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Special tools for building a 383?

Peer81

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May 21, 2003
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Netherlands
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'81 Black
Hello everbody,

As I'm looking left and right so I can build my own 383 in the future. I not in a hurry but I want to do it the best way I can, I'm not saying blueprinting is the right word for it not by a long shot! But the like the idea to tripple check everything to get it just right. Maybe I overlooked some tools I will be needing for the build. :)

At this time I have all the basic tools like wrenches (standard and metric), torque wrench, dead blow hammer feeler gauge, engine stand, digital mitutoyo caliper and a 0 to 1" digital mitu outside micrometer, 0.01mm dial indicator, piston ring compressor and 2 snapon clock torque wrenches.

I planning to buy a good set of mitutoyo outside micrometers 0 to 4" (0.0001"), a 0.0001" dial indicator, bore gage 0.0001?, piston ring filer, carbide cutters, camshaft degree wheel, valve spring compressor, valve seat pressure tester and shims? and make my own chamber cc kit.

I think I'm not going to install the cam bearings as the tool isn't cheap and the machine shop and go the job to.
So besides all the sealing stuff like RTV etc etc what am I missing? Do I need a special tool to measure how deep the piston is below the deck as I can imagine it doing with my caliper?

At this moment I think the machine shop will clean the block, slightly mill the deck (not zero deck), line bore the crank and hone cilinders for crosshatch pattern, balance the crank parts.

Any extra advise or tips on good books are always welcome. Of course youtube also has some vid's on this subject but I can already see some people "blueprinting" an engine without even taking the micrometer outside the toolbox. :ugh

Greetings Peter
 

TimAT

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Sep 8, 2007
Messages
708
Location
Gladstone Missouri
Corvette
1969 LS-7 BB
The one thing I see missing from your list is inside micrometers or snap gauges. Snap gauges go into a bore, then you release them so they "Snap" to the inside diameter, then you turn the handle to lock and measure with an outside micrometer. A calculator is handy too- IT's tough to figure the difference between the OD of the crank and the ID of the rod or main bearing bore in your head and be accurate- unless your math skills are way better than mine. Many people swear by plastigage, but I'm not one of them for things I want to be dead on right.

I agree- have the machine shop install the cam bearings- just look at them after you get the block back and make sure they're in the bore correctly and square with it. I know guys that test fit the cam before they ever open a package of anything else.
 

Peer81

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May 21, 2003
Messages
2,497
Location
Netherlands
Corvette
'81 Black
Thanks Tim,

But I was under the impression that a bore gauge (inside micrometer) is much more accurate then a spring loaded snap gauge? I see alot bore gauges on ebay (fowler) but they are 0.0005" is that enough or should I hunt for a 0.0001" one?

Greetings Peter
 

TimAT

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Joined
Sep 8, 2007
Messages
708
Location
Gladstone Missouri
Corvette
1969 LS-7 BB
You are correct. An inside micrometer is much more accurate than a snap gauge- especially in a round bore. Even with an inside mic, the edges of the anvil touch before the center does. Think of this- I'll use a Main bore diameter of 2.45 as an example. IF you use a mic that has an anvil that is .25 in diameter then when you insert it in that 2.45 bore the radius of the anvil is different from the radius of the bore- so you get an induced error. Draw a circle on a piece of paper, then use the end of a ruler to measure it. Like putting a square peg in a round hole..

In the automotive world, it's not that big of a deal since we're measuring both the ID and the OD about the same way. The difference is the OD will fall in the center of the anvil where the ID will get the edges of the anvil.

Just my thought, but .0005 is just about right. When you start looking at less than that the cost goes up dramatically. And just about all of the clearances in a Chevrolet engine are in the .001-.003 range as I recall.
 
Last edited:
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Apr 29, 2001
Messages
2,141
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Rio Rancho, NM
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1981 HD Suspension; ZN1 Option
Piston stop

2012-08-20T21-49-21.jpg

Cylinder gauge. Since your machinist will be boring these cylinders, and I am sure you'll pick someone half-decent, you probably won't need Mitutoyo gauges for a one build. Perhaps, the Mitutoyo would be better if you were doing your own machining. They would be better for opening a shop and build many engines. The 500 - 700 percent mark-up on a Mitutoyo is probably not justified for a home-built engine for the average joe like some of us. :D

2012-09-13T19-23-30.jpg






A drop or vertical gauge.

2012-09-13T19-24-32.jpg





More importantly, do not skim on a quality ring compressor. And stay away from plier/clamp types. Get one that will work for the piston you are installing.

MOR-61840.jpg



Do not spiral the rings onto the piston. Use a ring expanding pliers.

POW-POW105060.jpg



If you want to CC your own heads and find displacement of piston top, get one of these. You use propylalcohol or similar with food coloring.

POW-POW351150.jpg



This other type of piston stop is for when the head is on, and you need to find TDC (with #1 intake/extaust valves at the cam's base circle).

cca-4795.jpg



I hope this helps...:)
 
Last edited:

Peer81

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May 21, 2003
Messages
2,497
Location
Netherlands
Corvette
'81 Black
This is a big help Gerry thanks! :thumb

I think i need to call santa to visite twice this year :D

Greetings Peter
 

navy2kcoupe

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Dec 16, 2006
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799
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West Central FL and SE Mass.
Corvette
2000 Navy Blue Coupe A4 Z51
This is a big help Gerry thanks! :thumb

I think i need to call santa to visite twice this year :D

Greetings Peter
Peter, it would probably be better just to have Santa take the car this year,
and bring it back next year set up exactly like you want it. :thumb:L:L
Andy :w
 

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