View Full Version : Engine: Oil Pump ?

03-06-2012, 01:18 AM
To prime my pump what direction do I turn the shaft and how hard should it be to rotate?

I used a piece of rod and cut a tab on the end similar to the distributor drive end and want to use a battery drill to spin it and prime my motor. Just want to make sure I spin it in the correct direction. Any other neccesary tips?

03-06-2012, 02:37 AM
You want to turn it Counterclockwise the same as Distributor rotation. It will be very hard for a Makita battery powered to turn, but if you use Low/Slow speed and a fresh charge it should work, have someone tell you if you get 20-40 Lbs. on the gauge before you burn up the Drill. It is best to use a 3/8" or 1/2" Reversable Electric drill.

Mike Van Veghten
03-06-2012, 03:50 AM
AND...to do it correctly...turn the crank shaft through a full revolution to make sure all passage get filled.
If you leave the crank in one position, less than half of the passages will get oil.


03-06-2012, 01:05 PM
OHHH MAN, thanks for all of that. I thought that it was too hard and something may have been wrong....phwhew. Thanks also for the heads up on turning the crank. I will need some help for that, but good input.

Good news for me.
I REALLY do love this site.
Again, thanks to everyone here...Oscar is coming along because of ALOT of help here.

03-06-2012, 08:27 PM
I used a battery powered WalMart drill a couple of weeks ago to prime the 289 I rebuilt. The pressure relief valve popped open early on, but I just continued to spin it till oil was coming out all the rockers and the oil galley was filling up the cavities from the lifters. Never thought about cranking the motor over, and not sure how that might work, but will spin the pump again after adjusting the valves.

03-07-2012, 12:29 AM
keep the valve covers on , if not don't stand near the sides, oil will be squirting out.

03-07-2012, 03:03 PM
That much I knew...lol.
They are on and ready. Just fix my starter, crank while priming OP, drop in distributor/plugs/wires and try to fire it up...wooo hooo, maybe today if my neck can hold up long enough.

03-07-2012, 04:47 PM
keep the valve covers on , if not don't stand near the sides, oil will be squirting out.

If just priming by rotating pump only, as I thought was meant here, the oil does not squirt anywhere. It simply oozes out around the rockers, lifters, etc. It will eventually overflow and drip down the sides of the engine, but you'll have plenty of time to stop before that happens. If the engine is running, that's a whole nother story, of course it will sling everywhere, but that is mostly because of the moving rockers.

On another note, if you don't have a drill, you can also use a speeder wrench, just takes a little more elbow grease.

03-07-2012, 05:50 PM
Okay, I am a bit scared. I got my starter fixed and installed. I put my homemade oil pump primer rod in my 1/2" drill motor, 110v not battery this time, and inserted it easily into the motor with the drill in reverse, counterclockwise.

As soon as I start spinning it, there is alot of torque on the drill to turn the pump, even when I started cranking the motor over the torque on the drill may have dropped a tiny bit, but not much at all.
I mean there is alot of torque against the drill.

I have done alot of non-Stude motors and I have felt resistance from a high pressure or high volumn oil pump, but this is alot. Too much I fear.
I am sure that my oil galleys are clear, my bearing tolerances have been checked, measured, and double checked, all well within specs. New check valve and spring on the front. Complete oil pump rebuilt kit from SI in my engine overhaul kit. Rocker arms and shafts cleaned and blown out.

I am going crazy. Any ideas?
It is enough pressure against the drill motor that I am worried it could shear the drive pin on the distributor shaft.


03-07-2012, 06:30 PM
can you turn the crankshaft with a big socket ?

03-07-2012, 07:07 PM
Yes. I can turn it over no problem. If I pull the rocker arms off so there is no valve spring tension it turns over fine. The springs are very tight, but I knew that would be the case since they are new and R2+ HD racing springs.

I do not have the distributor in yet and am just trying to prime it for the moment.

What if I drain the oil and turn the pump over dry, well not dry and not fast just not buried in oil, and see if that turn easier?
I turned the pump over after I rebuilt it and it turned just fine.

03-07-2012, 08:43 PM
Come on guys....no ideas?
Pull the motor and tear it back down to re-inspect every galley, line, tube, hole, port, and the pump? Time I don't have and a new gasket kit.... I am ready to throw something.

03-07-2012, 08:59 PM
Ok so update, My wife got home and I had her sit in the truck and watch the gauges.
I spun the oil pump with my 110v corded 1/2" Black and Decker drill motor. It took 10 to 20 seconds to get to 20 lbs of psi. Then another 20 seconds or so to get to 40 psi and by the time it got to 40 psi my drill motor was LITERALLY smoking out of both sides.

I stopped, pulled out my rig, set down my drill and shaft driver slowly so I didn't bend it, and went to look at the gauges {maybe 15-20 seconds after stopping spinning} and it still had about 30 psi and was slowly dropping.... as I watched it. Maybe another 20+ seconds before it dropped all the way down.

{not yelling at you guys....just screaming in frustrating I guess}

03-07-2012, 09:25 PM
You can check the oil pump for binding by spinning it backward. It should spin easily, and you should hear a gurgling sound from the pan as the pump pukes air from the pickup screen.

If the oil is cold and thick, the pump can require a bit of torque to turn. But from your description, it sounds like the pressure relief valve may be stuck closed, even though you said it is new. If it is opening, you should hear a sound that can best be described as wet flatulation (trying to be clean here) from the timing cover while you are spinning the pump. If you cannot hear that sound, remove the valve assembly, lay the cap and spring aside, then insert about a 12" long piece of safety wire thru the tiny hole in the center of the valve, then tie a knot in the end of the wire that sticks out the engine side of the valve. Use a small screwdriver to push the valve from backside in, till is it completely seated, then pull the wire to drag it back out. It should float back and forth FULL TRAVEL without any drag whatsoever. If it will not, use a .45 cal. bore brush on the end of a drill, and carb cleaner to clean the bore. Then try the fit again. It may take up to an hour of patience, but do not settle for anything less than free floating, full travel of the valve. Of course, the carb cleaner will contaminate the oil, unless you drain it first. Use oil no thicker than 10W30 initially.

The PR valve is often not given the attention it deserves during a rebuild. If hot tanked, the process will often mess up the surface of the bore enough to stick the valve.

Just my 2 cents.

03-07-2012, 09:27 PM
Can you pull a gallery pipe plug close to the pump or otherwise loosen a fitting close to the pump and try the drill again to see
1) if it requires less torque
2) if any oil comes out

what was the upshot with the starter?

03-07-2012, 09:27 PM
Guess I was typing while you were. In reading your last post, I am now almost certain the PR valve is stuck.

03-07-2012, 10:04 PM
tbird and Joe,
Thank you so much for some input here. It is cold and dark now so I will try those things tomorrow. Just having something to check rather than just think of tearing it all down again would have driven me nuts all night.
Running the pump backwards is a great start to check for some pump binding possibilities.
As to the check valve, I do not remember if it was quite that smooth and easy to insert, i certainly did not have to tap it in or force, but I dont recall it just falling in either...so that is a definate second place to go and check.
I am still a bit freaked out, but much less than before.

THANK YOU all again. My head was gonna explode, not my it just hurts a bit...
Man I am having a bad week. A bunch of other personal stuff going....but that is a "Dr." visit conversation....I think my shrink loves me...I am sure he is at least entertained....lol

03-07-2012, 10:28 PM
Check to see if the PV is in backwards. Check to see if the spring is in front of the plunger and not the other way around. Check to see if the plunger can actually be removed. Spring comes out first. Use a pencil magnet to extract the plunger. It should slide out with no fuss or cuss. Is this a full flow block? Check oil filter and oil filter adapter base.

03-07-2012, 10:51 PM
It is a full flow '63 289. Sorry for not posting that.
What do I need to check on the filter adapter?
I thoroughly cleaned and checked that on Monday, I dont remember any possible issue.
I am using a Wix 51049 filter. It looked the same as the old filter.

03-08-2012, 08:28 PM
The filter adapter has a by-pass valves that are suspose to open if the filter gets clogged. Never have used that filter so don't know but if the filter is defective and the filter adapter is struggling to offer a bypass then it might behave in the manner you are seeing. Pull the filter and see if the oil pump will then pump oil freely. If so, you have found the problem. You'll have to catch the oil some how and it will be messy but you have to at least confirm that the filter is not clogged. The oil pump exit goes straight to that filter first, then returns to the block galley for distribution. Or try a PH-11 Fram filter and see if oil flows freely. You did add oil right and not rear end grease. (just kidding).

03-08-2012, 08:52 PM
Hmmm, full flow, good info
Believe it or not 35 yrs ago a friend did a total rebuild on I don't remember what motor. I was standing there when he started it up (the motor was free standing at that point). Within a few seconds the filter (full flow) exploded and oil went everywhere. Needless to say we were totally shocked, and speechless, but quickly realized that the filter must have been defective and obviously blocked. I happened to have an exact replacement on hand, we installed, and all was well. Very bizarre. But if it happened once, it can happen again. Not that it matters, but it was a Fram

03-09-2012, 02:44 AM
The WIX is about the best there is, and that is the correct Filter, far and above the quality of the current Fram filters. IMO of course!

03-09-2012, 09:24 AM
ok..what am I missing or not reading: your wife confirms oil pressure to near 40 lbs...right ? The take-off for the gage is at a low pressure location for oil travel......start the engine up and break it in .....Removing the pressure valve is about a 5 min job.......again...what am I missing ?

03-09-2012, 08:15 PM
I did just that.
There is a write up on General Discussion entitled "Oscar is Alive" posted last night.
But to address your question as to what you are missing,
My concern was that it was SO hard to turn the oil pump that it could shear off the pin that holds the OP drive rod onto the cam gear and distributor shaft. Being so hard to spin had me concerned that there could have been a blockage somewhere early on in the passages making too much back pressure on the pump itself.
Once I took a couple of the plugs out of the heads and saw HOW much oil was literally SHOOTING out of the block from both heads, and double checked the pressure relief valve, I was comfortable just starting him up, and the it fired RIGHT up...thanks for everyones help.

When I worked at the auto parts store here in town, I got a pretty good education on filters and I LOVE Wix stuff. Great filters. Not as common as other brands, but long haul truckers have been using them mostly for decades. Their whole livelihood is based on their motors holding up as long as possible...most of them use Wix...good enough for me.