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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just finished doing some work on my 66 SS, finished throwing it all together, and was looking forward to a good ole night on the town. I threw on the heads, torqued them down, did everything, then I started her up to adjust the rockers, WHEN, I noticed I wasn't getting any oil up through the rods!
Now, I checked the oil pump, and 1st prob. was the shaft was missing. oops, must have fallen out. replaced that, primed the system, and tried again. STILL no oil up top. my oil press. gauge was disabled due to header clearance (a prob. I plan on fixing soon) where the line feeds out of he block. Oil flowed like mad out the hole when primed or cranked, so I am getting pressure... I looked through the oil channel on the heads into the valley, oil flowed quite well through there... but not up to the top! now to answer questions I can see coming right now. Yes, they are hollow rods, and yes, they are clean. I have Crane hydraulic lifters (could by some freak accident, all of them collapsed and are not letting any oil up??). I need heeeelp! my baby needs to see the road again!!!
 

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do you have the right cam installed??? there is something about the cam having a groove on the last journal in the early big blocks,,,and your headers can't be any worse than these 2" Hookers that I have,get an oil pressure guage hooked up!!

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Bob West
1972 Malibu 454+.030
350 turbo-3.73's
[email protected] 1000ft.track
[email protected] mph 1/8th mile
 

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Bob's right, early 396s (65-6) require a grooved rear cam journal. Is yours?

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Tom Parsons
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yes, the right cam is installed. I forgot to mention, The engine was running great for about 1000miles, when I had to replace the oil pan and replace my head gaskets with felpro high perf. the cam is good, but I was thinking of replacing it with something more aggressive anyway... My two theories are, debris in the engine clogging the oil pump screen or one of the oil channels, or, by some phreak accident, all my lifters collapsed, unless any of u think it could be something different. And as for my headers, they are 1 7/8 custom, that are a real tight fit. maybe 1/2-1" clearance between the header and the pressure hole. the prev. adapter, the "nipple" had the metal pressure line break off in it, so I had to get an adapter, which in order to fit into the hole, has to stick out ALOT, and wont fit with the header in the way... If I can find a replacement nipple, I will use it, but none of the local hardware stores or auto parts stores sell anything like it...Well, I gotta run, please help!

[This message has been edited by Airborn Fox (edited 09-26-2001).]
 

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Why did you have to replace the oil pan? and do you have the right oil pump pickup for the new pan? I don't think head gaskets would cause this...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I had to replace the oil pan because it was damaged when I accidently bottomed out the front end (darn Oklahoma roads)
. When I replaced the pan, I replaced it with one that was exactly the same as orig, well, almost
gotta fig. manufacture differences! It is a stock 5qt oil pan, and the pickup is a stock style high flow, I assume it should still work ok
, . I assume clearance seems fine, I shure wouldnt want to pull the engine again to check
! one more thing, the oil pump shaft, I beleive there should be a shank on one end and the only way to put it in is to pull the engine, when mine fell out, there was no shank... poss. problem??
It seems to sit in fine without wobbeling... I sure hope I can get this problem inexpensively...
 

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I can almost guarantee your problem is the cam, and the groove it is supposed to have in it for oiling purposes... only early 396s had this feature on the cam, and new cams/aftermarket cams dont have it... and even if they do, often they are not mahined wide/deep enough to get proper lubrication... i know this cause i had the identical problem on mine (66 396) The cam i had WAS grooved, but not enough... was more like a scratch than a groove... had the machine shop take some more metal out, and it cured the problem immediately... i suggest looking there first.
 
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