Short trips

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2018: Short trips
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 - 04:30 pm:

I noticed some water in the oil in my T. I have already removed the head and dropped it off to be resurfaced. Then I started thinking about my driving habits lately. On a typical day I crank the car and move it outside in the morning. Then sometime around mid-day I drive it for about a mile, then it sits for 3 or 4 hours until I crank it again and move it back into the garage. I probably am getting a lot of condensation in the engine. I drained the coolant before I removed the head but still poured a lot of coolant into the cylinders when I broke the seal between block and head. So now there is more coolant in the oil. I planned to change the oil before starting it again How can I tell if the problem is condensation, and not a crack somewhere? Where will condensation show up first? In the oil fill area maybe? Inside the starter drive cover? thanks


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Gregush Portland Oregon on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 - 07:45 pm:

Mostly it just condensation. Where I live and store my car it is just something I live with. You should NOT just start the car and move it, it needs to be brought up to op temp to even have a chance to burn the condensation off the inside. I see mine in the oil fill but have popped the inspection plate off the transmission and saw lot there. I did a pressure check on the block and could not find any internal cracks. Water is a by product of the engine running esp when the engine is cold.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By George Barclay in west Michigan on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 - 08:25 pm:

When you say coolent do you mean antifreeze, if so it won't separate from the water. So if you have clear water in the crankcase it's condensation. Hope that helps. George


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 - 08:40 pm:

Every time you run an engine, the air inside becomes hot, and expands. When the engine cools, the air inside cools, and contracts, sucking in fresh air, and the humidity it carries with it, inside. Things get cold at night, and that humidity condenses on the exposed metal surfaces, then runs down into the oil. The engine has to run long enough for the oil to get over water-boiling temperature to literally boil the water out as steam vapor in order to "cleanse" the oil of condensed water.
Too many short runs will contaminate the oil fairly quickly.

A similar process occurs if an engine doesn't run at all. Ambient temperatures cause the air to expand and contract slightly every night and day. It is slower, but over several years can "breath" in enough water to condense and run to the bottom of the oil pan. I have drained nearly a quart of water out of engines that sat in indoor storage for a few decades. This same process is part of why the Babbett washers in the rear end can fail with age. The water forms a mild acid and contaminates the soft metals in the Babbett resulting in them becoming weak and brittle.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 - 08:42 pm:

George B's comment is a good one. Excellent diagnostic.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 - 09:06 pm:

Thanks all. George, I see no clear water or green antifreeze in the engine or trans. I'm running a 50/50 mix. All I see, besides clean oil, is the milky water and oil substance.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By George Barclay in west Michigan on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 - 11:07 pm:

The white gunk is a harder to tell what it is. I guess you will have to bite the bullet and take it for longer rides and see if that helps.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Whelihan Danbury, WI on Thursday, January 04, 2018 - 05:49 am:

Tommy, one of the byproducts of of fuel as it is being combusted in the four stroke engine is H20. Normally in our other vehicles that is vented out by a positive crankcase ventilator (PCV) valve, or turbo oil separator. Since the stock Model T doesn't have either of these systems it has to rely on extended operation at temp to vaporize the moisture and vent it from the engine out of the crankcase openings and oil filler cap. If that doesn't happen, the moisture tends to emulsify with the oil creating a light chocolate or even milky colored mess. That's just normal. Some of the white gunk George mentions is just more water/oil mix that seems to build up around vented engine areas that are cooler. You can run it log enough to remove some of the moisture, but once oil has become contaminated its best to change it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Stroud on Thursday, January 04, 2018 - 06:46 am:

I agree with what Kevin W. says. Kind of off topic, but relevant. I just saw a reporter on TV yesterday that said that according to the "expert" mechanics, it is very harmful to start your car in cold weather and let it warm up before you drive it. According to the "experts", the engine won't warm up until you drive your car for 10 or 15 minutes.(?) I wonder what thermostats are for? Also, the oil won't circulate while it is idling(?) which leads to premature wear. Do these new engines not have oil pumps? I wonder how many people believe that hogwash? Unbelievable!!! Dave


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry & Sharon Miller, Westminster, CO on Thursday, January 04, 2018 - 08:18 am:

I agree with David, HOGWASH.

What I do know, is in line with Kevin's comments but I will take it one step farther. You need to run you vehicle at operating temperature for at least 10 minutes, not only to drive the moisture out of the engine but also the exhaust system. The H2O from combustion condenses in the exhaust system and usually gathers in the muffler since it is the largest mass of metal and the last to come up to temperature, in the exhaust system. That's why many mufflers have a small drain hole in them. Once up to temperature, all of the moisture that can be carried/driven out will have been removed.

I have witnessed this in my parent's car which was on driven on very short trips to the store, never for more than 10 or so minutes. The muffler literally rusted into pieces. Letting the car warm up and/or driving for more than 10 minutes can do wonders for your exhaust system. I have a '99 Chevy P/U with 170K miles and not one rust spot anywhere.

Good Luck,
Terry


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Lew Morrill on Thursday, January 04, 2018 - 09:54 am:

you can purchase a dye to add to your coolant that is florescent. I got a bottle at Advance Auto parts. An ultra violet flashlight (including batteries!) can be had off the internet for about $6. Add the appropriate amount of dye to the radiator (it may only require an ounce or two) Then next time you drop the oil or have the access cover off the hogs head all you will need to do is shine your black light on the drained fluid or inside the transmission. No glow, it's just condensation. It will glow if there is fluid from the cooling system getting mixed in the oil. This is a common diagnostic practice with diesel engines and I have done it many times. Effective and low cost.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Thursday, January 04, 2018 - 09:38 pm:

I got my head back today, from the machine shop. I'm thinking about pressure testing my engine before I run it again. I'm thinking about making block-off plates for the inlet and outlets. Maybe a filler valve in one, to put in air, and a pressure gauge in the other. My block still has some water/coolant in it. Do I want to finish draining it or should I top it off before putting in the air? How much air should I put in? How much leakage should I expect?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Thursday, January 04, 2018 - 09:56 pm:

If you have a car with the one piece valve cover, you cannot pressure test the crankcase because the air will blow out around the throttle rod which goes through both the block and the valve cover. You might be able to pressure test the water jacket and head gasket by blocking off the intake and out pipes. If you do so, remove the valve covers and look for leaks in the block above the valve cover. That is an area prone to cracking. You can also do a "blow down test by removing the spark plugs and bring the piston to the top on the compression stroke which will close both valves. Then with a tire valve inserted into the base of a spark plug, or a special plug with a valve stem put about 50 psi in the cylinder. if air leaks into the manifold either the exhaust valve leaks or if into the intake manifold the intake valve leaks. It is normal for some air to leak past the rings but in that case very little if you have good rings. If bubbles come out the radiator, you have a leak into the water jacket.

I agree with the others especially if you have a cold humid climate, there will be condensation. Driving the car for a while after it is completely warmed up will boil off that water.
Norm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Thursday, January 04, 2018 - 11:06 pm:

Ain't life great! The advice that I'm getting is drive my Model T more!!! At least that's what I'm getting and I'm sticking to it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Saturday, January 06, 2018 - 11:51 am:


I'm preparing to put the head back on my '21. I'm glad that I ran a bottoming tap in the head bolt holes. I got a glob of junk out of every hole the first time in. I don't know how much was cut off of the head. I hope the bolts don't bottom out.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry & Sharon Miller, Westminster, CO on Saturday, January 06, 2018 - 12:32 pm:

Tommy,

Lay all your head bolts side by side and find the shortest one. Thread that shortest one into EACH of the head bolt holes, finger tight, and accurately measure from the top of the block to the underside of the bolt head. Write them all down to find the smallest measurement-shortest bolt & shallowest hole combination. Then measure through one of the bolt holes in the head. This should give you the height of the head.

Then compare the head height to the bolt measurement. Now you'll know.

It is generally accepted, you should grind all the bolts to the same length as the shortest bolt. That way, you can put any bolt in any hole and not worry about bottoming out based on using that specific head.

Good Luck,


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Saturday, January 06, 2018 - 06:09 pm:

I now have everything cleaned and ready for reassembly. There are some very small pits in the block between the end holes and the front and rear cylinders. I read somewhere that someone used JB Weld to fill the pits. Would you?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Noonan - Norton, MA. on Saturday, January 06, 2018 - 06:19 pm:

Tommy, i wouldn't bother if its minor pitting. Coat the gasket with copper gasket sealer a couple times, and you should be good to go.

https://permatex.com/products/gasketing/gasket-sealants/permatex-copper-spray-a- gasket-hi-temp-sealant/


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Wayne Sheldon, Grass Valley, CA on Sunday, January 07, 2018 - 04:30 am:

Tommy C, You say you ran a "bottoming tap" down each bolthole. But the tap in your photo is a "plug tap".
A "taper tap" (or tapered tap) has much longer taper than the one you show. The bottoming tap has basically full threads the full length.
If you cut new threads in an uncut hole, and that hole is drilled and expected to be threaded all the way through? (And is no more than maybe 3/4 inch?) All you need is a standard (long) taper tap. Run it all the way through, the long taper cuts the threads slow and gently (less likely to break the tap in the hole, can be a really difficult fix!). Put another way, the (long) taper cuts each thread a little bit with each turn. The long taper also cuts nicer and cleaner threads which in turn will hold better and last longer.
However. IF you have a "blind" hole, one that does NOT go all the way through? And need it threaded? (Like the block for the head-bolts.) Then, the better way, is to run the (long) taper tap all the way down first. It gently cuts the threads as far as it can. Then, you follow with the plug tap. It should complete the threads all except the last half or so an inch. Using the pre-cut from the taper tap, it should go fairly easily. After that, then you use the bottoming tap. This one should only cut that last half inch of threads. And they usually go hard. Be gentle! This is the one that is most likely to break in the hole.

For cleaning threads in a blind hole. IF (that big IF again) you have reason to believe the hole is not gummed up or filled with crud? A bottoming tap alone should be okay. If there may be gunk in the hole? It often works best to run a plug tap down first. A bottoming tap can (I have had this happen a few times!) push the crud down, and actually pack it tightly into the bottom of the hole.
I sometimes scrape the bottom of the hole with a small screwdriver first to clean it out some, and loosen any junk down there. If a lot of gunk comes out on the screwdriver? Then the plug tap is still advisable as a bottoming tap could still push enough out of the threads to restrict the bottom.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Sunday, January 07, 2018 - 05:54 am:

Wayne, thanks for pointing that out. I will have to check my taps. I must have more than one 7/16x14 tap in my box. I probably have 3, actually. I may have switched back and forth between two when cleaning the threads. My tap and die set is older than I am (meaning 60+) except for the ones I have broken and replaced over the years. I did dig around in the holes with a screwdriver before and after using the tap/taps. I went over the bolt holes several times, blowing them out with my air hose, wearing safety glasses, of course. I also ran a die over the threads on the bolts after cleaning them on my bench grinder with the wire wheel brush. I want everything as clean as I can possibly get them. When the time finally comes to install the head bolts should I lube the threads or install them clean and dry? Thanks


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Stroud on Sunday, January 07, 2018 - 07:16 am:

Tommy, Wayne is spot on about the taps. One thing to mention is a bottom tap can be made very easily from a broken taper or plug tap by just grinding it as needed.

Dave


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Sunday, January 28, 2018 - 10:11 pm:

I have driven our T a few times since getting the head back on. I didn't put stop-leak in. I just checked and found evidence of water/coolant mixed with oil in the oil filler, under the cap. There was no sign of water/coolant behind the side covers on the engine. Why would it show up under the filler cap and not behind the side covers?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Sunday, January 28, 2018 - 10:37 pm:

What did you use on the head gasket when you installed it?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry & Sharon Miller, Westminster, CO on Monday, January 29, 2018 - 07:49 am:

Tommy,

It showed up on the inside of the filler cap due to the cap being the coolest item exposed to the oil pan. The coolant/water has been vaporized by the heat of the oil & engine then condensed on the cool sheet metal of the cover. It then will drip back down into the oil. I'm pretty sure you will find some coolant in the bottom of the oil pan when you pull the drain plug.

Good Luck,
Terry


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By gary hammond-Forest, Va on Monday, January 29, 2018 - 08:00 am:

The hot moisture rises. The cap, being higher and cooler will cause any moisture to condense. The reason new car manufacturers want the oil changed once or twice a year regardless of mileage is moisture condensation from short trips, since adequate mileage is not being run up to ensure complete warmups to get rid of condensation.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Erik Thomas on Monday, January 29, 2018 - 08:10 am:

You need to run the engine a minimum of 1/2 an hour to cook out any meaningful moisture. On cold days, the engine may not make it to a high enough temperature, unless you block off part of the radiator or have a thermostat. You are looking for an oil temp of 160F at least.

Frequent oil changes are the only band aid I know of


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By tommy coffey on Monday, January 29, 2018 - 04:41 pm:

Jus' cause inquiring minds wanted to know, I took my condensation/oiled filler cap off and heated it with the blue flame of my propane torch. Somehow I expected the yellow-beige pasty stuff to disappear quickly. That didn't happen. It began to sizzle a little and eventually started to "melt".


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