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Old 03-28-2008, 03:55 PM
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Newly fitted chevrolet SBC with no oil pressure

Hi

I have a fairly decent spec 383 stroker that was professionally built back in the UK for me. It was running fine in another vehicle, although it was rarely used during a 4 year period. It might have covered 200 miles max during that time.

Anyway, I have just imported it into the US and fitted it to another vehicle I have here. I had expected/hoped it would go in and fire right up but before I start it I wanted to make sure I had good oil pressure. I turned the engine and have no oil coming out of the oil pressure take off or into the rocker covers.

I have removed the distributor and will try to grab an oil pump priming tool in the morning but I am a little confused. The distributor was turning fine (and seated properly into the oil pump) so other than a sudden failure of the oil pump, which I doubt, is there anything else that could be the culprit?

The engine shipped from Ireland the US with the distributor out of the engine so could the oil pump shaft have come dislodged? I don't think this is likely as the distributor surely wouldn't seat properly if this had happened.

Anyway, thanks for any input you might have. This was an expensive engine and I am hoping nothing major is wrong with it.

Paul

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Old 03-28-2008, 04:15 PM
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Perhaps, prior to shipment, someone decided it would be wise to ship theengine without oil. With the oil, it might be a hazmat shipment.

Pat
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Old 03-28-2008, 04:16 PM
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You could have dropped the pick up tube off of the pump during shipping.
If it wont prime up I would drop the oil pan and check the pickup tube.
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Old 03-28-2008, 04:26 PM
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yup buy a priming rod and spin the pump and see if you get any pressure and oil to the top end.

lol make sure that it HAS oil in it and a filter on....
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Old 03-28-2008, 05:59 PM
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Like others have suggested, make sure it's full of oil and the filter is good. Look down the hole and see if the driveshaft is still in the block. It should be. An aftermarket shaft cannot come out through the top. Stock rod I believe has some kind of plastic sleeve to keep it in place too.

Get the correct priming tool and a drill. A straight shaft will NOT work for priming as the oil passage goes AROUND the dist housing. You will spin it all day long and get nothing.

this is the right one!

this POS is the WRONG one! why they sell these is beyond me, they don't work!


Mark
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Old 03-28-2008, 06:35 PM
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Thanks guys. I should have said I put a fresh oil filter on and flushed/filled it with new oil.

I will get the priming tool and see what gives. If that fails I see the oil pan coming off, painful.

Thanks again,
Paul
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Old 03-28-2008, 07:18 PM
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If you did the filter, and even if you prefilled it, you need to spin it quite a while to get pressure. I just adapt a mechanical gauge to the sender hole, if the motor is out of the car.

I'd pull the plugs and try cranking it some more. I spray a little lube in each cyl, if it sat for years.
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Old 03-28-2008, 09:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jmark
Get the correct priming tool and a drill. A straight shaft will NOT work for priming as the oil passage goes AROUND the dist housing. You will spin it all day long and get nothing.
True Mark, my trusty primer is acctualy an old points style dizzy with the cam gear ground down. Works remarkably well and the only reason that I used it was because I didnt want to have to go BUY one.

Us poor boys get by on what we have

the poor little nub on top is almost gone tho, I'm gonna have to apply something to it for a better bite.

you might try and let it crank up then if there is no pressure after a second or two SHUT IT DOWN and tear it apart to see whats wrong
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Old 03-28-2008, 10:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pcoghlan
Hi

I have a fairly decent spec 383 stroker that was professionally built back in the UK for me. It was running fine in another vehicle, although it was rarely used during a 4 year period. It might have covered 200 miles max during that time.

Anyway, I have just imported it into the US and fitted it to another vehicle I have here. I had expected/hoped it would go in and fire right up but before I start it I wanted to make sure I had good oil pressure. I turned the engine and have no oil coming out of the oil pressure take off or into the rocker covers.

I have removed the distributor and will try to grab an oil pump priming tool in the morning but I am a little confused. The distributor was turning fine (and seated properly into the oil pump) so other than a sudden failure of the oil pump, which I doubt, is there anything else that could be the culprit?

The engine shipped from Ireland the US with the distributor out of the engine so could the oil pump shaft have come dislodged? I don't think this is likely as the distributor surely wouldn't seat properly if this had happened.

Anyway, thanks for any input you might have. This was an expensive engine and I am hoping nothing major is wrong with it.

Paul
The SBC uses a short intermediate shaft between the distributor and the oil pump. If a GM part it is retained by a plastic sleeve. These are known to fall out when the distributor is removed.

Bogie
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Old 03-29-2008, 04:44 AM
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Thanks guys. The distributor is a billet MSD piece and the oil pump similarly high spec so I don't think the GM plastic piece is the culprit.

I am off to the local performance shop this morning to try to track down a primer tool. I will update later this PM.

Have a great weekend,
Paul
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Old 03-29-2008, 09:17 AM
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Well I think this is good news.

The priming tool worked a treat, oil pressure of 50 PSI showing at the gauge.

Interestingly though I didn't get oil to the rocker covers? This was with drill at full speed for 30 seconds too.

Not sure if this is something to be concerned about or not.

I think the fact I see pressure at the gauge is good so I will fire her up and check the rocker covers after a 30 second run.

Paul
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Old 03-29-2008, 10:05 AM
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I ran my half inch drill for a full minute before I saw oil at the rockers. Then I turned the crank and ran it again for a minute.
Put everything back together and started it up. 65 psi on a mechanical gage.
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Old 03-29-2008, 12:27 PM
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On a tightly build engine, it can take a minute or two to make it all the way to the rockers.
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Old 03-29-2008, 01:19 PM
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Thanks for the input, all is OK.

I ran the primer tool and after nearly two minutes got oil at the rockers.

Just timing to do and it should be fine.

Thanks again,
Paul
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Old 03-29-2008, 01:55 PM
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You did the right thing getting a priming rod and priming the motor.

Oil is the life blood of the motor and by priming it you know your oil pump is working and that the motor will be getting plenty of "blood"
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