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Oil pressure issue with new ERL 434ci engine.

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Old 05-03-2012, 07:13 PM   #1
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Default Oil pressure issue with new ERL 434ci engine.

Im going to make a new thread so I can explain a little better what the issues are.

Running a melling HV pump with red spring installed.

Upon initial start up the rear barbell was left out of the block. I had about 45-60 seconds of turning the engine over with the starter then about 30 seconds or so with the engine running to which I was only getting 10psi of oil and no oil to the lifters or top of the engine.

Installed the barbell (and running 10w/40) car started up and immediately had 50psi of oil pressure. Once the car got up to operating temp the oil sat around 18psi of oil at 900rpm idle.(big cam) By 1200 rpms oil pressure is at around 30 and by 2,000 rpms oil pressure at 40. Now with the 10/40 I noticed that while getting on it from 2k to about 6 oil pressure only climbed about 5psi and leveled off around 45psi.

Switched to 20w50. Cold start up oil pressure is around 55-60 and when I rev the engine it shoots to about 80psi. Once the car warms up...18psi of idle and does the exactly same thing as with the 10/40. 40psi by 2k and settles to a max of about 45psi by 6500rpms.

One thing I notice is that cruising at around 3krpm the oil pressure is around 40..and if I apply load to the gas pedal the oil pressure dips about 2psi and stays there till I let off the gas (say from 3-3300) and then it shoots back up about 2-3psi.

I cut open my first and second oil filter and didnt notice anything out of the ordinary. I did however see only 1 extremely tiny chome/copper looking flake and that was it. The first oil change was grey sludge and the second oil change had the bronze dust in it which is normal on the first few oil changes.

I was getting a little bit of blowby out of the valve covers for the first 20 miles or so but it is completely gone now. I also notice I have a pretty bad leak coming from what it looks like could be my rear main seal. When I installed the barbell I didn't RTV the back cover upon putting it back on which is probably responsible for the leak.


Anyone have any input as to what is causing these issues? My first thought would be bearing material...but im reading o-rings could have similar symptoms.
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:01 AM   #2
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I read the other posts and didn't ever see that the build sheet posted for bearing clearances. I will tell you that when I picked up the last motor I had built from Kurt Urban he told me not to be worried if the oil pressure was low (as in 20psi idle).
He stated the clearances were set loose and that it is a non issue. I dont know if you have a problem or not but I would hate to see you waste a bunch of money on something that isn't a problem.
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:21 AM   #3
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30 seconds of running initially, was at idle? If so I'd personally not be worried about anything. The material in your filter is normal for a fresh engine. Relax and enjoy. Definitely fix that leak!
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:24 AM   #4
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If you think those pressures are low, then you don't want to see what a GM service manual says about the minimum psi per 1000 rpm increments
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:28 AM   #5
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My concern isn't the idle pressure it's the fact that it climbs to 40 by 2k then from there only goes up 5psi.


I had to modify the bracket on my pickup tube to get it to sit properly in the pan and the 2 bolt flange that bolts it to the oil pump isn't welded to the pickup. It's free. It's possible that the pickup tube is in the oil pump at a very slight angle. Could this cause that even if the o ring is in correct?
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:41 AM   #6
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Your fine! If you had a problem it would show at idle, not so much at high rpm. Over clearanced bearings or worn bearings will show VERY low pressure at idle. Your at 55-60 cold and 18-20 warm at idle. That's normal. The flakes in your filter are normal. I've been there. I used to run Peterson 400 series take apart filters, and I remember driving as fast as I could to my engine builder, with flakes in my filter, only to have him laugh at me. Fresh engines do that. Most people have no idea, because they never open their filters.
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:46 AM   #7
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So you're saying only a 5psi increase is normal?
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Old 05-04-2012, 11:21 AM   #8
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You've got 45 psi at 6000 rpm. You do not have a problem. The clearances were probably not setup at "race specs"...there is a difference. Some like tighter, some like less. Can you put an oil temp gauge in? If not, drive the car for 30 minutes, and then try to shoot the pan with an ir temp gun. This will not be as accurate as a gauge but will give you an idea of where your oil temp is.
200 to 230 would be normal. Bearing issues would show much higher temps.
I honestly think your fine, though. Really.
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Old 05-04-2012, 07:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snyper View Post
My concern isn't the idle pressure it's the fact that it climbs to 40 by 2k then from there only goes up 5psi.


I had to modify the bracket on my pickup tube to get it to sit properly in the pan and the 2 bolt flange that bolts it to the oil pump isn't welded to the pickup. It's free. It's possible that the pickup tube is in the oil pump at a very slight angle. Could this cause that even if the o ring is in correct?
Could well be that your current pump's flow is maxxed out because the bearing clearances are leaking it all by from that point upward. Maybe installing a pump with more flow output will give you the peace-of-mind you're looking for...
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Old 05-04-2012, 07:52 PM   #10
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Default Exactly the same

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snyper View Post
My concern isn't the idle pressure it's the fact that it climbs to 40 by 2k then from there only goes up 5psi.


I had to modify the bracket on my pickup tube to get it to sit properly in the pan and the 2 bolt flange that bolts it to the oil pump isn't welded to the pickup. It's free. It's possible that the pickup tube is in the oil pump at a very slight angle. Could this cause that even if the o ring is in correct?
Issues I found on my LQ4. Went to put the pan on, [LH8], new pickup. Had to do a bit of modifying to make the pickup fit in the pump. I added a second bolt w/ a home made collar.
As for psi.....My stock, ported LQ, [05 H2], pump holds those same pressures..
The original, H2 pan/pickup had the loose collar on the tube.
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Old 05-05-2012, 04:39 PM   #11
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Looks like the bearings were bad the whole time.........

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Old 05-05-2012, 04:48 PM   #12
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Sending these pics to ERL?
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Old 05-05-2012, 04:51 PM   #13
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Yes. What bothers me is oil pressure was low from day one. What would of caused the thrust bearing to go? My car is a 6 speed.
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Old 05-05-2012, 05:52 PM   #14
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That's amazing! 30 seconds? Wow. I've had this conversation over in the manual tranny section, but if you have an adjustable hydraulic throw out bearing that is set up incorrectly, meaning that it set up tight, it will cook a thrust bearing. Not saying that is what happened here, but it's definately possible. My machinist has a $3500 crankshaft that he uses for a doorstop, that got cooked due to throw out bearing being set up wrong. Seen others also. I'd definately consult ERL.
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Old 05-05-2012, 05:56 PM   #15
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Stock throw out bearing. I was told by McLeod that I need at least .050" of play between the TOB being completely open and the clutch fingers. I have .080"
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Old 05-05-2012, 05:59 PM   #16
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Sounds like a build issue to me. Sorry man.
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Old 05-05-2012, 06:05 PM   #17
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Not trying to pour salt in your wounds here, but hopefully this thread will teach all who read this that it is absolutely imperative that you prelube your new engines! Yes it's a pain, but so worth it.
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Old 05-05-2012, 07:12 PM   #18
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This crap make me very very uneasy about my ERL motor (If and when I get it).
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:29 AM   #19
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oil starvation.
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Old 05-06-2012, 06:50 AM   #20
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The 30 seconds with little to no oil pressure is not what killed it. It the miles after you had some. The thrust got killed because the bearing was dead. They need oil, Path of least resistance.

Prelube is a must. You really need more oil pump and also need to make sure the pump is installed correctly. Sounds like you may have some pan issues also.

Hope you didn't kill the main caps with heat like mine did.

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Old 05-06-2012, 06:50 AM
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