Need to remove 4th rod/piston. Engine in car with 3 dip pan. Please share your advice for doing this. I understand it is a bear and there are many precautions associated with things falling into the tranny space.
I have done it. This week we replaced a fuel pump on a F350 Diesel. Think removing your #4 rod is
hard how bout 2 days for a fuel pump eh? and we have $20,000 in tooling...........
Drain the oil and stuff rags down between the pan and flywheel so if you drop a rod nut, it won't go anywhere. Beyond that, invest in good universal joint socket... the kind with the U-joint built in. When you loosen or tighten the nuts on the cap, rotate the piston around toward the top of the stroke. It makes it easier to get to.
A buddy in Ocala wrote up this hint for a 'safety plate' to fit against the flywheel. By repositioning rearward 1/2 of the crankcase reinforcement (p/n3102), the U-shaped threaded plate, it will act as a support for a safety pan made of sheet metal.
A Tip for those with a Three Dip Pan
3. Turn the crankshaft so that the fourth rod is about 1/3 of the way down from the top of it's stroke. That gives you enough room to get a wrench on the bolts and your hand on the cap.
4. Slide the rear half of the U Shaped threaded bolt backing bar to the rear...just one bolt hole, and then re-insert one bolt on each side to secure it. This results in the U shaped bar being quite close to the flywheel.
5. Here's the trick...insert a piece of light sheet metal (6" X 7"), such as a piece of flashing, into the crankcase, and allow it to lay on top of the U shaped bar. The inside the crankcase is approx 7 inches wide and the distance from the flywheel to the lower cover opening is approx 6 inches. This sheet metal can be pushed against the flywheel and will prevent almost anything from dropping into the sump!
6. With this "safety shield" in place, you can follow your normal technique, or the Ford service manual knowing that you can probably retrieve that dropped shim, nut or cotter pin, because most of us will usually drop something!
Mike -- I use a Ridgid brand ratchet from Home Depot for this task. The head on it is much smaller than other brands and makes the job easier.
Stuff rags (or try Dan's shield) to prevent small parts from going into the bottom of the crankcase. Just don't forget to remove the rags when you're finished. (I forgot one time and picked shop rag fuzz out of the tranny for days.)
When you put the rod cap back on, use self-locking nuts so you don't risk dropping a cotter pin.
It is a tedious job, but it can be done. Take your time and DON'T DROP ANYTHING!
If you put rags behind #4 and the magneto coil or flywheel, be sure to count the number of rags and be sure they are all removed before you put on the inspection plate.
I had a hard time when I tried doing it - fortunately it was only #2 and #3 that seemed to start knocking, so it wasn't necessary to take up #4, but while in there I thought it's best to check it out.. #2 and #3 had grades formed in the soft steel dippers that hindered pulling the caps without first hammering the rod bolts up with a drift punch until the dippers were free to pull. Naturally that was the case with #4 too, and with no success with any other method I had to leave #4 as it is, since access for drift punch and/or hammer was impossible.
I will think about adopting some special tool to push up the bolts this winter, getting the dipper off in any other way will probably destroy it, but that's also an alternative since they're fairly cheap.
Toughest part when I did mine back in August was getting the cotter pins out. I had to cut the loop off on the front side of the nuts and use a small punch to drive the rest of the pins through the hole in the nuts and bolts. Positioning the cap and nuts correctly by rotating the crank helped a lot.
Since I don't have a magneto, and relatively small hands, I was able to retrieve stuff that I dropped in the sump (shims, cotter pins, tools, etc.) fairly easily, once I rotated the crank so I could get my hand in there.
Another trick that can be used in places like this is the Dental Floss to hold the nut and dipper to the cap. I recently changed the rings on my '12 and with a Bill Dubats conterbalanced crank it was really fun to get it all back together because the counter weight really limits access.
Take your time and many breaks to relax your hands and also your patience.
Don't know why anyone would Not use self locking nuts like all modern cars now.
Good Luck! You CAN do it
I tried on the Speedster which has a three dip pan and a Scat crank. After a little while, I decided it would be easier to pull the motor.
Be careful on the nylon self locking nuts, the specification on McMasters states a limit of 225F
A nylon insert grips threads to resist loosening. Also known as elastic stop nuts, these can be used as a stop or a spacer for rotating parts. Nuts can be removed without damaging threads. Nylon absorbs moisture, which can cause the insert to become brittle over time in wet environments.
Inch sizes are reusable, but their holding power lessens with each use. Inserts have a maximum temperature of 225° F. Locknuts have a Class 2B thread fit.
Thanks for all of the tips. I went to my shop with a positive attitude and was able to locate the correct model t wrench that was made for reaching the 4th rod on a 3 dip pan. Placed rags, pulled the cotter keys. Remarkably I had the rod cap off in 15 minutes and the rod/piston out a few minutes later. Original bore with minimal wear and minimal taper with original rods and cast iron Pistons. #1 rod had a crack in Babbitt but all others were good. Two piece valves but wear on the lifters. Checked bore with new aluminum Pistons, standard size. Could just get a .005 feeler gauge in next to Pistons. Dean Yoder and I plan to hone and do a new valve job after I place new lifters. This is one pretty nice barn find!
I'm Forgot to mention, will be using new levels get rods with aluminum Pistons. Dean will size rods to my standard with minimal wear crank. More as this comes along..
Are self locking nuts the same as nylock nuts ????
These are the best I have found.
Bud, NO... Like Tony said there's quite a difference. Use the ones like Herm shows. Don't reuse them.
When I mentioned self-locking nuts above, I didn't mean the ones with nylon inserts. I guess I should have been more specific.
RE; "I went to my shop with a positive attitude"
THAT is the best place to be doing the 4th rod and may be half the battle. I have found doing the rods, a good attitude is the key to doing the job, that and saying a few not so nice words as needed to keep things in check. (That and installing a 4 dip pan! )
Herm, I see you're displaying your nuts right above a newspaper article about someone pulling their pants down at the airport. Coincidence right?
DAVE!! Wow that is some good eyes!
Great post and interesting article. I'm sure Herm did that on purpose. Something like that couldn't possibly be an accident!
Thanks for the heads up and a good laugh.
Take a look at aircraft lock nuts for high temp. The part number needed for a T would be MS21042-6. When fitting the rod, use standard non-locking nuts. Once you have it fit, replace with the locking style. No sense wearing out the lock nut during the trial fitting.
Those nuts can be had through Aircraft Spruce and they aren't all that much.
My good attitude turned really bad after trying for hours to work underneath the car, so like Tony, in frustration, I pulled the whole engine out of my 1920 Touring. So many other things to do on an engine, it was (and will be in the future) just easier (for me anyway) to take a couple of hours and take the engine out.
Yes, Dave, it was coincidence.
But, is there enough there for you to make a current event summary!
Inquiring minds would like to know, even if it is old news.
It could have been that he was just proud of his new duckie pictured boxer shorts.
Gary, the lock nuts I showed you can put them on, and off as many times as you want with out damage to the nuts or bolts.
Just as any bolt and nut, make sure the threads are oiled.
These are what is used on many Chevy engines.
Also they work well with dippers, and don't use Chevy bolts that many rod builders are using, as the bolt is shorter then stock Fords. If you do, something will be cheated.
Do not Torque nuts over 35 Ft. pounds.
Yes Herm. I've used those before and agree with you. I was only showing an option. The MS 21042 can be put on and taken off a zillion times as well.
You have a better handle on which hardware is good based on what you see every day. I see aircraft hardware daily. I know if you say they are good they are.
What concerns me, is some of the off shore stuff and not knowing what specs they are made to. As I said, you see it daily and I'm sure you can separate the wheat from the chaff. I'm also sure you have seen some hardware that you won't allow in the shop. Cheers.
Great info Herm, thanks.
While I don't have anything like the experience of Herm, the McMasters site indicates not to use more than 15 times.
Also known as Flexloc and split-beam nuts, these one-piece nuts have a slotted top that expands when tightened. They’re often used to secure parts in engines and suspension systems. Nuts are reusable up to 15 times. The strength of the bolt, screw, rod, or stud should match the strength of the nut to prevent damaging threads. Inch sizes have a Class 2B thread fit.