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Old 09-11-2011, 05:46 PM
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Chevy 350 valve adjustment

Hey everyone. I am building my first Chevy SB. I have a 4bolt main block with 1 piece rear seal. Believe it is an '86 block. Installed 882 heads that have been professionally built with Z-28 springs. The new cam is a Summit 1 step above stock with matching hydraulic lifters. I bought new pushrods of standard length. I am using a book by Larry Atherton to assemble this engine. When following his recommended technique for adjusting valves (seems like there are a dozen or so methods) When I complete the cycle of rotating the engine, starting at TDC on #1 cyl. and go through the sequential valve adjustment, each one tightens up nicely as I make the adjustment, but when I am finished, I end up with several loose rocker arms - loose to the point that they wobble on the stud.

I do not yet have oil in this engine, since it is a fresh rebuild and has not yet been started. I am thinking that the lifters are not holding pressure, thus causing the loose condition. Or perhaps, the pushrods are not long enough. Obviously, I am stumped, so any help is greatly appreciated.

Thanks. Hope to hear from you soon!

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Old 09-11-2011, 05:51 PM's Avatar
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If you adjusted as stated then you are right and will have a few loose rocker arms and once running will fill the lifters with oil and the adjustment will be correct.
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Old 09-11-2011, 05:51 PM
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After you adjust a valve then turn the motor over, some of the adjusted valves will be pushing down on their lifter. Since there is zero oil pressure the force of the valve spring will collapse the lifter and bleed the oil out. Then as you rotate it over again and that particular lifter is on the base circle, there will be some lash since there is not enough oil in the lifter to take up the slack.
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Old 09-11-2011, 10:30 PM
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350 SBC valve adjustment

Prime the engine oiling system before you try to start the engine. Have someone rotate the engine by hand while you prime it. And be sure to break in the cam correctly.

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