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The engine was already rebuilt and in really good shape when I got the car. All I really had to do was degrease it, lay some paint down and add some chrome.
I bribed the neighbor kid to help Several thin coats of black After the black was laid I sprayed
by giving him a freeze pop. were laid first. a few coats of clear for protection.
One of my favorite things in the world is the sound of a nice NOISY gear drive. I bought a Pete Jackson NOISY and took a bunch of pics during the install. I'm going to try to go over it going by memory. Its not quite as simple as just bolting it in place of the timing gear set and going. Well, actually it is but there are a lot of clearance issues that you must measure so that there won't be any problems when it comes time to fire it up.
The first thing to do is to remove the chain and gears with the engine at Top Dead Center.
When installing the cam gear, you have the option of running the cam "straight up" like a factory cam. Or, you can use one of the offset bushings that come in the kit to give you 2 degree increments forward or backward depending on your cam configuration and how you are building the engine. This is basically a mild 327 so no need to run anything other then straight up. Don't forget the protective piece that prevents the cam bolts from walking out. Remember that the gear drive will produce a lot of cam vibration, so this is important. Also, the cam button rests in the center. This is what rides against the timing cover.
Next is a test fit. You basically install the cam gear and crank gear. Then place the idler on but only halfway. You then slide your timing cover on and bolt it down so that it pushes the idler gears back. The idler gears end up against the timing cover when the engine is running, so you are trying to check block clearance. I don't have the numbers on me and each brand may have different clearance numbers, so check with your install sheet! You will notice the idler gears run a bit forward over the cam and crank gears.
After you are sure that the block clearance is ok, you need to place a load on the idler gear by slightly turning the crank until the gear lifts up and binds on one side. This will allow the other gear in the idler to kind of float between the gears. Here you need to check this clearance as well. Too loose and it may bang around possibly break. Too tight and it will burn the gears from excessive friction.
Sounds simple, and it is IF you are lucky and all clearances are good. If not, there may be machining required to the timing cover and/or the block to make sure everything will work. I got lucky and everything was fine. I'm using a 2 piece timing cover. I hope to God it doesn't leak oil, but I wanted to do this in case there was a problem with the gear drive and I had to make some minor adjustments, or if I decided to change cams. With this cover, I can take off the front and not disturb the oil pan gasket seal. I guess we'll see how it holds up.
Other then that, it was just basically bolt on chrome parts and my polished intake manifold. I was worried that my headers were not going to clear the gearbox. Well, they clear just fine, but I will definitely need some custom bent pipe to clear the center link and tie rods. Here's how she'll look dropped onto the frame:
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