Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

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Steve Jelf
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Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Steve Jelf » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:02 am

It is maddening when that one little part vanishes from the planet and you don't have a spare. In this case the part in question is the little valve spring seat pin (#3057). In my 3000 parts drawer I found plenty of seats, but not one pin. So I'm wondering if a piece of the same diameter drill bit would be OK. Hard enough? Not too brittle?
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Original Smith » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:04 am

A nail would probably work for awhile, but have you tried drill rod, or better yet Langs?

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Steve Jelf » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:11 am

Yes, I can get it from Lang's or any of the parts dealers. But I want to use the car this weekend. I'm sure a nail would be too soft. That's why I asked about drill stock.
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Dropacent » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:12 am

Chinese metallurgy is a crapshoot at best, IMHO. If I was in a hurry, I’d use the end of a drill that is snug ( drill rod) and still sleep at night. Grandpa would use a nail and sleep good at night, too.
Last edited by Dropacent on Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by John E. Guitar » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:14 am

Yes, a quality drill bit will be fine. I know someone here in Sydney who has had drill bits as retainer pins in his tourer for the last ten years/20,000 plus kilometers without any issues. He did this as he found the repro pins were to soft. I don't know if the current repro ones are better or the same.

You could also use Silver Steel which may end up cheaper if you have to replace every pin.

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Steve Jelf » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:37 am

It's very likely I have some originals somewhere, but it will probably be weeks or months before I find them. For now I'll go with a piece of drill bit.
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by jiminbartow » Wed Mar 11, 2020 1:41 am

You could take an ungalvanized nail of the right diameter, cut it to size, heat it red hot with a torch and temper it in oil. Jim Patrick
Last edited by jiminbartow on Wed Mar 11, 2020 9:39 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Wayne Sheldon » Wed Mar 11, 2020 4:44 am

I have used snug fitting nails for a long time. I did have a few about thirty years ago that the nails were too hard, and fractured. No problems since.

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Kaiser » Wed Mar 11, 2020 5:49 am

The cheap chinese drillbits are too brittle, but an older US made one is probably o.k., you can allways check by clamping the drillbit in the vice with the cutting tip and give it a light rap with a hammer, if it breakes readily, toss it, if it holds up, cut to length with a cutting disk and presto ! it'll probably outlive you :)
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by tinman080 » Wed Mar 11, 2020 6:48 am

Kaiser X 2.... :D
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by perry kete » Wed Mar 11, 2020 7:53 am

Steve
I have used drill bit ends for valve pins and they work very well. In a pinch I cut off the end of bits that I use every day and now they are just little shorter. I put them in a vise and placed a white rag directly under it on the bench and the small pin falls on the rag. A dremel tool works great for cutting
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Mark Nunn » Wed Mar 11, 2020 8:57 am

I know where your pins are, Steve. They're in that box with your speedometer. In fact, I think one of my lug nuts that disappeared a few years ago is in there too. My apologies. I'm not helping the conversation.

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Charlie B in N.J. » Wed Mar 11, 2020 9:02 am

Steve all you have to do is go ahead with the drill bit piece and button the engine up. About 5 minutes later that box of missing pins will show up.
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Philip » Wed Mar 11, 2020 9:03 am

im not a metallurgist but the end of a good drill should work great they are hard on the outside about 60r and still
have some soft core to prevent breaking. again good ones not harbor freight go to fastenal and buy a pack. philip

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by DLodge » Wed Mar 11, 2020 9:04 am

Steve Jelf wrote:
Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:37 am
It's very likely I have some originals somewhere, but it will probably be weeks or months before I find them.
It won't be weeks or months. You will find them the Monday morning after the weekend when you need them.

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by TFan » Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:13 am

I have asked this before but no response, would the bearing pins out of a later model u-joint work or would they be to brittle. Jim
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by jiminbartow » Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:39 am

Tfan. Jim. I may be misunderstanding how your question regarding a u-joint pin pertains to this thread, but the pin this thread refers to is one of the eight valve spring retainer pins that goes into the hole at the base of each shaft of the intake and exhaust valves that secures the valve springs. The pins are approximately 3/32” diameter x 3/8” long. That may be why you have not gotten a response. Jim Patrick
Last edited by jiminbartow on Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:52 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Scott_Conger » Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:43 am

If a file "zings" off the pin it is likely too hard/brittle. If if scratches the pin it's too soft. If it just marks it, I think it would be fine. Personally I'd find a drill bit that fit, polish it and anneal it to JUST blue and test it. It should be fine for the trip but I would plan on eventually replacing with a good correct pin eventually.
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by jab35 » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:10 pm

Follow Scott's suggestions, and if you try needle bearing 'pins' from discarded modern u-joints, follow the same guidelines. Nails don't have enough carbon to be heat treated, common nails would be a last ditch and very temporary emergency fix. Drive Careful! jb


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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by jiminbartow » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:24 pm

TFan Jim. I understand your question now. I believe you were referring to the pins from a new fourth bearing that replaces the old babbited fourth bearing. Jim Patrick

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Steve Jelf » Wed Mar 11, 2020 12:54 pm

Now here's another question. How good (or bad) are the current reproductions from the parts dealers? Several years ago some folks posted that they would use only original pins because the new ones wore out quickly. Are the current pins any better? At 25¢ each they should be perfect.
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by perry kete » Wed Mar 11, 2020 1:58 pm

Steve,

The reason I switched to quality drill bit stock is when I redid my motor the pins I bought from a supplier lasted only about a month until I had to replace them. Some were bent and other broke. If I remember the suppliers were having an issue with the manufacture at the time.
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Tim Rogers » Wed Mar 11, 2020 2:34 pm

metal-hardness-chart.png
<o><o><o><o> Tim Rogers - South of the Adirondacks - Forum member since 2013 <o><o><o><o>

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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by TFan » Thu Mar 12, 2020 12:27 am

Jiminbartow., By later I meant 50's- 60's this is what I had in mind. Jim
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Jsteele » Thu Mar 12, 2020 3:44 pm

So in looking at the chart that Tim posted is that saying that Red Brass and Phospher Bronze would be good choices for pins?
I ask because I have 16 valve Roof heads that uses stock T valves but have heavier valve springs and a very high lift cams. I have not run these engines yet and have always thought about this a being a very very weak link. Dropping a valve in one of these might cause a grown man to cry. There is no room for larger valves and I have been unable to find a replacement valve with a more modern keeper that fits.


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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Scott_Conger » Thu Mar 12, 2020 4:04 pm

John

there is no material shown on that chart which would be good for pins

It is generic in information and does not include a multitude of alloys nor various treatment states for those alloys

For example, the category "steel" is even missing, which would include Hot Rolled, Cold Rolled either of which includes a myriad of alloys, uses and tempers

You'd be well served by consulting anyone of several engine builders and Horsepower guys that frequent the forum, with your question. I'm with you, it's not a subject you want to guess at.

Personally, I'd use a valve which uses wedge and collar keepers and not pins, for an overhead
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Steve Jelf » Thu Mar 12, 2020 4:12 pm

I made a pin by just cutting a piece off the top end of a 7/64" drill bit. Today I stopped at the Fastenal store to order a 36" piece of drill rod, priced at $3.13 on the Fastenal website, just to have the material on hand for future use. The manager informed me that it would come from the manufacturer with a shipping charge several times the cost of the item. No sale. I'll pick one up sometime when I'm in Wichita. :)
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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by 2nighthawks » Thu Mar 12, 2020 8:18 pm

Not to "cloud" the issue here, but over the years, I've seen another example of severe wear, that (unless I've missed it) nobody in this thread has mentioned. In all my years of "messing" with these old Fords, I've seen the original cupped style valve spring seats (retainers) with very deep grooves worn almost all the way through from those little pins continually bearing in the same position for many miles and many years. I would think that depending on the type of pin material and hardness, might actually cause this type of wear to become more of a factor. Of course, I guess it goes without saying that there are reasons why the more modern cone-shaped and split valve spring retainers (keepers) are a better idea and became the automotive industry
standard"! FWIW,.....harold


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Re: Substituting for a part: Is there a metallurgist in the room?

Post by Craig Leach » Thu Mar 12, 2020 9:33 pm

I seen 7/64 used for a diameter so 3/32 should work right? TIG welding rod.may be the answer. You can get it in steel ER70 & 308 stainless.

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