: Cracked Blocks. CKP swap to 00+ blocks?



97EldoCoupe
04-29-11, 09:46 AM
Four cracked blocks since I've been up here in Manitoba. 1 internally and 3 externally. Two had the crack run across cylinders 2-8 just above the crank position sensors. This crack is unfortunately on a forum members' car. I have to give him the news. Engine work was scheduled to be complete soon, I did not see this crack right aways- sometimes they're a bit tricky to spot.

MENTAL NOTE: CHECK THOROUGHLY FOR EXTERNAL CRACKING

I've seen this on 2000+ cars and all of a sudden this one on a '97? This one had big-serts installed already.

Anyone's thoughts on the cause? I'm starting to think there's a possibility that the head bolts on the ends of the block are releasing and the center bolts continue to hold torque. Combustion pressure and heat put loads on the center head bolts that were normally spread across the whole bank, therefore putting too much stress on a potential weak point. I thought I had it narrowed down to a certain year-span (00-01 blocks) of potential bad castings but this '97 threw that hypothesis right out the window.

I have all those new blocks and I know some, possibly most, can be used but not for 93-99's because of the CKPs. So once again I'm in a bind. Gotta have this car complete for the customer (he's been waiting a bit already) and this is another huge setback.

I just got my ETC back from the two former friends who I sold it to on payment terms and never saw a payment. Lucky for me I actually did get it back. Right now this car is my only source for a replacement block without resorting to raiding my collection of scrap Caddys in Ontario.

I need to start stocking used blocks again.

The CKPs fit the 00+ blocks but a spacer needs to be machined for them. That's not a problem I have that equipment but the angle is incorrect. So that's again, not possible. I wasn't the one who designed the ignition system for these engines but I'll assume that the location of the magnetic pickups in reference to the position on the block is incredibly picky. I have an idea as to how to fix the 93-99 vs. 00+ CKP issues but that right now is something I have no time for.

Any forum members here know more about this kinda stuff? Without modifying any PCM parameters whatsoever can the angle be changed on the CKPs without affecting ignition timing? I'm 99.5% sure you cannot mess around with that.

If the two pickups were moved keeping the same distance between each, I think it would work but then you'd be changing the actual base ignition timing. Injectors would be OK I think because they run off the cam position sensor trigger pin.

-97 heads
-97 crank
-97 ckps
-02 block

Any input on this would be appreciated. Now I have to contact the customer and explain to him how I did not see this crack before. This is going to be tough. There's really no excuse. Lucky final engine assembly hasn't been done- but we were close.

Ranger
04-29-11, 11:15 AM
Jake, you may recall that Joe (EDB150) ran into several cracked blocks.

stoveguyy
04-29-11, 11:26 AM
yes a cracked block is a bad thing. so the owner thought his only issue was overheating and crack did not cause any other issues like weepage? jeez, you tear into a motor and expect to only deal with headbolt threads and than find a cracked block? your not a mind reader. you cannot tell the owner his motor has other issues till you inspect it. i can just see the haters now. its your fault the motor has multiple issues.

ThumperPup
04-29-11, 12:09 PM
Jake, you may recall that Joe (EDB150) ran into several cracked blocks.

If i recall Joe was finding them in the 2000-02 ranges
not the 99 and olders

johnny kannapo
04-29-11, 12:10 PM
The stress at the motor mount may be part of the equation. Oil passages & two bores for the CKP's? Half case? I found these pics on google.


http://i826.photobucket.com/albums/zz183/billytheshoe/2001_DeVille_crack_1.jpg?t=1304093299

http://i826.photobucket.com/albums/zz183/billytheshoe/2000_DeVille_crack_1.jpg?t=1304093299

http://img17.imageshack.us/img17/1200/nstarr.jpg

ThumperPup
04-29-11, 12:12 PM
Jake that the same crack that came across mine after the insert job and all

are you finding just this one that has been inserted or where there more then one that was Cracked ? that had been inserted

what the dealer tried to tell me is hes seen 2 or 3 with the same crack i had the one you found in the 97
he thinks it was from the bolt holes not being cleaned out good and dirt still being in there when the heads where put back on

mhamilton
04-29-11, 05:43 PM
If the two pickups were moved keeping the same distance between each, I think it would work but then you'd be changing the actual base ignition timing. Injectors would be OK I think because they run off the cam position sensor trigger pin.


What does the reluctor ring look like? Are the teeth all equally spaced? Or is there an odd space that tells it what absolute degree the crank is at?

maeng9981
04-29-11, 06:02 PM
That picture is just sad. I am sure that I don't have an external crack, and hopefully I don't have an internal crack.

Destroyer
04-29-11, 11:38 PM
The N* saga just gets more interesting as time passes along............

ThumperPup
04-30-11, 12:19 AM
The N* saga just gets more interesting as time passes along............

deleted

its not worth it

97EldoCoupe
04-30-11, 10:14 PM
Stoveguy- the customer is being very, very understanding I could not ask for a better customer. This engine had been big-serted. I think the stress cracking is caused by uneven torque of the head bolts. Certain cracks, like one of the ones pictured above, look like other causes. But I can appreciate how important it is for proper, even head bolt torque. Especially after seeing these blocks here in Manitoba and the first two pictures posted by JohnnyKanapo.

I have made a note and informed my employee of the new rule in the shop. All blocks as soon as removed from the car, get a very thorough check for cracks all the way around, inside and out. I don't like bad news at the last minute.

I just found out what it involves to purchase cars in the USA and transport them into Canada and the process is easy and not terribly expensive. I will be expanding my collection of parts cars and spare engines/blocks. I don't like to be stuck without replacements.

Too many cracked blocks and too many fresh builds because of this has put me in a bit of a financial bind at the moment. The new order of studs is ready in Ontario and I'm on my way there to pick them up and ship from the old shop (quicker this way, orders will ship a bit faster) and pick up a couple of core engines at the same time. It's going to be a quick trip.

I'm dealing with one car right now that had two roller followers out of position and no intake valve function on cyl #3. Customer wanted to purchase an engine from 123engine.com and have me install it. I said no way. I called 123engine in California and their method of repairing the head bolt holes? "time-sert" only the holes that need it. Extra $200-$300 to time-sert all holes. Northstars for $1995. Everyone, as attractive as that price is, please stay away from these "engine builders" as far as humanly possible. Their quality speaks for itself- look at the nice paint job on the front cam cover in their picture gallery.

I have $1800 worth of new thread rolls for the lathe. As soon as the steel comes in production will be in progress and there will be no more delays on the studs. I'll have the shelves stocked easily 50 kits ahead. There is one very expensive tool I have on order that was designed and made in Germany: it will speed up production by 10 times and increase accuracy and smoothness of the studs. This is machinery that, if my suppliers had purchased and put into production, I would never have had a shortage of studs. Depending on volume of stud kit orders, production speed and costs, there may be a cost reduction on the kits in the future. Until I know what the costs are I cannot confirm this. I need to know when thread rolls have to be replaced or reground, at what cost, machine maintenance, etc. -

Hang in there everyone, a lot will be accomplished in 2011 It just has to be taken a day at a time.

Ranger- I remember Joe had mentioned quite a few cracked blocks.

(Submariner409) - Jim- as per your PM, you're absolutely correct about my priorities. Those other developments can be dealt with on Sunday afternoons :)

Thank you everyone for your advice and help/support.

ThumperPup
04-30-11, 10:43 PM
Wow just like 124engine there is a shop here in cleveland that my Mechanic told me about that does NorthStar Egnines he said the guy charges 500 more then he does with timesirts so hes charing 2300 for the job and only does the ones that look bad when the bolts come out lol

i can't belive some places do this

97EldoCoupe
05-01-11, 12:27 AM
Yeah Thumper no kidding. Competition is good for business, but for God's sake at least build the engines to last for the customer. How many times does it need to be said go the extra mile and make damn sure your product will last and business will do great. So many shops out there do the cheapest, quickest possible repair just so they can collect the $$ and hope the engine or car lasts the whole 365 days that it's under warranty.

I hope Joe (edb150) and Carrolls Custom Cadillac and a number of others stay in business. JoeTahoe is a prime example of someone who takes his time and does not cut corners. I saw his build photos. I've seen shops do the HG's on these Northstars and not even clean the carbon off the piston tops or combustion chambers. These days it seems everything is about money. Does anyone even care about pride of workmanship anymore? Clearly 123engines wants nothing more than a healthy bank account. I talked my customer into cancelling his order on that $1995 engine- I explained you can't even buy all of the parts for a full rebuild for that price and still clear a profit. They charged him a $300 restocking fee and the engine hadn't even shipped yet. How nice of them!

I have competition in the industry who I know is my competition but I have no desire to drive them out of business- because they're working hard to earn a living too- but companies like 123engines, if I had the chance, I'd happily make sure they could never rip off another customer again. Sadly, with that price, and with enough cheap-skates out there, they'll probably do very well- and many customers will be sorely disappointed when their engines blow HG's again. At least time-sert all 20 holes if nothing else!

maeng9981
05-01-11, 12:30 AM
Those shops are the main reason why a lot of people are junking the perfectly fine Cadillacs. They band-aid it once and hope nothing happens; it's good for some time and another bolt fails and you are back to square one. People lose hope and find another car.

97EldoCoupe
05-01-11, 12:37 AM
Yeah Maeng9981 - you've got that right!

ThumperPup
05-01-11, 09:27 AM
Yeah Thumper no kidding. Competition is good for business, but for God's sake at least build the engines to last for the customer. How many times does it need to be said go the extra mile and make damn sure your product will last and business will do great. So many shops out there do the cheapest, quickest possible repair just so they can collect the $$ and hope the engine or car lasts the whole 365 days that it's under warranty.

I hope Joe (edb150) and Carrolls Custom Cadillac and a number of others stay in business. JoeTahoe is a prime example of someone who takes his time and does not cut corners. I saw his build photos. I've seen shops do the HG's on these Northstars and not even clean the carbon off the piston tops or combustion chambers. These days it seems everything is about money. Does anyone even care about pride of workmanship anymore? Clearly 123engines wants nothing more than a healthy bank account. I talked my customer into cancelling his order on that $1995 engine- I explained you can't even buy all of the parts for a full rebuild for that price and still clear a profit. They charged him a $300 restocking fee and the engine hadn't even shipped yet. How nice of them!
!

i am going to go and read 123engiens website and return policy just for the hell of it cause it really upsets me when company's pull shit like that off

if i where the customer id read it also cause you know i bet it says in there somewhere something about restocking on returned parts
but the part was not returned the order was just canceled LOL

i know i would be calling the AG and BBB right now if that was me
thats just messed up 100%

ThumperPup
05-01-11, 09:33 AM
yeah workrman ship is very important but you all know this already
without someone who takes pride in what they do then i don't go to them


When David at Powetrain Automotive did my Engine he did the full rebuild he charged me 2300 for his time that included taxe shop fees and fluids and supplies
parts where extra
but he charge me 2300 for the full tear down and rebuild
i did not mind that it took him 2 weeks to complete the job because
i know what he did he carbonized and cleaned every corner and nick and crany there was in that engine
and the only parts he charged me for was the Block and Studs

in his 2300 price that included new plugs the gaskets and seals T-stat and a few other parts
i was really suprised i was exspencting some 4400 dollar bill
and when i went to pick her up total came to 4012 dollars this also included a ball joint tie rod and 4 wheel alighment so when it comes down to just the engine alone it was like 3700 for 2 weeks of his time and a full rebuild

now that is quality over quantity i would say

ThumperPup
05-01-11, 09:36 AM
Those shops are the main reason why a lot of people are junking the perfectly fine Cadillacs. They band-aid it once and hope nothing happens; it's good for some time and another bolt fails and you are back to square one. People lose hope and find another car.

:yeah:

and the ones who won;'t even do that just tell you that engines is a throw away lol
you know how many shops i have talked to when i was first looking that would not even touch the engine
they said a northstar is a throw away ones it goes bad

JoeTahoe
05-01-11, 10:47 AM
This is a problem with every thing in todays times. A lot of people want low bid and want it now. I will not do this I believe do it once and right the first time. If someone wants cheep and now I will not work for them. Jake did you get my pm last week?? Maange said it all alot of very nice Northstar powered cars got junked because of a poor headbolt fix. I have never ever tought about owning a cadillac till I found this site and talked to Jake. I love my Caddy!!!!

Submariner409
05-01-11, 02:35 PM
What does the reluctor ring look like? Are the teeth all equally spaced? Or is there an odd space that tells it what absolute degree the crank is at?

The reluctor wheels on the pre-2000 and 2000+ are different from a tooth/spacing point, but, yes, there are specific numbers of 'teeth" in specific groups.

The CMP (CaMshaft Position sensor) is also used to trigger a piston TDC signal used in conjunction with the crank angle timing signal.

Here's a non-accurate example of the pre-2000 setup.

Submariner409
05-01-11, 02:39 PM
This is a problem with every thing in todays times. A lot of people want low bid and want it now. I will not do this I believe do it once and right the first time. If someone wants cheep and now I will not work for them. Jake did you get my pm last week?? Maange said it all alot of very nice Northstar powered cars got junked because of a poor headbolt fix. I have never ever tought about owning a cadillac till I found this site and talked to Jake. I love my Caddy!!!!

Yeah, that.

The inside of this 1970 Olds 455 marine rebuild is as clean as a brain surgery operating room. I would never build ANY engine any other way.

ThumperPup
05-01-11, 04:13 PM
Yeah, that.

The inside of this 1970 Olds 455 marine rebuild is as clean as a brain surgery operating room. I would never build ANY engine any other way.

wow Sub now that looks nice great work

JoeTahoe
05-01-11, 04:16 PM
that is so sweet and I still had no idea that they were used in a marine application. SWEET!!!!

JoeTahoe
05-01-11, 04:21 PM
Sub were are you finding 70s 455, junk yards?? Thay must be getting a little hard to find

mhamilton
05-02-11, 07:01 PM
The reluctor wheels on the pre-2000 and 2000+ are different from a tooth/spacing point, but, yes, there are specific numbers of 'teeth" in specific groups.

The CMP (CaMshaft Position sensor) is also used to trigger a piston TDC signal used in conjunction with the crank angle timing signal.

Here's a non-accurate example of the pre-2000 setup.

Ah, okay... I was thinking they had to be. Then to answer Jake's initial question, no the crank position sensors can't be moved down the block without changing what timing info the PCM is getting. That reluctor setup gives the PCM absolute crank degree information, not relative degree info.

Submariner409
05-02-11, 07:58 PM
Sub were are you finding 70s 455, junk yards?? Thay must be getting a little hard to find

For many years the Olds engine was the preferred engine of choice for a particular breed of commercial crab boat built on the Chesapeake Bay: the deadrise. Heavy duty, powerful, able to idle at 500 rpm for hours without as much as a hiccup, all the while being able to push the same 7-ton wood boat to over 20 knots when time came to head for home. I know, right now, where there are at least a dozen engines for sale - all in need of overhaul - but all in decent mechanical condition. On top of that, within 5 miles of me there are two new old stock 1972 Olds 455 complete engines, in crates and oil paper. "Pop" Thompson (L.A. Thompson & Sons) bought 15 of them when City Oldsmobile in Baltimore went out of business. You don't want to know the original price - but I can have one for less than $1,000 for the asking. There are still enough new, used, and aftermarket Olds 455 parts around to keep the engine alive for another 50 years. You can build them to run on just about anything that will burn. This is one I built for my boat in 1998. It still runs like new - with over 2,000 hours of time on it......and uses not one drop of oil in 100 hours.

ThumperPup
05-02-11, 08:17 PM
hey sub your talking boating and hours of running now and all
got a question for you
i have been on boats but not really lived around them or anyting but go on them all the time friends boats family members boats hang out for the day have fun but never really understood why they say Running hours like we have Miles when we talk about how long we drive our cars and all
but why in a boat call it hours ? and not miles or km's or nots ?

JoeTahoe
05-02-11, 10:36 PM
i would think they were hard to find I know the 283 and 327 chevys are getting very hard to find. Dont remember how many we all blew up when we were young but I would like to kick my self in the @ss. Now 4 bolt carbed engines are hard to find. We use to laugh at the those guys!!