So has anyone chosen NOT to rebuild their motor? - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
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Old 03-10-2005, 10:01 AM
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So has anyone chosen NOT to rebuild their motor?

Some cars are parked for various reasons that have nothing to do with the internal condition of the long block. Just curious if anyone ever just runs the motor without rebuilding it. I'm talking really old cars though. Say 40 years and older. It seems like people are so quick to just yank a motor and rebuild it. Sometimes this alone becomes so over whelming that the car never gets back together. I've seen many cars at swap meets 50 years and even older that ran as smooth as new and were never rebuilt. I would at least replace leaky gaskets and valve seals and put in a carb kit.
Personally, if I were on a budget and the motor ran solid, I wouldn't care how old it is. Modern oils offer a lot more protection than 50 years ago. I say, drive it till its truly needing a rebuild.

Just curious what is the oldest, non rebuilt motor you have seen that is actually driven somewhat regular.

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Old 03-10-2005, 11:12 AM
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my brother has a 39 dodge car w/the stock flathead 6 in it. it had about 80,000 on it when he got it & drove it back forth to work (50miles each way)for about a year w/o a single problem other then running out of gas , the gauge is broke & he 4got to write his mileage down. other then changing the oil & adjusting the brakes he hasnt had a bit of problems w/it & its still running strong......joe
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Old 03-10-2005, 11:40 AM
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The older engines are not built as tight (or as flimsy) as these newer ones, so they can be pretty worn and not smoke, blow head gaskets or warp heads and so on.

I just threw the dice on a 89 Ford Probe (junker), by putting a $40 head gasket on a worn engine with a warped head. It runs, but has low compression and water is mixing with oil and visa versa, but it is much better now that it's not a lawn ornament, and that it's worth more than the $50 a junkyard would give. So in the end it worked out.
But it's best not to cut corners if there is a chance it could come back and bite you in the butt. IMO
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Old 03-10-2005, 11:54 AM
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Not 50 years old, but my plan is to run a bone stock 351 out of the 1981 F-150 donor truck in my rat project without touching a thing on the motor except new valve cover gaskets. I haven't even cranked it over yet, but when the time comes, if it runs, thats as much as I'll do to the motor. Actually, when we built these things back in the 50's and 60's, a LOT of hot rods didn't have speed parts or overhauls. Transplanting a stock V8, even a tired one, was about all the power you could handle with a model A or model T light weight chassis. So I'm just claiming it's "period correct" to run a weezy engine.

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Old 03-10-2005, 12:53 PM
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refresh

The 454 in the Lemans pictured in my Avatar is a refresh not a rebuild. It is a 1975, 454, std bore.

The heads are 1968, 427, 100.9cc heads. Which I understand to be quite rare and are 37 yrs old.
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Old 03-10-2005, 01:10 PM
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I have an original 1962 impala with a 283 thats all original and has only had new gaskets and a few minor exterior engine components installed and it runs likes its brand new. but it also only has 86,013 miles
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Old 03-10-2005, 01:18 PM
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I will be running my 1959 Zephyr with 108000 miles on it without a rebuild, may do seals though but it runs like a top even with 3 year old gas and a sticky carb. The 351W out of a 1979 econoline thats goin into my t-bird will probabally get pulled apart and a gasket set but nothings being replaced internally. I'm not worried
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Old 03-10-2005, 10:16 PM
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I got my '90 5.0 from a salvage yard for $200. They said it was a core that needed a rebuild. Teh cylinder walls were in great condition so I paid the cash brought it home. When I got it back I pulled the rod and main caps off. It was a fresh rebuild. All the bearings looked barely broken in. All I did was clean it up, retorque everything, and run it.

I know it isn't 40 years old, but it still fits your logic.
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