Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board - Reply to Topic -- Hot Rod Forum

Register FAQ Search Today's Posts Unanswered Posts Auto Escrow Insurance Auto Loans
Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board > Tech Help> Engine> Pontiac 400 / Oil Pump Gasket Question?
User Name
lost password?   |   register now

Thread: Pontiac 400 / Oil Pump Gasket Question? Reply to Thread
Send Trackbacks to (Separate multiple URLs with spaces) :

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name (usually not your first and last name), your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:
Please select your insurance company (Optional)


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Additional Options
Miscellaneous Options

Topic Review (Newest First)
11-05-2012 08:31 AM
Originally Posted by oneluv1979 View Post
2) what should i set idel at? I have it around 1000rpms in park but once in drive it drops to about 800rpm. Anything less and it wants to stall...
The problem is in the way the timing and distributor is set up.

The cam you have requires a good amount of initial timing. I'd start w/about 18-20 degrees initial and set the mechanical advance to give the rest, which would be somewhere around 16-18 degrees to give a total (initial plus mechanical) of 34 to 36 degrees. Be prepared to use a bit more initial if needed, and to remove the amount you added to the initial from the mechanical to keep the total where it should be.

Depending on the type of distributor you have, this can mean changing bushings (MSD) or modifying the mechanical advance itself (GM HEI).

You can use a vacuum advance, too. You might find it better to use ported vacuum for the vacuum advance when using a large amount of initial timing. Limit the vacuum advance can to give 10-12 degrees of added timing under high vacuum conditions. Do this by using an adjustable vacuum advance can or by using a simple limiter plate that you can buy or make yourself.

More info can be found here. The article was written w/the GM HEI in mind but the timing info is basically universal.

3) I have a edelbroclk 750 catb how would u suggest is the best way to set the air fuel mixture?
You can use a vacuum gauge to set the idle mixture screws to give the highest reading (keep the screws within 1/4 turn of each other). Or set them to give the highest idle speed.

It's important that the transfer slot not be over exposed before trying to set the idle mixture screws, else you'll never get it set up right. More on the carb's transition circuit can be found here.

Good luck.
11-05-2012 07:34 AM
Mr. P-Body No need for a copper gasket. Never (REPEAT: NEVER) had an oil pump gasket fail. Yes, install the gasket.

Oil pressure readings given are perfectly normal for a Pontiac.

We don't use E-carbs, so I can't help there. We use Q-Jets or AED Holleys.

11-03-2012 05:22 PM
oneluv1979 I have a couple questions also while i have you Poncho guys here.

1) should i order the copper gasket? Its only $6 and butler claims its much better...

2) what should i set idel at? I have it around 1000rpms in park but once in drive it drops to about 800rpm. Anything less and it wants to stall...

3) I have a edelbroclk 750 catb how would u suggest is the best way to set the air fuel mixture?
11-03-2012 04:48 PM
oneluv1979 Thanks for the info guys. I remember him telling me he likes to set clearances loose for drag applications and i told him it would be a street/strip motor.. He line bored it and set the crank and main bearings.
I was going to but when i checked it the clearances were so tight , i just went ahead and dropped the block and crank off to the machine shop that cut the crank. I set up the pistons and rod bearings.

Im thinking he set the clearnaces a lil loose because i said strip.
That would surely explain the pressure.
I ran it today and all is good , once it warms up im showing 20-25 @ hot idle in gear!

Originally Posted by hcompton View Post
My pnocho had 50 pound pressure at idle. 20 is to low for new engine, install the gasket. Careful to get the pump rod square away properly on install.

Larger pump should not be an issue once the new gaskets installed. Melon high volume was all i had. High pressure pumps usally require some machine work on the blocks oil passages.

Always install all the funny gaskets on pontiacs!!! Most important part of poncho build.

11-03-2012 09:36 AM
Mr. P-Body As Bill and 69 pointed out, those are perfectly normal readings for a 400 Pontiac. Added pressure in the Pontiac is counter-productive as it "heats" the oil more. The big mains in the Pontiac heat the oil enough, thank you... Wayne Hoehns (built the most powerful Buick 231s in the "Busch" days) once told me never put an oil temp guage in a circle track Pontiac or 351 Windsor (both 3" mains). "You don't wanna know..."

What MouseFink says about shops "adding" clearance is sorta true. That is, we allow engines "out the door" with more clearance than factory "tolerances" listed. Partly because of just what he says. Customers don't always end up using the engines for exactly what they say, and we have to "build in" some flexibility. We have SOME customers we "tighten things up" for because we KNOW what they're up to. But it's a common misconception that "tighter is better". As long as there's enough oil to keep the crankshaft "floating", it's all good. "Tighter" will actually add heat to the oil, too.

Aother reason engines are "looser" than original is the parts themeselves. Bearings are now designed such that, when the crank is in the "middle" of the tolerance, clearance will be near the "high lmit". Performance applications typically grind the cranks to the "low limit". That, combined with the "high limit" clearance bearings, an additional .0005-.001" OVER the high limit is seen. This is when oil pressure can degrade at low RPM.


11-03-2012 06:26 AM
MouseFink Regular production engine rebuilders and prefer to set the bearing clearances on the loose side because they do not want any "come-backs" due to wiped or spun bearings. That is because the machine shop does not know how the engine is going to be used, no matter what the car owner tells them.

Regular production rebuilt engines will have just enough oil pressure at idle to keep the lifters quiet. Most automobile owners who buy regular production rebuilt engines do not have an oil pressure gauge. The idiot light is caliibrated at the factory to illuminate at 7 lb. at 600 RPM.
11-02-2012 11:09 PM
WDCreech Rule of thumb is; 10lbs. for every 1000rpm. You figure it out!

11-02-2012 10:07 PM
oneluv1979 Yes but correct me if im wrong 15-20 @ hot idle is low?

See the thing is the machine shop told me he likes to set clearnaces loose for drag racing but i told him i will only use it as a street/drag , im wondering if he did not set the clearances loose and a higher psi would compinsate.....
11-02-2012 07:05 AM
69 widetrack
Originally Posted by WDCreech View Post
That, or we both think Pontiac!

That probably make more sense
11-02-2012 05:40 AM
Originally Posted by oneluv1979 View Post
About 850-900rpm @idle and around 50lbs at 2500rpm
Your idle pressure and pressure at 2500 rpm is totally adequate. Keep the pump you have- there is no need for the additional pressure!
11-02-2012 04:59 AM
oneluv1979 About 850-900rpm @idle and around 50lbs at 2500rpm
11-01-2012 10:21 PM
WDCreech What is your idle rpm, and what is your pressure at 2500?

11-01-2012 10:15 PM
oneluv1979 but im only getting 18/20lbs of pressure at Warm Idle.
Your telling me this will not help?
11-01-2012 10:13 PM
WDCreech That, or we both think Pontiac!

11-01-2012 09:58 PM
69 widetrack
Originally Posted by WDCreech View Post
You don't need an 80# pump unless you are running a 421, 428, or 455 block, 3.25" mains, with lots of bearing clearance. The RA IV (60#) pump is optimum for all other applications.


Hey Bill, we posted the same comment at the same time, it must be true, great minds think alike.

This thread has more than 15 replies. Click here to review the whole thread.

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:11 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 1999 - 2012. All Rights Reserved.