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Old 13-02-07, 11:42
maverick maverick is offline
Alan Bumford
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Swindon Wilts England
Posts: 93
Default Siezed Ford Engine

There seems to be a lot of different ideas about the best way to go about this. All theorys will be greatly received !
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Old 13-02-07, 12:16
Geoff Winnington-Ball (RIP)'s Avatar
Geoff Winnington-Ball (RIP) Geoff Winnington-Ball (RIP) is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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Default Re: Siezed Ford Engine

Originally posted by maverick
There seems to be a lot of different ideas about the best way to go about this. All theorys will be greatly received !
Pull all the plugs, fill the cylinders with penetrating oil, then put the plugs back in. Let it sit for the day. When the time comes, drain the sump oil and replace it with 30wt which has been prewarmed. Pull the plugs again, then try to hand-crank the engine to loosen it up. Yes, it will make a mess. You can clean that up.

THEN.... strip the engine and have the block boiled and magnafluxed... flatheads are notorious for cracks in their blocks. These have to be fixed or a new block found. Old-time engine-builders can be invaluable here. In any case, new pistons and rings should be invested in, never mind a professional valve job and having the crankshaft inspected and turned and having the bearings changed. You get the idea.
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Old 13-02-07, 12:23
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cletrac (RIP) cletrac (RIP) is offline
David Pope
Join Date: Jul 2003
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It all depends on how badly it's seized. With a flathead it's easy to take the heads off and hone out the visible rust. Then start with the diesel fuel in the cylinders treatment for a week or so. The best way to get a lot of rotating pressure is to pick a cylinder that's on the top half of its stroke that has the valves closed and screw a high pressure washer hose into the spark plug hole and turn on the pressure. You get the same forces as on a hydraulic cylinder. If you use two pressure washers on the proper cylinders you can alternate from one washer to the other and move everything back and forth until it frees up. I've seen some pretty sorry looking motors freed up this way.
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Old 13-02-07, 13:52
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charlie fitton charlie fitton is offline
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Location: Maryhill Ontario
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Default stuck fords

Sad part is, it's more often than not the valves that stick first, so a compression check is in order as soon as you get the works spinning..... especially if it gets very easy - real soon.
Charles Fitton
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Old 13-02-07, 18:12
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Keith Webb Keith Webb is offline
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Location: Eltham, Victoria, Australia
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Default Rust

Back in the 70s I pulled a LOT of these engines down. Most which were seized had serious rust in them where water had entered via the carby. They invariably had rust in the two cylinders with open inlet valves. Sometimes what looked a bit sad wasn't too bad, but sometimes the only thing which would move them was to bash the pistons out downwards once the crankshaft had been removed. These motors would sometimes need sleeving, or be scrapped altogether.

The cracks Geoff mentions were very common in the vavle seat area, mostly on the later 8BA engines (in fact it was rare to find one without cracks) but uncommon in earlier motors like the Mercury.

My advice is to try the soaking methods others have mentioned first but be prepared for the worst.
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Old 13-02-07, 20:44
Dave Page Dave Page is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Virginia, USA
Posts: 161

try a pint or two of diesel fuel in each of the cylinders via the spark plug holes, and some down her throat (for the inlet valves) let it soak for a couple of days. Remove the cover from the flywheel and using a pry bar (not a screwdriver) in the ring gear, taking care not to remove a tooth. Inch the flywheel in each direction a bit at a time till she frees enough to allow free turning with the crank handle. You will achieve much more purchase against the ring gear than you or your strongest friend could ever assert with a crank handle.
Good luck,
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Old 13-02-07, 20:50
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chris vickery chris vickery is offline
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Location: Nipissing Ontario Canada
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I concur with Keith on this one too. Having pulled apart several of these motors in the past few years I can say that all the soaking in the world is pretty much useless.
Of all the motors I have ever done, the only thing that worked was to pull the heads, pull the crank, and then proceed to beat the pistons out, usually with a large piece of hardwood and a big hammer.
Don't worry too much about hurting anything because at this point it is about wrecked anyhow. Finding a good flatty that isn't seized is like the needle in the haystack.
About the only one I ever had in this as found condition was one that had been lubed up regularily and was cranked over from time to time to keep everything free. Even so, some of the valves were stuck and needed to be freed up before it could be test fired.
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Old 14-02-07, 01:11
Snowtractor Snowtractor is offline
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Default flywheel

Originally posted by Dave Page
Remove the cover from the flywheel and using a pry bar (not a screwdriver) in the ring gear, taking care not to remove a tooth.
Good luck,
There is a flywheel tool specially designed for turning the flywheel without breaking a tooth or slipping. Princess auto has them , cheap, other tool places must have them too.
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Old 15-02-07, 08:37
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Bob Moseley (RIP) Bob Moseley (RIP) is offline
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Hi all
I'm not going to add to the welter of good advice but bear in mind that the Ford V8 is the benchmark of motors and you may just be suffering from their extreme high compression.
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Old 15-02-07, 10:34
maverick maverick is offline
Alan Bumford
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Swindon Wilts England
Posts: 93

Thanks Bob It would be nice if it was but its seized, but with the wealth of advice coming in maybe not for long.
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Old 17-02-07, 15:01
marco marco is offline
Marco Hogenkamp
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Lichtenvoorde, Holland
Posts: 261

Hello all,

When you are going to put in new pistons and the old ones can be trown away there is another trick which I used succesfully on a Cadillac 346 flathead Chaffee engine (after many alternatives failed):

Select a piston of which you are sure it is stuck.
From the top, drill a hole about 6mm diameter at the edge of the piston at a safe distance of about 10mm from the cilinder wall.
You might have to make an extension for your drill bit to have sufficient reach.
Drill as deep as you can get checking carefully not the hit the cilinder wall.

Once your through, replace the 6mm drill with a slightly larger drill and repeat the job, again checking carefully not to hit the cilinder wall.

The trick is to try to drill a hole as large as possible.
At a certain moment the wall of the piston is weakened enough to remove the tension between piston and cilinder wall.
Try to turn the crankshaft to see if it is coming free.
If not, pick out another stuck piston and repeat the job.

The method seems quite unconventional, but if done accurately it really works.

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