Need to replace rear main seals 57 belair do you have to remove the engine
It is easiest to do with the engine out, but you should have enough clearance with frame crossmember to extract the pan. Number 1 cylinder may need to be at bottom dead center to clear the counterweights. And the center steering link may need to be removed. Pay careful attention to the oil pump and oil pickup at the rear of the engine.
You would loosen all of the main caps and allow the crank to drop about 1/8 of an inch. There is a tooth that holds the rope seal in place, so you need to be patient. There used to be a tool called a "Sneaky Pete" which was actually a couple tools made just for changing the rope seals with engine in the car. The loop with a tiny corkscrew end is the removal tool and dropping the crank that little bit allows the old seal to clear that retaiing tooth.
Soak the new rope seal in 30 weight oil overnight, and squeeze of excess. The graphite is supposed to be impregnated into the rope, and it is supposed to sit in the groove behind the "slinger" ring of the crankshaft. Form the new seal to the lower rear cap so it has the approximate shape to slip in along the groove. The other tool with a gripper claw grips onto the rope and the end with a loop is where the metal handle fits into. Feed the wire end with the gripper through the seal grove so it is hanging down, then clip the new seal to the teeth then slowly draw the seal into the groove. Rotating the crank as the seal is installed will help a lot. If the seal only goes in halfway and stops or tears off the gripper, the crankshaft needs to be lowered a little bit more. And try again.
Once the upper seal is in place, raise the crank back into place, put the new rope section in the lower bearing cap, and form it into the grooce and then trim the rope with maybe 1/64 to 1/32 of an inch showing..You want a slight amount of crush without it getting between the block and the bearing cap. The upper rope seal should be trimmed just proud of the block casting as well. The seal ends should remian clean, but you may want to put a smear of silicone on the back edge of the cap keep it away from the seal.and install the rear cap. and tighten just snug, rotate the crankshaft (always in the direction of normal rotation) a couple of times, and then torque all caps alternately. reinstall oil pump and install the pan after placing all gaskets in correct location and making sure the front and pan gasket pieces are not reversed with each other. Instal and tighten pan, and if the center link needed to be removed, reinstall it with new cotter pins.
When you do this, you need to watch the dampener to make sure that the radial rotation when loosening the caps does not dislodge the front seal or deform it.
If you use the rubber seal instead, the sneeky pete may or may not work for you because the tool was not made for the rubber lip seal.
With the rubber lip seal, the procedure is the same except keep the seal dry and clean as you will be putting only a slight dab of silicone on the ends. The rubber seal is supposed to sit staggered in relation the block machining, so one end will be out about 1/4 inch and the corrosponding offset should exist on the lower seal when installed, the seal ends are not in line with machined surface the cap bolts to.
Most importantly, make the lip is facing inward on both halves ( crankcase pressurizes from blow by, and if the lip faces inward, the pressure forces the lip tighter to the crankshaft making a better seal.
Oct 06, 2012 |
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