Cast iron pistons ?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2017: Cast iron pistons ?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nevada Bob Middleton on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 01:16 am:

Ok never reused a set but have an engine in the shop just been one issue after another.
Finaly got it running only find it pumps oil quite well.
Pistons appear to be .005 os ford cast iron ones.
Two questions can these be installed backwards
And what size ring only see .010 listed by the venders.
And forgot the wrist pin bolt goes on the cam side correct
Truely shame when you buy a T with a so called rebiult motor


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 02:12 am:

I like cast iron pistons. Have owned and run several Ts over the years with them. I have also always been up front about them when I sold those cars. There are good reasons for wanting aluminum pistons. But the difference between the cast iron and most aluminum pistons is smaller than most people think.
IF (there is the big IF again) the bore is good and straight? IF the pistons fit properly? They should not pump oil. They should perform well, and maybe even pull a hill slightly better than the same engine had it had aluminum pistons also properly fit.
Whether or not the cast iron piston rings can be installed upside-down or not depends upon the rings. Most of them do not have and up or down side. However, I have seen some that did. Usually an oil scraping ridge on one ring, that I think should go down, and usually is in the second groove. But again, sets and instructions vary on that.
Some cast iron ring sets do have a true oil ring. It goes on the bottom. Some of them also do have an up and down. However, the last past set I used appeared to not have a top and bottom side.

Check the bore for size, straight, oval, and egg shaped wear. It seems to be more important with cast iron pistons than with aluminum. That said, I have seen several engines with extreme wear run quite well and for a long time. Usually, they did have a reduced top speed at which blow-by and oil burning became a problem. One "throw-together temporary" T engine I ran many years ago could go all day long at 42 mph without problems. At 44 mph, it would reach a full boil in less than two miles. Slow back down to 42 mph? It would cool back down and be fine in a couple miles. The key to finding the cause of this, was the two oil filler caps that I lost when I pushed the car a bit (trying to beat sunset after a long day touring). The blow-by became so severe that the pressure just blew the caps off despite a good tight fit. The exhaust gasses blowing by the rings and pistons was also heating the engine from inside the crankcase. I knew that the bore was bad when I threw that engine together. It gave me two really good years of service until its proper replacement engine was completed (including aluminum pistons).

I hope some of all that can help you some.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Frank van Ekeren (Australia) on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 02:12 am:

Not unusual to find odd size pistons.
They once could be bought in .005 increments up to .120thou.
If your bore is still serviceable, buy .010's and file the right ring cap.
The cast iron pistons can be fitted either way but best to keep then in the way they came out if you can.
As for the rods, yes the bolt go's to the cam side.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gene Carrothers Huntington Beach on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 02:56 am:

Franks right. You can buy rings the next size larger and then simply file the ring gaps to proper fit.
Check the gap with your old rings. Bet they may be too large.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Andre Valkenaers on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 06:35 am:

I have two T's with both standard cast iron pistons. The 1922 had them as I get it. They were stuck by rust. I cleaned it out, put new ring on the pistons and it runs great for 4 years now.
The 1926 touring had aluminum pistons as I get it in 2005. Engine had no power or torque as it should be. I sleeved it standard and build 4 old cast iron pistons in it. It runs great since 2008.
For me, as it is possible, I go for the cast iron pistons. The engine was original build build with it for a reason.

In the attachment a few photos of the 1922 engine as I found it.

Good luck
Andre
Belgium


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Richard E Moore Jr. Pickwick lake Tenn. on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 06:43 pm:

Rotating mass is a good thing.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary Blake, Kansas City on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 07:06 pm:

Cast iron pistons certainly work, 15 million T's prove that. But there is nothing about them that is better than aluminum pistons. They are heavier and therefore as a reciprocating part put more load on the crank, rods and main bearings as they come to full stop and restart twice per revolution.

Iron pistons also do not transfer heat to the cylinders walls as effectively as aluminum. Back in the days of low octane fuel that was significant, as the center of the iron piston crowns was nearly glowing red on a hard working engine, contributing to spark knock.

T's made their debut with them as aluminum pistons were a long way off from being perfected and as is well understood, Henry was reluctant to change the T for anything frivolous.

Ford made the switch to AL pistons for the Model A and the industry never looked back, save an experiment with steel pistons and sleeves in the late 30's with the flathead V8. That didn't last long.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nevada Bob Middleton on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 09:27 pm:

Well went out started it ran 15 minutes all 4 plugs like this


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Gregush Portland Oregon on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 10:42 pm:

Not to argue for or against, but, the V8 runs at much higher RPM and the Model A too. The Model A was 40 HP vs the T with 20 running at 1400RPM or less. Some day I would like to put an engine together using cast iron pistons, maybe even heavy rods with valves set by piston travel. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Scott Conger on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 11:20 pm:

Mark

If you do, you will have a sweet running, slow idling car that doesn't make much speed. I have a couple of them and love 'em.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Gregush Portland Oregon on Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 11:56 pm:

My 21 still had that configuration when I got it but never really got to run it more then up and down Mom and Dad's 1/2 mile drive way.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Woods, Richmond, Texas on Wednesday, September 06, 2017 - 12:53 am:

When we tore down the 222 block that was in my Grandfather's 27 coupe (in the sixties) we found it had .031 OS Ford cast iron pistons. Why .031? I can understand increments of .010 or even .005, but .031?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Gregush Portland Oregon on Wednesday, September 06, 2017 - 01:51 am:

I think the first over size cast iron was .0025 so I guess odd sizes were not out of line.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Nevada Bob Middleton on Monday, September 11, 2017 - 12:54 am:

Finaly had free day got the buckets out ring gap is .031 at the top and .033 at the bottom.
New rings coming
Also stripped rob clamp nut was also found
So that was good thing
Supposibly this fresh rebiult motor needed

Major Valve work
Almost a full gasket set
Cam gear
Now rings
Wonder if i kick myself not going through the trans


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