Help Restarting A Motor Sitting For Years

Discussion in 'Fox 5.0 Mustang Tech' started by blwnazstang, May 9, 2013.


  1. blwnazstang

    blwnazstang New Member

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    Hey guys it has been about 10 years since I have been around and glad to be back in the scene. Well, I picked up another fox so it is time to start playing. Previously I built a motor for my 89 track car then pulled the motor before selling the car. I ended up selling the motor to my brother who threw it in his 65. The car has been sitting for a long time and I believe it has been at least 8-9 years since the motor has been started. I guess what I am wondering is what needs to be done before starting the motor? It is an aluminum headed 306 out of an 89 Mustang. What could be damaged after all this time? Would the valve spring need to be replaced after sitting all this time, rings, bearings? What are the chances of heads being corroded through? The motor had a few hundred miles when he recieved it and he might have put 2k max after he got the motor in his car. The motor should still be pretty tight, but what condition would the bores and etc be after all this time sitting normally in CA weather?
    I have read a couple of different forums about what to do but somethings are questionable. Everything from running trans fluid to completely filling the motor with oil. I have sense enough to prime before cranking the motor but what else should happen? I have never done this before and I had put a lot of money into this build so I would like to not do any damage when starting. Thanks in advance
     
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  2. JordanB21

    JordanB21 Active Member

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    Well, in my similar situation (4 years since the engine had been started), I changed the oil, the transmission fluid, rebuilt the carb and new battery. A fresh tune up wouldn't be a bad idea, spark plugs and wires, rotor and cap.

    In addition, I doubt much has occured since then and now and it's more than likely ready to be started if everything is set up in a car. That car started up just fine, for me, and it is the original 1970s block with 80k miles on it, all original. The most trouble I had with the fuel pump wasn't right and the lines were all beat.

    oh and gas tank, trash in it too.
     
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  3. jrichker

    jrichker StangNet's favorite TOOL SN Certified Technician Founding Member

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    1.) Change the oil and filter.
    2.) Buy several quarts of Marvel Mystery oil, you're going to need it.
    3.) Remove both valve covers and pour the Marvel Mystery oil over all the valve train.
    4.) Pour about a cup of the Marvel Mystery oil down the intake, doing your best to see that you get several ounces in each intake runner. It may take more than just one cup.
    5.) Remove all the spark plugs and pour 4-6 ounces of Marvel Mystery oil in each spark plug
    6.) Remove the distributor and use a 1/4" hex socket to turn the pump counter clock wise (same direction as distributor rotation) until you see oil pressure (an external gage is a great help long about now). And keep turning for about 30 sec after you see the pressure come up. A reversible drill is the best tool to use to turn the 1/4" socket. The pressure should come up to about 50-80psi with cold oil.
    7.) If the engine is on an engine stand, then turn it upside down a couple of times to let the oil run all over the internal parts.
    8.) Use a 15/16" socket on the harmonic balancer bolt to gently rock the engine back and forth to break loose any stuck parts. After several rocking attempts, see if it will rotate at least 10 turns of the crankshaft freely. With the spark plugs out, crank the engine over using the electric starter. Crank the engine for enough time to see the oil pressure come up on the oil pressure gauge.
    9.) Put the spark plugs back in and attempt to start the engine. Don't be surprised if you oil foul some of the spark plugs attempting to start the engine. A can of starting ether may be helpful.
    10.) Run the engine 5 hours at varying speeds. Dain the oil, replace the filter. I recommend that you cut the filter can open and look for metal shavings. If you don't find any evidence of metal, you are good to go.


    Some additional help for putting the distributor back in place since you will need to remove it to prime and pre-oil the engine...

    Putting the distributor back in and setting the timing.


    You can forget about anything beyond this point if you don't have access to a timing light. You will never get the timing set right without one.



    Putting the distributor back in is fairly simple. Pull #1 sparkplug, put your finger in the sparkplug hole, crank the engine until you feel compression. Then line up the TDC mark on the balancer with the pointer on the engine block.

    The distributor starts out with the #1 plug wire lined up at about 12:00 with you facing it. Align the rotor to about 11:00, since it will turn clockwise as it slides into place.

    Align the distributor rotor up with the #1 position marked on the cap, slide the distributor down into the block, (you may have to wiggle the rotor slightly to get the gear to engage) and then note where the rotor is pointing.
    If it still lines up with #1 position on the cap, install the clamp and bolt. If not, pull it out and turn 1 tooth forwards or backwards and try again. Put the #1 spark plug back in and tighten it down, put the clamp on the distributor, but don't tighten it too much, as you will have to move the distributor to set the timing. Note that there is no such thing as one tooth off on a 5.0 Mustang. If it doesn't align perfectly with #1 position, you can turn the distributor until it does. The only problem is that if you are too far one way or the other, you can't turn the distributor enough to get the 10-14 degree optimum timing range.


    Setting the timing:
    Paint the mark on the harmonic balancer with paint -choose 10 degrees BTC or 14 degrees BTC or something else if you have NO2 or other power adder. I try to paint TDC red, 10 degrees BTC white and 14 degrees BTC blue.

    10 degrees BTC is towards the drivers side marks.

    Note: setting the timing beyond the 10 degree mark will give you a little more low speed acceleration. BUT you will need to run 93 octane to avoid pinging and engine damage. Pinging is very hard to hear at full throttle, so it could be present and you would not hear it.

    Simplified diagram of what it looks like. Not all the marks are shown for ease of viewing.

    ATC ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' '!' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' BTC
    ---------------- > Direction of Rotation as viewed standing in front of the engine.

    The ' is 2 degrees.
    The ! is TDC
    The ' is 10 degrees BTC
    Set the timing 5 marks BTC. Or if you prefer, 5 marks towards the driver's side to get 10 degrees.

    To get 14 degrees, set it 7 marks BTC. Or if you prefer, 7 marks towards the driver's side to get 14 degrees.

    The paint marks you make are your friends if you do it correctly. They are much easier to see that the marks machined into the harmonic balancer hub.

    At this point hook up all the wires, get out the timing light. Connect timing light up to battery & #1 spark plug. Then start the engine.

    Remove the SPOUT connector (do a search if you want a picture of the SPOUT connector) It is the 2 pin rectangular plug on the distributor wiring harness. Only the EFI Mustang engines have a SPOUT. If yours is not EFI, check for a SPOUT: if you don’t find one, skip any instructions regarding the SPOUT
    Warning: there are only two places the SPOUT should be when you time the engine. The first place is in your pocket while you are setting the timing and the second is back in the harness when you finish. The little bugger is too easy to lose and too hard to find a replacement.

    Start engine, loosen distributor hold down with a 1/2" universal socket. Shine the timing light on the marks and turn the distributor until the mark lines up with the edge of the timing pointer. Tighten down the distributor hold down bolt, Replace the SPOUT connector and you are done.

    The HO firing order is 1-3-7-2-6-5-4-8.
    Non HO firing order is 1-5-4-2-6-3-7-8

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. f8tlfiveo

    f8tlfiveo My wife likes my spool and blow-off valve.

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    Wow... That is prob the "right" way to do it there.
     
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  5. blwnazstang

    blwnazstang New Member

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    Thank you that was very informative. I will go get the car in a few weeks so it gives me time to gather all the supplies, drill, and timing light. Thank you again
     
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  6. 90lxcoupe

    90lxcoupe Mustang Master

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    I would bet the cylinders have some surface rust on them. It all depends how deep you want to get into it. I would replace the valve springs, its cheap, and i would say it needs to be done. I wouldnt worry too much about the surface rust on the bores, it wont be perfect, but it will get you up and running, and having fun with the car, instead of sinking a ton of money into it for little to no performance gain.
     
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  7. 7991LXnSHO

    7991LXnSHO Well-Known Member

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    There is an engine fogging oil for starting up or storing a motor. If it is in the car, I would consider using it again to coat every cylinder. M.M. oil is good stuff too, this is aresol or however spray stuff is spelled. Look for it in a boat shop if not NAPA. If you are lucky, the rings and springs were oiled first and will not be an issue At all.
     
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  8. blwnazstang

    blwnazstang New Member

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    So I should change out the valve springs? I was thinking since some we compressed all this time they might go bad. Springs are less than a couple hundred so I guess that would be cheap insurance compared to what could happen. ...
    Thanks for the info on the spray lubricant, I wonder if any penetrating oil would be sufficient to make sure things were lubricated and loosened up properly
     
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  9. 88gt373

    88gt373 Member

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    +1 on the Marvel..

    that stuff really works and its not expensive. a gallon would be more than enough for two engines. Like JRICHKER said, youll foul out some plugs so get two sets. reason for pouring it in the cyl holes is to coat the rings and the cyl walls so when you do start it up it lubes the rotating assym to prevent damage to the walls, rings, etc. it can get messy but the best way to do it for long lasting results.

    i have broken loose seized 25 year old motors with that stuff. it took a while to let that stuff soak but it worked. it has also help re seat rings on a friends 82 honda motorcycle that hand nearly no compression. after a couple days of soaking, we finally broke the engine loose, ran a comp test, had a dead hole then more MM oil and poof! compression!
     
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  10. 90lxcoupe

    90lxcoupe Mustang Master

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    Like i said, i would change them. If the rockers were loosened up before it sat, you would probably be good, but thats not the case.
     
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  11. 7991LXnSHO

    7991LXnSHO Well-Known Member

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    FOAM is the form this spray oil comes out in! It only took a few days to remember that word.:confused: But it is not like WD-40 that comes out in a spray pattern then goes right to liquid. I suggest using it if you can not rotate the motor, and for sure when parking it for some time.

    The last motor I started that had been parked for 8+ years needed a rebuild all right - 50,000+ miles later with over 100,000 miles on the entire 1960's thing, including the valve springs. I doubt the valve springs will loose tension any more than if they had been periodically used. I also doubt you would have just replaced them if you had used the car for a little or moderately each year. I am more worried about what will happen to the cam if a pre lube with oil pressure is not performed with the oil pump. In my opinion, if it was stored so badly that rust under the valve cover is an issue, you will need more than just springs very soon.
     
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  12. 7991LXnSHO

    7991LXnSHO Well-Known Member

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    See reply above - but to really get the tension off all the valve springs, the retainers, not just the rockers needed to come off. Unless it's a racing motor, I think it will not likely need it. Start 'er up and see what it needs. If it has junk for compression and a flat cam, (less likely with roller lifters, but possible if the roller is seized), you may be wasting time and money.
     
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  13. 90lxcoupe

    90lxcoupe Mustang Master

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    This i know, but there is obviously way more pressure on the springs if the camshaft isnt on the base circle. I do agree that i would get it running first, then do the valvesprings when the motor is known to be good.
     
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  14. 7991LXnSHO

    7991LXnSHO Well-Known Member

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    Some do get more pressure parked part way open. So I guess we are in practical agreement. Now only if his motor is in agreement and runs.
     
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