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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
If I was going to do the heads on my 302....could someone explain what extra effort would be needed to replace the cam. (this would be my first time) How difficult? Thanks for the replies....The more defined and better explained....the better.

Allan
 

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It is possible to do with the engine still in the car but removing the heads is half the work. You will have to remove the radiator and grill and anything else in front of the engine cam location and the entire front of the engine exposing the timing set. Remove the Timing chain and sprockets which will expose the cam thrust plate. Remove the thrust plate and all the lifters, Depending on how long since the last rebuild a build up of varish on the bottom of the lifters may make removing them difficult. It is best to get a cam install tool and carefully remove the cam being carefull not to nick the bearings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How difficult is it to put a new cam in. How do you line the lobes and everything up? The bearings should be still good because the engine was rebuilt about 2.5 years ago. Thanks
Allan
 

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Putting it in is the easy part. You carefully slide the new one in (with everything nice and greased) and install a new timing set.. Line up the dots appropriatly(with the crank at #1 TDC of course), and then all you gotta do is put everything back on. I've never done one in a car..

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: ummduh on 5/1/02 9:39am ]</font>
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
how is it that the cam will fall in same place as the old one....and how do you replace the timing set without changing timing off....?And how tight do you tighten the rocker arms down...
sorry for the dumb questions...

Allan
 

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The cam is keyed so the timing gear will only fit on it one way so you don't worry about the lobes(if the cam is installed properly the lobes will line up). Then make sure that the crank is at TDC and line up the marks on the 2 gears and your golden. You should definately get a shop manual of some kind for a step by step but it really isn't that difficult. Just be sure to inspect the old set-up before disassembling it to be sure you can see the relation of the timing marks etc... forget about degreeing the cam in until you have a better understanding of a straight up install. Good luck....Lee
 

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A first time cam installation is something that requires carefull research and study. The link below is from Crane cams, but all major cam companies have instructions on their websites. Also, there are some very good videos available that walk you thru the whole installation process. One of the monthly mags had an article about a cam swap with the engine still in the car. It was very detailed about the prep. If you think you might like to check it out, I'll try to find it. Check this link:

http://64.90.9.168/cranecams/pdf/214e.pdf
 

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It really isn't that tough. I replaced my first intake, carb, cam, and heads in a weekend, with the motor still in the car. The part that took me a while was adjusting the rockers and putting in the distributor. First had the rockers WAY too tight, none of the valves closed at all. Strangest sound trying to start a car with zero compression. Then dist was in backwards and backfired all that unburned fuel. Sounded like a damn bomb. All the neighbors came running out, stared at me, and shook their heads and walked away. (I was 17) Turned dist around, tried again, and I guess some of the valves still weren't closing, because my carburetor turned into a flame thrower. Once I figured out what the hell was going on, ten more minutes adjusting, and it fired right up. You can do it, no problem. Just don't overtighten the rockers!
 

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If you do a search on this forum, you will find more than one post regarding problems with a cam installation. Some of these posts are from experienced wrench-heads who found out things don't always go as planned.

Based on the questions you have asked, I urge you to do your homework before attempting your first cam install. Although some may consider this "not tough", there are several things that must be done correctly to ensure a successful install. Otherwise you risk wiping a cam lobe in the first 60 seconds.

If you don't want to do 2 cam installs in 2 days, make sure you do it right the first time. When you have no more questions to ask, and you have memorized the answers, you are almost ready to start. Read it all again.
Twice.

Just my $.02.
 

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Just a note, I used a 6" long 3/8" bolt as my "cam instalation tool".
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks guys....I want to try to do this over the summer. I will look at every site you give me. Timing gears,chain, cam, valves, and crap is the things I dont understand the most. Thanks again for all your help.
Allan
 
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