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  #76 (permalink)  
Old 04-04-2011, 07:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Get the cover bolted on right and then its time to get yourself a timing light.
Timing light; my biggest fear, right after degreeing a cam. Forgive my rookiness but how can you tell? Is it because of the pulsation?

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  #77 (permalink)  
Old 04-04-2011, 07:25 PM
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Couldn't see your video but you mentioned backfiring somewhere.
Get the light and we'll walk you thru it.
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  #78 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2011, 03:10 AM
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- Valve Cover and Gasket, cont. -

On Friday, I attempted to reinstall the driver-side valve cover and gasket, but had no luck. The gasket just would not stay in place. I took another look at it and the gasket just seemed to be out of shape. It was bending inwards too much when the holes were lined up.


Autozone now sells these gaskets with warranties so I drove over and inquired about it. The manage let me bring in the bad one and swap it from a fresh set. However, since he had none in stock, he ordered it from another store and I picked it up today.


I recently ordered and have been reading David Vizard's "How to rebuild you Small-Block Chevy". In it, he discusses using "a ball-pein hammer to flatten the area around the holes" on the valve covers (referred to as rocker covers in the book) (1991 ed., page 130). I had actually never looked at the valve covers to see if they might be bent out of shape. After taking a quick look, I determined that one side was indeed quite uneven. Having no access to a ball-pein hammer, I use a regular hammer to flatten it back into place. perhaps the old gasket was fine after all.


At the suggestion of the Autozone manager, I used a light amount of Permatex Copper Spray-A-Gasket on the valve cover's surface before setting the new gasket on top of it. Seems to work better than the RTV gasket maker I was using before. Unable to find the valve cover bolt I dropped last week, I went ahead and used new ARP bolts to hold the valve cover down. To make the work a little easier, I also removed the throttle cable and return spring bracket behind the carburetor for better access to the bolts.








----------------




- Start Up -

Once the valve cover and gasket were installed, I went ahead put everything else back in place: throttle cable and return spring bracket, various hoses, oil filler cap and driver-side spark plug wires.


Before proceeding with the start up, I went ahead and checked to make sure there was enough oil in the engine. Last week, when I checked the oil the day after start up, the dipstick had no oil. Ipoured in two quarts before realizing that the driver-side valve cover was leaking. This evening, when I checked the dipstick, the oil level was above "Full".


I went ahead and started the truck. You can see the start up and shut down in the following three videos:

Video 1: Combination of two videos. The truck initially struggles with starting (0:00 to 0:55). After spraying some starting fluid into the carburetor, it starts up powerfully (0:55 to 3:29).

Video 2: Combination of three videos: I move the camera around to the passenger side (0:00 to 1:29), the rear (1:29 to 2:35) and the driver side of the truck (2:35 to 3:55). At each side, I rev the truck. You can clearly hear something in the exhaust. I have a feeling something is stuck in there. When the truck is turned off (3:45), there is a very loud bang with a visible flame below the truck in the exhaust area (3:47).

Video 3: Lots of smoke (white this time) rises from the engine bay.

For reference, here is the video of the start up from last Saturday. I believe there is a difference in how the truck sounds.
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  #79 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2011, 06:25 AM
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So now you're burning off the leaked oil that's all over the exhaust.
That's a good thing. Should be gone soon.

A heat riser in the exhaust system can rattle. I'm sure there's nothing ''in there''.
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  #80 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2011, 11:06 AM
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I just realized that the links for the first two videos in my previous post are not working so I have updated them here.

Quote:
- Videos -


Most Recent Start Up Videos

I went ahead and started the truck. You can see the start up and shut down in the following three videos. These videos were shot consecutively:

Video 1: Start Up - Combination of two videos. The truck initially struggles with starting (0:00 to 0:55). After spraying some starting fluid into the carburetor, it starts up powerfully (0:55 to 3:29).

Video 2: Warming Up and Shutting Down - Combination of three videos: I move the camera around to the passenger side (0:00 to 1:29), the rear (1:29 to 2:35) and the driver side of the truck (2:35 to 3:55). At each side, I rev the truck. You can clearly hear something in the exhaust. I have a feeling something is stuck in there. When the truck is turned off (3:45), there is a very loud bang with a visible flame below the truck in the exhaust area (3:47).

Video 3: Engine Bay Smoke - Truck is now off. Lots of smoke (white this time) rises from the engine bay by the firewall. This smoke was not there when the truck was running (possible dissipated by the fan?)




For Reference/Refresher

Previous Start Up Video (post-carburetor rebuild) - This is the video of the start up from last Saturday. I believe there is a difference in how the truck sounds. The following are my notes on it from post 74:
Quote:
The truck has to be cranked a few times before it starts and revved once it catches. But once it does, it idles very strong (strongest since I've owned it) and at roughly 1500 rpm (much higher than the usual 1000 rpm). At 3:23 you can hear the rpm dropping. I had forgotten to plug the hose from the carburetor the brake booster back in place so I went ahead and did that. From that point forward, you can here a bit of a "bop bop" in the exhaust as well as the engine some what pulsating. At 3:58, I start revving the engine to see if there is any hesitation or backfiring. Upon seeing some light smoke from the passenger-side of the engine, I turn off the truck at 4:19. At 4:20 and 4:23,you can clearly a loud backfire from the exhaust. As the video progresses, you can see black smoke rising from both sides by the firewall.
First Start Up Video (pre-carburetor rebuild) - This was the first video made when this truck began giving problems. The following are my notes on it from post 38:
Quote:
The truck doesn't start right away. I then "prime" it three times and then it starts up. From what I can tell, the choke engages immediately but the motor also begins to die down very quickly. All the high revs you hear are me working the pedal (one time as high as 3500 rpm). As also seen in the video, the fuel filter right before the carb is originally empty but fills up quickly and stays full for the duration of the run. In the second half, fuel can be seen shooting up out of the carb, near the accelerator linkage. I also noticed that there no backfires this time.



Hey 123pugsy,
Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Get the cover bolted on right and then its time to get yourself a timing light.
I swear the timing light is coming soon!




Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
So now you're burning off the leaked oil that's all over the exhaust.
That's a good thing. Should be gone soon.
Isn't the smoke from burning oil usually black?




Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
A heat riser in the exhaust system can rattle. I'm sure there's nothing ''in there''.
As hard as I tried, I did not see a heat riser valve. I read online that it is on the passenger-side. I took both pictures of both sides. Also, the loud rattling seems to be coming from the muffler on the driver-side. I checked it this morning by hitting it with my hand but didn't hear anything.
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  #81 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2011, 11:30 AM
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Burning oil from inside the exhaust pipe is blue.
Dripped off oil on the outside of the pipes may appear grey.
I don't think it was steam so start it up and cook off the rest.

If it is steam you have a head gasket problem with a severe exhaust leak in the engine compartment.
Is the oil milky?
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  #82 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2011, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Burning oil from inside the exhaust pipe is blue.
Dripped off oil on the outside of the pipes may appear grey.
I don't think it was steam so start it up and cook off the rest.

If it is steam you have a head gasket problem with a severe exhaust leak in the engine compartment.
Is the oil milky?
The oil doesn't look milky. But then again, it is very dirty. I do find it worth noting that the smoke or steam doesn't seem to come out until the the truck is turned off and the loud backfire is heard. That could be because the engine fan is blowing it away when the truck is running.







I also checked the coolant in the radiator and it seems full, but a bit oily.


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  #83 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2011, 03:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lt1silverhawk
I do find it worth noting that the smoke or steam doesn't seem to come out until the the truck is turned off and the loud backfire is heard.

Timing light.
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  #84 (permalink)  
Old 04-10-2011, 09:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Timing light.
Still didn't buy one... yet.


However, I did finally mess with the timing and I believe I have it down just right. I was originally planning to go through the process of finding TDC and then working from there (according to Autozone's website, timing for a '77 Chevy pickup with CA emissions is 2 degrees adavanced). I wiped down the plate with the timing marking but was having diffciulty turning the engine because the bolt holding the the dampner is rusted and the socket kept getting stuck. So I went stright to the distributor. The nut holding it in place was hard to get to.





If I remember correctly, I initially advanced it (CCW) 2 clicks. It resulted in the usual backfire in the end. I then retarded in (CW) 1 click and it started and idled just as it used to when I first bought it, with no back fires. I even went through the gears with my foot on the brake it seemed just fine. I then retarded it once more and it stalled. I moved it back to where it was running perfect. Video of it here. Thanks 123pugsy!


Unfortunately, oil is still leaking and burning on the driver side. I wiped everything down and then made a video and photographed as the oil trickled out from underneath the driver-side valve cover and dripped down the exhaust manifold. I am confident the gasket was in place and all the bolts are secure so I can't figure out why it is still leaking. And it seems to be leaking more than before.

Could valve cover still be bent out of shape? Or are the new valve cover bolts the wrong style (they don't have the wing-type plates like the originals)?


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  #85 (permalink)  
Old 04-11-2011, 05:05 AM
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If you tighten the bolts too much , they'll leak.
Sounds like its time for some new covers (and a timing light of coarse).
I like the cast aluminum covers as they press the gasket down better.

You'll have to take off the cover, tap the metal back flat if its bent down again. Try something called Right Stuff on both sides of the gasket if you don't want to buy new covers.

You can also reuse the ''wing'' washers with your new bolts.
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  #86 (permalink)  
Old 04-11-2011, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
If you tighten the bolts too much , they'll leak.
Sounds like its time for some new covers (and a timing light of coarse).
I like the cast aluminum covers as they press the gasket down better.

You'll have to take off the cover, tap the metal back flat if its bent down again. Try something called Right Stuff on both sides of the gasket if you don't want to buy new covers.

You can also reuse the ''wing'' washers with your new bolts.
I am definitely taking note of the "Right Stuff". I'm at work today so I'll probably take a crack at the covers tonight. I should have the timing light tonight, along with a rubber mallet for some light hammering. I don't really want to invest in a new set of covers unless I absolutely have to. Craigslist may even come in handy. I think I will give the wing washers another try when I reinstall the cover (yet again).




On a related note, I found a rather interesting thread with tips on straightening bent valve covers on Thirdgen.org. I found the following two tips to be noteworthy:

Quote:
double gasket, rtv two gaskets together, and use the two, cork is the best for bent surfaces as it gives more, and forms to the surface, just dont torq it down too hard, snap, it will break in half.

I've used the double gasket trick for years on bent covers, no leaks as of yet.

By 12SecondTA, Post #4
Quote:
If its a steel valve cover, get out a peice of 2x4 wood, put said wood on top of the valve cover flange, and beat it flat with a hammer. By hitting the wood, you won't dent the valve cover. You won't break it, steel ones are quite flexible before they break, unlike aluminum ones.

By BigWhiteGTP, Post #5

Last edited by lt1silverhawk; 04-11-2011 at 02:59 PM.
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  #87 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 10:35 AM
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Got the valve cover off this morning. There are definite bends where the bolts go. I should be able to straighten that out.

Unfortunately, the bolt closest to the distributor fell yet again. When I tried fishing it out with the magnetic pickup stick, it fell into the head. I looked for it everywhere but its nowhere to be seen. I believe it fell into the large opening at the top of the head marked in the picture below. What will I need to do find it?


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  #88 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 11:13 AM
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Time to go fishing with a magnetic pickup tool.
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  #89 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 11:22 AM
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Fair enough. But, would I have to go as far as removing the head in case the magnet can't catch it?
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Old 04-12-2011, 11:25 AM
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No, just the intake.....but you'll get it.
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