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Old 04-20-2015, 08:44 PM
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Engine Exposed to the Elements - What To Check and Repair / Replace

Hi All,


I've made a big rookie mistake and need some assistance.


About two years ago, I was working on a Chevy 350 engine, and left it exposed to the elements. No valve covers (for a while). No intake manifold. No radiator hoses. The hood was closed at all times.


My neighbor pointed out that leaving everything that way was probably not the smartest thing to do, and I may need to pull the heads and clean everything up.


I was wondering if I do indeed need to pull the heads, and if there are other things I will need to check and inspect. Spark plugs, oil change and carb rebuild are already on the list.


I will try to take pictures of the engine's condition and post them tomorrow.


Thanks in advance!

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Old 04-20-2015, 09:35 PM
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I've seen the full range of what could happen. I've seen motors like this that suffered almost no damage. On the other hand I've seen the cylinders rust so bad that the engine seized up and had to be bored and a complete rebuild. Isthe motor locked up?
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 04-21-2015, 06:53 AM
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You might of gotten lucky by leaving the hood closed, maybe... I seen way to many engines at the local pick n pull where the hood was gone an the Carb/throttle body/air cleaner was gone also, rain water will find it way into the engine thru a few open intake/exhause valves, then sit there for months. Yours may be the same cause their were some open valves, maybe not rain water but condensation/dirt/mice... Hose the cylinders down with WD 40 thru the spark plug holes an see if it will turn over.
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Old 04-21-2015, 09:52 AM
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I'd need to know how long it was this way, and see pictures of it now. Impossible to say for sure, without more info.
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Old 04-21-2015, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tresi View Post
I've seen the full range of what could happen. I've seen motors like this that suffered almost no damage. On the other hand I've seen the cylinders rust so bad that the engine seized up and had to be bored and a complete rebuild. Isthe motor locked up?
Quote:
Originally Posted by dogwater View Post
You might of gotten lucky by leaving the hood closed, maybe... I seen way to many engines at the local pick n pull where the hood was gone an the Carb/throttle body/air cleaner was gone also, rain water will find it way into the engine thru a few open intake/exhause valves, then sit there for months. Yours may be the same cause their were some open valves, maybe not rain water but condensation/dirt/mice... Hose the cylinders down with WD 40 thru the spark plug holes an see if it will turn over.
Hey tresi and dogwater,

I did spray a liberal amount of WD-40 into the cylinders this morning and then turned the engine about a quarter turn clockwise and counter-clockwise several times. The engine just fine turned with no effort at all.




Quote:
Originally Posted by 1971BB427 View Post
I'd need to know how long it was this way, and see pictures of it now. Impossible to say for sure, without more info.
Hey BB427,
Its been sitting this way since at least May of 2013, so almost two years.


Pictures are posted below.


Top View




Driver Side




Driver Side





Passenger Side





Passenger Side




Thanks everyone!
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Old 04-21-2015, 04:52 PM
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If it was mine, I would go ahead and remove the heads. 34 bolts removed and you can be sure of the bore condition. Pull the pan also. Probably condensation collected in it.
By the way, I have the exact same Goodwrench, (hecho in mexico) 350 in my 26 T coupe. Completely stock. Not big HP, but it sure runs sweet.
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Old 04-21-2015, 08:14 PM
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Unless you have access to a borescope I would pull the heads and pan also. While your looks amazing for setting outside if you want to try your luck leaving the heads on here's what to do. At the minimum you need to assemble the rest of the valvetrain and adjust the valves. With the valves set you need to be able to rotate the crank 2 full turns clockwise. Drain the oil and if you don't get water refill the oil. Only if you can do this can you consider assembling the rest of the motor.
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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 04-21-2015, 08:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaw22w View Post
If it was mine, I would go ahead and remove the heads. 34 bolts removed and you can be sure of the bore condition. Pull the pan also. Probably condensation collected in it.
By the way, I have the exact same Goodwrench, (hecho in mexico) 350 in my 26 T coupe. Completely stock. Not big HP, but it sure runs sweet.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tresi View Post
Unless you have access to a borescope I would pull the heads and pan also. While your looks amazing for setting outside if you want to try your luck leaving the heads on here's what to do. At the minimum you need to assemble the rest of the valvetrain and adjust the valves. With the valves set you need to be able to rotate the crank 2 full turns clockwise. Drain the oil and if you don't get water refill the oil. Only if you can do this can you consider assembling the rest of the motor.
Hey guys,


Thank you for the tips.


I do have a boresope with a digital camera. I will try to take pictures of the inside and post them asap. I will also drain the oil as well. If all checks outs and everything seems safe, I will then move on to the valve train and assemble everything else after that.


Otherwise, off with the heads.
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Old 04-22-2015, 08:58 AM
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I think the bore scope is a good idea, and I'd run it in the oil pan drain plug hole also, just to see what the lower end looks like also. Not sure I wouldn't pull the heads anyway, considering head gaskets are under $20, and it's a quick check to do.
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  #10 (permalink)  
Old 04-22-2015, 09:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1971BB427 View Post
I think the bore scope is a good idea, and I'd run it in the oil pan drain plug hole also, just to see what the lower end looks like also. Not sure I wouldn't pull the heads anyway, considering head gaskets are under $20, and it's a quick check to do.
Hey BB427,

Thank you for the help and suggestion. I've only dealt with heads when headgaskets blew, and they required machining. If I am just doing a check, and everything looks ok, they can go right back on with new gaskets?
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lt1silverhawk View Post
Hey BB427,

Thank you for the help and suggestion. I've only dealt with heads when headgaskets blew, and they required machining. If I am just doing a check, and everything looks ok, they can go right back on with new gaskets?
Absolutely! Just a thorough cleaning of the mating surfaces to remove any gasket residue. Carefully, to ensure not nicking, or gouging the surfaces. Don't worry about cleaning the tops of pistons, other than loose debris. I always stuff the bores with oil dampened rags first, to prevent any debris from dropping into the piston bores. I also use a shop vac to clean everything, once it's ready to go back together. It will suck out small debris that I can't get with rags.
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:05 AM
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Couple of those leves pictured down the dist hole would certainly plug/restrict the oil pump pickup....
dave
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:08 AM
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Sorry meant LEAVES..... damn tablet typing sucks
dave
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1971BB427 View Post
Absolutely! Just a thorough cleaning of the mating surfaces to remove any gasket residue. Carefully, to ensure not nicking, or gouging the surfaces. Don't worry about cleaning the tops of pistons, other than loose debris. I always stuff the bores with oil dampened rags first, to prevent any debris from dropping into the piston bores. I also use a shop vac to clean everything, once it's ready to go back together. It will suck out small debris that I can't get with rags.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2old2fast View Post
Couple of those leves pictured down the dist hole would certainly plug/restrict the oil pump pickup....
dave
Thanks! That makes it a lot more easier on my mind lol!

I will take my time cleaning the mating surfaces as carefully as possible.

As to the leaves and debris, I am planning on using a shop vac to suck up and out as much stuff as possible. I may have to rig up a small extension for the shop vac to get down into the distributor hole. Maybe a PVC pipe or a small rubber hose.



Quote:
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Sorry meant LEAVES..... damn tablet typing sucks
dave
LOL! I knew what you meant. And I know what you mean. I spend more time retyping what I wrote because of all the mistakes. Touch screen and my fingers just don't get along.
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:32 AM
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I use a piece of 1/2" emt tubing, which has a 3/4" inside diameter. I simply wrapped the outside with duct tape until it was large enough to fit snug in my vacuum hose. Slip it in, and it gets into smaller places my 1.5" hose wont reach.
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