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  1. #1
    Shawn Ghormley is offline Stainless
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    Unhappy L Head Continental 6 engine frozen

    Anyone know the inner workings of a F 227 Continental 6 cylinder engine. It's frozen, I can rotate the cam 360, (crank gear removed)but not the crankshaft. I loosened all the connecting rod nuts, no go. It's going to be rebuilt anyway, I'll just remove the mains and drop the crank. Shawn

  2. #2
    W. Johnson's Avatar
    W. Johnson is offline Cast Iron
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    Continentals are just like any other IC engine, pistons go up & down, crankshaft goes round & round.

    You probably have at least one stuck piston. Have you pulled the head and looked at the cylinders?

    Wayne

  3. #3
    Shawn Ghormley is offline Stainless
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    The head is off. With the con rods loose at the crank I thought the crankshaft would turn some.
    All the valves go up and down but not the crank. I have the pistons soaking in fluid. I would like to figure out what stopped this motor, I'll loosen the mains tomorrow.
    Last edited by Shawn Ghormley; 07-14-2008 at 09:17 AM. Reason: spelling

  4. #4
    handsome devil is offline Hot Rolled
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    Sounds like a cool project. You are way more patient then me. I would of gotten a hardwood block and started tapping on the pistons to knock them loose. I don't recommend you follow what I would do. When I tear into an engine or compressor, I don't seem to have enough patience to let the penatrating oil do it's job. Got lucky so far, never broke a piston or even a ring, but your approach is probably way better. What is this out of? I know little of Continental motors with the exception that they were often used in stationary applications. Years ago at RR museum we had a huge V10 or V12 Continental engine that had been a generator. Luckily somebody talked them out of it before it was complete junk. It probably ran when they got it a few years earlier. Good luck. John.

  5. #5
    Shawn Ghormley is offline Stainless
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    1971 Jaeger air compressor, engine was full of oil, radiator had antifreeze in it, but its stuck.

  6. #6
    carla is offline Stainless
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    Hi, Shawn,

    Well, I've 'been there' with a number of this general class of engine, one time and another.

    Its usually not a bad job, but the engine really does have to come completely apart, to 'do it right'.

    Engines which get 'stuck' from sitting unused may have had the head gasket rust through near one cylinder, and allow coolant water into the cylinder, rusting that bore......or the bores will just develop a light coating of rust from condensation.

    Sometimes it is indeed possible to break a 'stuck' engine loose by 'brute force', oil the cylinders, spin it over awhile, and have it run.....but it won't run well, as the rings will be stuck in their grooves in the pistons.

    Its really best to have the engine out of the machine, and have it completely apart. Sometimes you'll find rust on the crankshaft and/or insert bearings pitted from water in the oil. Almost always you'll find rusted bores, which you can de-rust above the pistons, and then press out the piston/rod assemblies.

    On most of these engines, you can remove the crankshaft, and remove the rod cap bolts. Then, after de-rusting the bores above the pistons, you can try.....after a penetrating oil soak....to tap the piston/rod assemblies out with a heavy hammer, with a block of softwood interposed between hammer and rod.

    Occasionally, you may find an engine with one or more badly rust-pitted bores. Yours is unlikely to be that bad, but sometimes there's nothing for it but to sacrifice the pistons and rebore the cylinders.

    In any event, clean the block carefully.

    With the engine completely apart, clean out the drilled oil holes in the block which run to the cam and main bearings. I've worked on blocks with those oil galleries so solidly sludged up that only a long 'aircraft drill' of suitable diameter, used gently by hand (make up an adapter to put a file handle on a Jacobs or similar drill chuck) will remove the solidified sludge. Use a .22 rifle cleaning rod, rifle bore brushes, and lacquer thinner to remove all the sludge from the oil galleries. Do the same with the drilled holes in the crankshaft which feed the rod bearings.

    (some oils will degrade over time into a substance resembling tar....it can be surprisingly difficult to remove, in some areas)

    Once the engine is apart and the parts cleaned up, proceed as with any standard overhaul/rebuild procedure.

    cheers

    Carla

  7. #7
    Dave D is offline Hot Rolled
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    Hi Shawn. As you realize it takes just a riduculously small amount of surface rust on the bores and the pistons are stuck good. It's good that you flooded the cylinders with fluid, diesel or gas/oil usually works well and is relatively cheap. A slick trick if you knew which cylinder (if you were lucky enough it was only one) or with a single cylinder engine is after soaking the bore, fill it with grease, rebolt the head and weld/thread a pipe thread to an old spark plug, put a grease nipple on it and use your grease gun to push the piston out. This works after the usual wooden block/small sledge hammer approach (read as getting desperate) does not.

    As Carla says, you need to take it apart anyway if it is that stuck, your rings will be stuck etc. The good thing is these engines are pretty basic, easy to work on and you'll have a really neat compressor after. Good luck, Dave

  8. #8
    DaveKamp is offline Titanium
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    Default My technique...

    Sean-

    I've broken six engines like this free in the last three years. MY technique evolved from the soaking/grease injector techniques after having more success...

    Pull the head, get a couple'a drill-wheel brush... a plastic brush with light abrasive seems to do best, and an extension-rod to fit in in your drill. Don't use wire- it'll get snagged at the piston-bore interface point. Take that brush, and spin the brush up and down the walls with a cordless drill 'till the bores look clean enough to pass. Use a wet-dry vac to suck out all the crud. Clean up the valves, put a sucker-stick and some compound to 'em, lap 'em down 'till they make a nice seal pattern. Remove the tappets, so the valves will all stay sealed shut. Get the gasket good and clean, put a light film of grease on it, oil the bolts, and put it back into place with proper torque. (Be careful when cleaning the carbon deposits off... especially if you find white- it's lead, so don't breathe it!).

    Smash the sparkplugs... knock out all the ceramic, but keep the sleeve. Weld a short piece of 1/4" pipe to each one, thread 'em into each hole, snug 'em a bit.

    Mix up even quantities of diesel, ATF, and Acetone. Fill each cylinder... to the top.

    Make a 7-way manifold... hook up flexible hoses and couplers from the manifold to each plug pipe. Hook a hose with regulator to the last manifold fitting, dial up about 30psi, and walk away for a week.

    When you come back, pull the dipstick. Sniff for acetone... if so, that means it's getting pushed through. Relieve pressure from hose (wear goggles, in case it spits at you!), refill cylinders, set regulator to 15psi, and walk away for a week.

    Eventually, all cylinders will flow this witch-brew.

    Next... re-plumb the oil-pressure gauge/switch port to a hose into which you can pump oil. Drain the crud out'a the oilpan, leave the plug out. Put a 5-gallon bucket under the oilpan, get or make an oil-pump that'll generate about 20psi, and feed it INTO the gallery. If the distributor shaft gear also spins the oil pump, figure out a way to keep the pump from spinning. Let the pump run for an hour or two... a day... or two... expect the bucket to look pretty murky after a while. When you're ready to give it a try, put a socket on the crank and see if it'll turn. I can't say wether mine was luck, science, or good technique, but my '48 Allis Chalmers sat in a field with no lid on the stack long enough to fill with water, and was stuck-rusted-tight when I got it... took me about 20 hours' labor to break it free, and it runs. Yeah, rings are all stuck, bearings are worn, and it definately passes oil, but it won't require a hammer to disassemble when the rebuild kit arrives.

  9. #9
    Dave D is offline Hot Rolled
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    Dave, great idea. Must look a little like Dr. Frankenstein with the hoses but hey, it works. The other thing I've done but for smaller parts is using a vacuum pump and a container full of solvent (or diesel, oil/gas) to clean parts and then use oil or grease in a plastic bag to put lubricant back. You cycle the pump on and off a few times (vacuum on/release vacuum) with the part in the solvent and the solvent gets dirty fast. Change solvent as necessary. So far I've only done this with sealed bearings and smaller assemblies in a fish bowl but it works really well. You could scale it up. Your compressor intake is a good source of vacuum if you don't have a vacuum pump. Again, a great idea. Dave

  10. #10
    handsome devil is offline Hot Rolled
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    Not sure how far your going with this Shawn, I have never gone this route but if you have any concerns that there may be a crack, you can have the block boiled and checked before you go and start buying expensive rebuild parts. I always did this with heads, I know some folks did it with blocks too. Sure is nice and clean when done. I never had the luxury of concrete floors and parts tanks here at home. Now I could keep things cleaner, but my tractor engines turned out good. Does the Continental use sleaves or are the bores directly in the block? If you can get by with rings, valve job and bearings it is great. I have always been lucky there. Had to replace one sleave, the crank and bores were usually within decent specs so I got off cheaply. But I shut the motor down before it too the point where it was going to self destruct too. Good luck, John.

    PS I presume you have a ridge reamer, for when you break the pistons free.

  11. #11
    Shawn Ghormley is offline Stainless
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    Piston 1 and 5 were stuck. There unstuck now. I took the block, pistons, crank and head to the machine shop waiting for the word. No crazy wear on the bearings or crank. No sleeve inserts in bore. If the major parts are okay, I'll have the machine shop assemble a long block. I removed the radiator/oil cooler assembly what a pain. Thought I was going to have an industrial accident hoisting it off the frame. There going in for an inspection next. Anyone have a idea for a portable gantry/hoist setup. My shop doesn't have any flat "I beams" to mount steel to, not sure in there areana. I'll post picture later today. Thanks all Shawn.

  12. #12
    johnoder's Avatar
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    Anyone have a idea for a portable gantry/hoist setup
    Less than 500 miles away:

    http://houston.craigslist.org/tls/702951500.html

    John Oder

  13. #13
    handsome devil is offline Hot Rolled
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    Here is what I built and use in my shop. My ht is about 13 ft, my big hoist is 6 ton, small one I think is 1 ton or 0.5 ton can't remember. This works well and originally was going to be telescoping for ht. As it was I miscalculated and had too much ht to begin with. I also have a mounting plate and fixed casters for directly under the main post, but didn't install them. Mostly I don't need them. If I were going to pick up extreme loads I already have decided I will block the frame up off the wheels by fraction of an inch so the wheel thing is mute. With mine the crane MT is about all one can do too maneuver, two people work best. If your not going to need the beef, just go smaller dimensions and lighter steel. I had a small version of this and it worked well, not enough beef for my tastes, basically the same thing scaled down. There are probably 100 better ways too do this, this is just the way I did it. I like it for big lifts, but if you want to change a chuck in your lathe it is a bit overkill. A cherry picker boom crane would be better for some things like chucks and positioning large work. For moving machines or heavy lifts I like a gantry. Dave Kamp mentioned something about building one. I am dying too see his design. The biggest problem with the small version that I used for so long was the telescoping posts didn't go high enough. If you can make for the longest posts {highest lifting capacity} possible. Oh ya, with my newer, bigger improved model it is next too impossible to move the crane with a load on it, only with the trolley. When moving big stuff across the floor I use pipe. Cheers, John.




  14. #14
    handsome devil is offline Hot Rolled
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    Boy if someone needed that gantry crane and hoist, that is a steal for the money. A quality set up at a bargain price if you could use it. The transformer and hoist are free at this price. To me the current set up is limiting, but Shawn you should consider this. There I go again telling others how to spend there money. Sorry, John.

  15. #15
    Shawn Ghormley is offline Stainless
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    The gantry part is great, I wouldn't be able to use the motor because of the power requirements. Shawn

  16. #16
    DaveKamp is offline Titanium
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    Thumbs up I thinK...

    I think the hoist's power requirements are quite a bit less than they seem... that hoist doesn't have a whole lotta capacity, so you're lookin' at probably 2hp max... hoisting while motoring to one side.

    The transformer is more than likely big... simply because that's what he found cheap.

  17. #17
    Shawn Ghormley is offline Stainless
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    Here are some pictures of radiator and oil cooler setup, inner motor also. Dave are you saying the hoist will run from a 220v source?

  18. #18
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    Default Don't Give Up Until You KNOW it is a Lost Cause

    A general word of encouragement:

    When I was 12 yrs old, I helped my father save a GrayMarine 4-cyl 45HP flathead which a previous owner had left outside uncovered with the plugs removed. One cylinder was filled with rainwater.

    Completely dismantled the engine, cleaned everything as per Carla's post, and unstuck the pistons with penetrating oil and tapping with a well-fitted wooden block. It took two weeks of soaking to free the worst one.

    One piston needed to have its ring grooves recut at an automotive machine shop.

    The engine ran really well for five seasons after that.

    I can still remember Pop showing my 10 yr old brother and me how to scrub out the interior of the engine. He let us get our hands into it. I've been interested in mechanical things ever since.

    If it is not cracked it is probably useable if you are willing to put enough work into it.

    JRR
    P.S. The inside of yours looks about the same as that Gray did.

  19. #19
    handsome devil is offline Hot Rolled
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    SB, great story. I never had kids of my own, I borrowed them a lot, but never my own. My brother and my best friend in childhood were both mechanically inclined, by chumming with them I was introduced to a lot of cool things mechanical and steam.

    One thing I saw years ago that really stuck with me was a friends little boy. His dad and grandpa were good friends of mine. We all went to farm auctions back then and had a field day as many farmers were selling out, retiring or going to bigger more modern equip. It was sort of like this web site, to see who could come home with the most cool junk. Gramdpa was a junk man. He sold scrap, occasionally kept machinery, but usually concentrated on buying scrap. One day at Gramps farm I saw Ryan who must of been 4-5 years old at the time sitting in the gravel driveway with an elec impact wrench. He was just taking some chunk of iron apart with the impact. He had his own set of junky sockets and was covered with oil and grease. He was playing mechanic. Gramps thought it was a good education for him to learn how to take stuff apart and then put it back together. Very much like a puzzel but way more fun. I know most women and a lot of men wouldn't approve of this, even 25 years ago when this happened a lot of folks wouldn't. I thought it was great. Farm kids have such an advantage in many ways over city kids that don't get exposed to much mechanical experiences. Later on when I worked with kids that grew up on farms I could see the drastic differences in work ethics and the willingness to just plain work. Anyway, Ryan grew up to be a cop, not sure what he is doing today, but I bet he changes his own oil! Cheers, John.

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