Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure? - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 03:36 AM Thread Starter
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Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

This is the 2nd time I am going top have to fix the pan from leaking. 1st time was minor, but this time it literally blew the oil pan gasket out and apart dead center of the crank in the back of the motor where it loops around. I know that is the weakest point and an easy fail point, but the gasket was hanging out of the back maybe a good 1-1/2" on each side, not to mention it was a rubber gasket with metal inside. I reached out to the engine builder and waiting on a response so I thought I would pick your brains as well. It is so tight and dark that I could not get a pic to show up any detail. How do I test for pressure?
Build info:
572 BBC Mark IV Style Merlin block
11-744-9 Comp cam
AFR2020 heads - 385cc - 2.35 intake/1.88 exhaust
11.5:1 comp
Oil pump pressure at initial start up 65/70 - 55 at full temp

'68 Camaro with RS conversion
Moser 9" with 4:11
Martz Chassis 4-link and Front Sub-frame
Tremec T-56 Magnum 6 speed
572 BB - CM Engines
Wilwood 6 piston front and 4 piston rear disc
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 03:42 AM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

What do you have for crankcase ventilation?

Don

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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 03:46 AM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

You might be looking at an external crankcase vacuum pump here.

https://www.dragzine.com/tech-storie...up-horsepower/
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 04:25 AM
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Oil pressure should have nothing to do with your gaskets. The 454 in my truck runs 90 psi cold, and 80 psi warm. My oil pan gasket is cork with rubber ends. No leak for the past 6 years. Those rubber gaskets are slippery. I always use a little black RTV. To hold them in place at both ends. Not a bead, just a smear. I use this technique on small blocks all the time without failure. Check your pcv and valve cover breather. I have also used 2 pcv valves as well. If those don't work, think of blow by.

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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 04:54 AM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

Agreed, not due to oil pressure. The pressure is contained to the oil ports and channels.

Sounds like crankcase pressure.

As above.... What do you have for crank case venting ?

I had an issue on this build where I blew out the dipstick and sprayed oil everywhere....not fun at 120 and slicks
I added a filter to the oil fill cap, and ran 3/8" vent lines from each valve cover to an oil/air separator which is also vented with a filter.....no more issues

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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 06:18 AM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

Yep...crankcase pressure. I had a 6 cylinder blow out the rear rubber oil pan gasket. The PCV valve was plugged solid, so the crankcase was unable to expel any of its pressure. Add to that, the rings were pretty bad, and most likely caused the PCV to gum up and plug over time.

If you change over from a PCV valve setup to a valve cover vented cap, you may experience oil blow by on the valve covers, depending on the health of the engine (rings, valves/valve stem gaskets). I notice that lots of folks will eliminate the PCV valve, and route the PCV valve line to a "catch can" instead, to capture the crankcase fumes and oil mist.

On newer cars that use a throttle body (fuel injection) using a "catch can method" instead of the PCV valve can rid the throttle body valve from getting oiled up, and throwing a diagnostic code.

You would only need to place a vented cap on one side of the two valve covers, but most folks, for cosmetic reasons, put one on each valve cover. The engine will "pull" fresh outside air from one side of a given valve cover, which routes eventually to the crankcase, and then the crankcase pushes out its crankcase fumes to the other valve cover. This "other side" valve cover is the valve cover that has the PCV valve, which then routed these crankcase fumes/oil mist to the carb (or newer cars, the throttle body valve), to be reburned. You would plug the carb end to prevent an air intake leak.

I recall my dads old 56 Chevy having the "down draft" tube. This tube was used in the place of a PCV valve or breather cap on a valve cover to directly route the crankcase fumes to the air. He would drive off, and spew smoke from under the car! I guess the feds got involved and made the auto manufacturers stop that, hence the PCV valve arrangement.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 03:19 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhutton View Post
What do you have for crankcase ventilation?

Don
Quote:
Originally Posted by DOUG G View Post
Agreed, not due to oil pressure. The pressure is contained to the oil ports and channels.

Sounds like crankcase pressure.

As above.... What do you have for crank case venting ?

I had an issue on this build where I blew out the dipstick and sprayed oil everywhere....not fun at 120 and slicks <img src="https://www.camaros.net/forums/images/smilies/noway.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Noway" class="inlineimg" />
I added a filter to the oil fill cap, and ran 3/8" vent lines from each valve cover to an oil/air separator which is also vented with a filter.....no more issues <img src="https://www.camaros.net/forums/images/smilies/wink.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Wink" class="inlineimg" />

I have a pcv valve that is built into my ps breather and is connected into the back of the carb. On my ds valve cover i have a std breather.
Is there a way to check crankcase pressure?

'68 Camaro with RS conversion
Moser 9" with 4:11
Martz Chassis 4-link and Front Sub-frame
Tremec T-56 Magnum 6 speed
572 BB - CM Engines
Wilwood 6 piston front and 4 piston rear disc
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 03:52 PM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

Ai don’t know if it matters, but big blocks had the pcv valve on the drivers side and breather to the air cleaner on pass side

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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 03:53 PM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pittpens24 View Post
but this time it literally blew the oil pan gasket out and apart dead center of the crank in the back of the motor where it loops around.
Is this the neoprene seal about the groove of the rear main bearing cap?
The oil pan will fit directly over the gasket, AND hopefully of the correct thickness. Might check next time.
As Keith suggests, a bead of RTV on both sides of gasket helps sealing and keeping it in place.

In checking pressure, with engine running, pull PCV out of cover and place finger over the end ensuring there is a vacuum.
Plug PCV back in and remove breathing side.
Place a rubber glove on VC and visually watch glove. If it balloons, blow-by from rings, may not be seated.
If glove collapses, crankcase is under a vacuum
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 24th, 18, 04:39 PM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

We think of our motors as being air pumps but tend to lose sight of the fact that the “bottom” of the piston is moving about as much air as the top, it just has no direction hopping from bore to bore. It gets a little hot and expands. Some oil joins in the mix, maybe the rings leak a tad, and it becomes a pretty violent place. At 572” I think you could outwindage most of us Greg.
A practical experience: Ford FE 427 side oiler drag only car. Breathers weeped, set it up with a pcv and it was fine. Threw in a 428 crank, same mild build, everything weeped. Put on a pan-evac and it was fine. Amped up the build and its weeping again. By weeping i mean wiping it down between runs. Put on a crankcase pump and its real good, best it ever was.
We never checked crankcase pressure. Some block designs are worse than others. Regardless, at 572 your crankcase is a busy place.
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 25th, 18, 03:32 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

I'm good with putting on a crankcase pump - it is basically a race motor so I didn't expect things to be easy. Now for the fun part - to try to figure out how to add it to a front-runner serpentine belt system. I'll give Vintage Air a call later on to see if they make an accessory drive crank pulley for their system

'68 Camaro with RS conversion
Moser 9" with 4:11
Martz Chassis 4-link and Front Sub-frame
Tremec T-56 Magnum 6 speed
572 BB - CM Engines
Wilwood 6 piston front and 4 piston rear disc
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 25th, 18, 08:47 PM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

Is it a good quality pan?. I had a repro one once that was almost 1/4" off in the radius, compared to a factory pan.
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 26th, 18, 03:09 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bill3337 View Post
Is it a good quality pan?. I had a repro one once that was almost 1/4" off in the radius, compared to a factory pan.
It's a Milodon 7qt

'68 Camaro with RS conversion
Moser 9" with 4:11
Martz Chassis 4-link and Front Sub-frame
Tremec T-56 Magnum 6 speed
572 BB - CM Engines
Wilwood 6 piston front and 4 piston rear disc
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 26th, 18, 07:28 AM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

I had a similar issue with my engine, but mine was blowing the dip stick out of the tube under boost. I had 10AN fittings welded to the front of each of the valve covers (with a baffle plate on the inside) that run to an oil breather tank. Problem solved. Might work for you. Not expensive to boot.

Here's a picture where you can see the set up on my car. The breather tank is in the lower right of the picture. Not a great picture but it's the only one I have handy:


Here's the type of breather tank I'm using:
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/s...iABEgKE-_D_BwE

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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old Oct 26th, 18, 07:30 AM
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Re: Oil pan gasket blown out - pressure?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PROZ11 View Post
I had a similar issue with my engine, but mine was blowing the dip stick out of the tube under boost. I had 10AN fittings welded to the front of each of the valve covers (with a baffle plate on the inside) that run to an oil breather tank. Problem solved. Might work for you. Not expensive to boot.

Here's a picture where you can see the set up on my car. The breather tank is in the lower right of the picture. Not a great picture but it's the only one I have handy:


Here's the type of breather tank I'm using:
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/s...iABEgKE-_D_BwE



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