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Old 03-25-2020, 07:01 PM   #1
Bruce of MN
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Default Solo Motor Installation

I just got my engine back in the car on my own after replacing the cam gear and cleaning the pan. A few tips were discovered:
• I found that it was very important to have the motor as level as possible on the engine hoist to get the lips on the clutch housing square on the stock motor mounts.
• If a load leveler is used, make sure that the crank handle is pointed away from the firewall to make turning it easier.
• Along the same lines, the chain to the block at the firewall end needs to be attached to a head stud inboard from the end to avoid the chain hitting the firewall.
• Working by myself, it took a lot more going back and forth between the front of the car to looking at the clutch area than if working with an experienced Model A wrench spinner.
• Once the engine was resting on the motor mounts and slid up to the trans input shaft, with the trans housing aligned vertically with the clutch housing, I screwed the ratchet nut into the hub part of my two piece pulley, then turned it with my 1-3/8” box wrench to align the splines and that part turned out the easiest part of the task.
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Old 03-25-2020, 07:39 PM   #2
Gary WA
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Nice, Slow process but it can be done, as long as you have the patience. And as we all know we have the time! been there and done that!
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Old 03-25-2020, 07:49 PM   #3
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Good job Bruce. I have removed and install my engine a few times, not something I would look forward to in the near future.

I actually shortened my load leveler ~4" to gain clearance from the firewall. Time and patience it can be accomplished.


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Old 03-25-2020, 07:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Good info. Did you need a frame spreader, as you mentioned stock rear mounts?
Also, was the light bar removed?
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Old 03-26-2020, 03:33 AM   #5
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Yes, I used our club's frame spreader and I removed the light bar and the front bumper to get my engine hoist in far enough. That also took some re-positioning of the front jack stands.

Several false starts with learning some of the above points! When I removed and installed the engine 10 years ago, I didn't have the load leveler and it seemed easier. I tilted the engine by having the center link offset from the chain mid-point.

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Old 03-26-2020, 07:37 AM   #6
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Here is how I pulled mine solo. Don’t know how it will work to install. I was set to take my block to machine shop last week, but I guess that’s on hold for now.
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Old 03-26-2020, 08:18 AM   #7
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

I'll be facing a reinstall soon... whenever I can get to the shop that recently re-poured the engines bearings. Any thoughts on whether it's easier to do with the transmission in the car, attached to the driveshaft, or with it out of the car and attached to the flywheel housing?
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Old 03-26-2020, 08:21 AM   #8
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Trial & error is a fantastic way to learn about our Model "A" Fords.
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Old 03-26-2020, 08:32 AM   #9
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Quote:
Originally Posted by macdonge View Post
. Any thoughts on whether it's easier to do with the transmission in the car, attached to the driveshaft, or with it out of the car and attached to the flywheel housing?

Both times, I supported the transmission and unbolted the flywheel housing from the trans.
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Old 03-26-2020, 11:34 AM   #10
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Is there any advantage such as less stress on the block/studs to lift as in post 6 with the head on ? The vendors sell eyebolts to attach to the spark plug holes.
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Old 03-26-2020, 05:21 PM   #11
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

My grade 8 head studs are plenty strong and the chain link on the exhaust stud is close to the base, so minimized bending load.
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Old 03-27-2020, 06:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by duke36 View Post
Is there any advantage such as less stress on the block/studs to lift as in post 6 with the head on ? The vendors sell eyebolts to attach to the spark plug holes.
I made my fixture out of angle iron. Laid a cardboard pattern down over oily spark plug holes to locate them and drilled angle to match. I was worried about using the eye bolt thing in just one hole. I figured this way the stress is divided by four. I guessed at lifting hole location, but it balanced really well. Had to grind a little relief on back side of angle for a couple of head nuts. I had planned to rent an engine lift, but none available in my area so I had to rig that too.
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Old 03-27-2020, 07:45 AM   #13
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Glad you were able to accomplish this by yourself successfully.
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Old 03-28-2020, 03:25 AM   #14
Bruce of MN
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Originally Posted by 77Birdman View Post
Glad you were able to accomplish this by yourself successfully.
Not much choice these days.

The Les Andrews book surely says this, but why would I read it in detail? The four motor mount bolts should go in before the trans is bolted to the motor. That makes it a lot easier to pry and hoist the engine around to get those babies lined up.
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Old 03-29-2020, 12:29 PM   #15
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Quote:
I actually shortened my load leveler ~4" to gain clearance from the firewall. Time and patience it can be accomplished.
So, what is the shortened length?
I am presently in the process of assembling materials to build a load leveler, so it would be nice to know how long or short would be optimal.
Tnx, Ken
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Old 03-30-2020, 07:41 AM   #16
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

I did about 99.9% of the work on my resto (70's car) solo, oddly enough the one thing I needed help with was installing the hood. I thought about for about an hour or so how to rig something up then finally just went inside and asked my wife to give me a hand!
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Old 03-30-2020, 01:31 PM   #17
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

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Originally Posted by katy View Post
So, what is the shortened length?
I am presently in the process of assembling materials to build a load leveler, so it would be nice to know how long or short would be optimal.
Tnx, Ken
Not sure if it is optimal but the length of the bar is ~16" now, shorter than the head. When it was full length it hit the firewall. I used #1 and #4 spark plug holes for lift points. It could be even a little shorter.
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Old 03-31-2020, 10:44 AM   #18
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Quote:
Not sure if it is optimal but the length of the bar is ~16" now, shorter than the head. When it was full length it hit the firewall. I used #1 and #4 spark plug holes for lift points. It could be even a little shorter.
Sounds good, thanks, Ken
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Old 04-02-2020, 07:58 PM   #19
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Default Re: Solo Motor Installation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Y-Blockhead View Post
Not sure if it is optimal but the length of the bar is ~16" now, shorter than the head. When it was full length it hit the firewall. I used #1 and #4 spark plug holes for lift points. It could be even a little shorter.
I was just getting ready to cut four inches out of mine. I had to put a bunch of towels on my firewall getting the engine out. If you had to do it again would you go 14" or 15"?
Thanks
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