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Old 08-15-2020, 06:41 AM   #1
mike42
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Default Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Morning ....

I've probably asked this question before, but can't remember what the answer was !! Old age I think.

I've had a '40 for about 8 years now and it runs great and no probs. I change the oil in Spring and also in October of each year. New filter each time. I use Valvoline ZR-1 with Zinc 20-50 weight..

I only put about 1,500 to 1,800 miles on it each year. This engine was rebuilt in 1987, but sat around until 2012 when I bought it. It got very little run time.

My problem is the oil turns to sludge and very black. Each time I drain it ...it's always a mess !

Nothing to worry about or is there a "safe" way to clean out the engine to remove the sludge.

Thx very much.....Mike
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Old 08-15-2020, 07:14 AM   #2
big job
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Removing the crankcase, cleaning pump screen, but for my ole bones thats 'no way' I
rather remove the engine by kids. Or just leave it be BUT whatever you do Do Not
put that engine flush in there or You will be sorry. Has been said black oil is doing its
job. Also make sure engine is venting and not plugged up by mouse nest and use
thermostats. cold engines cause condensation..............
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Old 08-15-2020, 07:52 AM   #3
40ford
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

This sure has always been a big discussion on here.Motor oils today are so much better than 75 years ago!I have to ask,why the use of "fancy" oil with zinc in it?Looks like to me this zinc would just help to gum up an engine.I have been driving flatheads for many years and use super tech 20-50(wal-mart brand)with no issues.Sorry,just my 2 cents.Your going to get a lot of different opinions on this.
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Old 08-15-2020, 08:27 AM   #4
19Fordy
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Mike: Just keep doing what you're doing. Black oil means the oil is doing it's job.
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Old 08-15-2020, 08:36 AM   #5
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

My father in law had a car that his boys had been tuning up for him. The carburetor was so messed up when he turned the car over to me, running extremely rich. I fixed the carb but the oil was black as coal. I changed the oil 7 times with warm up and drive in between changes before the oil drained out as normal.
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Old 08-15-2020, 08:38 AM   #6
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

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It has been said earlier, but if the engine doesn't get warm enough, you will get sludge. It seems like you drive it enough.
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Old 08-15-2020, 08:58 AM   #7
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Mike, what temperature does it run at? What degree thermostats are you using? In general, the hotter the engine runs the cleaner the oil will stay.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:07 AM   #8
mike42
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Guys...thx for the remarks. The engine runs perfect with 50 psi when start up and then goes down to about 30-35 psi. Makes no strange noises except that great flathead purr !!

I have 160 thermostats in it and after I ran it when I put then in I checked the water temp and it was dead nuts 160 !

When I do change the oil I usually take a 15 minute ride to warm it up.

Thanks again for the comments and I'm inclined to leave it alone !!

Mike
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:23 AM   #9
petehoovie
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

D...f...w...it! ....
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:36 AM   #10
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Quote:
Originally Posted by mike42 View Post
I have 160 thermostats in it and after I ran it when I put then in I checked the water temp and it was dead nuts 160 !

When I do change the oil I usually take a 15 minute ride to warm it up.

Thanks again for the comments and I'm inclined to leave it alone !!

Mike
That may have a lot to do with your oil sludge (or at least dark coloration) issue. Oil needs to get hot enough to burn out the impurities. I would go to at least 180 deg thermostats and if it was me, more in the 185 to 190 deg range.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:46 AM   #11
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Since your cooling system seems to be in excellent shape ("dead nuts 160 with 160 thermostats), I agree with "JSeery" that some higher temperature thermostats may be in order, especially given your location (Michigan).
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Old 08-16-2020, 08:18 AM   #12
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Tubman & Jseery are right.....180s made my 8BA run better all the way around.
Nice looking car you have there.
mike in Ohio
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Old 08-16-2020, 10:09 AM   #13
mike42
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

I agree with Pete Hoovie....DFW it !!! LOL

Thx...Mike
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Old 08-16-2020, 10:56 AM   #14
philipswanson
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Either pull the engine and do it right or just keep changing oil. Shell Rotella has a higher detergent level because its a diesel oil. You might try that. I run it all the time in my flatheads.
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Old 08-17-2020, 10:40 AM   #15
mike42
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Thx Phil
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Old 08-17-2020, 11:24 AM   #16
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

As long as your running an engine cold you are going to have to change the oil very often, that is the only way to remove the impurities. There are a lot of advantages to running an engine hotter, but if you want to run it cold, just keep changing the oil.
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Old 08-17-2020, 11:49 AM   #17
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

It's a lot easier to change your oil than to change your thermostats.
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Old 08-17-2020, 04:22 PM   #18
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Default Re: Cleaning engine out in '40 Sedan

Quote:
Originally Posted by tubman View Post
It's a lot easier to change your oil than to change your thermostats.
Must be, and so much cheaper too!
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