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  • #16
    I never have adjusred valves with the engine running. How do you know when the valve is adjusted, it seems to me the opening and closeing of the valve would pinch the feeler gauge. Tell me more about how to adj Hot and Running. Sounds interesting.[8D]

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    • #17
      quote:Originally posted by curt

      I never have adjusred valves with the engine running. How do you know when the valve is adjusted, it seems to me the opening and closeing of the valve would pinch the feeler gauge. Tell me more about how to adj Hot and Running. Sounds interesting.[8D]
      For some reason fellas have this picture of an engine running at about 2500 rpm while they're doing a valve lash adjustment, never ceases to tickle me.

      First question, have you ever had a valve cover off a running engine? If not, warm your car up, pull the valve cover off and check it out. (Hint: turn the curb idle down to about 450 rpm before you pull that valve cover.)

      Second question, have you ever set valve lash? If not, it's just plain ol', "practice man, practice". You should have a good understanding of how to use feeler gauges. Usually, when you have the clearance right, (say .024), a .025 feeler gauge will not go into where you just had the .024 feeler gauge. OR, it's been said that if you have the clearance right, you should feel a slight "drag" on the feeler gauge as you insert/retract it from the space being measured.

      Bottom line, it's exactly the same feeler gauge operation while setting them running or not. Just make sure that you set that idle way down, put a piece of cardboard under the valve springs, (all of them and inside the bottom lip on the head), so if any oil spritzes out the cardboard will catch and drain it back into the head.

      I use feeler gauges made especially for setting valve lash. They're a longer length and have about a 45 degree bend in them about a quarter of the way from the free end. Remembering that the valves should be close already, (you set them to the cold settings already, right?), if the car is running, the proper feeler gauge will slide in with a slight drag. Do NOT try to force the feeler gauge in between the valve tip and the rocker and the gauges will never get damaged. It doesn't matter which valve you start with, but I'd recommend starting in the back on either side, then working to the front, (it can get hot as hell while you're setting 'em running). Oh! Remove only the valve cover that you're working on, leave the other cover on.

      Some considerations.... If you pull a valve cover and it's "sludge city" under there, I'd forget adjusting anything until I got some diesel fuel and cleaned up everything under the covers spotlessly, (especially the return holes). Get yourself some of those round wire brushes and little brass wire brushes to get into all the holes, nooks and crannies. Try to not let anything but that diesel fuel get into the engine, I guarantee that you'll see all of those little hard chunks that you let get inside your engine again. [:I]

      After a diesel fuel douche, you can flush it clean enough by pouring about a quart per side, of the cheapest, clean oil you that can find, all over the valve train. But, leave the plug out of the oil pan as you're pouring that cheap oil in and hopefully it will wash out any chunks that may have found their way into the pan. After I've had to clean 'em like that, and back together and running again, I put in cheap oil, run it for a very short time, (mebbe 50 miles), then change it to a good brand diesel oil, (it'll finish the internal clean up).

      Also, now would be a good time to inspect the stem seals, (you can see 'em through the valve springs). In fact take a small, flat screw driver and poke 'em. If they're hard as chicken lips or a chunk falls off, or there's already chunks missing, replace 'em before you mess with the lash. (It's hard to believe that rotten valve stem seal pieces can clog the oil pump screen but TRUST me, they can! [:I]) Look for damaged springs, broken or missing locks, damaged retainers, hammered valve tips, chipped or broken rocker tips, etc.. Oh, how's those valve cover gaske
      Sonny
      http://RacingStudebakers.com

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