Northstar Engines and System Technical Discussion Discussion, Today's Racing Question: Studs or Norm's? in Cadillac Engine Discussion; nice!
i have 67, cars, boats, and toys
Originally Posted by submariner409
Post #12: You know how macho your are ...
I believe studs are better for this motor. We have a Cad dealer tech who tells about insert failures he has seen. Do a search on the forum. We haven't heard of studs failing yet. I wonder how many thousands of inserts have been done and what the failure percent is.
I think installation procedures are much more critical on the inserts. If you get an inexperienced tech who just wants to finish the job in a hurry you get a pretty high failure rate. If you get Submariner409 doing them all you would have a fairly low failure rate.
Saying that, I think the studs are a stronger fix with a lower failure rate.
The ARP stud in a Norm's Insert has been around for years. It is only a slightly less elegant solution than Jakes studs.
One of the (very distinct) advantages of studs is that they have a fine machine thread at the top (coarse thread in the block) so nut torque and precision clamp pressures are easier to obtain. You don't torque a stud into the block - just past finger tight is enough.
For inserts you don't have to drop the cradle, but your work and life will be much simpler if you do. To do a good, precise insert machining job with the engine in the car there are a few twists and tricks to use, such as a slight rotation of the entire engine assembly in order to get clearance to install the drill jig and drill and tap the rear lower line of head bolt holes. It is not easy, and if you don't have a calibrated mechanics eye and experience with precision drilling and tapping, you're much safer to drop the cradle. An insert job in the car is not for the faint of heart. Mike Lawson over in Kentucky does his work in the car, but he's been at it a while and has the tools..............
Wow, I didn't know that Norm's can be done with the engine in the car. I thought the big deal with the caddy's was you had to drop the engine to do the hg replacement.
Is it true that you dont have to drop the engine to use norm's serts?
There has been several debates over what method is the best or easiest.... most people do drop the engine out the bottom to do the HG repair. Jake pulls the engine out the top... Mike Lawson and a couple others on this forum have done it in the car. Videos of Mike doing one in the car are available on his website.
Personally I don't agree with doing the work in the car. Drilling & tapping creates a mess of aluminum chips. To each his own, but the amount of stuff in the engine bay you have to work around with a drill and tap, makes it difficult. The best way is with the cradle dropped or the engine out. Or both. Block taped up, no engine parts laying around, nothing getting in holes such as the transmission vent tube or alternator, A/C lines, power steering lines, etc...
Mike is careful, I know.
But still. Doing the work with the engine in the car still allows you NO access to the block seals/oil pan seals. How many cars need the bottom engine re-sealed? I do this on every car. Who wants to do a head gasket job and then have to pull the engine again 6 months later to do the lower seals... So many of the ones I see need it done. The odd time I'll find a car who's already had the engine re-sealed by a dealer. The one STS, they used so much RTV that there were strips of it in the oil pump pick-up.
I didn't re-seal the block on my '98 when I did the HG's. Guess what- it's coming out again. It's leaking enough that I can see smoke under the hood when I come to a stop...