Ball hone?

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Craig Burriss

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I have a cheap motorhome 440 that I was going to build into a stroker. When disassembling it I learned how NOT to remove rusted water pump housing bolts, and broke the block. I believe it’s usable, but I don’t want to put a lot of money into now.
I’m thinking about just putting some pistons, bearings, and a cam in it now, maybe not even pistons.
The cylinders do not have any cross hatching left and there’s a slight ridge in the tops of the cylinders where the top ring stops. The ridge can be felt with a fingernail, but isn’t big enough to catch a fingernail on, if that makes sense.
Never used a ball hone before but figured this would be a good time to try it. How would you do it?

I’m not interested in “fixing” the broken part of the block.
IMG_4460.jpeg
 
Id use a stone hone. That way you can see the undercut below the ridge. You can rent these at auto parts stores.

Ball hone is more for light freshening a race engine that has a good bore.
 
You also run the risk of breaking a new ring on that ridge.
 
Honestly, find another core and build the stroker you planned on.

A ball hone is not going to clean it up enough and i wouldn't put any money into it without fixing the pump housing sealing issue.

Sorry, just my personal opinion.
 
Honestly, find another core and build the stroker you planned on.

A ball hone is not going to clean it up enough and i wouldn't put any money into it without fixing the pump housing sealing issue.

Sorry, just my personal opinion.
I’m definitely going to find a different block for my stroker. I just hate to throw this block out, but I also don’t want to attempt to fix the broken piece. I don’t think it would be a sealing issue because the hole doesn’t go into the cooling system, and there’s still 2 bolts for that side of the housing to bolt to. Only issue I see is bolting a power steering pump to it. I have a manual steering truck that it could go in so I’m just trying to find a reason to use it for something.
 
I’m definitely going to find a different block for my stroker. I just hate to throw this block out, but I also don’t want to attempt to fix the broken piece. I don’t think it would be a sealing issue because the hole doesn’t go into the cooling system, and there’s still 2 bolts for that side of the housing to bolt to. Only issue I see is bolting a power steering pump to it. I have a manual steering truck that it could go in so I’m just trying to find a reason to use it for something.
A BRM ball-hone is the best if You're going to just de-glaze & re-ring it, but You should get a good ridge cutter & remove whatever is there, there is a thread on ridge removing here...forget where tho'...I use a floating cutter so-called "lathe-style". Really more boring-bar style, but it is the only type I will use, & can be had new reasonably priced.
The engine isn't junk, & if there are still threads down in that hole, just clean 'em & put a correct length longer cap screw in there or a stud. If it bugs You, You can install a bolt with a very light coat of lube & JB Weld around it, then unscrew it after it sets up & run a tap thru' it to give it the correct fit. Seriously, that's a "non-critical" load fastener situation, I sure as hell wouldn't be condemning a block over it.
 
I had the identical situation without the buggered water pump hole.

What i did is exactly what you should not do, but for a budget build this engine is a monster.

Total engine noob but I wanted to do this on my own and with what little money was invested the risk was low

Block was standard bore, with a ridge. Bought (borrowed but never returned) a ridge tool from local store (do NOT use the Lisle tool, its junk, use the OTC if available)

Measured the bores and they were nice and straight and within tolerance. No one believes that part given it had a ridge, but it was/is

Used a ball hone, the flex hone I think it was 4.5" which was needed for the 4.32 standard bore

Local guy had a set of dome sealed power standard pistons with moly rings for sale for $250 USD (just over $325 CAD) because he decided to do his block the right way, these had been sitting on his shelf for a decade hence the price as he was just making room

Put the engine together, I used 75cc eddie heads, so not sure what my final compression is but has to be at least 10.50 the last time I did the math

Runs clean, has great compression and on the higher end of still very good on a leak down which I expected. No piston slap when cold. I used standard bearings on the home polished crank, so i am running 10w40 oil and oil pressure is quite good, 60 cold and 30 hot idle which is pretty good given I have on the higher side of clearances in the rods, mains were still pretty good. I have the plasti gage numbers written down somewhere

Anyway, the thing is an absolute beast, does not burn oil at all that I can see or smell. Idles perfect, stays cool, and melts tires for days.

is this the right way, no way. Will it last, for how often i drive the car yes it will.

Not telling you to do what I did, but I started my car building very late in life, and wanted to build my own engine instead of writing checks to everyone including summit and machine shops and I really lucked out.



This is the tool I used to cut the ridges down

1707311080177.png
 
I agree with removing the ridges. Also, just some FYI, that broken part of the block would be a very easy fix for a good welding shop.
 
I had the identical situation without the buggered water pump hole.

What i did is exactly what you should not do, but for a budget build this engine is a monster.

Total engine noob but I wanted to do this on my own and with what little money was invested the risk was low

Block was standard bore, with a ridge. Bought (borrowed but never returned) a ridge tool from local store (do NOT use the Lisle tool, its junk, use the OTC if available)

Measured the bores and they were nice and straight and within tolerance. No one believes that part given it had a ridge, but it was/is

Used a ball hone, the flex hone I think it was 4.5" which was needed for the 4.32 standard bore

Local guy had a set of dome sealed power standard pistons with moly rings for sale for $250 USD (just over $325 CAD) because he decided to do his block the right way, these had been sitting on his shelf for a decade hence the price as he was just making room

Put the engine together, I used 75cc eddie heads, so not sure what my final compression is but has to be at least 10.50 the last time I did the math

Runs clean, has great compression and on the higher end of still very good on a leak down which I expected. No piston slap when cold. I used standard bearings on the home polished crank, so i am running 10w40 oil and oil pressure is quite good, 60 cold and 30 hot idle which is pretty good given I have on the higher side of clearances in the rods, mains were still pretty good. I have the plasti gage numbers written down somewhere

Anyway, the thing is an absolute beast, does not burn oil at all that I can see or smell. Idles perfect, stays cool, and melts tires for days.

is this the right way, no way. Will it last, for how often i drive the car yes it will.

Not telling you to do what I did, but I started my car building very late in life, and wanted to build my own engine instead of writing checks to everyone including summit and machine shops and I really lucked out.



This is the tool I used to cut the ridges down

View attachment 1716203579


Nice work, - good job .
 
I would send the pistons off to line2line coatings and for $280.00 you'll have a nice piston. Cheaper than new and better than a new factory replacement. You can have them add up to .005 of thickness, I would then take it to a machine shop and have them hone it to size. Because Depending on the rings you'll probably be wanting a 220 -280 finish, but if you're doing it over a probably polished bore you won't have the deep valleys to retain oil.
At work I use the roughest stone which is a 101 sunnen. (I think it's about 80-100 grit) and leave .001 left to hone with the next stone, this stone is only knocking off raised ridges and the 3rd stone is for the ring seal. It knocks down the 2nd stone, I only take .00025 and that leaves in microscopic terms valleys where oil will hold on the cylinder walls.
 
I decided to take it to a local welding shop and see what they could do.
I think it looks pretty good and the bolt threads in clean now. I guess we’ll see if it holds. I’ll probably take it to a machine shop soon to get it bored and decked.
I’m going to loctite a stud into the hole to hopefully prevent failure.
IMG_7864.jpeg


IMG_7866.jpeg
 
Ball hone/ flex hone

drill with decent torque and variable speed
loads of WD40 or diesel or paraffin slopped in the bore
never let it run dry

set it at the slow speed if you can

the cross hatch angle is a function of 2 extremes

nice slow drill speed
and nice fast in out movement of the hone
with its still spinning and moving out at same speed on removal

like you are some kind of honing ninja your arms should feel like they had a work out :)

This will get a good angle on the cross hatch pattern 23* 24* off the horizontal with 45 * between i.e close to what the manual suggests


Dave
 
You also run the risk of breaking a new ring on that ridge.
I would think busted rings pistons coming out more than going back in. It depends on how big the ridge is which you will be able to see once you stone hone it. Then again any ridge will not seal rings. Mopar blocks are noted for being very hard and wear resistant unless they were run with dirty oil from not changing the oil on a regular basis. You will know once you stone hone it. If your pistons come out hard because of the ridge or they get stuck, then its time to use the ridge reamer. I have never had to use one on a mopar, luckily.
 
Please remove the ridge, nothing good will come from leaving it.
Most tool rentals have a ridge reamer, or used to, a coupla minutes each hole, once you get the hang of it,
Napa and others advertise tools avail.
Everytime the square ring edge smacks that round cove . .
Cheers
 
I used a block with ear broken off the top water pump boss .
They brazed a new one on and it looked like it never even happened .
That repair has been in place over 37 years,,,,still like new .

Tommy
 
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