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Air Cleaner Element

8

81Red

Guest
On my L81 there is a second inner air filter element located next to and shorter than the paper filter element. It is a metal mesh construction and is glued to the base of the air filter. I'm told there may be a PCV connection underneath to aid in crankcase ventilation.

Can this element be cleaned, replaced, or removed? Light does not seem to shine through it, so it might add pressure drop to the airflow entering the carb.

Has anybody experimented with this?

81Red
 

greydbj

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 24, 2001
Messages
59
Location
Orleans, Ontario, Canada
Corvette
1981 Charcoal Grey; 2009 Black Coupe
I posted the same question to the old L81 registry about two or three days before the move to the CAC.....got no reply, but it may have got lost in the black hole during the changeover......of all the 81's around here, mine is the only StL version and the only one with that type of air filter set up....no one else has seen one that before, so hoping our buddies in the registry can help out.....you are quite right, no light passes through, almost seems like a carbon filter of some kind and neither the assembly manual or any other documentation I have shows this set up.....my car has only 60K kilometers on it and I am sure it had never been cleaned.....so I used some decent biodegradeable antibacterial soap and sprayed it out good.....did not fall apart, the light still doesn't go through, but I am sure it is clean.....hope we get some response.........dbj
 
T

Tomlin

Guest
Air Filter Element

Well guys, I'm no expert but I believe the metal mesh element is a flame supressor in case of carb blow back. I have a St Louis vette also. I have removed mine as well as all other obstructions to air intake flow. Only thing left in my air cleaner is a K&N filter. The metal mesh filter is glued in place and if I remember correctly not connected to anything. It should peel out fairly easy. Hope this is of some help.

Tom
 

greydbj

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 24, 2001
Messages
59
Location
Orleans, Ontario, Canada
Corvette
1981 Charcoal Grey; 2009 Black Coupe
Flame suppression.....that makes sense altho I'd rather see the flames come out the other end......I had thought of taking it out as well, but was wondering how yours runs now, better or about the same.....I know one of the biggest problems with this drive train set up is the 'inability to breathe' which includes intake, and exhaust....after I get mine cleaned up and stock and drive for a couple of years, I plan to open things up a bit....by that time the exhaust will need to be replaced, I won't have to worry about the cats and I can put the 'real duals' on it.......thanks for the note......dbj:D
 
8

81Red

Guest
Update from 81Red:

I just removed the inner element from the air cleaner assembly. It measures 9-1/2 inch outside diameter, is 5/8 inch thick, and stands 1-1/2 inch tall. There is a very fine mesh screen on the inside and outside, and is packed in the middle with a black granular charcoal/gravel mix (1/8 inch to 1/4 inch size). It is seated in the base of the air filter box with gasket-type sealant. If you try to force it up too hard, the screen will tear and the gravel particles will come out. The air filter box MUST BE REMOVED FROM THE ENGINE COMPARTMENT before attempting to remove this element.

There are no connections under this element. The PCV valve sits in front of this element towards the inlet of the carb. There is also a small pipe nozzle that is located in the same space between the element and the carb. I'm not sure of the exact purpose of the gravel element; it could be a distribution grid, but I would guess it works in conjunction with the ECM computer to provide some effect with the temperature of the air entering the carb; either to diminish the temperature at either extreme, in order to make the carb and/or sensors behave better.

Performance with the element removed? The engine seems to breathe noticeably better. My first impression is that it takes a wide open throttle easier, and the revs are a little higher. My car is totally stock (except for Master Flow mufflers and a full port cat)and you can actually hear a little more suction from the front.

I will report back if anything negative crops up.


81Red
 

Nut

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 15, 2000
Messages
890
Location
Bowie, MD
Corvette
Vette-less for now
Tom is right about the flame suppressor. My StL '81 had it and it does peel off if you do it carefully. You may also find the need to scrape off the residual blueish glue that remains in the air cleaner housing. It has not affected the performance in the slightest.

.............. Nut
 

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