My plan is to mount the engine from the stand to the frame (no hoist) and without the oil pan installed. I then want to install the new timing set and main seals, inspect/replace if necessary the oil pump.
Keep the engine on the stand for your engine work.
It's hard to turn the engine up-side-down with the frame tagging along!
Fix engine, button up oil pan, then install.
MUCH cleaner that way without the bottom of the engine open to disaster all that time.
My engine is a 1979 I6 258 4.2L
I have a Haynes manual, and it is helpful, but no substitute for experienced advice. so....
More than one manual or 'How To Build' books are good, and there is no substitute for the Factory Service Manual.
My questions are;
Is there anything I should watch out for as far as pulling the oil pump to inspect? any tips?
Pulling the pump is straight forward. Make sure you take time and notice where everything comes from/goes to!
Have you considered the later model 4.0L pump with screw in sump?
It's not a bad upgrade and pretty cheap, all things considered.
Should I loosen all the bearing caps so the crank lowers, and remove the main bearing cap all together to replace the rear main seal? is this safe or will I wreck something?
Loosing mains always comes with some degree of risk.
I've chased in a new rear main without loosing any of the other caps, but it's usually MUCH easier if you give yourself some 'Wiggle' room!
While it's on the engine stand, pulling the crank isn't a bad idea...
You can inspect all the caps, bearings, clean out any crud, maybe throw a new bearing or two at it if needed...
Is there a universaly Ideal way to hold the crank without a special tool while I remove the flywheel bolts,etc...
With the oil pan off, it's pretty easy to block the crank from rotation at the rod journals with a wood block.
If you don't have the pan off, you will need a flywheel holding tool.
Any tips on positioning of the sprockets upon replacement of the timing set? as the old were removed??? 15 pins from timing mark to timing mark or installing in line with each other...?
There are TWO different kinds of timing sets!
Not all use the 15 pin method!
(ask me how I found that out!)
Make sure the 15 pin count is accurate for your engine...
Is the flowkooler water pump worth it, or will stock do just fine? I dont plan to do any extreme upgrading or off-roading... daily driver/back 40 tool.
Stock pump should be fine...
Here it is somewhat back together.
Torqued the flywheel back on 80lbs (I re-used the same flywheel bolts- Mistake?),
No, as long as the bolts are in good shape, they are fine to reuse.
You aren't building a top fuel dragster, so you should be fine.
installed the timing cover ,tapped(understatement) the balancer back on. and torqued it on 80 ft lbs.
Usually, you can just use a longer bolt with the same thread to pull the balancer back on.
The parts stores have Puller/Installer sets on their 'Loaner Tool' programs, so there is no need to use a hammer on a balancer.
Remember this, you can sand the inside of the balancer so it fits will with no ill effects.
I'd rather you sanded on the balancer (easily replaceable) rather than on the crank (not so easily replaceable), and you should use a little 'Never-Seize' inside the balancer hub so it's not such a pain to get off the next time!
Couldnt find any info on timing cover torque so I set it at 18 ft lbs, probably over- torqued. fel- pro gasket and rtv.
Not horribly over torqued, but the idea is to work evenly around the cover, from one side to the other, so the gasket gets evenly compressed instead of crushed on one side and gapping on the other.
It's a lot easier on the cast aluminum cover too!
I keep the RTV to a minimum.
I find it causes many more leaks than it fixes...
Nothing beats a well fitting, good quality gasket and having it properly torqued on clean, flat mating surfaces!
new oil pump is next.
New oil pump is a GREAT idea anytime you have the oil pan off!
I'd check into the later model high volume 4.0L pump with screw in sump upgrade...
If not, make sure your sump is held fast by a bolt, or have it brazed in place, or what ever it takes to keep it from backing out of the pump!
So far I'm guessing I learned that;
A--Hammering on the balancer even part way is not a good idea.
In no way is hammering on a harmonic balancer a good idea.
Not only does it often do damage to the balancer, but it can EASILY wipe out the crank thrust bearing face!
I've seen more than one broken crankshaft snout from hammering on a balancer too!
B--My crankshaft bearings are most likely smoked (but did not check clearance).
I didn't see but the one in the rear when you were showing the rear seal placement...
I wouldn't reuse it,... Too much copper showing.
Bearings are layered, softer materials on top, progressively getting harder as you get deeper into the bearing...
By the time you get to brass, bronze or tin, the crank is wiped out.
Seeing copper is a good indicator of uneven wear, or something under the bearing shell when it was installed.
The zinc and lead layers are gone, and what looks to be copper is showing.
There is NO SUCH THING AS 'TOO CLEAN' when you are doing internal engine work!
Also, ANYTIME you have a bearing off or loose for ANY reason, squirt some assembly lube or at least some heavy engine oil in there before you reassemble!
Anytime you can stop a 'dry start' you are a head of the game!
C--use gasket sealant in the keyway.
Only if the key way goes through the front seal, most won't.
Use anti-seize on the crank shaft snout/balancer hub.
D--18 ft lbs is probably too much for timing cover.
E--do not use rtv on ends of rear main seal.
NO! Don't use ANYTHING that will hold the main cap off the block!
The ends of the rear seal should have projected past the block channel and main cap channel, so they compressed when you put the main cap on.
No sealer required...
Here is one thing I didn't see mentioned...
The LIP of the seal should face IN,
Always towards the oil pressure!
So when pressure gets under the seal lip, it forces it out into the crank and seals things up.
If you install the lip facing outward, the pressure will just flatten it out and run right over it...
This goes for ALL seals... Lip faces the pressure or lubrication, EVERY TIME...
I hope it will be o.k.. I dont plan on re-building this engine for a few years anyway.
You could have done some other things, like taken out the pistons, cleaned up the rings, cleaned out the ring grooves and made sure the ring grooves weren't pinching the rings,
A quick 'Glaze Busting' cylinder hone won't hurt anything either.
Nothing like getting the rings freed up and then giving them a surface suitable for seating again!
Pulling the crank and inspecting the crank journals and bearings never hurts anything...
Any groove you can catch a finger nail in is a bad thing, but just a groove here and there doesn't disqualify the engine...
Bearings are made soft so hard, sharp particles embed in them and don't continue to circulate and attack other parts of the engine.
If you find a large particle embedded in the bearing, you can sometimes pop the particle out, other times you just replace the bearing to get rid of it.
Radial scratches on a crank don't make it junk...
A few light scratches or grooves are quite common, sign of tight bearing tolerances and lack of oil filter maintenance...
Same rules apply, if you can catch a finger nail on them, they are of some concern, but if you can't catch a fingernail on them easily, then they are just part of the engine...
Used some 'Plasti-Gage' on the rod and crank bearings.
If you have excessive amounts of clearance in the bearings, you won't hold oil pressure, so change that bearing!
Plasti-gage is cheap and easy to use, no sense in not using it when the engine has the oil pan off!
When you re-torque the rod nuts or main bolts, make sure you follow the manual instructions to the letter!
Lube the threads that need to be, leave others dry, but ALWAYS follow the manual for your particular vehicle!
I, personally, detest reusing a rod nut, so I'm big on having the correct size/type of nuts around for the rod bolts...
DOUBLE AND TRIPLE CHECK ALL TORQUE SPECS BEFORE INSTALLING THE OIL PAN!
USE ASSEMBLY LUBE ON EVERY FRICTION SURFACE DURING FINAL ASSEMBLY!
Avoid dry starts at all costs!