Before anyone thinks I am complaining that it took FOREVER for spring to arrive, rest assured, I am grateful. I'm also reminded by the "shared memories" of Facebook that it hasn't been that uncommon to have snow after or on Easter weekend in the past decade. At least spring appears to be here for good and we can cancel the arrest warrant for the Groundhog. He was wanted for fraud.
I got my FlyCorvair.com engine dis-assembly DVD this past week and watched it as a starting point for assessing the 140hp core.
It was a gorgeous afternoon today and I took the opportunity to pull out the engine stand I purchased with the two core motors:
With Brenda's help, we lifted the 140hp core up onto the mount. This gave me the chance to have a better all-around look at it. I placed it in a spot where the sun this morning would warm any oil inside with a plan to drain it this afternoon:
First step after letting the warm, beaming sunshine do it's thing, grab a wrench and bucket to remove the oil drain plug and catch any old oil that might be sitting in the oil pan:
I removed the oil drain plug and.... it's dry? I would have thought there would be some oil there, but even the threads on the bolt are dry.
I grabbed a 3/4 inch socket and ratchet and tried turning the crank at the harmonic balancer. It didn't seem as it is tightening at all. Watching the cam gear and crankshaft at the other end, they remained dead still..... hmmm. Maybe the engine is seized? No oil so it wouldn't surprise me. Weird that the harmonic balancer bolt just keeps turning. Must mean that whatever the bolt is threaded into is turning inside the oil cover.
This engine core already has the distributor removed. I looked down the distributor hole as I was turning the harmonic balancer bolt and I can see daylight?:
So... the daylight means something is missing on the other side.... namely the oil pump gears and associated cover:
That explains two things. The lack of oil in the pan (the oil pump gears are close to being the lowest part of the engine) and the crank not turning as I suspect the crank is seized (possibly bad news for taking apart the pistons and cylinders).
With the concerns I have with the 110hp core studs being damaged and snapped off, the other place I wanted to have a better look at was the studs on this motor, hoping to use this block instead. Sadly, it looks like someone previous tried to remove the studs, but at least they are complete and not broken. Hopefully they pass the torque test. If they pass, great. If not I'll replace them and use this block. Some look like they have been partially backed out from the block (not preferable) and one is completely out of the block. Thankfully all of them seem to have good threads and are clean:
Next thing I wanted to have a look at is the rocker arms under the covers. Oddly, the hold down clips are missing on the rocker covers and 1 of the 4 bolts is a different size.
My next hint that things aren't as they seemed was that the rocker cover I removed came off very easily. I started to get the picture that they had been removed already and put back by the previous owner:
Once the cover was off I got my first good look at the valve train. It became immediately obvious that there are some key pieces missing (the ones I found earlier in my inventory - now I know where they came from!). The rocker arms are loose enough to spin around their studs:
The pushrods are missing....
....and so are the valves, as evidenced by the empty valve guides, missing valve springs and keepers:
This is the final clue that tells me the heads have been previously removed. There is no way to remove a valve from the head without removing the head from the block. The valve's shape only allows it to come out from the combustion side of the head, therefore, this head (and likely the other one) have been removed previously. I have a bunch of valves, springs and retainers in my inventory. Guess I know where they came from! It also explains at least in part the lack of oil and the surface rust on the rocker arms (which will be replaced).
That these heads have been off previously this is good news. This should mean dis-assembly will be easier when I'm ready. In preparation, I've soaked the upper side head nuts on both sides in PB Blaster penetrating oil. I continue to soak them for several days before turning a wrench on them. If I'm careful I should be able to get the heads and cylinders off and have a good block to work with in my conversion.
That should be easier than fixing the 3 broken studs in my other core block. At least I have some options.
Time until takeoff
Husband, father and 911 dispatcher. Long time pilot with a licence that burns a hole in my pocket where my student loan money used to be. First time aircraft builder. Looking to fly my own airplane.