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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys as some of you's may know about a month ago i got my engine running and to my surprise it sounded way better that what i anticpated........pity it only lasted just over 12 hours.

Here is what it was running.......40 thou over XE Cleveland block, 4mab Crank standard size, king mains bearings, 302 cleveland rods, clevite bearings, fully floating gudgeon pins with circlips (brand not yet mentioned as i think i may pursue this as it has cost me a raw $4000) hv oilpump, cam dynamics 247 580 th inlet, 258 606 exhaust, 302 closed chamber heads ported and polished (around 490hp), 10.5 :1 comp, weiand xcellerator inlet, mighty demon 750 dp carby, msd 6al ignition, holley mech fuel pump, thats pretty much the general idea of the engine specs............well pretty much all that i can salvage internally are my heads, and valve train gear, the crank is bent, and 6 rods are still ok. All external accessories are fine too.

After driving it all day on a bright saturday with a car load of mates and with heaps of attention, we were excited about bringing the old girl to the gold coast for the night so we headed down the M1 and i was putting it under slight load to wear the rings in and to cut the story short, it let go at 110 km/h in 3rd gear.........a circlip come off one of the gudgeons and the pin slid to the bore and was rubbing for a long time, because i was nice to it all day, it didn't bother it too much. Once i started to give it full load ( at lower rpm, nothing over 5500) it let go at about 4000, the piston gave way and smashed into the head, bending valves and filling my inlet manifold with shrapnel. The floating conrod pierced a massive hole in my block and spun around and put holes in my sump. It also smashed the cam in two places.

Has anyone heard of this happening before as i think the circlips supplied are not sufficient, and because of a 5c circlip i have lost an engine, which simply isn't good enough, i am in the process of building another as we speak hopefully it will be home before christmas........any advice/input would be appreciated..........-Mark
 

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The only way I know that a gudgeon pin circlip can come out is if it wasn't seated correctly when installed.
 

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Slurry Boostin
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As garth04 said.

Or, depending on what kind of circlip used, there can be a right and wrong way of installing a circlip.

Some have a leading edge that can be hard to see even with a trained eye.

If it was installed backwards (so to speak) it could have worked its way out, even if you had seated it properly.

In any case, bad luck and hope the newy is all good ;)
 

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Slurry Boostin
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Agreed Racer.

Even when they are installed back to front, they can still be pretty hard to remove when trying, let alone when not.

Just thought I'd make the point so that those that didin't know, might learn :)
 

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Approach with caution.
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Ive NEVER heard of a properly installed circlip coming loose....
They can be damn near impossible to get out so i cant see how they'd work themselves out if installed properly.
The only other thing i can think of is if the piston to pin clearance wasn't right or if the rod had a slight bend in it it might place allot of load on the pin and push it into the circlip?
Other than that there shouldn't be much if any load or thrust against the circlip at all so id say maybe the clip wasnt installed properly.
 

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I have only ever seen one come out. The engine had done something like 500 000 km, and was pretty well stuffed anyway (Diesel engine). The vehicle came in for excessive blow-by. Which was understandable because of the train tracks down one bore. The circlip in this case had been running "loose"and had worn the side of the piston away so the clip was able to drop into the sump. Took a long time, and it kept on running.

Point is, they don't come out for no reason......
 

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old B - new B
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hmmmmmm...... :1read: maybe i am tied or its just that i have not been inside a clevo for some time but ......... i have been thinking about how the loose circlip could have caused the problem.

my thinking is that if the circlip did come loose it would move to the edge of the piston and wear against the cylinder bore..
this would last until the clip wore away ,or tore a hole large enough to get caught between piston and bore and got draged out the top or bottom.

then the gudgeon pin could move to the side and start wearing on the cylinder wall till it tore into the water jacket.

my brother had a gudgeon com loose ( the standard press fit type ) in a clevo once and had to drive about 800 KM towing a load and all that it did was wear into the water jacket and he had to keep filling it with water to get home. took it apart ,got that cylinder sleeved and that motor is still going strong about 15 years and 5 vehicals later.

i am having trouble working out how the piston came off and smashed into the valves leaving the conrod free to destroy the rest of the bottom end.

unless the gudgeon pins come completly out of the cylinder at bottom of stroke there is no way that the piston can seperate from the conrod unless it breaks apart first. then i doubt that the pin would have time to get out of the piston while doing 5500rpm.


maybe it was a completely different string of events that occured.

e.i. .... not enough valve clearance / too much compression, etc..... survives at low revs , a few more revs and the piston starts to hit valves, piston cracks, valves bend, piston disintergrats leaving conrod free to finish the job off. ?????

its just an idea and i am sure that others will add some comments but it could be worth checking out before the new motor is built incase it happens again.

of corse i could be totaly wrong :driver:
 

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V8_GRUNT said:
Hi guys as some of you's may know about a month ago i got my engine running and to my surprise it sounded way better that what i anticpated........pity it only lasted just over 12 hours.

Here is what it was running.......40 thou over XE Cleveland block, 4mab Crank standard size, king mains bearings, 302 cleveland rods, clevite bearings, fully floating gudgeon pins with circlips (brand not yet mentioned as i think i may pursue this as it has cost me a raw $4000) hv oilpump, cam dynamics 247 580 th inlet, 258 606 exhaust, 302 closed chamber heads ported and polished (around 490hp), 10.5 :1 comp, weiand xcellerator inlet, mighty demon 750 dp carby, msd 6al ignition, holley mech fuel pump, thats pretty much the general idea of the engine specs............well pretty much all that i can salvage internally are my heads, and valve train gear, the crank is bent, and 6 rods are still ok. All external accessories are fine too.

After driving it all day on a bright saturday with a car load of mates and with heaps of attention, we were excited about bringing the old girl to the gold coast for the night so we headed down the M1 and i was putting it under slight load to wear the rings in and to cut the story short, it let go at 110 km/h in 3rd gear.........a circlip come off one of the gudgeons and the pin slid to the bore and was rubbing for a long time, because i was nice to it all day, it didn't bother it too much. Once i started to give it full load ( at lower rpm, nothing over 5500) it let go at about 4000, the piston gave way and smashed into the head, bending valves and filling my inlet manifold with shrapnel. The floating conrod pierced a massive hole in my block and spun around and put holes in my sump. It also smashed the cam in two places.

Has anyone heard of this happening before as i think the circlips supplied are not sufficient, and because of a 5c circlip i have lost an engine, which simply isn't good enough, i am in the process of building another as we speak hopefully it will be home before christmas........any advice/input would be appreciated..........-Mark
Clip was not seated correctly , who ever built the rod /piston assy needs a kick in the Janglys
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
351cid said:
hmmmmmm...... :1read: maybe i am tied or its just that i have not been inside a clevo for some time but ......... i have been thinking about how the loose circlip could have caused the problem.

my thinking is that if the circlip did come loose it would move to the edge of the piston and wear against the cylinder bore..
this would last until the clip wore away ,or tore a hole large enough to get caught between piston and bore and got draged out the top or bottom.

then the gudgeon pin could move to the side and start wearing on the cylinder wall till it tore into the water jacket.

my brother had a gudgeon com loose ( the standard press fit type ) in a clevo once and had to drive about 800 KM towing a load and all that it did was wear into the water jacket and he had to keep filling it with water to get home. took it apart ,got that cylinder sleeved and that motor is still going strong about 15 years and 5 vehicals later.

i am having trouble working out how the piston came off and smashed into the valves leaving the conrod free to destroy the rest of the bottom end.

unless the gudgeon pins come completly out of the cylinder at bottom of stroke there is no way that the piston can seperate from the conrod unless it breaks apart first. then i doubt that the pin would have time to get out of the piston while doing 5500rpm.


maybe it was a completely different string of events that occured.

e.i. .... not enough valve clearance / too much compression, etc..... survives at low revs , a few more revs and the piston starts to hit valves, piston cracks, valves bend, piston disintergrats leaving conrod free to finish the job off. ?????

its just an idea and i am sure that others will add some comments but it could be worth checking out before the new motor is built incase it happens again.

of corse i could be totaly wrong :driver:

Hi there, yeah these circlips are of the conventional type (like any old circlips, the next engine is going to have spiral locks, which i have been told are foolproof.

I had a look at the gudgeon pin and we lined it up against the edge of the piston to pretend it was rubbing on the bore and it actually slides out of one journal of the piston and runs in one journal only. Under full load the piston has cocked sideways and being cast it has shattered like hell, there are massive scoring marks on no. 7 cyl as well from where the pin has rubbed......

P.S i didn't put those gudgeons together......wish i did though, this would not have happened
 

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old B - new B
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fair enough
 

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V8_GRUNT said:
Has anyone heard of this happening before as i think the circlips supplied are not sufficient, and because of a 5c circlip i have lost an engine, which simply isn't good enough........any advice/input would be appreciated..........-Mark



We call them Spirolox here in the US and we typically use "double Spirolox" or two per side of the piston pin. They don't come out if they're installed properly. One possibility would be if the pin length was too short and kept banging away at them. Eventually, they would be bludgeoned out. Another possibility would be if the piston was cut for two, but only one was used per side. That would leave a sizeable gap and the pin would bang away at the clip until it popped free, which I know can happen as I knew a bloke who was getting ready to pull his engine out (after destroying it) and he showed me all of the "extra" Spirolox they'd given him.

I think that you're going to have to "pursue" it with your engine builder as it sounds like a totally novice job during installation.


:davis:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for that.......as i said the kit that came with the pistons gave me conventional type circlips and my new engine which i personally am putting together this time will use spirolox, as i have been told are very hard to come out if installed correctly. 15 of the 16 circlips stayed in so i would say at this stage it was simply not installed correctly. ........i wouldn't call it a totally novice job my engine had a lot going for it apart from that mishap, but as i always say, if you want something done right do it yourself, which is what i am going to do and at 23 i dont have a lot of money to throw away, but i guess its time to cut my losses and move on to bigger and better things........... i sniff closer to 500 fwhp this time round :driver: :priest:
 

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V8_GRUNT said:
i wouldn't call it a totally novice job my engine had a lot going for it apart from that mishap

I wouldn't be too eager to praise the builder. It doesn't sound like there is enough left of the engine to praise it! Apart from the mishap? With it, there is no engine, or did I miss that part entirely? One total screw-up is enough to be labeled a novice job in my book. What else needs to go wrong? Distributor pop out and oil pressure go to zero?


:davis:
 

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There's a website with the story of an old Porsche flat 4 rebuilt after a circlip came out and the gudgeon pin started work on the cylinder wall. It made a perfect groove- just like with a milling machine. It was still running, though poorly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
yeah thats true Davis, don't worry, i am not praising anyone i know i have barely an engine left out of it and it is such a damn waste.......it was enough to make you cry trust me and i have learnt a lot out of it.....i don't have a lot of trust in people anymore, but one good thing about is that i still have the car in one piece.........the new engine will be a lot better than the last one ever could have.
 

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Hi guys as some of you's may know about a month ago i got my engine running and to my surprise it sounded way better that what i anticpated........pity it only lasted just over 12 hours.

Here is what it was running.......40 thou over XE Cleveland block, 4mab Crank standard size, king mains bearings, 302 cleveland rods, clevite bearings, fully floating gudgeon pins with circlips (brand not yet mentioned as i think i may pursue this as it has cost me a raw $4000) hv oilpump, cam dynamics 247 580 th inlet, 258 606 exhaust, 302 closed chamber heads ported and polished (around 490hp), 10.5 :1 comp, weiand xcellerator inlet, mighty demon 750 dp carby, msd 6al ignition, holley mech fuel pump, thats pretty much the general idea of the engine specs............well pretty much all that i can salvage internally are my heads, and valve train gear, the crank is bent, and 6 rods are still ok. All external accessories are fine too.

After driving it all day on a bright saturday with a car load of mates and with heaps of attention, we were excited about bringing the old girl to the gold coast for the night so we headed down the M1 and i was putting it under slight load to wear the rings in and to cut the story short, it let go at 110 km/h in 3rd gear.........a circlip come off one of the gudgeons and the pin slid to the bore and was rubbing for a long time, because i was nice to it all day, it didn't bother it too much. Once i started to give it full load ( at lower rpm, nothing over 5500) it let go at about 4000, the piston gave way and smashed into the head, bending valves and filling my inlet manifold with shrapnel. The floating conrod pierced a massive hole in my block and spun around and put holes in my sump. It also smashed the cam in two places.

Has anyone heard of this happening before as i think the circlips supplied are not sufficient, and because of a 5c circlip i have lost an engine, which simply isn't good enough, i am in the process of building another as we speak hopefully it will be home before christmas........any advice/input would be appreciated..........-Mark
Repco NOS 1960s-style six-cylinder pistons with shitty real-wire springy circlips that went in easily enough (THOROUGHLY checked all 12 of these were snugly home in their grooves). Two weeks of running later, one came off when I started it and let the gudgeon pin hit the bore (knock, knock, knock). One unwanted teardown (which I did again - no money) and ensuing 60-thou rebore later to bugger the groove off, I had pistons specially made with clips I designed myself (two-plier pinch design to remove, FLAT with square-ended profile!). Once bitten. Little bastards are still there 30-odd years later...
 

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Original post is more than 15yrs old. Only had the odd one or maybe two in the workshop and that was many , years ago .
 

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Original post is more than 15yrs old. Only had the odd one or maybe two in the workshop and that was many , years ago .
Yes, technology has moved on. Still, these old kits are still floating around, and if I can save some poor bugger pain and expense by sharing my sob story, I will.
 
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