View Full Version : Engine: How do you install Harmonic Balancer with the engine in the car

08-11-2013, 10:03 AM
Working on my 1963 Champ and need to reinstall the harmonic balancer. Plan on renting an installation tool or getting an extra long bolt to install the part, but the real question is; how do I keep the crank from turning when the engine is in the car, without removing the oil pan? The only thing I can think of is to put a screw driver in the flywheel ring gear (ouch!!!). Or perhaps use an air impact wrench.

Any ideas will be greatly appreciated!!!

08-11-2013, 11:35 AM
One way is to remove the starter and clamp vice grips on the ring gear. Another trick is to pull a spark plug and insert a length of 1/4 inch rope, (leaving the tail of the rope hanging out the spark plug hole) and turn the engine over by hand till the piston hits the rope. Be sure to do this with the piston coming up the compression stroke so the valves are both closed.
As a last resort, pour a large bowl of assorted nuts and bolts down into the crankcase and turn the engine over till it locks itself up against some of the debris.
Just kiddin about the last one.

08-11-2013, 01:35 PM
Actually the screwdriver in the starter hole approach is not as bad as you think.. They have a tool that has the same pitch as the teeth on the ring gear. It bolts to the bell housing and engages the ring gear to hold it steady.

As long as you can apply constant force on the crank bolt while the screwdriver is there, there should be no problem.. As noted it is a two person job this way and a square shank screwdriver works best.

OK.. I'm ready for the comments..

You could also get your engine in #1 TDC.. Remove spark-plug.. Back the crank up to where #1 is half way until compression and fill with oil.. Replace spark-plug..

Tighten bolt..

The oil in the cylinder will compress and hold the engine still until you get the right torque on the bolt.

When done.. remove spark-plug and burp your engine... Yes, it is a bit more messy!

By burping, I mean syringe out as much oil as you can, or rotate by hand one time to get most oil out. Then place a rag over the spark-plug hole and start it up. Then replace spark-plug.

Plus is you do not have to crawl under the car (or truck) and remove what you will have to replace..

Not for the timid or the guy not wanting to head tot the car wash afterwards..

08-11-2013, 03:29 PM
Put in reverse, out of o/d, and pull up emergency brake

08-11-2013, 03:46 PM
Put in reverse, out of o/d, and pull up emergency brake

I agree with Flashback idea using the car trans in reverse, I would also use some 4x4 wood blocks in front and back of the rear tires if the car is on the ground. Stude8

Dwain G.
08-11-2013, 04:06 PM
If you use a harmonic balancer installer you won't have the problem of the engine trying to turn. Problem is though, no one puts an adapter in their kits to fit the Studebaker 11/16"-16 threads. If you have machining capabilities, you can make one by cutting down the 3/4" adapter in the kit or by making a new adapter. Since 11/16"-16 bolts are very hard to find, I used a wheel lug stud that size (Dorman 610-158.1 or NAPA 6413251) and machined the upper part to fit my installer.
If you have to pay to have one made it would be just as cheap to buy the installer from this SDC vendor: http://studebakerparts.com/ (Scroll down to special tools).