Might be some metal shavings in a cylinder, what to do?

Engine, Transmission & Driveline

  1. WissaMan

    WissaMan Well-Known Member FCBO Gold Member

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    So this 440 I'm working on had an exhaust manifold stud broken off previously. It's on the driver side, to the right of the #7 exhaust port. It actually did not show any signs of having been leaking around the gasket in that area, but I thought it'd be the proper thing to do to get that out of there before putting the HP manifolds on.

    Frustratingly, the bolt extractor broke off when trying to back the stud out :BangHead: so I had to drill that out too. Fortunately, there is a tool that can do it called the Rescue Bit, you can find it here. It's pricey but really does work.

    Anywho, as I was grinding out the stud/extractor combo with the Rescue Bit, it went all the way through and there was nothing beyond it. When I took the tape off the exhaust ports, I could see some metal grindings sitting on top of the exhaust valve, which unfortunately was open so I can only assume some metal grindings got inside the combustion chamber.

    So how screwed am I? Do I need to pull the head and thoroughly clean it and the cylinder? Or should I trying hitting it with a good dose of compressed air and hope for the best? Or maybe rotate the engine so the exhaust port is face down and spray WD-40 into the cylinder to flush it out?

    Mind you, this is not a freshly rebuilt motor (as you can plainly see lol). I just want to drop a running motor into my 68 Newport to get it moving under it's own power so I can access the rest of the car's drive train, suspension, etc. So I'm not concerned with perfection. But at the same time, I don't want to totally f-up the cylinder wall either as I'm guessing that could potentially make it the block non-rebuildable.

    Thoughts / opinions?

    And go ahead and feel free to call me a doofus if I should've known better :rolleyes:

    upload_2020-12-31_9-12-30.png
     
  2. 67Monaco

    67Monaco Go Woke, Go Broke.

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    If it's not in the car, I'd pull the head and the pan, yank the piston, and make sure any swarf that got in isn't trapped by a ring. Better safe than sorry.

    But if it's in the car, I'd pull the plugs and spin it dry, no fuel, in hopes anything that got in gets shot out knowing a rebuild is down the road anyway. Maybe ya get lucky.
     
  3. PH27L7

    PH27L7 Well-Known Member

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    From your picture I can't see how any significant amount of material could enter the exhaust port with that tape covering it. I would expect it to be just blown out on startup. You could take the spark plug out and look at the top of the piston with a scope if you're concerned.
     
  4. 413

    413 Senior Member

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    First is the Shop vac and vacuum it out and leave it dry. Don’t blow air first. If the exhaust valve is open then the intake will be closed which is what you want.

    Lastly If it comes to a liquid flush use brake cleaner, not any lube like WD-40.

    next time turn the crank until the exhaust valve is closed.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2020
  5. 68PK21 440.6bbl

    68PK21 440.6bbl Old Man with a Hat

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    Any job I've had messing with cylinder head's and a chance of polluting the combustion chamber I remove the head to be safe.
    Learned that lesson from gas station clowns putting AC spark plugs in Mopars and the owner not tuning up said car for years. I just got bulldog'ish pissed when I would come across a stubborn plug and give it the breaker bar shearing it off after glancing over at the torches. I loved calling the customer and telling'em "Gotta pull the head" ROFLMAO! (a money maker) Later on in life I learned to give'em the heat and to try and preserve the threads at all possibility. You would be surprised what heating does, most studs whether in the head or on the exhaust manifold flange (GM) after one (or two) heatings you can take a prick punch and just spin it out and then a compressed air blow out and a bottoming tap clean out your good to go. I learned quick to not beat yourself up trying to work on it in vehicle, best to R&R and get it on the bench and giving yourself some 'working room'.

    :thumbsup:
     
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  6. Ripinator

    Ripinator Old Man with a Hat

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    Since your engine is sitting on a stand, I would play it safe and remove the head, vacuum out the cylinder and blow air through the exhaust port, etc. in the head. I wouldn't rotate the crank at all while doing these steps, just in case some small particles are sitting on a ring land waiting to eff up the cylinder wall.

    BTW, I will never use an extractor again in this lifetime. . .
     
  7. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    Another choice might be to use one of those fancy magnets that are mounted on a flex cable to go in and fish out the debris. That will work for any debris that are magnetic. The redneck solution is to start the engine with the plug on that cylinder removed and hope everything blows out (not recommended).

    Dave
     
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  8. livininharrow

    livininharrow Senior Member

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    as mentioned by Dave the magnet would be a good idea. do that first. also i would use an air gun to move shit around the cylinder with intake valve closed and a vacuum on the plug opening at the same time . put a piece of new filter material on the inlet of your shop vac hose. when you are done check for any noticeable debris in the filter. if none i would have a beer and get a good nights sleep. good luck and happy new year. Paul
     
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  9. WissaMan

    WissaMan Well-Known Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Thanks all, lots of good suggestions here! I'll try a combination of several of these ideas. I do really want to avoid pulling the head even though I know that would be the "gold standard" thing to do. If this was an engine I cared more about I'd certainly do that, but being that this is just a stop-gap I'm not super concerned, except for the chance that I'd thoroughly ruin the cylinder wall.

    As to how metal shavings could've gotten past the tape, I'm assuming it's because the stud hole is open to the exhaust port and when I penetrated the stud, shavings got into that way. Is that not how that is?

    Also, why avoid the WD-40 and go with brake cleaner? The brake cleaner usually has more pressure in it so would be better from that perspective, but is there something bad about using WD-40?

    Oh, and beer is probably partially what got me into this mess, though I'll have one anyway :D
     
  10. PH27L7

    PH27L7 Well-Known Member

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    If that's the case then you have a much bigger problem. Should go to water only.
     
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  11. rkrochen

    rkrochen Well-Known Member

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    WD 40 won’t flush it out and will likely cause the material to stick. FYI I never use WD40 for anything it is one of the worst penetrants on the market. I took a gunsmithing course years ago and we were told that WD40 can literally ruin things. Can’t remember the reason but seems to me that once it dries up rust will set in (I may have this wrong though).
     
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  12. WOT440

    WOT440 Member

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    If you drilled through the stud hole, and now you can see shavings on the open exhaust valve which was taped off at the exhaust port, you must have drilled straight through to the combustion chamber. I would pull the head and see what's going on.
     
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  13. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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    OK, the exhaust stud hole goes into the water jacket. Understand?

    If you have drilled deep enough to get chips into the exhaust port or combustion chamber, that means that you have drilled ALL the way through the water jacket and into the exhaust port/ combustion chamber. Understand and agree?

    If that is the case, the head is junk.... basic anchor for a small boat and that's it.

    If you aren't sure you did that, pull the head, pull the valve(s) and triple check, but by your description, I'd say that you need to shop for another head... Might as well pull the other and do a valve job while you are at it.

    Doofus!! :lol:
     
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  14. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    If you drilled that deep, could also be the basis for a very creative lamp.

    Dave
     
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  15. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    One you have the metal shavings accounted for, the quick check for a lamp vs head is to run a compression check on that cylinder. No compression = lamp.

    Dave
     
  16. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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    I was always going to do that with an empty trans case...

    Then I had a couple of these height gages that are 24" tall and I wanted to use one.

    Never got around to it.



    192-130-1-600x600.jpg

    Then I had a Cadillac height gage (another junker) that I thought about.

    s-l640.jpg


    Never did get around to making any of those and my wife never saw the elegance in them, let alone appreciate that they were actually very expensive when purchased new.
     
  17. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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    Yes, but if he just hit the exhaust port, it won't show up in a compression check. I don't have a bare 440 head laying around anymore to look at to see where the drill would land first, so I can't say for sure, but I think it might hit the port first.

    Might be best to stick a piece of wire in the hole and see how deep it goes.
     
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  18. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    I made a creative lamp out of a multi piece crank from 426 that came apart on the track, 3 pieces mind you, a rarity, gave it to my younger brother as a wedding gift. His wife did not get it either.

    Dave
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2020
  19. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    The studs on most 440 heads are about 3/4" below the combustion chamber. Not likely to hit the chamber, but possible to hit the port with some creative off angle drilling.

    Dave
     
  20. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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    Then probably the best bet is a straightened paper clip and a flashlight. Probably could even do that without pulling the head (if for sure it's a lamp). Might still be worth pulling the head for a better check if the paperclip/flashlight test doesn't show lamp positive results.
     
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