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Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

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Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby peej410 » Thu Aug 19, 2010 5:37 pm

Sunday night I fired up a long term build of my SBC. After about a total of 2 minutes running. I still dont have oil through the pushrods.

Here is my setup.

Properly cleaned align honed and bored 1970 block.
Scat forged crank.
Eagle 6in featherweight rods
SRP 4.020 forged pistons
Custom solid roller cam by Bullet Cams.
Morel Pressure fed roller lifters.
AFR 195 Elminators
One piece 8.000 pushrods
Jesel Sportsman.
Melling M55 oil pump.

Engine was assembled under the supervision of a knowledgeable builder. Using proper assembly lubes. I primed the pump in a bucket of fresh oil by hand. Primed the motor with this primer for a minute or so to 40psi with this primer http://www.jegs.com/i/Proform/778/66896 ... tId=745600

Did I miss something? How long should it take for oil to make it through all the assembly lubes used in a fresh motor? Cam and lifter lube was Clevite cam lube.

Thanks !
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby Speedbump » Thu Aug 19, 2010 5:46 pm

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say you forgot to put the front galley plugs in. Once the timing gear is on, you can't see them and since the timing cover keeps the oil inside, there is no external leak. This is an EASY thing to overlook, especially on a "protracted" build. One gets all fired up about timing gear and chain fit, cam degreeing and trial fit to make sure everything fits, etc., and those little plugs become something that someone thought someone else put in at a time in the past. You can ask me how I know this, but I won't tell you. :D
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby dan miller » Thu Aug 19, 2010 5:53 pm

I can think of two possibilities

1) lifter holes not communicating with oil holes in the lifter bosses

2) no holes in the push rods

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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby bill jones » Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:07 pm

-here's my story about the problem from another thread:
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=21626
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"-sounds like you have what is called "edge orifice" oiling in the lifters---which is a pretty common method of oiling the pushrods and rocker arms.

-One thing you can do to help with priming the top end is to take an oil squirt can----put a short piece of rubber tube onto the spout end---this makes it easy to fill the pushrods as you install them----that saves having to wait forever to get the oil to the top.

-one other thing is to stop and start the drill motor you are using to prime the engine----this purges the oil and seems to make it somewhat quicker to get the oil up to the top---still takes a long time.

-I also rotate the crank in like 1/8 or 1/4 turn increments---purge for a while then rotate again and purge---takes about half an hour to get oil to all 16 at the top on a good day.

-I haven't yet seen any primer tools with O-rings to seal off the leakage out between the primer body and the block----a lot of oil leaks out there and doesn't do anything constructive during priming or during racing.
--------------------------------------------------
-some people have ground very small "flats" from the lifter oil hole downward---to get more oil to the top---I wouldn't do it tho."
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby Alan Roehrich » Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:44 pm

Why did you attempt to start it without actually getting oil to the rockers while priming it? If you knew oil wasn't getting there during priming, you should have checked it then. I never start one unless I know I already have oil up to the rockers, if you find out there's no oil up there after you run it, it might be too late.

What plugs and/or restrictors do you have in the oil galleries, and where? What oil pump and pick up do you have? Have you checked oil flow and pressure anywhere else?
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby robert1 » Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:49 pm

I built a short block for a guy once. He installed the restrictors. He won the first 2 weeks out. I happened to be there the second week. I asked why the car was fluttering down the straight? He didn't even notice it. Upon inspection he found the ends burned off of a few push rods. Replaced them and didn't look any further. It happened again the next week. When he installed the restrictors he didn't notice they had no hole at all.
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby BirdMan » Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:50 pm

Are there any problems with distributor/oil galley problems of that era?

There was only '1' time I did not make sure oil was at top end and it was then that I had a problem, Go Figure :roll:
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby Keith Morganstein » Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:59 pm

Not to lecture, but there is no way you should be starting a new engine without priming / pre-lubing it.

Always make sure every push rod / rocker is getting oil. Have a gauge installed to monitor pressure. Some blocks have several place to check oil pressure. It's useful to check pressure in those locations to see if there is a big pressure drop somewhere.

When using a distributor style priming tool, use a heavy duty 1/2 drill motor that can run a long time without overheating or slowing down. It can take quite a while to oil the engine the first time.
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby WRIGHTWAY » Thu Aug 19, 2010 9:20 pm

peej410 wrote: Primed the motor with this primer for a minute or so to 40psi !

I prime my motors with an old dist with the gear removed and with cold oil I will see 70 psi easily and it takes 20-30 min slowly turning motor over with breaker bar to get all 16 rockers
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby CREngines » Thu Aug 19, 2010 9:31 pm

check your lifter bore clearance. a fellow builder i know had this problem because the lifters were just tight enough on a brand new block the oil wouldnt feed through. it was a "edge oriface type" if thats what you wanna call it. what base circle is the cam and is it the wrong one for the block/lifter combo? Ive used that lifter with good results but they were both on bowtie blocks with the raised bodies. on another note i had this problem this year on a flat tappet motor with morel flat tappets. (decided to try them) i heard a rocker arm start squeaking on the dyno when it was idling (after a cam change) and when it was all said and done, the pushrod seat in the lifter body was so *&%$$&% loose that it was bleeding the oil off before it could even get to the front of the galley to oil the front. Changed lifters and got ten more pounds of oil pressure. #-o
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby peej410 » Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:25 pm

Admittedly this is my first build. When I was priming everything It never occurred to me that the oil wouldnt go everywhere if I had more than adequate oil pressure (verified with mech gauge)... I had the valve covers on to keep the mess down since I carefully adjusted the lash cold. Prior to installation and fire I poured oil into the lifter valley and carefully lubricated every last part (pushrods, lifter cup, rocker, valve tip) with the high pressure grease that comes with the Jesel rockers. Hopefully everything is ok. I have a old points dizzy i can strip down. I will try some of the methods you guys have mentioned and re prime while turning the crank slowly. This may sound ridiculous but I have a good feel for fit as far as the lifters. As far as the oil galley plugs. They are definitely installed I have images of the build with them in there. I am not sure what the base circle of the cam is. I did not measure it. Attached is the cam card. Thanks already!
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby governor » Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:45 pm

Did you make sure and put the soft plug back in under the rear main cap?

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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby dwilliams » Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:45 am

That plug just forces oil over through the filter boss.
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby SonnyJames » Fri Aug 20, 2010 7:03 am

If the rear cam bearing is not installed correctly it will do what you are saying also. It will also show low pressure on the gauge. A very little amount of the galley needs to be "not covered" by the bearing for this to occur. Another "don't ask me how I know this" :D
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Re: Fresh motor assembly. No oil to top end.

Postby peej410 » Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:03 am

I had the cam bearings installed by my machinist. Is there any way to get a look in there without a boroscope? Or should I pull a galley plug and try to read oil pressure behind the cam gear? Tonight I am going to attempt the priming procedure recommended and post back with my findings. Thanks for your time everyone!
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