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carpecursusII
05-26-2014, 01:35 PM
I know this has been beaten to death so I'll try and keep it short. Reading through everything here it would seem I want to avoid the revington seal conversion and not machine my crank. I have looked at the ARP replacement kit with the lip seal and it looks pretty good. When I removed my original rear seal it had felt packed in the channel just aft of the scroll seal, the car did not seam to leak much oil, it certainly did not leave any drops on the floor maybe just a light coating on the back of the engine. I know this motor has been rebuilt before so I presume this was added.

My questions are:
1) How good is the ARP seal kit and how easy is it to install, I will be doing the work and don't want to add more headaches.
2) Has anyone else seen felt packed into the aft channel of the seal before and is that a viable solution to the probem. If so, where do I get more felt rope to replace it with?

Thanks

tinman58
05-26-2014, 01:44 PM
I like the lip seal. Easy to install, just shorten your flywheel bolts. I don't quite understand where you are talking about with the felt rope. (pictures)!

charleyf
05-26-2014, 01:53 PM
I have installed one of the ARP ( Alexander Racing products) rear seals and found it to be very straight forward. You do need the centering tool as well as the seal. The felt packing is the traditional way to seal that channel. The felt comes with most lower engine rebuild gasket sets. But the felt is not alone in there. The manual says to cut the felt in short pieces and soak them in Wellseal ( TRF # WS100) and then pack them in as tight as you can. This is still done with the ARP seal. A call to TRF should net you both the felt and Wellseal.
Charley

TR3driver
05-26-2014, 04:25 PM
2) Has anyone else seen felt packed into the aft channel of the seal before and is that a viable solution to the probem. If so, where do I get more felt rope to replace it with?

Interesting concept. Just to be clear, I believe you are talking about adding rope to the oil return groove in the original seal; not the felt that goes between the bearing cap and the block.

'Rope' seals were common "back when"; the much-maligned scroll seal was actually an upgrade as the rope frequently didn't last very long. A quick Google shows that several sources still carry the rope, eg Summit https://www.summitracing.com/parts/fel-bs3165?seid=srese1&gclid=CPv-kb60yr4CFUVqfgodqFcAiw

I will definitely be going with the "Mad Marx" Viton seal, as supplied by Alexander Racing Enterprises (not to be confused with American Racing Products). It was developed by a TR racer in Germany, who tried all the other seals and found them lacking. Apparently you can be banned from some race tracks, for leaving even a single drop of oil on the pavement.

One of our local club members tried the older conversion, where the scroll gets machined away. The results leaked far worse than I've ever seen an original seal leak! We're talking a stream of oil, not just an occasional drop.

carpecursusII
05-26-2014, 06:57 PM
Randall, you are correct I am talking about the return groove not the felt that seals the bearing cap to the block. I have had club members who have used the revington seal with success when machined to 63.5 mm but I would still lean toward the ARP seal if I upgraded. Do you know if that summit link you posted would be the correct size, I am temped to order it and see how it works.

TR3driver
05-26-2014, 07:15 PM
Do you know if that summit link you posted would be the correct size, I am temped to order it and see how it works.
I don't know, but it looks kind of big in the photo. IIRC the rope for my old "stove bolt" Chevy motor was close to 1/2" in diameter and the groove was about 3/8". I don't recall the groove in the TR seal being nearly that big; but can't say I've ever paid all that much attention to it.

The factory scroll seal can actually work pretty good, if you re-arrange (or lose entirely) the factory "PCV" system, and use the right size mandrel to install the seal. (The factory workshop manual is apparently a misprint.)

carpecursusII
05-26-2014, 07:24 PM
I am running the factory PCV system and it is operating properly. I suck from the valve cover and into the intake. How would I re-arrange it?

PeterK
05-27-2014, 09:10 AM
Had me confused for a minute, thinking that ARP now makes a seal kit. It's A.R.E. (Joe)Alexander Racing Enterprises that sells the kit https://www.the-vintage-racer.com/ . ARP is the fastener maker.

TR3driver
05-27-2014, 07:49 PM
I am running the factory PCV system and it is operating properly. I suck from the valve cover and into the intake. How would I re-arrange it?
One way would be to remove the plug and install the TR2-3 style road draft tube. But if you've got the early setup with just an open tube to the air filters, then just freshening the rings & cylinders would probably be enough.

The problem is that, at full throttle and especially if the rings & cylinder walls are a bit tired, there is quite a bit of exhaust that makes it's way past the rings and out through the crankcase. You want to make sure it can exit the crankcase easily and not build up pressure there. TR4A (and I've been told some TR4) used a valve in the line from the rocker cover that greatly limits the amount of flow; especially at full throttle when there is no vacuum in the intake manifold. The pressure build up in the crankcase tends to blow oil out everywhere, including the rear main seal.

DanB
10-07-2014, 02:25 PM
I have installed one of the ARP ( Alexander Racing products) rear seals and found it to be very straight forward. You do need the centering tool as well as the seal.
Charley

Feedback on Joe's seal from me... I installed it this past spring. Due to some transmission trouble, I pulled the tranny out last night. It looks like the new seal is leaking as bad as it ever did before. There is a good bit of oil inside my bell housing.

Dan B

charleyf
10-07-2014, 06:09 PM
Dan,
I have had no reason to get inside my bell housing to see if there is any leak there. But I have put 8-10,000 miles on this car.
Charley

tinman58
10-08-2014, 11:32 AM
Dan B.
check the lenght of the flywheel bolts. The arp bolts were I little long and wore out the seal. The fix was shorten the bolts on a grinder. After 6000 miles on the new seal, no leak...

PatGalvin
10-08-2014, 12:04 PM
As info, I installed the Revington lip seal, machined my crank to exactly 2.5 inches, and it doesn't leak a drop (after about 500 miles). So, I'm quite happy so far. Make sure your aluminum oil gallery plug on back of engine block is sealed tight, or replace it. Mine leaked and I mistook that leak for a rear seal leak. Was a very expensive and unnecessary repair on my TR3A. Best of luck!

Pat

sp53
10-08-2014, 07:42 PM
I have not started my engine yet after installing the Mad Max seal, but it looks like it should work fine, and it was not too difficult to install. Read up on it and get both sets of instructions. One suggestion I would make is to make one of those stock rear main cap pullers that pulls the rear cap straight up. I suggest this because there is a sequence of dry fits as you go through the installation process and the rear cap is a very snug fit. Half of the new seal stays in place when you mate the two together and then take the crank back out to put on the seal, so you cannot wiggle the unit back and forth too much. You want a starlight pull up. Chris maintains with his instructions to also follow the shop manual, and I believe the manual shows how to make that simple lifting puller dealie with a couple of screws, at least the Haynes does.

TR3driver
10-08-2014, 08:12 PM
Feedback on Joe's seal from me... I installed it this past spring. Due to some transmission trouble, I pulled the tranny out last night. It looks like the new seal is leaking as bad as it ever did before. There is a good bit of oil inside my bell housing.

Dan B
Are you sure it's the crank seal leaking? There are several other places that can leak, including a couple of plugs and the seams between the rear main cap and the block.

TR3driver
10-08-2014, 08:20 PM
I have not started my engine yet after installing the Mad Max seal, but it looks like it should work fine, and it was not too difficult to install. Read up on it and get both sets of instructions. One suggestion I would make is to make one of those stock rear main cap pullers that pulls the rear cap straight up. I suggest this because there is a sequence of dry fits as you go through the installation process and the rear cap is a very snug fit. Half of the new seal stays in place when you mate the two together and then take the crank back out to put on the seal, so you cannot wiggle the unit back and forth too much. You want a starlight pull up. Chris maintains with his instructions to also follow the shop manual, and I believe the manual shows how to make that simple lifting puller dealie with a couple of screws, at least the Haynes does.
It's also in the factory TR4 workshop manual (tho not in the TR2-3 manual)

sp53
10-09-2014, 09:58 AM
I would like to point out that the Haynes manual is confusing when it talks about the installation of the felt. In one section it simply talks about putting the felt in and in another it shows how to put the felt in with a square punch with the felt cut into one inch pieces and soaked in shellac.

When I talked to Joe he was telling me a story about a professional shop that simply put the felt in dry and called it good. I guess they figured the felt would swell with oil or something. Who knows what they were thinking, but I guess they were defending there installation and blaming the new seal.

TR3driver
10-09-2014, 04:06 PM
FWIW, I feel that 1" is a little long and use the 3/4" given in the TR3 factory manual. The felt needs to be soaked thoroughly and tamped down good; if done right you wind up with shellac seeping from the joint. I've been using classic Permatex #3 "Aviation Form-a-Gasket", which seems to work well (tho it can be hard to remove the cap later on, my tool is bent!). I also use a 3/16" diameter round aluminum rod (originally part of a motorhome dump valve I believe) instead of the square drift mentioned in the manual.

bobhustead
10-09-2014, 06:24 PM
So sorry to hear about the bent tool.
Bob

TR3driver
10-09-2014, 07:07 PM
So sorry to hear about the bent tool.

No big deal. It's still functional, and only took a few minutes to make in any case. I'll use a stronger bar if I have to make another one.

Don Elliott
10-09-2014, 07:07 PM
The oil in the bell housing might be coming from a bad seal at the front end of the transmission where the input shaft is. There are splines on this input shaft and you have to wrap masking tape of use a vinyl bag around the splines when it is re-assembled - so as not to prevent the sharp corners of the splines to ruin the new seal you are installing.

MadMarx
12-07-2014, 02:43 PM
Hello Guys,

two years back I have updated the installation manual with the most common mistakes during installation.
I post here a link:
https://www.tr4-racing.de/download/splitseal.pdf

Hope it helps.
After now 4 years of experience with these seals I can say that they do well. I get rarely feedback of trouble. I would say 4-5 people in the last 4 years.

Cheers
Chris

mallard
12-07-2014, 05:02 PM
Chris the seal worked great for me, would recommend to anybody. Thanks for doing all the homework and producing a great product.

shoopal
01-21-2015, 04:27 PM
I Just installed the Alexander seal and it was really easy. A couple of tips:
1. Don't try to open the spring. Remove it from the lip and work it gently over the crank boss. Then open the viton part and slip it over the crank boss so the lip of the seal faces the spring.
Lastly (I have a little hook tool) position the spring back into place. Oil up the lip.
2. Light coating of silicon seal around the seal and in the split. Mark the split position on the crank with a felt tip. Position the crank in place seal split facing cylinder head, By tightening the bearing cap bolts, move the rear bearing cap til its almost down but don't tighten yet
Hand tighten the flywheel bolts (without the flywheel) till the bolt ends move the seal into place. Don't overtighten, it does not take much to move the seal.
Torque down the cap (85-90 lb-ft) and without turning the crank, let it stand overnight.
Naturally all the other instructions hold. Make sure you have the correct flywheel bolts when you install the flywheel. If they are too long, it will wipe out the seal as soon as the crank turns. Mine measured 23 mm long
You can buy the whole kit from Joe Alexander (the-vintage-racer.com) including the centering tool. Loved it.

Update 8/20/15 Got the motor running on the bench. I Ran it for 1/2 hour and pulled the flywheel. Rear Seal has absolutely no leaks. Some seeping from pan gasket in front which I am going to attend to. Do be careful of the flywheel/crank bolts. Without the lock plate, they will hit the seal. Moss sells self-locking bolts which are a hair shorter. Note the abundance of Red Silicone. Belts and Suspenders

sp53
01-25-2015, 12:36 PM
I like the idea of removing the spring because the why I did it I had to open the spring on the seal and found it very unsettling. My memory is shot and I cannot remember which end the seal bottomed out on, and you suggest gently moving the seal with bolts and that also makes good sense, right on.

TR3driver
01-25-2015, 01:15 PM
Over-stretching the spring (to get it over the crankshaft flange) may also weaken it, increasing the chances of leaks farther on. Chris Marx put a lot of time and thought into designing this conversion for his own use (Joe A. just resells them), so I'm inclined to believe that he had a specific reason for having the seal made (it is a custom piece) with the split spring.

shoopal
01-25-2015, 01:38 PM
I cleared that suggestion with Joe Alexander before I posted it. He uses them as well as selling them. Obviously the spring has to be joined at some point. I started to unscrew it but it wasn't coming apart easily. When I streched it out to go over the crank, it didn't seem like I "over" stretched it at all, and when I worked around the lip at the end, it was snug.
However, I get your point. I guess I'll know how it worked out after I get the engine running.

KVH
06-29-2015, 03:57 AM
When I get around to removing my crank, how will I be able to determine what the prior owners may have already done to the crank, or with which seal kits? What do I look for, for example, if I want to see if the crank was already machined?

TR3driver
06-29-2015, 05:31 AM
The only seal mod you're likely to find will be very obvious : no scroll at all. If so, you may have found the cause of the leak : some of the instructions for the older seal conversion had the wrong dimension for the crank surface!

For the journals, you can get a rough idea by looking at the bearing inserts. If they have been previously ground undersize, the undersize will be marked on the back on the insert. Eg 010 for .010" undersize. But, you'll probably need an accurate measurement to decide if they have to be ground undersize (again), so you'll need either a micrometer, or take the crank to a shop and let them mike it for you.

I see Enco has a 0-3" set of mikes on sale for $33 at the moment, which seems too good to be true, but I've been happy with the ones I got from them several decades ago. Be sure to check the calibration, though, mine all had to be tweaked (but the set comes with the standards to check them, and the wrench to adjust the calibration).
https://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=8&PMKANO=393&PARTPG=&PMCTLG=01

KVH
06-29-2015, 06:33 PM
I see Enco has a 0-3" set of mikes on sale for $33 at the moment, which seems too good to be true, but I've been happy with the ones I got from them several decades ago. Be sure to check the calibration, though, mine all had to be tweaked (but the set comes with the standards to check them, and the wrench to adjust the calibration).
https://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=8&PMKANO=393&PARTPG=&PMCTLG=01

Hold on just a second here. This appears to be an instance where you're not mentioning HF (whose mics I own).

TR3driver
06-29-2015, 11:54 PM
Hold on just a second here. This appears to be an instance where you're not mentioning HF (whose mics I own).

True enough. I've bought a lot of tools from HF, but for precision stuff like micrometers, I prefer to buy from Enco. Probably no real difference, but my perception at least is that Enco's poorest (cheapest) quality tools are just slightly better than what HF sells, at about the same price. For example, the digital calipers I got from Enco remember where zero is, and "wake up" if you just move the slide. So I can just pick them up and measure something, without having to clean and close the jaws plus press the On button. The HF calipers were a dollar or two cheaper, but they forget where zero is every time they turn off. Seems like they also eat batteries faster (though I don't have any actual measurements to back that up).

I also like that Enco sells better and best quality tools right next to the cheap ones; so you can make your own decision as to how much quality you want to pay for. HF doesn't give you that choice, they only sell cheap junk.

KVH
06-30-2015, 12:34 PM
So I can cope with surprises: What if after removing the rear main seal I see I have no scroll or the crank has been ground too much? What's the fix other than a new crank (from a fenced yard somewhere)?

TR3driver
06-30-2015, 02:08 PM
Probably the only other choice is to run the earlier conversion (which is still available from many sources including Moss). It can be made to work well, here are some tips on what to check
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2H2NJt34OffYWRiYWEzY2YtNDQxMy00ZTA1LTg4NDQtOWNhZ DVkOTI1MzE5/view?usp=sharing
(article originally written by Ken Gillanders and published in the TRSC newsletter; reprinted in "Tech Talk". However, TRSC and Ken take no responsibility for technical accuracy.)

If the area has been ground too small, it can be built up with weld and reground to the correct dimension. I wouldn't do that for a race motor, as it may very slightly weaken the crankshaft, but I don't think you plan any serious racing and it should be just fine for a street motor. It's been more than a few years since I asked, but ISTR I was quoted $20 for welding plus grinding one journal at a local crankshaft service. The (former) scroll area might be a bit higher though, since it is larger.
Here's a web page with a little more information on welding (although you'll probably want to deal with someone like Arizona Crankshaft Co.)
https://www.crankshaftco.com/crankshaft-welding.html

TRMark
06-30-2015, 04:53 PM
Randall, thank you for the info from Ken Gillanders, I plan on pulling the engine next winter to do some work on the seal and a few other things. I did the Racetorations seal conversion years ago, it has always leaked. I machined the scroll area to 63.5 mm per instructions. A friend of mine did the conversion to his TR3 a few years ago and has had no problems, he said he drilled additional oil return holes rear main bearing cap per instructions from Macy's Garage. Here is the link. https://www.macysgarage.com/myweb6/Rear_seals.htm Just not to enthusiastic about the drilling, I have the drill press and clamps, but I am going to be very nervous.

TR3driver
06-30-2015, 07:29 PM
Randall, thank you for the info from Ken Gillanders, I plan on pulling the engine next winter to do some work on the seal and a few other things. I did the Racetorations seal conversion years ago, it has always leaked. I machined the scroll area to 63.5 mm per instructions.
FWIW, the instructions I got from Ken had been hand-modified to read 2.520" (64mm), and "uncle jack" Drews recommended 1.525" (64.135mm). Jack also recommended cutting down the spring to exactly 8" free length.

DanB
07-07-2015, 02:36 PM
The oil in the bell housing might be coming from a bad seal at the front end of the transmission where the input shaft is. There are splines on this input shaft and you have to wrap masking tape of use a vinyl bag around the splines when it is re-assembled - so as not to prevent the sharp corners of the splines to ruin the new seal you are installing.
There could have been oil from the transmission, since the input bearing was wasted. I am running a borrowed gearbox now, slowly making progress on rebuilding my OD trans. When I get it ready to put back in, I will revisit the rear seal...overall the engine leaks a good bit, so I have several places to work on. It likes to mark its territory!

shoopal
07-08-2015, 02:10 PM
Hi all
Just to update my experience (see earlier posts) I used the Alexander rear seal. When I started the engine on the floor (see pictures) while running no leaks. The next day a small drip from the pan bolt next to the rear block. When I pulled the flywheel, I saw that the leak was a small seep from the joint between the block and the rear bearing housing which has those ****-a-mamie felt seals. A generous application of red RTV in the gaps seems to have solved that problem. If not, I'll have to live with it. Anyway that Alexander seal did it's job. BTW the installation tool worked great to press the front crank seal.