Test lifter for push rod length check? - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 19, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
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Scott Scheffer
 
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Test lifter for push rod length check?

Hi all,
I'm testing for push rod length on a gen 1 350 with Vortec heads and retrofit hydraulic roller cam and lifters. I've read in a couple places that you can substitute a solid lifter so that you don't get a false reading due to the hydraulic lifter compressing as you're tightening down the rocker. Is that true? What kind of lifter do I use? I already replaced the springs with weak test springs. Might that be enough to get a good reading?
Also, if I want to use push rods that aren't a custom size, how much in thousands can I move up or down in length without compromising too much on performance?
Thanks in advance for any advice,
Scott
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 19, 12:04 AM
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Re: Test lifter for push rod length check?

For flat tappet hydraulic cams, I have two test lifters that have their guts removed, and a solid spacer inserted to keep the button down about .030 in the lifter. I also have done the same for hydraulic roller cams. I always do the push rod lengths with the engine on the build stand, and no intake manifold in place, E-O, I-C method and a rocker arm tool as well.

I am big on making my own tools, and have the machines to make them, but modifying a pair of lifters to set the button correctly isn't that hard to do.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 19, 7:20 AM
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Re: Test lifter for push rod length check?

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottscheffer55 View Post
I already replaced the springs with weak test springs. Might that be enough to get a good reading?

That is all you need to do.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 19, 9:57 AM
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Re: Test lifter for push rod length check?

If you have new dry lifters test springs will easily compress the lifters. Stick with the solids

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 19, 10:48 AM
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Re: Test lifter for push rod length check?

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Originally Posted by 69-CHVL View Post
If you have new dry lifters test springs will easily compress the lifters. Stick with the solids

Vince,


Not sure what test springs you use but the ones I have will not collapse a new, dry lifter. If the intake is off you can watch it anyway to see if the plunger is moving. Worse case put the lifter in a can of oil and pump it up.



The big problem with using any lifter other than the exact one you plan on having in the engine is that pushrod seat heights vary all over the place. Especially between hydraulic and solid lifters. Probably should not be that way but it is a fact of life

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 19, 5:59 AM
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Re: Test lifter for push rod length check?

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Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Vince,


Not sure what test springs you use but the ones I have will not collapse a new, dry lifter. If the intake is off you can watch it anyway to see if the plunger is moving. Worse case put the lifter in a can of oil and pump it up.



The big problem with using any lifter other than the exact one you plan on having in the engine is that pushrod seat heights vary all over the place. Especially between hydraulic and solid lifters. Probably should not be that way but it is a fact of life
I just use regular checking springs I think from comp and they will compress a dry lifter especially when turning the engine over. This is where you have to be careful as you will show false piston/valve clearance.

As far as lifter height affecting pushrod length - Shouldnít really matter when checking piston to valve clearance. Now for geometry- that would make a difference.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 19, 7:26 AM
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Re: Test lifter for push rod length check?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Vince,


Not sure what test springs you use but the ones I have will not collapse a new, dry lifter. If the intake is off you can watch it anyway to see if the plunger is moving. Worse case put the lifter in a can of oil and pump it up.

Same for the Isky checking springs I have from 1969/70 time frame.

The big problem with using any lifter other than the exact one you plan on having in the engine is that pushrod seat heights vary all over the place. Especially between hydraulic and solid lifters. Probably should not be that way but it is a fact of life

I've always wondered why this hasn't been mentioned before!
This!

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 19, 1:45 PM
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Re: Test lifter for push rod length check?

If solid lifters are used to check a hydraulic cam, make sure the push rod button height in both the solid, and hydraulic lifters are sitting the same height from the lifter to lobe face. Some solids have buttons sitting lower in the lifter, and if those are unknowingly used, the push rod will end up the wrong length.
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