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Old 01-16-2018, 08:12 PM   #1
midgetracer
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Default Bell Housing

I heard that there is a re-enforced bell housing (forward), but I don't know how to identify it. I have spent the day cleaning up bell housings and found all three cracked. What do I look for to tell if they are cracked before I spent so much time in sandblasting. I have cracks in three different places, so I guess any place is subject to cracking. Is there any fix to these or are they just scrap? Also how do i tell if it is a re-enforced housing? When were the re-enforced units used? Thanks for the help.
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Old 01-16-2018, 08:40 PM   #2
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Default Re: Bell Housing

Flywheel housing 1931 has extra ribs on the outside bottom 1/2 can't miss it.
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Old 01-16-2018, 08:56 PM   #3
Bob C
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Default Re: Bell Housing

Here's some pictures.

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File Type: jpg flywheel-housing2.jpg (51.4 KB, 198 views)
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Old 01-16-2018, 09:40 PM   #4
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Default Re: Bell Housing

Midget,
Learn the "ring" of a good one, when tapped with a hammer. A crack, anywhere, will make one go "THUD"---Sorta' like the Liberty Bell--LOL
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Old 01-16-2018, 10:00 PM   #5
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Default Re: Bell Housing

Quote:
Originally Posted by midgetracer View Post
I heard that there is a re-enforced bell housing (forward), but I don't know how to identify it. I have spent the day cleaning up bell housings and found all three cracked. What do I look for to tell if they are cracked before I spent so much time in sandblasting. I have cracks in three different places, so I guess any place is subject to cracking. Is there any fix to these or are they just scrap? Also how do i tell if it is a re-enforced housing? When were the re-enforced units used? Thanks for the help.
Good topic, thanks for starting it. Could you please post some photos of the cracks so that I know what to generally look for. Ugh, my crappy eyes tend to miss things like cracks
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Old 01-16-2018, 10:11 PM   #6
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Default Re: Bell Housing

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Originally Posted by BILL WILLIAMSON View Post
Midget,
Learn the "ring" of a good one, when tapped with a hammer. A crack, anywhere, will make one go "THUD"---Sorta' like the Liberty Bell--LOL
Bill Musicaldingdong
Hold the housing up with a heavy piece of wire and then tap it with small hammer. A good one will ring and a cracked one will just go Thud. This is the same method we used to determine if an old Chevy crank was forged or cast.
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Old 01-16-2018, 10:47 PM   #7
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Default Re: Bell Housing

What will happen if you drill a "stop hole" at the end of a crack and then stitch it? I did that to a couple with small cracks and they seemed strong enough, yet no ringydingy when tapped with a hammer, just a dull thud. I tried to displace the metal at the open end of the crack repair and could detect no movement though I put a very good pull on it with a large crescent wrench. Will they hold? should I try welding over the stitch? If so, cast iron rod or what? Brass? The venders sell new re-enforce one's, that's one option$$$
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Old 01-16-2018, 10:57 PM   #8
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The problem with the 'bell ring' method is it only works if its off the car. Removing the housing is a pretty severe step just to do an inspection.
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:04 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by daveymc29 View Post
What will happen if you drill a "stop hole" at the end of a crack and then stitch it? I did that to a couple with small cracks and they seemed strong enough, yet no ringydingy when tapped with a hammer, just a dull thud. I tried to displace the metal at the open end of the crack repair and could detect no movement though I put a very good pull on it with a large crescent wrench. Will they hold? should I try welding over the stitch? If so, cast iron rod or what? Brass? The venders sell new re-enforce one's, that's one option$$$
Drill a stop hole and weld it up....just like with the motor mounts. As long as you have a good cast iron welding technique it should work well IMO. Me personally I would bring it to a welding expert because my welding skills are non-existent. If you can do great cast iron welding, I'm jealous.
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:37 PM   #10
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Default Re: Bell Housing

Here is pictures of cracks from four bell housings. Some did not show up until I had primed the bell housing. I had one other that was cracked in similar place to the fourth one. I am running out of candidates. The problem with the ring teat is that you must clean all the grime off before it will work. Picture 3 bell housing will ring, but the small crack has me worried that it will grow with time. I appreciate all ideas. I found out I have no re-enforced bell housings.
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File Type: jpg DSC00001.jpg (94.3 KB, 145 views)
File Type: jpg DSC00002.jpg (43.0 KB, 147 views)
File Type: jpg DSC00003.jpg (71.8 KB, 149 views)
File Type: jpg DSC00004.jpg (54.2 KB, 139 views)
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:39 PM   #11
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Default Re: Bell Housing

I have marked the crack area with marker to make them easier to see. pic1 has a crack right up next to the engine mounting flange
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:43 PM   #12
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I have marked the cracks with marker. Pic 1 has a crack next to the engine mounting across from the starter.
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:59 PM   #13
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Took me five flywheel housing before I found a good one..three early's, a late reinforced and an aftermarket one no one can identify(Ill post up a picture tomorrow) one of the early ones had the cracks pinned and it ran out at.003... I was going to run it till I found a late reinforced one,uncracked that dialed at .002..the only way to crack check them is to bead blast them..good luck,its critical to smooth shifts and vibration reduction.



B flywheel checked at .001,balanced with clutch.
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:20 AM   #14
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Man, I didn't realize the bell housings were so prone to cracking. No wonder there are so many for sale. I think I liked this issue better when I was ignorant of it
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Old 01-17-2018, 04:03 AM   #15
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Default Re: Bell Housing

Torch welding with cast iron rod is easy, if it's CLEAN & you have the proper flux. I "think" my years at hard facing plow shares, was a big help in my technique.
I've had success, using Nickel-Arc. Weld a short distance & peen it, often. I have NEVER welded a bell housing, though. I "wonder" about warping or distortion??????
As a sidenote: I've NEVER torch welded Alujimum, I'd love to learn to do it. In the '50s, as a welders' helper, I learned to weld Alujimum, with a New Fangled Heli-Arc Machine. It was a BIG project & we got "pretty" GOOD--LOL
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Old 01-17-2018, 04:12 AM   #16
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Man, I didn't realize the bell housings were so prone to cracking. No wonder there are so many for sale. I think I liked this issue better when I was ignorant of it
The smart assed Dog jist "sed", "TO YOU, IGNORANCE IS BLISS"---Whut do I do, with a Smart Assed Dog ---I didn't know he knew the wurd, BLISS???--I always "wonder" how much of our Vocabulary, dogs absorb???
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Old 01-17-2018, 05:50 AM   #17
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Default Re: Bell Housing

Most flywheel housings (not bell housings they are the bit with the pedals on !!!) you find at swap meets are cracked, that is why they are there .Housings get cracked when someone jacks the front of the engine up to work on the pulley or front motor mount without removing a bolt each side from the rear motor mount so the motor can pivot .

John in cold wind snow and gales on the way spawned in the Great Lakes Suffolk County England .
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Old 01-17-2018, 07:55 AM   #18
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Man, I didn't realize the bell housings were so prone to cracking. No wonder there are so many for sale. I think I liked this issue better when I was ignorant of it
The part that is prone to cracking is the Flywheel housing, Not the bellhousing. the bellhousing is between the flywheel housing and the transmission, and is shaped roughly like a bell.
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Old 01-17-2018, 08:30 AM   #19
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In looking at your pictures make sure 1,2 and 3 are cracked through and not just casting flaws,picture 4 is the classic crack.Can anyone identify this one?


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Old 01-17-2018, 08:39 AM   #20
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classic cracks from the lower support bolt holes..general vehicle operation causes it in my opinion,its a design flaw.The bell housing load is equal all around,the flywheel housing is only supported on the upper half by the block.

The repaired one I have they just pinned the cracks,no weld...have another one weld repaired from bottom damage repair..that one was all over the dial,deviation of .020,reckon the weld heat had something to do with it.
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