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Old 07-29-2010, 08:45 AM
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comp cams

i was on the other day an seen a couple post about the cam wiping out with in miles from 50 to 200 miles, i just did a cam change for a guy that bought a cam for his 1974 impala an one i took out was a comp cam an number 8 exhaust was wipped out an now he bought a comp cam high engery cam an having trouble with same cylinder same lobe an i honed the lifter bores before doing swap an i ran engine at 2,500 RPM's for about 45 min. for break in an changed oils right after that, an nexted day guy came back an had one lifter tapping, so i pulled covers an reajusted all the lifters in the car, an 3 hours later guy came back with one tapping again an was same one as first time i reajusted them number 8 exhaust as same one was wiped out in cam i removed!, an seems that rockers not lifing as far as the rest i checked rocker studs an they measure same hieght as the rest as i've had some studs pull out the heads on stock chevy's, an when did change i put new pushrods in an new rockers with groved balls! all from comp cams, so as i read in the other post guy said his was number 8 exhaust lobe wiped out! has anyone else had there on number 8 exhaust go out on them? i've used comp cams in the past because had alot problem with crane cams in the past so i switched to comp cams, now is its like read in the post now there seems be a problem with comp cam's!!!!!!

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Old 07-29-2010, 01:06 PM
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Old 07-29-2010, 02:31 PM
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Too bad about that... not good news

essentially tech's link describes proper installation practices to lessen the chance of failure on any flat tappet cam, not saying you did not follow this or that you did something wrong but any make of cam can go south even if these steps are followed. I had a comp XE cam and it did not fail or wipe but it/the valve train made noise, it is a common thing but comp gets mentioned more, maybe cause they sell the most or are more popular? I don't think that #8 is a more likely candidate to wipe either but this particular cyl is also motioned allot in other threads for different reasons, not cam timing. So now what different make?
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Old 07-29-2010, 11:25 PM
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well the one i read guy said his was #8 exhaust but now can't find the post!
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Old 07-30-2010, 12:19 AM
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Check #8 lifter bore. Often when a old worn lifter is removed the bore or the bottom edge gets scratched, nicked. The lifter must spin easily in its bore.
Check the #8 rocker and stud and spring retainer and seal for defect, binding or lack of full lift travel.

You do not need to change the oil after 1 hour. Think about it. If that much metal gets ripped off the moving parts on initial break in and gets into the oil, the motor is f%$##% anyways.
I leave the break in oil in for 1 to 2 weeks before changing it.
I use moly slip in the oil as well as a zinc additive. GM EOS.

I have had a (1)Crane Cam (After 2 years many many miles) and a Comp cam crap out on me within a few miles before, over the years.

I've had many many of different brands cams with no issues at all.

We,, (me,, my friends, and my guy that does my engine machining for me) have had very good separate long term experience using Isky flat tappet cams.
I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest thats because all the Isky cams are made "in house" and not farmed out to the cheapest contract production shop.

Comp Cams sells way more common bolt in performance camshafts than they have capacity to produce themselves. Quality control of the cores and or manufacturing process may be at issue.

I have a custom ground Comp XE cam in my car and its fine. Comp cams had to make it for me and ship it as there was no stock at the time.
Comp sells and promotes Nitrideing their flat tappet cams for increased durability. This is not new technology and seems to work. Ya it costs more.

I had to replace a out of the box comp XE cam for a unrelated damage issue but the lobes and lifters on that one were fine too.

Again based on experience I recomend Isky cams if you want a quality off the shelf flat tappet performance cam thats made right. They seem to last.
I have not seen or even heard of a Isky cam failure yet.
We recently removed a Isky hyd flat tappet from a 396 BBC after many many years and miles and it was very near pristine. (it could have easily been reused) BBC's are notorious for eating flat tappet cams.
I;ve seen hard run race motors with Isky flat tappets in them come out pristine opon inspection. Even moved those Isky cams with new lifters to other race motors, without issues. The cams and lifters always looked fine on inspection.

Comp's custom ground stuff seems to be fine. But based on experience Isky gets my vote.

Watch the quality of the lifters you use.
When ever using higher than stock valve spring pressure wether single or dual springs, reduce the spring pressure for initial break in. I leave the breakin springs in and drive around for a week or two, then go to the higher recomended spring rate after everything is broke in and friendly (cam lifters rocker arms pushrod tips, rings etc)

After the initial 2500+++rpm 1 hour running time remove the valve covers and start it up. watch the push rods for rotation. My have to rev it to see all spin. Any that will not spin need inspection.

Try the moly slip. This is proven 40+ year old time tested antiwear technology. Leave it in the break in oil for at least a week before changing the oil. This additive and the Zinc additive will not clog oil filters.
Leave it in.
1 hour is not enough.
For the first 1 to 2 weeks of driving, set the idle speed for 1000+ rpm at idle in neutral. Put up with the high idle speed for a full week or two until everything is friendly. Then set the idle as you like. And reinstall your high perf valve springs.

www.molyslip.com

call Comp Cams tech for warranty consideration.

Last edited by F-BIRD'88; 07-30-2010 at 12:31 AM.
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Old 07-30-2010, 05:16 AM
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Real informative post!

One thing, regarding changing oil after cam break in, my thoughts on it are to change even before one hour of run time. After the cam run-in is over, I dump the oil and filter, right then and there.

This isn't because there's metal clogging the filter, but the moly lube- mainly if it's the thick, black kind- can clog up the filtration media of an oil filter.

I don't even know what the cam makers recommend- it's just one of those things I've always done, and always will do, I suppose. Call it tradition. Or maybe superstition. lol

I should add, all the engines I build get the filter pad bypass plugged if there's one there to plug. This means all the oil tries to pass through the filter- and as a result if there's any blockage, the oil pressure drops.

Last edited by cobalt327; 07-30-2010 at 05:21 AM.
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Old 08-06-2010, 09:11 AM
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well took off intake an pulled lifter out an cam was ok but lifter was about a half inch wore off it clean throught to the oiling hole! put another lifter in a guys driving it all i know is i'll never buy a comp cam again!!!!!!
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Old 08-06-2010, 09:19 AM
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Cam was OK??? Thats unusual. On a few occasions, when the retainer clips fail, I have changed a few lifters through the dist hole rather than pulling the intake.
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rachet ralph
well took off intake an pulled lifter out an cam was ok but lifter was about a half inch wore off it clean throught to the oiling hole! put another lifter in a guys driving it all i know is i'll never buy a comp cam again!!!!!!
It will be back, and when it is both the lobe and the new lifter you just put in will be shot too. There is no way you should have reused that cam, no matter how good it looked to the naked eye. There is no way the lifter wears like that and doesn't alter the lobe it is riding on...no way, no how.

It has nothing to do with Comp Cams, it is a problem with modern oils not being formulated any more for flat tappet use. Do a search on Cam break-in and motor oil and you will find all the info you need.
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:37 PM
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I am going thru a similar battle with a customer..

Built a 355 for this guy. Basically a stock cast piston 355. He insisted on A pair of 230 runner heads. victor jr. intake and a .557 solid lifter cam. Roller rockers, etc.

I knew this was going to be a troubled engine from the start. I informed the customer that the cam was way too big for motor. He doesn't know basic maintenance of an automobile. Can't lash hydraulics, but he says he has buddies who know everything..

Picks up motor three months after it's done. Takes three weeks to get it running..

On his invoice.. It stated what cam specs were, cam has been lashed at .020", copy of cam card and box. Also stated was requirement of camshaft break in lube. Required oils and proper break in procedure..

Copies of camshaft and parts warranties(NONE OF WHICH COVER HOT ROD/RACING CAMS).

When the motor left I bet my partner that I didn't think it would last a week.. Then, of course we'd be the bad guys...

Customer gets motor running, fuel and distrib problems (actually caused by his experts improperly re-lashing the valves). Can't get it to run much over idle.

It took 20 min to wipe lobes off cam. When asked what break in lube he used? None, couldn't afford $12.00 for bottle. What oil? Wal-Mart 20-50..

Wants me to warrantee motor.. NO...Brings down his whole family.. Thought there was going to be a major riot..on and on for the past week..
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BOBCRMAN@aol.com
I am going thru a similar battle with a customer..

Built a 355 for this guy. Basically a stock cast piston 355. He insisted on A pair of 230 runner heads. victor jr. intake and a .557 solid lifter cam. Roller rockers, etc.

I knew this was going to be a troubled engine from the start. I informed the customer that the cam was way too big for motor. He doesn't know basic maintenance of an automobile. Can't lash hydraulics, but he says he has buddies who know everything..

Picks up motor three months after it's done. Takes three weeks to get it running..

On his invoice.. It stated what cam specs were, cam has been lashed at .020", copy of cam card and box. Also stated was requirement of camshaft break in lube. Required oils and proper break in procedure..

Copies of camshaft and parts warranties(NONE OF WHICH COVER HOT ROD/RACING CAMS).

When the motor left I bet my partner that I didn't think it would last a week.. Then, of course we'd be the bad guys...

Customer gets motor running, fuel and distrib problems (actually caused by his experts improperly re-lashing the valves). Can't get it to run much over idle.

It took 20 min to wipe lobes off cam. When asked what break in lube he used? None, couldn't afford $12.00 for bottle. What oil? Wal-Mart 20-50..

Wants me to warrantee motor.. NO...Brings down his whole family.. Thought there was going to be a major riot..on and on for the past week..
Oh man . What a mess . I hate dealing with people who have not a clue and then when something goes wrong , it's your fault. He could afford to have you build an engine and then has his buddies re-adjust the valves and can not afford $12.00 cam lube . GRRRRR Makes ya want to go bite a tree . (yooper by birth)
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Old 08-06-2010, 05:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BOBCRMAN@aol.com
I am going thru a similar battle with a customer..

Built a 355 for this guy. Basically a stock cast piston 355. He insisted on A pair of 230 runner heads. victor jr. intake and a .557 solid lifter cam. Roller rockers, etc.

I knew this was going to be a troubled engine from the start. I informed the customer that the cam was way too big for motor. He doesn't know basic maintenance of an automobile. Can't lash hydraulics, but he says he has buddies who know everything..

Picks up motor three months after it's done. Takes three weeks to get it running..

On his invoice.. It stated what cam specs were, cam has been lashed at .020", copy of cam card and box. Also stated was requirement of camshaft break in lube. Required oils and proper break in procedure..

Copies of camshaft and parts warranties(NONE OF WHICH COVER HOT ROD/RACING CAMS).

When the motor left I bet my partner that I didn't think it would last a week.. Then, of course we'd be the bad guys...

Customer gets motor running, fuel and distrib problems (actually caused by his experts improperly re-lashing the valves). Can't get it to run much over idle.

It took 20 min to wipe lobes off cam. When asked what break in lube he used? None, couldn't afford $12.00 for bottle. What oil? Wal-Mart 20-50..

Wants me to warrantee motor.. NO...Brings down his whole family.. Thought there was going to be a major riot..on and on for the past week..
BBC builder on another forum will not use a flat tappet cam without the customer signing a release of liability form. When the customer picks up the motor, that's the end of it. The builder has no further responsibility. He will warranty the motors he assembles with roller cams, but not flat tappet builds. Makes sense to me.
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Old 08-06-2010, 10:20 PM
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yes i know , but guy owns the car said he's going to run it till lobe is wiped off , but why he runs it , it will be trowing a rod out the side any way! runs it till valves float, told him before with last engine can't do that ! he said i dont care i'll just build another one! so we'll see if which happen's first rod or cam !! LOL!!
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