Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 10:29 AM Thread Starter
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Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

The story is my first engine build and i had installed a Timing chain kit from summit that included what i now know is called a Torrington Bearing and 2 wear washers to place between the cam gear and the block
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/sme-7010-ts

2 Years later im tearing the block down for the first time, and I find whats left of the Torrington bearing and washers in my oil pan and tiny little pins everywhere. Worse yet the block face where the Cam gear mounts is badly grooved, i imagine from the bearing/washer disintegrating while it was running.

I'm wondering rather than get the cam face machined to repair the damage, if thats even possible, if i could just slap one of those camshaft retainer plates they sell for roller cam retrofits I believe (Mine is a flat tappit) https://www.summitracing.com/parts/nal-10168501 and call it a day? Its a 77' 454 block there does seem to be 2 holes for mounting one. Would there be any issue with this, assuming the crank and cam gear line up?

Note: Little embarrassed to mention that i found the crank gear wasn't all the way seated (about 1/8" off). took another couple of taps to get it all the way flush with the rim around the crankshaft. So for all i know the misalignment of the gears caused all this mayhem. Wouldn't be fair to blame the part if it was installed improperly.

Last edited by LevonH; May 15th, 19 at 1:08 PM.
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 1:10 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Mike, if I recall correctly, you will need a stepped cam to use that thrust plate. There may be other things as well to ensure that the cam gear and plate do not interfere with each other.

Levon Hovagimian
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 2:30 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

I just use the Brass spacer behind the top cam gear and mill off the thickness of the spacer on the top cam gear, works great and no little bearings to get into anything when they fail.
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 2:31 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Regardless how you go with the cam choice it would be best to fix that thrust surface either way!

We find ourselves fixing them fairly regularly over the years. It is a relatively common area for failure.

Also recommend using the later MK-VI cam setup with the stepped-nose. On most of our "streeters" we rarely use cam buttons any longer, even on the early SB's, makes for a "walk-in-the-park" assembling the unit!

Thanks, Gary in N.Y.

P.S. For us on our head machine this is a very simple fix, we usually go down .030" and use a Borg-Warner shim in the newly machined area. The front of the cam brg (new or used) requires some machining also, no big deal! Here's a shot of one being done.
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 3:20 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Just figured id post a picture of the damage .

I have a machine shop close by on LI. They've done some work for me on this motor originally, and i guess I have no complaints except for the turnaround time. I was thinking about putting in 4 bolt mains as long as i'm going through the trouble of disassembly and bringing the block in.
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 3:44 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Quote:
Originally Posted by deffmike View Post

I have a machine shop close by on LI. They've done some work for me on this motor originally

Wouldn't that be interesting if it was Gary . . . . . .
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 3:46 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Quote:
Originally Posted by deffmike View Post
Just figured id post a picture of the damage .

Wow, I think that is one of the worst ones I have seen

Bill Koustenis
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 4:05 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Wouldn't that be interesting if it was Gary . . . . . .


I was thinking the same thing Bill
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 4:57 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Wow, I think that is one of the worst ones I have seen
Think its salvageable?
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 6:13 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

yes theres plenty of meat there. just need to machine the depth the same as the shim pack needed to restore the proper height. a small vee filed in the cam bearing to intersect the oil hole help thrust lubrication
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 8:13 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Quote:
Originally Posted by deffmike View Post
Think its salvageable?

I dont see why not if your shop has the proper equipment. If you are on LI why not take it to Gary ? Looks like he has the setup to do it. See post #4 above

Bill Koustenis
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old May 15th, 19, 9:01 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Quote:
Originally Posted by deffmike View Post
Just figured id post a picture of the damage .

I have a machine shop close by on LI. They've done some work for me on this motor originally, and i guess I have no complaints except for the turnaround time. I was thinking about putting in 4 bolt mains as long as i'm going through the trouble of disassembly and bringing the block in.
If you are thinking of converting your block to 4 bolt mains it would probably be cheaper to pick up a used 4 bolt block.
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old May 16th, 19, 12:14 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

and unless you are going to boost the tar out of it or spin to the moon, I wouldnt waste the money. I would on a proper repair of that surface though!

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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old May 18th, 19, 5:31 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Just to let everyone know I met Mike today and have the block in my possession.

Hard to believe from his photo but the damage in the very specific area needing fixing to be OK is minimal, looks a whole bunch worse than it really is and the section outside where the cam gear thrust doesn't ride (by the screw holes) doesn't come into play here. Easy fix with a Borg-Warner 203 shim!

If Mike didn't open this up now the potential for a catastrophic failure is in place. I'll have more on all this later after we evaluate the entire unit! If you are supplied a "less-than-desirable" part and you "miss" a potential issue while doing the final ass'y it is basically on you, not the part mfr/vendor! It is 100% up to the assembler to catch ANY problem and make the final call!!

There is an issue here specific to the main brgs we have seen many times over the years. This is all the info I can give at moment. Will have more later.

I also informed Mike he doesn't need 4 BM's for this app! This will be his call though.

Thanks, Gary in N.Y.

P.S. (Very important here) DO NOT buy any (complete) rotating kits from any vendors at all UNLESS they are willing to supply you with very specific brand names AND part numbers included. And don't let them give you different parts than what they say is supposed to be in the kit. For instance they may say "we were out of stock and gave you that number part instead", unless they forewarn you don't buy it.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old May 18th, 19, 6:08 PM
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Re: Chewed up Cam Bearing Thrust Face

Gary, would you be willing to do a bit of a narrative with pictures of how you do the shim install. I've always been curious about it. Thanks in advance.

Levon Hovagimian
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