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Onan BF, Nobody warned me about the HOLE


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#1 coldone OFFLINE  

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Posted June 26, 2011 - 08:40 PM

Well, I started doing the decarb of the heads and pistons today. As was suggested by a member who shal remain nameless (OCH:D) I started to do a valve job. I picked up everything I needed at NAPA this week. On the first valve, exhaust LH side facing the flywheel, I managed to get the spring compressed and I got to the first keeper. I got it to come loose and it proceeded to fall straight down the HOLE that is directly below. I figure that it is an oil return hole, I try to fish it out, no luck. The other keeper jumped off in the other direction, when I go to retrive it from the other side of the galley it jumps out of the pliers, bounces off the intake valve spring and goes straight into the same @#$%^^&&*(((&&^%$##@ HOLE. So now both keepers are down in who knows where. The engine gets pulled and put onto the bench. I thought the hole was an oil return that would just go directly back to the oil sump, WRONG. I drop the sump and there is nothing but oil, no *&%$#!!!! keepers anywhere. I guess the hole leads to the cam/crank gears. So I had to stop because now I have to go buy a flywheel puller to get the FW off so I can get the gear cover off so Ican find the two keepers!!!!!

At least I got the other valves done and I am getting to know this engine pretty well. It seems to be in decent shape for a 30 year old engine that has never had any service done to it. I will post pics later on after I get those *&%$#^^@!!!! keepers out.:wallbanging::wallbanging::wallbanging::wallbanging::wallbanging::D

#2 wvbuzzmaster OFFLINE  

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Posted June 26, 2011 - 09:33 PM

That sucks, what engine is it just out of curiosity?

#3 coldone OFFLINE  

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Posted June 26, 2011 - 09:36 PM

Its a BF/MS out of a wheelhorse D-160.

#4 MH81 ONLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2011 - 01:20 AM

Ah man, that's a stinker. You just proved the "dropped wrench" theory is universal (@ least to Onan Engines) tho, if it's any comfort.

For those unfamiliar with the dropped wrench theory... It states that if you drop a tool while working on a project, it will position itself in the worst possible location to retrieve. This force is so powerful that I have seen it jump from the tool to the part you have just removed, were as the part will either position itself in a hard to retrieve area or evaporate/disappear entirely.
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#5 KennyP ONLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2011 - 04:37 AM

I'll keep that in mind when I do my Onan. Something covering that hole will be in place, and a magnet will be used to gather the keepers. Thanks, Coldone, for getting this out to the rest of us. Sorry for your troubles, though. Hope you find them soon. Do you have a small extendable magnet to stick up in there? It might retrieve them for you.

#6 NUTNDUN OFFLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2011 - 04:55 AM

That is a bummer and it never fails. Murphy's law at it's finest. At least you are getting to know the engine a lot better now. :D

#7 massey driver ONLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2011 - 07:49 AM

Thats gotta suck.Been there done that so your not alone in having stuff like that happen,as all the above posts mention.Larry

#8 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted June 27, 2011 - 08:25 AM

I should have thought to point that out. I plug the holes by nature, so didn't think of mentioning it. Of course the reason I do it by nature (now) is because of what you just found out the hard way. The holes do lead to the crankcase, but the keepers are likely hung up on a ledge, I have an empty BF block in my shed. I'll look to see exactly where the drains point to.
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#9 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted June 28, 2011 - 06:34 PM

OK, got some pics. My memory is short, plus I've never dropped a keeper into an Onan "hole", so I had to look at that old block to see exactly where they would be. One drain goes into the timing gear area (lower left of the Cam gear), which is the side with the breather connection in the valve cover. The other side drains through a small hole in the top side of the cylinder at bottom of the sleeve. The one that bleeds through the cylinder will have the keeper trapped there and will require either a small magnet to fish it out, or shaking the block upside down.

DSC00469.jpg

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#10 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted June 29, 2011 - 06:14 AM

That sucks. Have been in similar situations myself. I was going to suggest getting the engine upside down if possible to let gravity help you but I see Daniel already mentioned that. I have used duck tape or masking tape stuck to the end of a screwdriver or q tip to reach into tight areas and retrieve lost parts. The part needs to be degreased enough for the tape to stick to it.

#11 Alc ONLINE  

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Posted June 29, 2011 - 07:49 AM

I'm not sure if this mag. pick-up tool would help . I found it comes in handy because the aluminum shaft will hold a shape and is pretty small .
General Tools 395 Flexible Magnetic Pickup 15"

#12 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted June 29, 2011 - 09:06 AM

If you have a really strong magnet, you can just stick it to a wore, or even a tiny steel cable to retrieve stuff from tight spaces. With the block of this engine being aluminum, none of the magnetic attraction will be lost to the walls of the hole, making it easier to pull out the keeper.
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#13 coldone OFFLINE  

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Posted June 29, 2011 - 08:33 PM

Sorry, Ive been slack on updates. I pulled the flywheel and opened up to gear cover. They were laying on a ledge at the bottm of the block. I am in the process of putting it back together. I only get a few minutes each night to work on it. I have the gear cover back on, readjusted the valves, and put the valve covers back on. I think I am going to degrease the engine after I get the intake and heads back on. The heads are soaking right now and hopefully will be decarbed and installed tomorrow night. I hope all of this takes care of the engine for a while. Everything looked good, the cylinders dont have a ridge and are nice and shinny. One valve looked like it had some carbon trapped at one time and dinged the mating surface, the lapping compound took care of it though. Both pistons have STD stamped in them so it has never been bored. I would like to rebuild it since I am this far into it but the cost of parts and time are too much right now. Maybe in a year or two the parts prices will come down.

OCH, you know I have to give you some crap about it :D
I saw the hole and thought to myself " I should plug that up" about half a second before the keeper fell.




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