atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#1651: Seized.

Note to self: in the future, when storing an engine, put several squirts of oil into the cylinders and turn it over a few times, then place the entire engine inside a plastic bag.

Today I got the spare engine up on the engine stand so I could take care of some things that need taking care of before the thing goes into the red car. While I was out at the hardware store buying the required nuts and bolts, I stopped at Advance Auto and ordered the clutch kit.

The oil pan gasket leaks. I removed it and it turns out the thing uses an O-ring, so there's nothing I can really do about it except to make sure that I re-torque the pan bolts correctly.

I wanted to check some other things, like the timing belt and such. And I wanted to clean and detail the engine a bit. All of this is much easier when the engine is up at waist height rather than sitting on the floor.

Anyway, so I pulled the spark plugs and tried turning the crank, and it ABSOLUTELY WOULD NOT MOVE.

I said many bad words.

I put my 15" Craftsman breaker bar between the flywheel bolts and hung off it. The damn thing was bending and still the crank WOULD. NOT. TURN.

I said many more bad words. I was repeating myself a lot.

I grabbed a hunk of wood and the BFH and--using the wood as a drift--applied BFH to a connecting rod. The wood split.

I didn't want to use steel; I have this brass shaft collar which is meant to take a 1.5" shaft, and which I use as a drift, but of course I couldn't fricking find the goddamned thing. I ended up taking 20 minutes to disassemble the pile that was my workbench and learned that it was nowhere near there. It wasn't in the toolbox.

Turns out it was in a cat litter box on the other side of the garage, for reasons which are beyond my comprehension. It should have been on the bench; why the F-ING F S F P F HELL iI put it in that box...never mind.

Applied drift to connecting rod, applied BFH to drift, and I had to pound the damn thing to unstick the pistons.

End result: the "simple" engine swap I had been planning now includes removing the cylinder head, honing the cylinders, and installing new piston rings. And bottom end bearings because I have no idea WTF hitting the connecting rods may have done to the babbits, which are made of soft material for obvious reasons.

(I tried to limit the application of force to the connecting rod bolts, but God knows how good a job I did of that. Replacing the bearings is cheap insurance.)

None of this is really all that difficult; mainly it's just making the engine swap more expensive and time-consuming. I'm going to have to buy a new head gasket, new cylinder head bolts--these are "torque-to-yield" which can only be used once--new bottom-end bearings, and new piston rings. For tools I'm going to need a bottle-brush hone of the right size, a piston ring compressor (to install the pistons into the cylinders), and possibly a torque/angle gauge. I may buy a new torque wrench to ensure I get the right torque on the cylinder head bolts, too; I have no idea how well-calibrated my present unit is.

All of this could have been avoided if I had only stored the damn engine correctly. Well, live and learn, right?
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