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11/20/2019 5:07:11 PM
Posted: 9/20/2013 2:43:56 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/20/2013 2:48:53 PM EST by DieselRob]
how to work on cars. I love the shit out of tinkering/anything mechanical in nature.

Say I wanted to search junkyards far and wide for a motor to buy, tear apart and rebuild just to see how everything flows together...

What engine would you recommend? I am a partial to diesels, but wasn't sure if diesel vs gas presented any unique challenges for someone wanting to learn all the ins and outs. I also wasn't sure if you could even find junked cars with a diesel.

I appreciate any advice/help

Link Posted: 9/20/2013 2:48:42 PM EST
Small block Chevrolet
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 2:54:07 PM EST
At around 20 years old I bought a 1969 Chevrolet Nova to do just that since the car came with a straight 6 engine. I built a 350 cubic inch engine from scratch. I used heads from a friends old motor, a block from a junker I found in the junkyard, etc. Bought pistons, rings, seals, cam, etc and built away. I even pressed the piston sleeves when I attached the pistons to the connecting rods. Then proceeded to paint the car. Sold it about 5 years and 30,000 miles later. It was still running like a top. If you are looking at an older engine I would look at a Chevrolet small block. Most of the parts are interchangeable between many years and sizes. That was a huge learning experience for me and I still use those skills occasionally when I do work on my vehicles. Best of luck.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 3:07:50 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Green95LX:
Small block Chevrolet
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parts are everywhere and reasonable.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 3:17:02 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/20/2013 3:17:54 PM EST by CARSINC]
I don't even know where to start, I would say a small block Chevy as well.
Maybe a lawn mower engine or a tractor of some sort, I've been tearing these types of things apart and puting them back together since i was 5.
Thats why I say I don't know where to start I work on cars everyday including diesel and they are sooo different model to model watching a video
really would give you the same info. You can't compare a small block chevy to modern motors they are so different.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 3:22:35 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 3:48:50 PM EST
2.7 Chrysler engine. So many parts in that bastard that everything else will seem like childs play. And there are tons of them in the junkyards with bent valves.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 4:18:55 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Toiyabe:
Volkswagen 2.0 ABA.
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the motor of my heart.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 4:39:24 PM EST
I would say an in-line 4 or 6 cylinder engine.

I'll go further and say get a push rod engine to start.


I started at the age of 8 with a transparent plastic model kit of a V-8 engine. Everything on that engine functioned. Who knows, it may have been a small block Chevy.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 4:48:05 PM EST
I would try to scoop up a non running lawn mower off of Craigslist. They can be free or very close to it. It may be something really simple like cleaning the carb and new gas to something much more involved like a total engine rebuild. Short of a bent shaft from the blade striking something really solid, pretty much any mower should be fairly easily repairable.

Cheap, easy, and doesn't take up much room and the price of failure is low.

Sell on Craigslist when running, repeat until you get good at it and then move on the a car engine.

Keep in mind lots of the junkyard engines will be perfectly fine and were running engines when the entered the junk yard surrounded by a wrecked body. There would be little point to opening one up unless it was otherwise needed. A simple and quick compression check will tell you a lot about an engine.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 5:31:20 PM EST
Find a Ford n-series tractor (9n, 2n, or 8n). It's a dead-simple 4-cylinder and will give you a good idea of the basic rebuild process. If you can find a relatively clean one it should only take replacing the sleeves and bearings, but you can get much more in depth if you'd like (machine work).
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 6:41:52 PM EST
I agree on the lawn mower engine, except the part about it not running.

find a cheap one that starts and runs ok.

then take that one apart.
read about timing and how to set up the cam.

put it back together and see if it runs.

it will give you the basics of putting together a 4 stroke motor, without all the hassles of extra cylinders, or a distributor, and accessories.

you kiss a piston in a lawn mower engine and you aren't out too much to replace it.

while the same is relativly true in an engine, it can become profoundly more expensive, if you kiss all 8.
not to mention the time it takes to take apart a v8.

head removal alone is a pain on any car engine/liquid cooled.
you waste oil, and coolant. etc..

anyway, it is a cheap way to start and cheap if you make a mistake.

less consumables when you want to try again, and less time to try again.
Link Posted: 9/20/2013 7:44:15 PM EST
Small block Chevy or Ford. Keep in mind rebuilding a motor is less about assembling parts and more about the finer details such as adjusting valve lash properly, setting ring gaps, checking bearing clearances, balancing the rotating assembly, etc. The block would need to be machined and cylinders cross hatched if you plan to run it. A good torque wrench is critical as well. Happy hunting and enjoy.
Link Posted: 9/21/2013 5:09:02 AM EST
Appreciate all help. Just going through and seeing what I can get my hands on.
Link Posted: 9/22/2013 3:20:11 AM EST
I second the lawnmower or other small engine route. Small, cheap, don't need specialized tools, etc. Pick up a couple cheap or free on CL, learn the ropes, then trade in for something a little larger.

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Link Posted: 9/22/2013 6:58:55 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/22/2013 7:00:06 AM EST by viktor]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Green95LX:
Small block Chevrolet
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Have done a couple Ford SB's, a couple Chevy SB's, and a Chevy LB

a nice smallblock is what you want.
Link Posted: 9/22/2013 9:33:11 AM EST
Ford 300 inline six
Link Posted: 9/22/2013 1:18:46 PM EST
18436572...

another vote for a small block chevrolet
Link Posted: 9/22/2013 4:22:24 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By hotrod_sxty8:
18436572...

another vote for a small block chevrolet
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That is also Mopar firing order.

I find that overhauling a small block Chrysler is easier (though more expensive) than the SBC. Manly because on the LA series the rockers are on a common shaft so there is no adjustment needed just put the rockers in the right order and bolt down the shafts.
Link Posted: 9/22/2013 8:22:45 PM EST
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Originally Posted By DieselEngineer:
I second the lawnmower or other small engine route. Small, cheap, don't need specialized tools, etc. Pick up a couple cheap or free on CL, learn the ropes, then trade in for something a little larger.

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile
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third
Link Posted: 9/23/2013 8:51:38 AM EST
Small block Chevy. Parts store engine stand and a book on small block Chevy from book store.



Have fun.
Link Posted: 9/23/2013 9:00:29 AM EST
Small Block chevy or a air cooled vw 1600cc.
Link Posted: 9/23/2013 2:39:19 PM EST
Small block chevy, carburated VW bug also has some fairly reasonable part prices.
Link Posted: 9/23/2013 7:10:57 PM EST
8N is nice and simple, but will spoil you for everything more complex....

there is a slight trick to the electrical that can drive you nuts though...
Link Posted: 9/24/2013 12:09:04 PM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Orion_Shall_Rise:
8N is nice and simple, but will spoil you for everything more complex....

there is a slight trick to the electrical that can drive you nuts though...
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I like peoples faces when I roll them in half to swap the clutch
Link Posted: 9/26/2013 5:52:26 AM EST
carbed small block chevy......a dime a dozen, cheap and easy to find and so are parts. buy a how to book read it and start tearing the engine down and enjoy. i have no formal training but have been a wrench turner since i could hold one and i still learn something new all the time. i have built myself some crazy vehicles that turn heads and get me alot of compliments over the years. do i end up taking longer to do some things then it would for an professional mechanic to do them....sure, do i learn some things the hard and expensive way....unfortunatly yes i do but thats part of how i learn
Link Posted: 9/27/2013 3:33:02 AM EST
SBC / Ford 302 / Chrysler 318 or 360. All cheap, parts plentiful, and all similar enough to be ... well ... similar!

Followed by a very distant second of Chevy 4.3 or Chrysler 3.9.

Link Posted: 9/28/2013 2:36:41 AM EST
Originally Posted By DieselRob:
how to work on cars. I love the shit out of tinkering/anything mechanical in nature.
Say I wanted to search junkyards far and wide for a motor to buy, tear apart and rebuild just to see how everything flows together...
What engine would you recommend? I am a partial to diesels, but wasn't sure if diesel vs gas presented any unique challenges for someone wanting to learn all the ins and outs. I also wasn't sure if you could even find junked cars with a diesel.
I appreciate any advice/help
View Quote

the basic problem with some of the "get a small block" advice given above is that you will have a difficult time running your rebuilt engine without a rolling chassis or a dedicated test stand to run it in. so unless you have the room for a old pickup truck, or have the long term goal of having an engine test stand (complete with fan cooled radiator and such), you should consider an engine rebuild scenario which doesn't require so much space/investment to test the end product.

for example, if you want to learn about engines you can pick up a used-and-abused Suzuki DRZ400 motorcycle. the bike is cheap, and parts are widely available for the water cooled single cylinder OHC engine. the nice part is that everything you need to test your rebuild is right there, and you can put the engine under load as well. and of course you can sell the finished product easily, since folks can test drive it.

another on-the-cheap approach is to find a blown up Scag/Exmark/etc zero-turn mower. these are premium commercial landscape ZT mowers which use Kubota, Honda, Yanmar, or Kawasaki gas and diesel engines. the lawn guys run these things 6 days a week, 10 hours a day, and i don't know if you know many lawn guys but sometimes basic maintenance takes a back seat to beer, girls, and football games. so finding a bad engine isn't usually a problem, but i don't think you will find a cheap rolling chassis too easily since they are generally "re-powered" with a new engine.

the side benefit of a ZT (or hydrostatic tractor) rebuild it that you can learn about hydraulics as well, since a ZT is basically an engine coupled to a hydraulic pump. the output of the pump is plumbed to a set of valves and a set of motors (including the wheel drive and blade spindles). if you are looking for well-paying employment, knowing both engines and hydraulics is one way to do it.

ar-jedi
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 1:03:31 AM EST
350 Chevy. Get a hold of a copy of the boxwrench builder dvd. Shows you how to do it start to finish. While its not the end all be all, and nothing can replace experience, its the most comprehensive instruction I've seen outside of a classroom
Link Posted: 10/27/2013 9:25:38 AM EST
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 9:56:11 AM EST
Perfect starting point.

Not gay porn...
Link Posted: 10/29/2013 10:04:34 AM EST
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By winddummy82:

parts are everywhere and reasonable.
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Originally Posted By winddummy82:
Originally Posted By Green95LX:
Small block Chevrolet

parts are everywhere and reasonable.



Agree, but it is best to watch someone do it with you the first time.
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