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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Team,
I've never rebuilt a motor before so this I'm sort of an idiot. Last night I "installed" a rear seal twice. I'm just very uncomfortable and I think I'm going to get a leak. The first time I installed it I forgot to greese the "lips" of the seal and crank. I then realized I was only supossed to put RTV on the rear mating surface where the cap and block come together. I also had an issue where the seal kept falling out of the main cap when I was installing it (motor is on a stand upside down to make this easier). I also put RTV on the ends of the seals because I thought I read on here someone did that. Well after I did it I was checking my work and reading the manuals. I noticed the Hanes maual specially says not to put RTV anywhere on the seal.
So I chickened out and removed everything and decided to start over. I cleaned everything. I then added grease to the crank where the seal fits and onto the cap where the seal sits. I then greased the lips of the seal. I put the seal down into the crank area and left a 1/4 inch gap. I did the same on the cap. However when I'm putting the cap down I have no idea if the seal stays in that position or it if it just rolls over to be flush with the seam. I also added some RTV on the very back of the block not near the crank bearing like I did the first time. I didn't put any RTV between the seals because the Hanes manual said not to. I then had to use a rubber mallet to get the cap all the way on. I'm still not confident in my work. I'm worried I will get a leak. Any words of wisdom?
 

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I'm not sure why the haynes manual has an issue with the placement of rtv on the mating ends of the seal. I have done this for years with no negative result. Since the crank seal area is oiled before setting the crank, the rtv can't stick to the crank as it presses out. I only put a light finger smear on the mating surface.
 

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Just did mine two nights ago. I don't even bother staggering the joints. Just set the 1/2 into the block, dab of RTV on the mating surface and extra light application right across the extreme back edge of the main cap - just in case. Mouth of the V facing inward. I don't even oil the seal. Haven't had a rear seal leak since the days of the old rope seals (that's a long time ago).
 

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You do not want to stagger the ends, this is one of those stupid magazine ideas from someone who should not own a damn toolbox :mad:

Think these things through
What difference does it make where the gap is, it is still a gap
And you are going to have a much better chance of having the gap seal at the parting line where you are pushing on it straight than to stagger it & push crooked as well as take a chance on screwing up the back side of the seal when you install the cap.
Yes, the back is actually part of the seal too ;)

How many GM engines have you guys taken apart?
Now how many factory engines have you found the seal staggered in?

I put a very light amount of silicone on the back of the seal as well as on the parting edges
More important is to seal the cap to the register, especially at the register edges.
There is a direct leak path here if you do not seal it due to the chamfer on the cap so you can install it

Again, stop & look at what it is you are trying to seal up & how it works ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I did notice my factory seal wasn't staggered. I guess one part I am confused about comes from my Hanes manual. In the front of the book there is a section where they replace the rear with the engine in. They only show applying RTV on the very rear of the main cap (which is what I did). Then in the rebuild section of the book they show the main cap again and it says "Apply RTV to the crosshatched section" and the entire surface of the cap is crosshatched. I'm debating doing this one more time and keeping the seal flush with the block.......... they only reason I staggered it is because the fel-pro gasket I bought actually says to do that. I do agree I think you could damange the seal as you put it down because you really can't see what it is doing when you hammer the top cap down. (At least I had to lightly tap mine with a rubber mallet to get it to set)
 
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