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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was wondering if any of you guys are running the Morel #5372 roller lifters on your roller cams? And what you thought of them?
I have a set in my recently rebuilt SBC 355. They are pretty noisy. There is one in particular that taps pretty good. I'm hard of hearing and I can hear it plainly. It has been like that since first startup. Bugs the crap out of me.
Well, this morning I decided to see if I could do something about it. I took each rocker arm and pushrod out and inspected everything thoroughly. Everything good. There is a calculation in the instructions for setting preload on those lifters. With my 7/16" studs, it comes to 5/8 turn preload. That is what I have been running. I decided to try 1/4 turn of preload. It would barely run, and the lifters were clattering like crazy. I have run 1/4 turn on a lot of other lifters on different cams and not had a problem, but it won't work with these 5372's. So I decided to try a slightly tighter 3/4 turn preload than the recommended 5/8. Hey! That got rid of about 75-80% of the noise!. 1/8 turn more than I had been running made a big difference. I swear it even ran a little stronger. Now I'm wondering if another 1/8 turn would finish quieting the lifters. I have never had to set hydraulic lifters tighter than 3/4. I'm not sure of the effect of tightening the lifter that much. Are there any negative consequences to tightening up the preload a little. I wouldn't think you would run into any problems unless you started bottoming the plunger. But I'm not real sure about that.
What ya think?
 

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Yeah, no problems until you bottom out the plunger.

Used to be a circle track trick to run flat hydro lifters just a hair off of bottomed out, so that oil aeration or lack of time to refill caused them to collapse and the engine wouldn't lose a ton of power.
Problem comes if you run it that way into valve float and the lifter pumps up, valves get held off the seat a lot farther and risk getting struck by the piston and bent during overlap.
 

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I run a set of Morel tie bar hydraulic roller lifters in my Dart SHP small chevy block, and I paid like almost $900 bucks for mine several years back and mine has the .750 wheel size on them and I can say that my lifters are very noisy and for my studs which are 7/16 size and with the threads and stuff and according to my instructions it said to go about 3/4 to 1 full turn. I set mine at 3/4 of a turn and when you first start it up it makes a lot of racket and some more so then others but after it warms up its not as bad but I don't care about the noise as long as I know they are working right and there are no problems then I am fine with mine. I think its been three years now and have been pleased with them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah, no problems until you bottom out the plunger.

Used to be a circle track trick to run flat hydro lifters just a hair off of bottomed out, so that oil aeration or lack of time to refill caused them to collapse and the engine wouldn't lose a ton of power.
Problem comes if you run it that way into valve float and the lifter pumps up, valves get held off the seat a lot farther and risk getting struck by the piston and bent during overlap.
Thanks ericnova72. I didn't think it would hurt anything, but I didn't want to start tagging valves. I highly doubt that this engine will ever see valve float

Aren't hydraulics supposed to be run at 1/2 of plunger travel or thereabouts ?
Yeah, that is what I had always read and thought. Finding out that is not always the case.

I run a set of Morel tie bar hydraulic roller lifters in my Dart SHP small chevy block, and I paid like almost $900 bucks for mine several years back and mine has the .750 wheel size on them and I can say that my lifters are very noisy and for my studs which are 7/16 size and with the threads and stuff and according to my instructions it said to go about 3/4 to 1 full turn. I set mine at 3/4 of a turn and when you first start it up it makes a lot of racket and some more so then others but after it warms up its not as bad but I don't care about the noise as long as I know they are working right and there are no problems then I am fine with mine. I think its been three years now and have been pleased with them.
I have a set of the Morel #4602 hi rpm roller lifters in my 383 in my roadster. They were almost $800, but I know for a fact that they will turn 7000+. They have the .750 wheel. They are noisy as hell.
They also set to 3/4 turn preload. According to Straub the #5372's also have the .750 wheel. I didn't measure it.
I don't mind the noise in my roadster. It is a loud, obnoxious, in your face, scares women and children kind of hotrod. My coupe has an entirely different flavor Quiet mufflers, about half the horsepower, old man kind of car. It has a little bit of bark to it, but not like the roadster. The tappet noise just bothers me in that car.
 

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I would contact Morel and ask them how much travel your lifters plunger has? Here is something else to consider. A person with a 3/8-24 thread stud will move 1/24 of an inch when tightened one full turn. A person with a 7/16-20 thread will move 1/20 of an inch with one full turn. 1/24=.0416 1/20=.0500

So when a lifter manufacturer tells everyone that they should use say 1/2 of a turn, there is already a .005 difference depending on the stud being used. Then that is amplified by the distance from the adjuster pivot point to the pushrod. Again, I would contact the manufacturer and ask what the total travel of the plunger is and then experiment some more. Hydraulic lifters should not be noisy in a mild street engine. One other thing to consider is whether the studs themselves may be flexing. Had a fellow on another site who chased a problem and when he added some stud girdles, everything was solved.
 

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Not sure what the difference between yours and the 5285 I got. But when I did the math with a 7/16 stud 5/8 of a turn is what I came up with for preload on mine. I called Chris Straub, and he said I could go up to 1 and 1/4 turns with mine. I just readjusted them the other day and went from a 5/8 of a turn to 7/8 of a turn. They are nice and quiet now, and it almost seems like I picked up some power.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Not sure what the difference between yours and the 5285 I got. But when I did the math with a 7/16 stud 5/8 of a turn is what I came up with for preload on mine. I called Chris Straub, and he said I could go up to 1 and 1/4 turns with mine. I just readjusted them the other day and went from a 5/8 of a turn to 7/8 of a turn. They are nice and quiet now, and it almost seems like I picked up some power.
Yep! I just got back from the test drive after tightening up the preload to 7/8 turn. That got probably 90% of the noise. And I thought exactly the same thing with the power. It felt a little stronger.
The instructions for the Morels say to run nothing heavier than 15w40 with their roller lifters. But they also note that with their high rpm roller lifters to use 5w30. I have been running 5w30 in my 383 with no problems (hi rpm lifters) and 10w30 in the engine we are talking about. I'm thinking about trying 5w30 in this engine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I would contact Morel and ask them how much travel your lifters plunger has? Here is something else to consider. A person with a 3/8-24 thread stud will move 1/24 of an inch when tightened one full turn. A person with a 7/16-20 thread will move 1/20 of an inch with one full turn. 1/24=.0416 1/20=.0500

So when a lifter manufacturer tells everyone that they should use say 1/2 of a turn, there is already a .005 difference depending on the stud being used. Then that is amplified by the distance from the adjuster pivot point to the pushrod. Again, I would contact the manufacturer and ask what the total travel of the plunger is and then experiment some more. Hydraulic lifters should not be noisy in a mild street engine. One other thing to consider is whether the studs themselves may be flexing. Had a fellow on another site who chased a problem and when he added some stud girdles, everything was solved.
The calculation from Morel uses stud size/thread pitch to calculate preload and even gives different specs for different combinations of aluminum and steel heads and blocks. Something else to consider is if you move the nut down .050" you are actually moving the pushrod contact point down farther than that due to the distance from the fulcrum, or the valve tip in this case. (Too lazy to work out the math.) So if you are trying to figure out where your preload puts you in the range of the plunger, this also has to be taken into account.
I think the fella you are talking about with the stud girdle is montana1 on this board. I know him pretty well. He pinstriped my roadster. He was running 3/8" studs and fixed it with a girdle. I never run 3/8" studs in anything. I actually have a stud girdle for this engine, but I think they are a huge pain in the butt and not necessary in this case. My experience is with solids and girdles. You get your valves all set, then put the girdle on and all your settings have gone to .... heck. But I would probably have that girdle on except I had to use short valve covers due to clearance issues. :)
 

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Other factors that can play into valve train noise is what style of camshaft your using and also how fast the ramp rate is. I have used the GM oem hydraulic roller lifters with the spider tray and I still have the sound of it being like a sewing machine and some slight clatter while running but would quiet down after warmed up.

I run 10w40 oil in my builds and the only engine I had that was quiet was a stock vortec 350 and that was it. Everything I have had with the aftermarket stuff regardless of brand of lifters used, with a fast ramp camshaft like the lunati voodoo or my custom grinds I have gotten from Mike Jones camshafts, they have along with my full roller rocker arms and aluminum valve covers have always made noise and everything was fine and no stud flexing issues.

You can do a search history and you will hear of folks complaining about using the comp xtreme energy cams and how they make a lot of noise and stuff. The faster ramp rates will make things clatter and with full roller rocker arms it just adds to it. I have even heard a few stock GM small block builds with the oem roller setup make a tiny bit of noise but nothing like the aftermarket stuff does for setup wise. It varies to one person to another if it is considered to loud or not much at all. For me its not that much and when I am cruising I can't even hear it then.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yes, I think the aluminum valve covers act like a speaker box and amplify valve train noise. And the roller rockers probably don't help either. My cam has pretty long ramps so I don't think that is where the noise is. The car this is in has the quietest mufflers of any car with a hot rod motor I have ever had. That probably is making it a lot more noticeable to me. I know when I'm driving, my ear is always tuned to the engine. Especially if I built the engine.
Now that I have tightened up the preload the noise is at acceptable levels, but could be improved. To this end I think I will try the 5w30 on the next oil change.
 

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Hey Jim,
Montana here. Have you read the article on my experience with MORELS in my 389" SBC?

Here's the link:

Here's another one where I commented on MORELS:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hey Jim,
Montana here. Have you read the article on my experience with MORELS in my 389" SBC?

Here's the link:

Here's another one where I commented on MORELS:
Thanks Montana. I remember reading both of those threads now that you reminded me. I read them again anyway. It appears that we both experienced the same thing with the #5372 lifters needing more than the recommended preload. I'm fairly happy with them now.
 
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