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Old 10-04-2020, 12:00 PM   #1
1939Deluxesedan
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Default oil change

I finally got around to pulling the big plug on my 39. Pipe wrench was a friend. Black looking dirty oil, but its been sitting up 10-15 years. Can i put modern oil in it? I remember SAE 30 from my youth. I usually use Castrol 10w 30. Also. Towards the back of the pan I saw something that looks like a cotter pin from the bottom. So the loop is inside the pan, and the 2 ends are visible about 6 inches back from the plug. What is that? It didn't leak oil. Is it stock or some mod.
A master cylinder, fuel pump and carb are next.......
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Old 10-04-2020, 12:05 PM   #2
marko39
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Default Re: oil change

That cotter pin is there to keep the hole open. It's not really in the oi pan but under the clutch and pressure plate. It's to prevent any oil leaking from rear from getting on clutch.
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Old 10-04-2020, 12:44 PM   #3
Bored&Stroked
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Default Re: oil change

Any brand of modern oil will work just fine - pick your poison. Your Castrol selection would be just fine.

The only thing to ponder is whether or not there is any appreciable amount of sludge in the pan. If an engine has been sitting for a long time (and especially if it had old non-detergent oil in it), then there can be a thick sludge layer in the bottom of the pan. You don't want to start/run it with this crap in the pan . . . especially while throwing modern detergent oil in, loosening up all the old crap and pumping it through your engine/bearings.

What I recommend is pulling the pan, inspecting the bottom of it for any metal or other signs of bearing or other component failure, cleaning it out well and putting new gaskets in it. If you know the engine and it had good oil pressure before sitting, then you can use the old pump. Or, you can ponder putting a new oil pump in it while you have it all apart. Most of us run the 49-53 style pumps, with a 49-53 truck pickup.
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Old 10-04-2020, 02:14 PM   #4
cas3
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Default Re: oil change

Bruce Lancaster always said that fords were designed to leak oil at the rear to keep the cotter pin from rusting
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Old 10-04-2020, 02:22 PM   #5
Joe Immler
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Default Re: oil change

cas3 Fer sure. If your flathead isn't leaking oil...it is out of oil.
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Old 10-04-2020, 08:08 PM   #6
1939Deluxesedan
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Default Re: oil change

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked View Post
Any brand of modern oil will work just fine - pick your poison. Your Castrol selection would be just fine.

The only thing to ponder is whether or not there is any appreciable amount of sludge in the pan. If an engine has been sitting for a long time (and especially if it had old non-detergent oil in it), then there can be a thick sludge layer in the bottom of the pan. You don't want to start/run it with this crap in the pan . . . especially while throwing modern detergent oil in, loosening up all the old crap and pumping it through your engine/bearings.

What I recommend is pulling the pan, inspecting the bottom of it for any metal or other signs of bearing or other component failure, cleaning it out well and putting new gaskets in it. If you know the engine and it had good oil pressure before sitting, then you can use the old pump. Or, you can ponder putting a new oil pump in it while you have it all apart. Most of us run the 49-53 style pumps, with a 49-53 truck pickup.
I think your right. I could put my finger inside the very large drain hole and feel Quaker state crud! I pondered how to clean it, resisting pan removal. It seems like a big job, but maybe that is best. Are the seals any different then a modern engine?
I've got it where i can spin it over. No fire. Not yet. The right hand water pump is stubbornly not wanting to turn.
Changing the oil pump would be a huge plus, as I don't know the history. Thanks.
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Old 10-04-2020, 11:28 PM   #7
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Default Re: oil change

(1) I'm for dropping and cleaning the oil pan. I also use 10w-30 and change it every 1000 miles. My engine does not have a filter assembly but when changing the oil that frequently it drains out fairly clean. (2) The cotter pin hole in the pan under the clutch is there because its not unusual for the oil at the rear of the crank to leak a little which, as pointed-out, if it got in the clutch assembly could cause clutch plate to slip. I don't know if your '39 has a rear seal on the crank. I believe my '47 has a "slinger" instead, to keep the oil away from the rear of the crank. (3) Get yourself a complete oil pan gasket set which usually includes the seals. Check around Ford web sites for how to install the gaskets and seals. (4) If and when you drop the existing oil pump check the marking to see what PSI its rated for; there are two kinds out there.
(5) Replace the frozen water pump and while your at it, I'd recommend replacing both.
Please keep us posted on your progress.
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Old 10-05-2020, 01:49 AM   #8
aussie merc
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Default Re: oil change

just a thought why not replace the sump plug and fill the sump with kerosene or diesel and just let it sit for a couple of days [do not turn over] then drain it out it should soften any buildup and allow you to drain /flush the sump . The water pump is an issue but as aready mentioned i would change out the pair
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Old 10-05-2020, 08:19 PM   #9
1939Deluxesedan
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Default Re: oil change

Given some time to reflect, I have some more curiosities. Can I drop the pan with the motor in the car? Should i get a high volume oil pump? Since I never plan to race, maybe not. Most of all. how can I check the engine for oil circulation when it runs? I have no idea why it was parked for long ago. There could be things wrong from then, things now, or nothing wrong at all. I want to prove its a running engine before I put a lot of money into it. But also I want to be sure there is oil flowing if i can get it to run. With a conventional engine you could crank it with the valve cover off and see circulation. I guess there's no equivalent in the flat head world.
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Old 10-05-2020, 08:50 PM   #10
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Default Re: oil change

No on the high volume oil pump.
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Old 10-05-2020, 09:34 PM   #11
cas3
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Default Re: oil change

it is a conventional engine, just remove one of the plugs at the rear oil boss area and crank it over to see if it pumps oil is the easy thing. long version would be to get some new oil in that boss to prime the pump. make a hose set up for a funnel, or what ever, get creative, get some oil dripping in there, a quart would be nice, put a manual gauge on, or just wait for the mess, then pull the spark plugs and spin it over
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Old 10-06-2020, 08:22 AM   #12
1939Deluxesedan
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Default Re: oil change

Quote:
Originally Posted by cas3 View Post
it is a conventional engine, just remove one of the plugs at the rear oil boss area and crank it over to see if it pumps oil is the easy thing. long version would be to get some new oil in that boss to prime the pump. make a hose set up for a funnel, or what ever, get creative, get some oil dripping in there, a quart would be nice, put a manual gauge on, or just wait for the mess, then pull the spark plugs and spin it over
Oil Boss? Is that the dip stick tube? Sorry to be ignorant. I am hunting a diagram.
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Old 10-06-2020, 08:29 AM   #13
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Default Re: oil change

No, there are two oil pressure bosses located behind the left cylinder head on the flywheel housing area of the block casting. One boss is vertical and one points outward horizontal. The oil pressure sending unit should be in one of these ports.
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Old 10-06-2020, 09:42 AM   #14
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Default Re: oil change

When I was getting my 8BA running, I cranked it by hand, with the spark plugs out, until oil came out of the top boss hole. Very little mess was made that way.
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