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Old 01-08-2018, 06:44 PM   #1
patbill@megahits.com
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Question Oil filters on flatheads

I have two flathead vehicles. I have removed the oil filters from both of them. Are there many of you out there that run flatheads without oil filters? I change the oil at least once a year or every thousand miles, which ever comes first.

I never felt that the bi-pass filters were very effective. Maybe I am wrong. I think that today's modern high detergent oils do a great job of keeping the engine clean. I've still got the original Ford filters, cans, lines , etc. Should I consider putting them back on? Curious about what thoughts are out there.

Thanks!

Bill
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Old 01-08-2018, 06:54 PM   #2
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

In my opinion, you are wrong in your thinking. On the odd chance that something gets ingested into your engine that would harm it, you have no protection at all. But, given the way most of these cars are driven these days, the chance of something getting into the engine are remote.

But then, I have always been a "Belt and Suspenders" type of guy when it comes to engines. What I don't understand is why someone would remove any type engine protection; I kinda bitched about the cost of filters before, but they just make a lot of sense.
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Old 01-08-2018, 06:57 PM   #3
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

it has been a never ending discussion here. some folks run without em and some folks say you need em. you are correct, we have better oils today, and most take better care of the car than when it was in service years ago. so, take your pick to filter or not!
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Old 01-08-2018, 07:20 PM   #4
Glenn Thoreson
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

The crank case ventilation system on these things is wide open to the atmosphere. That means that fine abrasive dirt particles can, and will get in the oil. Poo-poo the bypass filters all you want. All the oil gets filtered quicker than you would think and any filtration is better than none. If filter availability and cost is a concern, use a remote filter adapter that takes a modern Ford or GM screw on filter that costs less than half what the stock filter costs.
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Old 01-08-2018, 07:22 PM   #5
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

Probably the newer oils with detergent and no oil filter is the worst thing for an engine.

Detergent oil keeps junk and debris in suspension so they can continue to chew out the innards every trip around.

You need an oil fliter to filter out the particles, funny thing is, a full flow filter only filters particles out of a size bigger than about .001 inch.

I read that a flathead crank clearance can be as low as .000 inch.
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Old 01-08-2018, 07:27 PM   #6
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

I guess there is another way of thinking to add . . . what could the oil filter possibly hurt? There are many different types of bypass filters that do a great job of filtering the oil, but not necessarily protecting the bearings from something getting into them (as they are bypass). I happen to believe in 100% full-flow type filters - but I realize they are NOT a standard item on a flathead and they are not easy to retro-fit (pretty much impossible if the engine is in the car). If I had a running engine, I'd put on a bypass filter - if I'm rebuilding an engine from scratch, then I'll put the extra time, $$$ into a full-flow system.
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Old 01-08-2018, 08:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

If the filter media in a full flow filter can't handle the output of the oil pump (and I doubt it can), you have unfiltered oil going into the engine through the by pass valve. True, it all gets filtered, just not every cycle through the engine.
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Old 01-08-2018, 08:42 PM   #8
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

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Originally Posted by 40cpe View Post
If the filter media in a full flow filter can't handle the output of the oil pump (and I doubt it can), you have unfiltered oil going into the engine through the by pass valve. True, it all gets filtered, just not every cycle through the engine.




The Flathead factory filter is always a bypass just a very little flow is being directed to that large canister filter from the main oil passage in the block. The brass fitting located on the outside of the housing has a very small hole so the actual pressure loss caused by this system is low to match the actual filtering its doing which is also very low. Eliminating that filter bypass system increases actual oil pressure and delivery to the engine.
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Old 01-08-2018, 08:43 PM   #9
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

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Originally Posted by 40cpe View Post
If the filter media in a full flow filter can't handle the output of the oil pump (and I doubt it can), you have unfiltered oil going into the engine through the by pass valve. True, it all gets filtered, just not every cycle through the engine.
Why would a flathead be in different than a modern engine is this regard. Oil flow rate out of the oil pump should be comparable. A good spin on type filter should not be by-passing oil with proper change intervals.
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Old 01-08-2018, 09:02 PM   #10
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

I put a gauge of both sides of my 95% filter and it read 10# lower on the out put side. It takes ~ 10# to open the bypass. The Wix filter shows a flow rate of 7-9 gpm, I don't know what the output of a flathead oil pump is. There is no difference in a modern engine, I think they all bypass some. No proof, just an opinion.
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Old 01-08-2018, 10:08 PM   #11
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

I wonder what a modern oil filter bypass sprung ball is set at ?

Obviously it would be higher than the main oil relief valve, or it would be open all the time, but how much more.
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Old 01-08-2018, 11:24 PM   #12
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

Pooch the bypass valve in the oil filter only measures the differential pressure ,that is the difference between the oil going in and the oil coming out of the filter,that is called the pressure drop over the filter.
On my A it is about 3.5 psi hot at 40mph.
I use the oil filter from a 6cyl falcon on my v8,s as they have the bypass valve in them,
the valve is there to still allow oil to get to the engine if the filter is not changed and becomes clogged or the engine is reved up with cold oil.
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Old 01-09-2018, 12:39 AM   #13
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

I lost a crank here recently because I had the filter lines reversed. and thus the bearings got no oil. I post this because, I, we, sometimes can't think right. The filter had been ttempoarly been mounted on the engine. I moved it down on the fram out of the way, and easy to change when drainibg the oil. And the lines got reversed.
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Old 01-09-2018, 05:02 PM   #14
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

If you believe that the bypass filter isn't effective, just forget to tighten the cap when you change the element and observe the oil shower! Don't ask me how I know that! I buy the elements at a local NAPA store where they still stock them for the Ford tractor owners Old Henry Ford didn't believe in filters. That is why the intake of the Model A carb points toward the rear of the vehicle. He thought that the plentiful dust and dirt on the old roads wouldn't enter the carb as long as the car was moving forward!
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Old 01-09-2018, 06:57 PM   #15
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

I don't run a filter, but I do think the OEM filter is a good idea.
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Old 01-09-2018, 07:15 PM   #16
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

Quote:
Originally Posted by supereal View Post
Old Henry Ford didn't believe in filters. That is why the intake of the Model A carb points toward the rear of the vehicle. He thought that the plentiful dust and dirt on the old roads wouldn't enter the carb as long as the car was moving forward!
Plus it has to travel up...
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Old 01-09-2018, 07:42 PM   #17
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

I run a modern FL1A Ford filter and a PCV valve. The engine stays clean and so does the oil. Also I sleep better.
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Old 01-09-2018, 07:53 PM   #18
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

Does anyone have a great trick to mounting a stock type oil filter on aftermarket finned aluminum heads?
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Old 01-09-2018, 08:23 PM   #19
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

Does anyone have a great trick to mounting a stock type oil filter on aftermarket finned aluminum heads?

If you're running studs, replace the appropriate head nuts with longer nuts, so you can use 7/16 UNF bolts into the topside of the longer nuts to attach your filter. Use the longer nuts to clear the fins.
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Old 01-09-2018, 09:09 PM   #20
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Default Re: Oil filters on flatheads

I managed to screw up the internal threads on the brass block T-fitting for my factory-installed bypass filter on a '47 v-8 engine.

Can anyone help me? I would like to start using it again.
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