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  #1  
Old April 25th, 2005, 07:20 PM
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Brian Ellis
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Rocker Covers off

In my quest to solve the ticking noise, I pulled the rocker covers to get try to rule out them as the cause. We put the plenum back on and ran it without the covers on. This brought up several questions not addressed in the manual:

1 Should the rockers be getting bathed in oil constantly? Or is the lubrication coming through the rocker shaft? Both sides of mine had a mysterious lack of oil present while running. Could not detect any ticking per se, but now am troubled by low oil pressure?

2. Where can I get a pressure gauge that will fit the metric threading of the oil pump orifice. I presume I need to check the pump pressure to determine if it is up to psi.

3. What if there is blockage after the pump, say in the cooler or in the lines? How would I check flow to the engine. Anybody have this? I know the pump is easy to pull and rebuild, etc, but what about the rest of the plumbing?
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  #2  
Old April 25th, 2005, 07:46 PM
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Bradlee Duncan
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Don't know about numbers 2 and 3, but I can help with number 1. The oil flows through the rocker shaft and should come out of a little hole in the seat where the pushrods are. That bathes the pushrod ends in oil. Then the oil just drains through to the bottom.
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Old April 25th, 2005, 10:47 PM
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Yeah, there should definitely be oil coming up through the pushrods and dripping out the rocker shaft. Are you saying you see NO oil under the rocker covers? Maybe not gushing, but it should be visibly and obviously getting oiled. If you say there is no visible oil coming out there, yeah you got a problem somewhere. Are we talking bone dry on both sides? That would mean your camshaft and lifters aren't getting any oil, and that's bad news that needs to be fixed ASAP. It would definitely cause the tapping. I am assuming you have a 94 or 95 with V-belts? Or do you have the serpentine setup? This is all for the V-belt setup with distributor.

You can try re-priming the oil pump. This means pulling the distributor out, and using a socket attached to an electric drill to spin the oil pump shaft. Let it whirl for a while, and watch the rocker arms to see if oil is coming out. If that works, put it all back together and it should work fine and the tapping should go away. If that doesn't work, continue to the next steps.

First step I would take is getting a proper oil pressure gauge in there. I think sun-pro makes a suitable adapter, the fittings at the pump are IIRC 5/8 UNF threading. From what I remember when I had my oil pump apart, the other fitting isn't a pressure tap, it's for the pressure relief valve... which may have gone bad. Instead I would remove the sender for the dummy light and put a sender for a real gauge in it's place. Find out the actual pressure coming out of the pump first since that's the first

Secondly, I would remove the oil cooler from the whole equation. All you need to do is remove the sandwich plate adapter thats on there. Take off the oil filter, unscrew the big honking nut that is part of the fitting the filter screws onto, and take off the sandwich plate. That leaves you with another oil filter mounting, which you put a brandy dandy new filter on.

Then, go back to the priming sequence and try again. If you still have the tapping and dry heads, but the oil pressure is good, you've got a blockage or pressure leakage somewhere. If you have very low oil pressure, it might be a bad relief valve on the pump.

If you need to rebuild the pump, you need to use the proper Rover gears, but I believe the oil pump base from most 215-350 BUICK V8's and Buick V6's should work as long as they have the external style oil pump that's integrated into the timing cover.

-Hans
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  #4  
Old April 26th, 2005, 08:56 PM
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Thank you for the intuitve oil pressure lessons, Hans.

Here's an update:
Found a pressure tester (yay!). Oil pressure is good (35 psi @2400 RPM). There is a detectable trickle of oil to the rockers along both sides' rocker shafts, just not a bath of oil like in a Ford or Chevy. After warming it up and listening, I feel the rockers are making the same ol' clickety clack that they're supposed to make (that familiar sewing machine sound). So I'm ready to eliminate the rockers and oil pressure from my hunt....

I think I heard the familiar nuisance ticking sound from the v belt assembly somewhere (couldn't scope the whirring pulleys and belts...). It showed up after a few minutes, when the engine got up to temperature. That is now my new focus.

By the way, when removing the plenum, I accidently spewed about a pint of coolant/water into the open rocker assembly and down into the sump Doh! Should I be afraid? Or is it no big deal? I slathered the rockers with fresh oil and plan to change the oil before running the Rover. I'm sure there is alot of water mixed in with the oil in the sump.....
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Old April 26th, 2005, 09:45 PM
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That oil pressure sounds right on the money, so the pump and relief valve is good. The dripping oil out of the rocker shafts is also what you should be seeing. The rocker shaft is lubed internally instead of the splash lube of the Chevy/Ford. If there is oil coming out, it means that you have oil where you're supposed to. It comes up through the pushrods, then actually goes THROUGH the rocker arms and around the rocker shaft to lubricate the pivot point.

I also had what I thought was a rocker/lifter tap in the past too... ended up being a bad header gasket. Got a set of new ones, and the noise went away but it took forever to find it. I only figured it out after the gasket really went bad and slipped out of place, man what a racket that was!. I also have some ticking from the waterpump/V-belt area now myself. But everything works fine, so I'm in no rush to start ripping it all apart again.

As long as you change that oil before running the engine much, you should be fine. Just leave the drip-pan under the truck and let it drain for a long time to get as much out as possible.

-Hans
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Old April 26th, 2005, 11:24 PM
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Marvel Mystery oil will aid in the removal of coolant or water in the block. Add some & run the engine for a while before you do your oil change.
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Old April 29th, 2005, 05:02 PM
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On a related topic: I had the pan off and did some eyeballing. I measured the oil pan hangs down from it's mounting face 5.5" at it's lowest (it's 5.5" deep). The oil pickup hangs down about 5.25". I inserted the dipstick and it sticks down about 3.5". That means that the oil level should be up high enough to tickle the dipstick between the 'add' and 'full' marks, right? So the pan should hold 3+ inches of oil to make a mark on the dipstick.

I just put in 8 qts. of oil and the dipstick is dry. Do I stick with the set amount in the manual for adding oil or do I continue to add oil until it registers on the dipstick?
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Old April 29th, 2005, 10:17 PM
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Is the dipstick tube fully sitting down on the hole on the block?

-Hans
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Old April 30th, 2005, 07:55 AM
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Yeah, it is sunk all the way in the hole to it's guard (next to the rocker cover). So you routinely add just the measured amount of oil? The owner's manual says add 7.1 qts. oil, shop manual says 5.9 qts. oil. Trying to make sure I have the right dipstick (Mine is 27.5" long).
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Old April 30th, 2005, 09:37 AM
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5.9qts is for the engine itself, 7.1 includes the oil cooler I think. But that dipstick tube is so long and a tight fit that sometimes it strips the oil off the stick, and new oil can be very hard to see. 8qts, you should see something.

-Hans
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