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Old 09-17-2019, 09:12 AM   #1
flatheadhauler
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Default rear main leak

just pulled my 454 out of my 55 sedan for an oil leak in rear of motor for second time. Cars under restoration and I have not taken car on street yet last time we put motor in we were going to take on shake down cruse, but it was leaking to bad. Have not been able to verify without a doubt that leak is coming from rear main. But oil is running out of the weep hole in the bottom of the trans. dust cover and around the starter. a week ago pulled the motor and removed the rear main cap, did not disturb the crank. Just pushed old seal out with screw driver and oiled new seal and pushed in place sealed the ends with rtv and off set the joint by 1/2 inch. The leak was jus as bad as before. About 1/4 cup per 5 min run time. Bought this motor with 200 miles on it. This experience is telling me there might be issue on the dia. of crank surface were seal rides on. Could be oil pan but new aftermarket with new felpro gaskets was used when I got it and used the first time I pulled it out. Checked oil galley plugs and cam plugs not seeing an issue there. I have the motor back on the stand going to drive oil pump, to see if I can cause a leak, if not will try to run motor on stand, to try to make leak. I need some input, has anyone had crank issue on seal surface or a leak from the main, that was hard to stop.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:30 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by flatheadhauler View Post
just pulled my 454 out of my 55 sedan for an oil leak in rear of motor for second time. Cars under restoration and I have not taken car on street yet last time we put motor in we were going to take on shake down cruse, but it was leaking to bad. Have not been able to verify without a doubt that leak is coming from rear main. But oil is running out of the weep hole in the bottom of the trans. dust cover and around the starter. a week ago pulled the motor and removed the rear main cap, did not disturb the crank. Just pushed old seal out with screw driver and oiled new seal and pushed in place sealed the ends with rtv and off set the joint by 1/2 inch. The leak was jus as bad as before. About 1/4 cup per 5 min run time. Bought this motor with 200 miles on it. This experience is telling me there might be issue on the dia. of crank surface were seal rides on. Could be oil pan but new aftermarket with new felpro gaskets was used when I got it and used the first time I pulled it out. Checked oil galley plugs and cam plugs not seeing an issue there. I have the motor back on the stand going to drive oil pump, to see if I can cause a leak, if not will try to run motor on stand, to try to make leak. I need some input, has anyone had crank issue on seal surface or a leak from the main, that was hard to stop.
I have had BBC since the mid 70s and never had such an issue. If it is the seal area and not at the cam plug or other location, I doubt that it is the crank. More likely the seal. Are you sure it is oriented correctly?
Post a picture of the seal installed in the block or cap.
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Old 09-17-2019, 02:41 PM   #3
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if there is a grove worn in the crankshaft from an old seal it will always leak. fel-pro I think makes a repair seal that might help it has a smaller Id on the sealing lip.
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:17 AM   #4
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I have had BBC since the mid 70s and never had such an issue. If it is the seal area and not at the cam plug or other location, I doubt that it is the crank. More likely the seal. Are you sure it is oriented correctly?
Post a picture of the seal installed in the block or cap.

I am trying to convert my engine stand to a run stand. I want to be sure where leak is coming from, I am 98% sure it is coming from main seal but at this point I can't assume. Will post a picture of seal when I pull oil pan... Thanks for the response.
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Old 09-18-2019, 09:40 PM   #5
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I am trying to convert my engine stand to a run stand. I want to be sure where leak is coming from, I am 98% sure it is coming from main seal but at this point I can't assume. Will post a picture of seal when I pull oil pan... Thanks for the response.
If you have a three wheel stand don't do it, not safe. You could end up flipping it over. Make something lower and safer. Couldn't you use a power drill and pump it with the drill, you can get sufficiently high pressure to locate a leak.
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Old 09-20-2019, 07:11 AM   #6
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If you have a three wheel stand don't do it, not safe. You could end up flipping it over. Make something lower and safer. Couldn't you use a power drill and pump it with the drill, you can get sufficiently high pressure to locate a leak.
I have a 4 wheel stand, it's pretty stable. We spent a day shoring it up in front to take weight off. Ran motor yesterday and found why I have leak. Had nothing to do with main rear seal. Took flex plate back off and looked at cam plug where it was leaking and low and behold there is no cam plug in place? Trying to figure out if it fell out or was never there. I bought this motor with 200 miles on it about 7years ago was built by someone else so I can't say what was done. I had so much black paint on back of motor that I did not notice plug was missing. I will be willing to bet that it won't leak after I install plug. Good thing I pulled motor out because the last time I pulled motor out I did not get flex plate seated on the crank the way it should have been, I have a bad wobble in flex plate just have to rebolt it. When I had it running last, couldn't figure out why front fender was shaking so bad at idle. Also found that front harmonic balancer was not for a externally balanced motor. after correcting those two issue motor should run smooth. Below I am posing a picture of cam plug missing.
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Old 09-20-2019, 09:02 AM   #7
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I have a 4 wheel stand, it's pretty stable. We spent a day shoring it up in front to take weight off. Ran motor yesterday and found why I have leak. Had nothing to do with main rear seal. Took flex plate back off and looked at cam plug where it was leaking and low and behold there is no cam plug in place? Trying to figure out if it fell out or was never there. I bought this motor with 200 miles on it about 7years ago was built by someone else so I can't say what was done. I had so much black paint on back of motor that I did not notice plug was missing. I will be willing to bet that it won't leak after I install plug. Good thing I pulled motor out because the last time I pulled motor out I did not get flex plate seated on the crank the way it should have been, I have a bad wobble in flex plate just have to rebolt it. When I had it running last, couldn't figure out why front fender was shaking so bad at idle. Also found that front harmonic balancer was not for a externally balanced motor. after correcting those two issue motor should run smooth. Below I am posing a picture of cam plug missing.
Glad to hear your findings and on your way for correct them, Make sure the flexplate also has a balance weight fir a 454 and the it the orientation (front-back) is correct. Come do not seat when installed backwards, may wobble. Check and seal the other plugs in the back of the engine, may not have sealant. The cam plug was forgotten, may be a few other things forgotten.
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Old 09-22-2019, 08:05 AM   #8
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Ran the motor 2 days ago now. Had the longest run that this motor has ever seen. Had it running a good solid 20 min. on the stand Had 1 drop of oil hit the cookie sheet, that I was using for a drip pan. I'm contributing that oil to oil coating some surface that was uncleanable or trapped. Yesterday started putting motor back in car. Will post another video when that job is done.


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Old 09-22-2019, 09:50 AM   #9
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Way to go Glad you got it fixed

Rotated the pic for you:

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Old 09-22-2019, 01:24 PM   #10
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Wow,
Amazing that that was over looked by the builder of the engine, also incorrect balancer issue. Glad you got it sorted out!
Enjoy your hotrod!

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