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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Can a “certified YouTube mechanic” rebuild the bottom end while still in the car? Having a hard time keeping rear main seals from leaking and oil pressure is beginning to run low in my ‘66. Also, black smoke comes out of the driver side exhaust when run hard. I’m thinking the previous owner may have run the engine out of oil shortly after a complete restoration with a Blueprint engine. Engine has maybe 10,000 miles. Thoughts and recommendations please?
 

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Time for a compression check.
 
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Can a “certified YouTube mechanic” rebuild the bottom end while still in the car? Having a hard time keeping rear main seals from leaking and oil pressure is beginning to run low in my ‘66. Also, black smoke comes out of the driver side exhaust when run hard. I’m thinking the previous owner may have run the engine out of oil shortly after a complete restoration with a Blueprint engine. Engine has maybe 10,000 miles. Thoughts and recommendations please?
The short answer, Not Really! While one can access all of the rod bearings and a couple of the mains, getting access to the rear is a PITA. You stated, in part, rear main is leaking. Well, installing a new seal is best completed with the engine removed. Not to mention, what about the journal condition? Pull it and "Do it Right The First Time"
 

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The short answer, Not Really! While one can access all of the rod bearings and a couple of the mains, getting access to the rear is a PITA. You stated, in part, rear main is leaking. Well, installing a new seal is best completed with the engine removed. Not to mention, what about the journal condition? Pull it and "Do it Right The First Time"
His picture indicates he has a full circle, late model block so the rear main is even easier.

It is feasible to remove the crankshaft without pulling the heads. I've done that before, although it is much easier with the engine on a stand. Push the pistons up the bores as far as you can to wrangle the crankshaft out (timing cover off of course). Having a helper would make it much easier, especially on installation.
 

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CAN you? Yes and no. Yes, if the bores are still within spec and only need a dingleberry honing... No, if the bores need cutting. Yes, if the main caps are round and all in line. No, if it needs a line-hone. Yes, it's kind of a pain.... When you think about it, to get to the stage where you'll be pulling pistons and crank, etc., it's not much more to simply yank the block.... it's much easier to work on when put on a [cheap...aka, used or borrowed] engine stand... plus you can have it hot tanked and cleaned up at the same time.
 

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Also, black smoke comes out of the driver side exhaust when run hard.
This indicates it is running rich. Maybe lean out the secondaries (if so equipped).

Gray or bluish-gray is burned oil and would likely implicate the piston rings.
 

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Pull the engine out and give everything a good going over. If you think the oil ran low and have oil pressure issues, I think it would be foolish not to check everything.
I don't know about you, but I only like doing these kinds of things once. You might get it right by doing it from under the car, but you might miss something and have to pull it anyway.
 

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Pull a couple main and rod caps and inspect for wear. If anything looks suspect, pull the motor and install new bearings. Way easier out of the car.
 
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