I have heard before that if you wrap a rod journal with newsprint and then tighten the rod on the journal with shims so that the rod doesn't turn on the journal,then remove the newsprint, you'll have the proper rod to journal clearance. (long sentence, I know!!)
What say you all???
I say use Plastigage. First use the red label stuff (0.002-0.006") to find out where you are. Remove the right amount of shims, then use the green label stuff to check that you are between 0.0015 and 0.002".
If you have more than 0.005" axial play on the crankpin, just assemble with the cap off center to take up that play.
'Tis what I do.
"Axial play"....can you say that on a family forum? Being from Southern Indiana, I assume you mean..."from side to side on the journal??"
Yes Sir - play in the thrust direction. Which, I think needs to be about zero if you want quiet connecting rods. If you are "readjusting" used rods, there will likely be wear on the thrust flanges of the babbitt. There is lots of room between the 3/8" diameter bolts and the bores in the cap so that you can do this.
I know this because I have one very long (1.530") #3 crankpin in my car's engine and could use a specially machined "wide" rod.
BTW, Ford machined it incorrectly - all four journals still measure 1.248" diameter.
I used the newspaper method to check/adjust my rod bearings. When I removed shims to the point the rod was tight, I then rechecked with plastigauge. All 4 rods were right on .001 inch!! It workes for me!
Sometimes the old boys do know a way that's tried and true