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The "Whatever" Project

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  • DanStokes
    replied
    Had a friend many moons ago who ran Hilborns on a SBC in a (IIRC) '60 'Vette. He street drove it some and I'm pretty sure he added a bit of castor oil to the methanol. Lubricity of methanol was way less than zero. Just a fuzzy memory.

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  • dave.g.in.gansevoort
    replied
    And I just realized something else. Way back in the modifieds days I had to silicon caulk around the bases of the tubes to keep dirt out of the engine. It was a messy time consuming process, that had to be done every time the injectors needed to be tweaked. For those who have never played with injection on methanol, one thing that is a constant concern is throttles sticking. I still have 4 rolls of 0.001 feeler stock used to set the plates.

    The procedure that I learned was to put a strip of the feeler stock down each throttle body throat, loosen the butterfly screws, disconnect the cross body linkage so the throttles would close on the feeler stock, and gently tap on each throttle plate with my finger setting them snugly against the feeler stock. Then carefully tighten the throttle plate screws, making sure that the plates didn't shift. Once that was done, the cross body linkage connecting the 2 sides was adjusted so that the center to center distance of the heim joints matched the distance between the two throttle shafts.

    At that point the linkage arms were set against the idle stop and the linkage tightened up. Then there's a procedure for setting the initial barrel valve position. Once that is done, connect up a leakdown tester and leak the barrel valve to 9 to 12 percent, I don't remember the exact number off the top of my head, but it was in that range. Then and only then we'd start the engine and go thru the final tune. Once the engine is up to temperature, final adjustment of the cross body linkage was done. This required 2 people, 1 doing the adjusting, and 1 standing 15 or so feet in front of the car listening to the exhaust. As the cross body linkage was adjusted very slowly and slightly, the person out front could hear the exhaust beat from side to side and would signal which side was working. The effort was to get the exhaust note the same.

    Then on to the barrel valve. It was adjusted longer or shorter by no more than a flat on the hex link to get the throttle response instantaneous when cracked open fast.

    So here's the good news: it wasn't a weekly task. Only when something was changed on the engine that might affect the injectors. Which was a good thing, because it was a little bit time consuming and couldn't be rushed. In general the weekly maintenance was just pull the nozzles and soak them in acetone to clean them up. And with the hex cap screws out, carefully blow out any schmuts. Of course there was/is a procedure for pickling the engine on gasoline after a race night. That also was time consuming, but necessary. And we did it before loading up to go home. Of course in those days waste fluid disposal was a lot simpler. But we won't get into that...

    So back to the beginning, and sealing up the tubes. Now this design will allow a gasket under each tube pair. Cut them out from velumoid gasket material and Bob's your uncle.

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  • dave.g.in.gansevoort
    replied
    Originally posted by DanStokes View Post
    Good luck! Or you could buy a set - but where's the fun in that?
    Therein lies the rub. Hilborn was bought by Holley. Their old stock was bought by an injection specialist. He doesn't have any more of the correct size tubes. And a couple of other sources didn't either. The 2-1/16 size in the 2 bolt configuration is a little bit of an oddity. I know of 2 other sets in the U.S. in working condition. And they're certainly not going to sell me their tubes. So I'll make them myself. And today I had a breakthrough!

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ID:	1342622 Here's some pictures of the concept. A flat flange formed on the bottom of the tubes and held down with a retainer plate. The retainer plates will be made in 2 pieces from 16 gauge steel plate. Here's a picture of the the template I've made to layout the retainers tomorrow.
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ID:	1342623 I'll contour the final retainers to match the shape of the injectors. They will be split in 2 along the long central axis after the holes for the tubes are bored. And the best thing? No welding, brazing, or soldering! To form the bottom flanges I repurposed the fixture I made to use for adhering the bolt bosses on the tubes. I ground the bottom of the fixture flat and was able to form the bottom flange to a nice square 90 degrees. Here's the fixture.
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ID:	1342624 I'll make the flanges larger in the final configuration so that the retainerplates will be fully supported at the screw holes. Lots of work, but it should be worth overdoing...

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  • DanStokes
    replied
    Good luck! Or you could buy a set - but where's the fun in that?
    Last edited by DanStokes; September 17, 2023, 07:37 PM.

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  • dave.g.in.gansevoort
    replied
    You know that feeling you get when you just can't let something go? Well, I suppose you all do, so here's mine today. Those ram tubes! I have tried everything to get those little tiny itsy bitsy bolt bosses on the tubes. I didn't like the looks of any of my attempts to do it. So today, while I was looking through some stuff in the basement, I came across a Hilborn catalog from 1976, and of course I had to glance thru it.

    Back then Hilborn had an updated version of the injection manifolds that angled the ram tubes right from the get go. The throttle bodies were a bit taller, and the flange base was angled enough to allow K&N filters to be used without having to angle the bottom of the ram tubes like I did to my set. And instead of the bolt bosses on the tubes the bottom of the tubes are flanged. What I couldn't tell from the pictures was if the flanges were formed in the bottom of the tubes or were fabricated separately and fastened together. I decided on the latter, and have made a template to fabricate 4 flanges, only after making sure that the hole saw I have made the correctly sized hole for the tubes to fit thru.

    Now Hilborns tubes back then were a separate flange for each tube, again because they angle away from each other. Mine don't, so 1 flange for each 2 tubes makes sense. But it was going on 4 p.m. and we hadn't had lunch yet, so maybe later today after NASCAR is over...

    Pictures tomorrow. And just for the fun of it, I'm also going to make a flange on the bottom of a spare tube, similar to the flair, but flat. That may actually be the best way to go...

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  • DanStokes
    replied
    Originally posted by dave.g.in.gansevoort View Post
    Only if I can find a manifold and 4g carburetor. Talk about past tech. Even the wcfb is newer if I'm remembering correctly. But if I put the old Hilborns on, could I call it a 58 Corvette fuelie motor?
    Well, you COULD........

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  • dave.g.in.gansevoort
    replied
    Only if I can find a manifold and 4g carburetor. Talk about past tech. Even the wcfb is newer if I'm remembering correctly. But if I put the old Hilborns on, could I call it a 58 Corvette fuelie motor?

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  • DanStokes
    replied
    Originally posted by dave.g.in.gansevoort View Post

    Not to mention the cheap Pacific rim k-noc-k offs. The 283 has the offset valve cover bolt holes. I found 3 sources in about 30 seconds of searching. They look almost exactly like the real set I've been dragging around the country with me for years, except for the o. The real ones are not perfect. The phonies look too good...

    The next swap meet I get to I'll be looking for Chevy stamped steel covers in decent shape with the offset holes. I just can't pretend it's a Corvette engine...
    Oh, why not? The 2GC gives it away as a REAL Corvette!

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  • dave.g.in.gansevoort
    replied
    Originally posted by silver_bullet View Post

    GM performance kept selling them for decades! still manufactured under GM license: https://paceperformance.com/i-648574...corvette+valve
    Not to mention the cheap Pacific rim k-noc-k offs. The 283 has the offset valve cover bolt holes. I found 3 sources in about 30 seconds of searching. They look almost exactly like the real set I've been dragging around the country with me for years, except for the o. The real ones are not perfect. The phonies look too good...

    The next swap meet I get to I'll be looking for Chevy stamped steel covers in decent shape with the offset holes. I just can't pretend it's a Corvette engine...

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  • silver_bullet
    replied
    Originally posted by DanStokes View Post
    IIRC, fitting a set of those cast aluminum Corvette valve covers made it official. Again, I wonder how many more sets of those VCs there were than Corvettes?
    GM performance kept selling them for decades! still manufactured under GM license: https://paceperformance.com/i-648574...corvette+valve

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  • DanStokes
    replied
    'Zakly.

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  • dave.g.in.gansevoort
    replied
    So in other words, if I put a set of Corvette valve covers on that 58 283, I'll have a for real, by god, Corvette engine. Then I could sell it for a huge markup, and swear on a stack of bibles that it came out of a Corvette, even though there's a 2 barrel on it, and the numbers say that it's a passenger car engine originally bolted to a slip-n-slide Powerglide.

    So all these years later, I'vegot another Corvette engine! Woohoo

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  • fatguyzinc
    replied
    yous guys might be onto something here, im pretty sure every smallblock ive
    ever looked at was a "corvette engine"--at least according to the seller.....

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  • DanStokes
    replied
    IIRC, fitting a set of those cast aluminum Corvette valve covers made it official. Again, I wonder how many more sets of those VCs there were than Corvettes?

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  • dave.g.in.gansevoort
    replied
    Originally posted by DanStokes View Post
    I've oft wondered how many more "Corvette" engines there are vs how many Corvettes were built. I'm guessing at least twice as many.
    Yes, me too. Every 327-300 horse engine must have been Corvette engines. I had a couple of them way back in 1972, stuffed into a CJ5. Of course when I got them from Drake's Automotive Salvage Yard (run by Mr. Drake, the one armed bandit, lost his arm in WW2 in a tank. My father took care of him in later years stopping an insidious infection that kept nibbling away at his arm...btw my brother and I were treated so well by him, something about that), they came out of an Impala wagon, and another full size car, don't remember what it was. But by god I'd swear on a stack of bibles they came out of Corvettes, not that it mattered, I blew up 4 engines in a row in the Jeep. The original F-head 4 banger, followed by the 327 out of my first dirt car, followed by those 2 Corvette engines that came out of passenger cars, but by god I'd swear on a stack of bibles they came out of a Corvette.

    Finally got a 283 from an early 60's passenger car, 2 barrel and all, from Mr. Drake. He recommended that I swap a better set of the heads I had onto it, as well as cam, lifters, and timing chain stuff. While it was apart, I cleaned up the sludge and grime, and new gaskets etc. It was the last one I had to swap into it. It lasted 13 months until I traded it for a 67 SS396 Chevelle.

    Built a 327 for the SS, a 365 horse fitted block, over the counter. With 492 angle plug heads, 754 off road cam and lifters, Edelbrock Tarantula intake and 700 cfm double pumper Holley. Lots of other expensive stuff. But by god, I'd swear on a stack of bibles t
    it came out of a Corvette...

    So counting the engine in my 72 Corvette, I've had lots of Corvette engines, 6 at least counting a couple of others. There must be a lot of Vettes with non-original engines out there!

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