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BBC cam oiling: is there a problem?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by madmike, Feb 3, 2003.

  1. madmike

    madmike 1/2 ton status

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    A year or two ago, I read an article on the ORC site by Shawn Spickler about installing an auxiliary oiling tube that sat in the intake valley and was centered above the camshaft, which helped deliver more oil onto the cam lobes. Before this article, I had never seen or heard of anyone needing extra oiling in this area, and I didn't realize it was even considered a problem with the big block Chevy oiling system. Of course, most of what I read concerning big blocks was in street machines and road racing, not rock crawling stuff.

    I'm in the planning stages of a 402bbc and I'm wondering if this is a necessity, or a luxury I can do without. Does the BBC need extra oiling help in this area? What are your experiences?
     
  2. fortcollinsram

    fortcollinsram 1/2 ton status

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    BBC's are notorious for eating cams, esp. with flat tappet lifters! AFAIK, Shawn is using roller lifters...the auxillary cam oiling system is def. a good idea, esp. in motors that do a lot of work at lower revs when the oil pressure is still relatively low... In the 454 that I am building, I am just going to run the Melling HV oil pump; cheap and effective!

    Chris
     
  3. wfo163

    wfo163 1/2 ton status

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    I read an article in HOT ROD a few years ago about that very same aux oil tube. They remarked that it was for engines that use a lot of lift and solid lifters. I changed the cam in my 454 and took a good look at the lobes of the old cam and didnt notice any excessive wear, keep in mind this engine was 70k old and had been used in a farm truck that pulled 3 tons of hay as well as plow snow every winter. I did not install the tube with my new cam and I have not seen any metal in the oil yet, its been 20k since I changed it out. /forums/images/graemlins/truck.gif /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
     
  4. loudnowlouder

    loudnowlouder 1/2 ton status

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    if you have it down to a bare block, i'd say do it, the kits are pretty cheap, come with everything you need, and it will keep that bad boy from chewin the cam up...

    think about it this way, its best to install the oiler when the block is stripped, so you can get ALL the shavings out, compare how much you're spending on the engine to how much the oiler costs, it might just be worth it to do it, give it that little extra security...for cheap
     
  5. ken

    ken 1/2 ton status

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    Does anyone have a website or contact info as to where to get this oiling kit?
     
  6. fortcollinsram

    fortcollinsram 1/2 ton status

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  7. POWERMAD

    POWERMAD 1/2 ton status

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    This is what I am going to use when I rebuild the 2 454's I have. klick
    The one from the Burb has never had a problem with the cam.
    The one in the 73 has eaten 2 of em since I have had it (nearly 5 years).
    A high volume pump is definately going on also.
     
  8. 4DiggerDan

    4DiggerDan 1/2 ton status

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    NOTHING in a BBC DIRECTLY oils the lobes of the cam, and a high volume pump won't help with this. The way it gets oil is from splatter off the rods. That kit you're talking about would help with the problem, and it ain't a bad idea if you're building a new engine. I wouldn't tear a running one apart just to put it in... There may be another option. I forget who it is, but somebody out there is making a flat tappet lifter with a hole EDM'd in the bottom of it so that when the cam starts to lift, it piddles oil out the top (like an OEM one) to oil the valvetrain AND out the bottom to pressure oil the cam lobes. I like this idea better, because its simpler. Probably not cheaper, although I'm betting its less than a roller cam... In a 4x4 where you're using a cam that makes low end grunt, I can't really see whiping out a lot of lobes... In a drag car where durations are high, lifts are big, lifters are solid, and spring pressures exceed 140 Lbs on the seat, directly oiling the cam is a good idea.

    I could regergite info from David Vizard for pages on what takes out cam lobes. But I'm too busy sitting on my butt soaking up all the non-engine info I can find on K5's...

    By the way... I'm a firm believer that big blocks are 489 cubes and up /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif a 454 is just a small block that needs to lose 200 Lbs, with big canted valves and screw in studs from the factory /forums/images/graemlins/ignore.gif
     
  9. madmike

    madmike 1/2 ton status

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    Yeah, I got a friend of mine here at work that runs a 509bbc in his drag car. When I ask him questions about my 402bbc, he just sneers and says, "that ain't big!". I think his motor is making like 750hp or so, but he had no comment on the oiling question... so I don't know if he know's the deal or not...
     
  10. ken

    ken 1/2 ton status

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    </font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
    Trucks T!tt!es and Beer. What more could a man want?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    How about an offshore powerboat with twin monster big block Chevy blower motors?? Now THAT is a way to score you some hotties, even up there in Big Sky Country!!! /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  11. 4DiggerDan

    4DiggerDan 1/2 ton status

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    LMFAO!!!! /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif

    If I hadn't taken up 4X4's at the tender age of 18, I'd probably have a huge budget for a boat. After all, the largest "non man made" fresh water lake west of the Missippi is about 30 miles south of where I live. We definately do have a boat culture up here.
     
  12. the professor

    the professor 1/2 ton status

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    Got an easier solution...
    --
    First, I have been running BB since the mid 1960's and have never lost a cam...broken valve springs, bent pushrods, but no cams...
    --
    Just use good oil..modern synthetics will assure no problem
    --
    Also, a nice easy fix, to add oil to the lifer galleries...is AN MSD BILLET DISTRIBUTOR...
    --
    How's that you say, well the MSD distributor is machined for 2 'O'-rings, that seal the distributor into the block..the distributor does not fit very tight into the block, and.since the oil for the lifter galleries goes through this area to lube the distributor, before going up the lifer oil galleries, it increases the flow to the lifters..and thus to the cam.
    --
    Beware, for those of u using 20/50 oils, very high oil pressures, and massive coolers.and/or.when the oil is cold, if you don't have some 120lb plus seat pressure springs, a trip to 5500+ will probably pump up ALL your lifters, and the engine will stop for a moment..not great for the distributor gear,but the MSD is a good one
    /forums/images/graemlins/truck.gif
     

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