Lotus Elan

My first engine rebuild

PostPost by: MarkDa » Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:44 pm

Is it worthwhile getting the tube between engine and gauge full of oil?
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Sun Feb 11, 2018 2:21 pm

I could not get oil pressure after a strip down and dare not try starting it. That was just cranking on the starter motor with plugs out.
After advice on this forum I smeared Vaseline on the inside of the oil pump and then got low pressure very soon when cranking. After that and now having some confidence, I started the engine and oil pressure came up quickly.
Best of luck
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PostPost by: 2cams70 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 2:28 pm

The critical oil pathway to get things started is from the oil pickup in the sump through to the pump itself. What happens after the pump has no bearing on whether it primes initially - eg. pumping oil into galleries is largely a waste of time.

Did you oil the pump rotors before fitting? If not remove the pump. Remove the oil filter and check that the pressure relief valve is fully closed and not stuck half way. Most of the aftermarket pumps available now aren't of a high standard and it's not all that unusual to find a stuck PRV. If you neglected to oil the rotors originally pour some clean engine oil into the inlet and outlet ports of the pump whilst rotating by hand to ensure a good internal oil coverage. No need for Vaseline or Graphogen or anything else - in fact oil is best. Refit the oil pump and filter ensuring the filter is pre-filled with oil.

Now take a long and very hard think. Did you remember to install all the oil gallery plugs? Was the oil pickup pipe a tight interference fit in the block? (if the later press in type). Was the oil pickup pipe sealing washer correctly installed and was the pickup tightened down securely? (if the earlier screw in type). If the answer was no to any of these questions or there is any other doubt about either the plugs or pickup go back and check.

If the answer was yes to all of these questions just go ahead and start the engine as normal. Don't worry about endless cranking with the plugs out. Provided you properly lubricated all the bearing surfaces during assembly there is negligible risk of any damage. As soon as the engine fires check for oil pressure. If no oil pressure within 3-4 seconds of starting shut the engine down IMMEDIATELY and go back to the "Take a long and very hard think" section dismantling the engine further as may be required.
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PostPost by: Concrete-crusher » Sun Feb 11, 2018 4:30 pm

Vaseline seemed to do the trick 20psi on the starter. Only problem I decided to tap the gauge glass don,t know why but it fell off :(

Anyway next job put the carbs on and start.

Then maybe look for a new gauge unless some glue works.

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