View single post by Ron Earp
 Posted: 06-01-2006 02:32 pm
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Ron Earp

Joined: 03-12-2005
Location: Cary, North Carolina USA
Posts: 339
The first race outing for the Jensen Healey ended up badly, unfortunately. Jeff and I decided to head down to the Memorial Monster event at Carolina Motorsports Park for a lot of racing - two sprints, one mini enduro, and the Carolina Cup. Friday, the day before, was an open testing day so we signed up for that to shake the car down.

We'd previously had the Jensen out at Roebling Road and learned it had cooling issues, as well as oiling issues. Since then I'd spent a lot of time putting in a new NASCAR radiator, adding an Accusump, larger oil cooler, and dual remote oil filters. I was pretty sure we'd handled the cooling and oiling problems, that was we'd be allowed to concentrate on figuring out other problems with car.  In fact, here are a couple of pictures of the compete system:

Well, out we go on the first practice session and on lap two, on the front straight, the remote oil filter adapter blows off the block and within about 5-7 seconds pumps the oil out of the sump, Accusump, and runs the engine dry. And, naturally, the car oiled the track down and closed it for about 20 minutes for clean up. I felt horrible about that as I've been on the receiving end of it before.

Anyway, after a flat tow back in the paddock we were able to check it out. The adapter was not the correct adapter for the motor. The adapter that blew off was for a Chevy with 3/4" threads, while I needed the Ford one with 13/16" threads. You can put a Chevy adapter on a Ford nipple, and it will tighten up. And, most kits just come with Chevy adapters since they think everyone wants a Chevy motor. The adapter won't stay on and when you have thread locking sealant on the nipple it is extremely difficult to tell that the adapter is in fact the wrong size. I've always not liked Chevys. It's my fault, yes I know.

A 120 mile parts hunt Friday turned up the correct part. After cleaning everything, carefully, and putting it back together the moment of truth arrived. We fired up the motor and she had pressure, great! But, after about 15 minutes of running a ticking noise slowly became louder and eventually became an identifiable rod knock.

I am hoping we only wiped a rod bearing and that the bearing is damaged while everything else is okay. That could be repaired relatively easily since the bearings for the motor are not expensive. Bearings are there to protect machined surfaces, right? Maybe I'll get lucky on this one.  Judson did a nice job of building the engine, and I did a bang of job of ruining it. But, we're pulling the motor out now and will report back later this week.

Extremely disappointing day, but we'll be back. Jeff got in a few laps in the JH on Friday between repairs and before the rod knock set in and was extremely impressed with power and handling, we might be on to something.  Cooling issues are gone for sure, we've got more water and cooling area than we know what to do with now, both oil and water.

At least there was one glimmer of hope - Jeff's TR8 that I wrench on placed 4th on Saturday's race, and led the IT racing on Sunday for about four laps!!!!! -  before retiring with burned up calipers.  Still, the first time a Brit car has led IT racing in probably 15 years at least. One day in the not too distant future some Brit cars will bring home some IT trophies!

Last edited on 06-01-2006 03:13 pm by Ron Earp