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Modified Mustangs & Fords
September 01, 2008
To begin the short-block assembly, the block is rotated upside down for the crankshaft installation steps. The main bearing saddles were inspected and wiped clean before we installed the main bearings themselves. Be sure the backs of the bearings are clean and dry. Do not apply any lubricant or sealer to the rear of the bearing shells. You'll also notice the block side of the crank bore has the oil gallery openings, so use the proper bearing for the block and the cap, otherwise you'll block off the oil passages, causing instant death to your fresh build on start up.
To begin the short-block assembly, the block is rotated upside down for the crankshaft ins
With our freshly machined crank cleaned and prepped, Kyle carefully laid it into the main bearings dry. Do not rotate the crank on dry bearings. Kyle applied a small section of the supplied Plastigage to one of the journals. If you really want to feel good, you can check all five main-bearing clearances. Install the bearing caps and torque them to specs.
With our freshly machined crank cleaned and prepped, Kyle carefully laid it into the main
After the main caps were set in place and torqued properly, Kyle removed the main caps and checked the crushed Plastigage against the package's measurements to determine if the clearances were within specs. While the Plastigage is a great tool, many builders opt to measure the crank journal with calipers and the bearing journal with a telescoping gauge set or bore gauge. The calipers and telescoping gauges will set you back around $100 at Powerhouse if that's the option you want to take (and they're both great tools that have many other uses).
After the main caps were set in place and torqued properly, Kyle removed the main caps and
After carefully cleaning the Plastigage from the crankshaft journal and bearing shell, the crankshaft was temporarily removed (always stand a crank on an end, never lay it on its side) and the main bearings were lubricated for final installation of the crankshaft. We used Royal Purple's Max-Tuff synthetic assembly lube on all internal components. The crank was then carefully laid in place and received an application of Max-Tuff lube.
After carefully cleaning the Plastigage from the crankshaft journal and bearing shell, the
Once again, the main caps were seated and the original main-cap bolts were installed and torqued to specs. We worked from the center-thrust bearing outward toward each end when we tightened down the caps.
Once again, the main caps were seated and the original main-cap bolts were installed and t
With the crank set in place and the caps tightened to specs, the last thing we checked was the crank's endplay by using a dial indicator and moving the crank back and forth against the thrust bearing. Kyle first forced the crank rearward with a prybar, then installed a dial indicator and zeroed it (we used Powerhouse's PN POW151125 magnetic base at $29 and the company's 0-1-inch dial indicator, PN POW151100 at $29.95). He used the prybar again to force the crank forward to read the amount of movement off of the dial indicator. We were within specs on our setup.
With the crank set in place and the caps tightened to specs, the last thing we checked was
We have success! Kyle seated all eight pistons with just a little help from his old man and not a single broken ring or nicked bearing journal (sections of fuel hose over the rod-bolt ends are cheap tools to prevent bearing surface damage to the crank). Notice the notch in the piston faces the front of the block. All eight pistons should do so.
We have success! Kyle seated all eight pistons with just a little help from his old man an
Knowing our crank was good to go, Kyle moved on to install the eight piston and rod assemblies. There are some nice tapered ring compressors on the market, but dear old dad built his first engine with the ring compressor shown, so we thought it would be a nice hand-me-down image for Kyle to use the same tool. With the crank throw rotated away from the bore being worked on and the deck surface facing up, the piston and rod assembly was carefully tapped into the bore after a liberal application of oil on the piston and cylinder wall. Listen for any change in the sound of the assembly being tapped into place, as it could mean a ring is catching the edge of the block!
Knowing our crank was good to go, Kyle moved on to install the eight piston and rod assemb
For valvetrain, we gave Summit Racing another call and opted for the tried-and-true Ford Racing Performance Parts E-303 camshaft (PN FMS-M-6250-E303, $176.88), Summit's OE replacement roller lifters (PN SUM-HT220, $100), Summit roller timing chain set (PN SUM-G6620, $37.95), Comp Cams pushrods (PN CCA-7826-16, $37.95), and an FRPP oil pump driveshaft (PN M-6605-B302, $16.95).
For valvetrain, we gave Summit Racing another call and opted for the tried-and-true Ford R
When it's time to install the cam, some people like to do it with the block upside down so they can reach down and support the cam through the bearing journals. It's not a bad idea, but I've always installed it after the reciprocating assembly. A bolt and set of locking pliers make for a simple, yet effective, handle. RP's Max-Tuff was applied to the cam lobes and journals as Kyle carefully slid the cam into place.
When it's time to install the cam, some people like to do it with the block upside down so
While many pro engine builders go through the effort of degreeing their cam, for the typical street build like we're doing, dropping the cam in and setting it "straight up" keeps things simple. Kyle installed the Summit timing chain with the crank gear at zero degrees advance.
While many pro engine builders go through the effort of degreeing their cam, for the typic
When installing standard lifters, there's nothing too special to worry about. But on OE-style roller lifters, you have to place these tie-bars over each pair. Ensure the word "UP" is facing up, then bolt the lifter retainer into the valley of the block. If you're using link-bar lifters, like the common roller retrofit versions, follow the manufacturer's recommendations as to how they want the link-bar situated.
When installing standard lifters, there's nothing too special to worry about. But on OE-st
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