was really clean and I thought I took the right steps to keep slicone/crap out of the valley. I layed down several layers of paper towels in the valley and then wrapped it all up to close it up. She ran about 5 minutes then quit. I tried to restart her and heard metal to metal. Pulled the pan find some aluminum flakes at the rear of the pan. Rods 4 & 8 were completely dry and thier rod cap bearing were shot. Didn't seem to scar the crank.

1) Is it possible to clear out the oil journals without removal and tear down???
2) Bought a new Melling hi volume pump and wondering if I should do any other mods before installation???
3) What do I do about replacing the bearings???
Sounds like it's time for an engine overhaul. With all that those metal shavings, you won't get it completely clean in the car. There will be residual shavings in the oil passages. You need to remove and completely disassemble the engine, remove all the core plugs and have the block cleaned. Your oil pump drive shaft either broke, twisted, or you missed it when putting the distributor back in. My shop foreman has built many engines. He also had friends who owned FE equipped Fords. He said a high volume or high pressure pump is not necessary for these motors if you're leaving them stock or mildly modifying them. (He mention something about blowing the oil seals out with a high volume pump???) He said his friend beat the P--- out of the 390 he had and the stock oil pump was adequete. He said the stock pump drive shaft never had a problem to his amazement. Get a hardened driveshaft to be safe. The cranks in these are pretty tough, so that shouldn't be a problem.
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Old 07-21-2007, 18:34   #3 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

I removed the old oil pump and the shaft, no twisting cracking or marks on it. Blowing the seals out with a high volume pump?? I was thinking of putting the hivolume on and spinning it with a drill to see if maybe the Rear oil journal above the crank might clear out. Pistons 1-3 and 5-7 were all wet with oil. My thoughts are that since no oil was getting to 4 & 8, the bearing flakes would not have been circulated????? I may just try that for shits & grins, I think the rear journal probably is clogged with a piece of silicone. If 4 & 8 do not oil up I will tear her down. thanks
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Old 07-22-2007, 03:54   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

Your going to be aggrivaded doing all that extra work...even a tought of metal flakes of any size is bad news...best to tear it down mich the crank, turn it if you have to, have the block cleaned and make sure all the gallies are cleaned. Pull the lifters and take them apart to make sure they are metal flake free. All in all you will be saving money in the long run by doing the overhaul, than to be stranded somewhere with a blown motor. The FE is a tough motor but without cleanliness sooner or later they will fail.
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Old 07-22-2007, 06:07   #5 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

I just needed a few voices of reason. I have one at the t machine shop as I type. I'm allready in that aggrivated state as she ran so good b4 I decided to change out the manifold and got 4bl. I guess I will be pulling her as soon as I get back home. I also know I will end up spending a shit load more money because Ill want to upgrade her all around. thanks . Any suggestions? I want to build a drive any-where motor with a few more ponies than stock,.
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Old 07-23-2007, 17:09   #6 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

Watch that HV pump with the stock 5qt pan.
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Old 07-24-2007, 07:41   #7 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

Another thing you can do to keep more oil down below where it's really needed is to put a restricter in the oil gally feed in the head for the rocker shafts. With the HV pump, it's pushing enough oil to keep them lubed...and the FE will run fine. Commenting on FFR if you are using a 5qt pan.
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Old 07-25-2007, 14:03   #8 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

Well the stock pans have no slosh baffle or trap doors. Just a crank scraper at best. Even with the flow restriction to the heads it's real easy to launch hard and have the pan suck air. What oil that is left in the pan goes to the rear. Granted not much of a issue on a easy street driven car. But if like you to take the car to the strip or some stoplight to stoplight romping it's something to think about. You can at least add a windage tray, install a slosh baffle and run another qt of oil. That was the factory fix for the CJ/SCJ cars with stock volume pumps. And sometimes not enough. IMO a GOOD oilpan is one of the best oil mods you can do. And with the prices these engines cost to build good insurance.
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Old 07-28-2007, 06:38   #9 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

ffr428 is right, at least fit a slosh baffle to your sump. . you wont blow seals out with a hv pump! stock pump ok for stock or mild motor. other than that go hv if you plan for more revs or high loads. a good oil pump drive shaft wont hurt but other than very high revs the stock ones are fine. the only times i have seen a stock shaft fail is from something getting stuck in the pump( old bits of valve stem seal is common) or from wear in bottom of dissy usually caused(on the fe motor) by aftermarket intake manifolds not being fitted so that the dissy runs true to the oil pump shaft. anyway., clean the motor out carefully and dont use too much silastic! cheers
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Old 08-05-2007, 10:43   #10 (permalink)
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Re: 352-390 Oil passage blocked

The oiling system of the non-side oiler FE Ford engine needs some work before it will keep the engine alive at anything over 5500 RPM.

Oiling System Mods:
Drill out the hole where the oil pump mounts to the block to 5/8". Polish and blend it to the passage that goes to the filter adaptor.

Using a 1/2" drill bit 12" long, drill the main oil galley. You will have to go from each end. One thing you will notice is the fact that Ford intentionally put in a restriction in the back of the block just behind the cross drilled passages that feed the lifters. The FE block was designed in 1957 and was the first engine Ford used with hydraulic lifters. The engineers thought that they needed LOTS of oil pressure to the lifters so they put this restriction in to increase pressure. Since they never thought the engine was going to see anything over 4000 Rpm, they didn't worry about starving the bottom end. (We also completely blocked off all oil to the lifters.)

Next, use a 5/16 X 12" drill bit to drill out the passages between the upper part of the cam bearings and the main oil galley. They are 5/16 diameter from the main bearing to the lower part of the cam bearing, but the upper part is smaller. (Again, Fords effort to increase oil pressure to the lifters). Finally, at the cylinder heads, drill and install a plug where the oil feeds the rocker shaft. The plug should have a .060 hole drilled in it. You will be amazed how much oil still gets to the rockers.

This is what we had to do to keep bearings in our 352. We used to spin that engine 8600 on the starting line and shift it a 7500. Running under the old Super Stock rules, (1980's) The car ran 11.60's and 4070lbs using stock compression and the stock Auolite 4V carb.

These are pretty extensive mods requiring complete dis-assembly of the engine. A competient shop should be able to handle it. If you don't want to go that far on your oiling system, at least get rid of the restriction in the main oil galley. I know of guys who have had problems spinning bearings on the back cylinders. Removing that restriction cured the problem in every case.
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