Bits & pieces engine stand

I need an engine dolly so that I can access the back of the engine to install and dial in the bell housing. The block and bell housing are not a matched set from the factory so a dial in needs to be done to ensure that the transmission is directly in line with the crankshaft. If it isn’t the trans will destroy the engine-to-trans flex plate in short order.

These are most of the pieces needed to make up an engine dolly. Just some old project wood lying around, four used 4″ dolly wheels and some decking screws.

I used the edge of the floor mat in front of my work bench as a straight line to start from. The cross pieces on the bottom will hold the dolly wheels. They are each 26″ long. the two top rails are each 33″ long and are exactly 20″ apart measuring from the outside edge of one to the outside edge of the other. Using a tape measure and square I got everything lined up pretty close. I used a miter saw to cut the wood. That way I got good straight edges and uniform lengths. When all was square I put one screw through each top and bottom board – rechecked the measurements and squareness – then put two more screws in each corner.

Next I flipped the base over and started putting on the dolly wheels. I needed some big screws with large heads to hold down the four wheel bracket corners.

I’m putting the brackets right to the edge of the boards. To prevent splitting I pre-drilled for each screw. This piece of wood came from our old farm house when we did some remodeling. It is likely close to 100 years old and super dry and hard. Even with pre-drilling the wood was close to splitting.

Dolly wheels installed. I used two locking wheels on opposite corners to hold the engine from moving if I needed to.

Time to put the uprights in place. These will be mounting spots for the engine’s front mounting brackets. They are 4X4 pieces. The tops are 2″ wide with the rest shaved away at a 45 deg. angle. I needed a couple of pieces of wood for gussets to help hold the uprights in place. I also have a short piece of wood to join the two uprights. The uprights are mounted on the top 2X4 pieces and are kept exactly 20″ apart (outside edges)

Uprights in place with gussets and one long deck screw on the inside of each. The cross piece is 8″ below the top to make sure the front the of pan will not hit.

The rear cross piece and uprights will be fitted once the engine is resting on the front uprights and still being held up with the engine hoist. The rear uprights will fit along the pan lip near the rear of the engine. I will taper the tops of the uprights so that they fit inside the pan lip and rest on the pan bolt heads.

Next, moving the engine from the engine stand to the dolly.

Getting it right

The 5/16″ spacer in front and the correctly machined 3/8″ spacer behind. Big difference.

A little flat filing front and back to remove the machining lumps from clamping the aluminum too much. The machinist didn’t believe me when I said it was aluminum!

Pulley alignment looks a whole lot better.

The straight edge test proved the alignment to be pretty well spot on. The slight gap at the top disappeared when I test fitted the exhaust manifold-to-pump bracket.

Lower pulley and fan pulley in place. Still need final paint on the lower pulley. I will need to turn the engine some to align the bell housing so I’ll hold off on the paint until that is done.

The PS pump kit should arrive any day now. So that will be the next job.

PS pump test fit

First I needed to get a donor PS pump ready. I wasn’t going to test install a greasy, dirty used pump on my nice newly painted engine! Also pictured are a used PS reach rod, ram frame bracket and the pump bracket that attaches to front exhaust manifold screw.

Parts all nicely cleaned up. I will do a pump rebuild later and sandblast/clean and paint. For now I’ll just re-assemble for my alignment check.

Pump fitted and belted to the front crank pulley. I made sure the pump was in the correct position with all the flat washers in place (next to the manifold ) on the pump adjusting arm and lower pump mounting studs. But there are problems.

The crank pulley is pulling back on the belt. It needs to come out some. Another check of the parts book shows a special pulley for the Jet Thrust engines. The one I’m using (#533890) for standard V8s is different from the proper one #1557898. I checked with a few online Studebaker vendors for one, but no luck.

Regular Stude V8 engines used a spacer (#534294) behind the PS pulley to line up with the PS pump. I happen to have a used one so I put it on to see how things would look.

Now the crank pulley is too far forward. OK, I can work with this.

I held a straight edge across the lower pulley and checked the alignment difference with the PS pulley. The gap you see was about 3/16″. If I remove that much from the crank pulley spacer Then the pulley’s should line up nicely.

I’ll have to send the pulley out to be shaved before I can continue with the install of the intake and PS pump.

Here’s the cut down crank pulley. I put it on the engine but it didn’t line up. Somehow the machinist and me got our wires crossed. Instead of removing 3/16″ he cut the pulley back to 3/16″ so now it is too thin! As luck would have it I have another so I will take it out and have it done along with a rebuild of two king pins for the front end work I’ll be doing during the engine swap.

In the meantime the never-ending cleaning, sanding and painting goes on!

Water pump & manifold install

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Tools for the job. Scraper to remove any paint on the edges of the gasket surfaces, paint thinner to clear off any oil, alignment studs, Perfect seal for the gaskets and thread sealant for the screws. And of course, an inch pound torque wrench.

Alignment studs in place. I needed a shorty on the lower left side of the block so that the manifold could clear the fuel pump housing boss.

I was able to coat the lower gaskets and stick them to the manifold.

But the upper gaskets are a thinner paper and wouldn’t stick. They did stick OK to the engine when helped by the alignment studs.

Water pump and manifold in place. All screws torqued to 200 in lbs including the two PS mounting studs in the top right of the photo.

Next I’ll have a go at test fitting a PS pump.