Originally Posted by small block marine
I purchased a new oil pump and the shaft for my sbc 350. I'm using an ARP high performance oil pump shaft and want to verify that it does not lock into place before I put my pan back on. The factory one has the plastic sleeve and this one is metal.
The GM intermediate shaft isn't designed to be locked into place in the sense that Fords are if you remember to put the spring washer on the hex shaft.
Whatever hold you get on the Chevy is one of luck, so if your's fits a bit loose, you don't want to turn the engine upside down without a distributor in it to hold the shaft positively in place. An assembly trick is to coat the inside of the sleeve with fiber style wheel bearing grease, it's sticky stuff and usually provides enough goo to hold the parts together if the engine gets flipped over during assembly without anything to clamp the intermediate shaft positively in place. However, if it falls out and the intake is not in place it's no biggie as it will reinstall from the valley side.
The steel sleeve is goodness as it doesn't get hard over time and crack away leaving the intermediate shaft without a supporting connection.