: Update on engine project...

Night Wolf
10-13-04, 11:26 PM
Well, last weekend I bought an engine stand... it was on sale too, came to $30 after tax, nothing speical, 750lbs, I had to put it together etc... but it'll be fine for the job...

I then brought the '79 in the back yard and pulled up to the basement door... damn NorthStar block is heavy... so I brought back a childhood toy to live a second life... my little red wagon (that I painted blue)... brought back memories :)

I brought the cams in a while back, as with the condensation in the car, and the fact i had them aorund rags, they were literally sitting in water... I was pissed... I did a rather quick job of cleaning the rust off with a rag, which worked good... but there are still some heavy spots... that and some light surface rust on the end of the crankshaft... then some very light dust type rust within the cylinders in a few parts... most this should come off just with a rag, but my friend said I could use WD40 and some vry light sandpaper (800 grit or so) to get some of the more heavy areas on the cams off... what is the best process?

Perhaps my next step, which is holding me up from further doing anything.... My block is not on a hoist... What is the best way to get the engine on the stand? I will need to buy 4 bolts to mount the block to the stand... any preference? Also, what is the best way to get the engine level enough to get on the stand? only thing I could think of is have someone help me lift it, while a person puts the bolts thru the arms on the stand, and into the block...

Some recent pics, Hows that for power to weight ratio? might have some trouble starting though :)

10-13-04, 11:39 PM
Take the fixture with the four mounting arms out of the engine stand. Bolt it to the black at the bellhousing bolt holes. Much easier to do with the fixutre loose and attaching it to the engine in the wagon. THEN lift the block and just stick the pivot of the fixture into the engine stand. Much less of a chance of crossthreading bolt holes and such like that...and you only have to align one thing to get the fixture onto the stand.

Night Wolf
10-13-04, 11:49 PM
you know, out of all the things I was thinking of... that did not cross my mind at all?!?

Heh, that makes perfect sense though Thank you for mentioning that.

Are there any special bolts I should use for the bell housing on the NorthStar? or it dosn't relaly matter? if not I can just go to the hardware store and pick 4 of them up... what size do I need?

Also, kind of OT, but I need to get a factory service manual for the NorthStar... can I get, say a 1994 Eldorado ETC service manual... that would list everything about the enigne as well... or is there an actual manual for the N* I should get... if not, I can start looking on ebay for a cheap used FSM...

Thanks again

10-14-04, 12:04 AM
Well...the bolts are metric so start there. You have to measure the length of your standoffs on the engine stand so the bolts are long enough. Allow for plenty of thread engagement so the bolts can sink into the bolt holes securely. If there is any question , buy longer than you think and get a large stack of washers to shim the bolts to the correct length by putting the washers under the bolt heads to get the bolt length correct.

BE CAREFUL. If you have never done this before be aware that a cheapy engine stand like that can be VERY TIPPY. It will HURT if it lands on your foot. Rotating the engine part way can put the center of gravity so far to one side that the engine can just tip over. BE CAREFUL with it on the stand. Nothing wrong with a stand like that..you just have to acknowlege it's shortcomings and realize it and work accordingly.

Remember to watch the stand when you start torqueing main and head bolts and such....that, too, can pull the stand over and cause it to tip.

It is always best to have some help when you want to move or rotate the engine on the stand to avoid tipping it and to catch it if it does tip.

10-14-04, 12:05 AM
I would try to get a service manual for the year of the engine that you have. The service manual for an STS or ELDO should have the Northstar engine section with it that includes all the details you need.

Night Wolf
10-14-04, 12:17 AM
that is true about the tipping... on the enignes that I have helped m father with, he has a more expensive engine stand, and tipping was never an issue with that... but it is defintily something I'll keep in mind..

What is the diameter of the threads on the block?

Also, maybe you could help me.. I havn't been able to get an exact year.. or any info of my enigne yet... IIRC someone said it was a '93/'94... the engine code is 6P4125103... and it is an L37

Thanks again, you are helping with with loads of knowladge on this project alot :)