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Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ #4751699
05/09/18 02:58 AM
05/09/18 02:58 AM
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,989
Manchester, England
Olas Offline OP
Olas  Offline OP
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,989
Manchester, England
Hello Everyone,

I have a question and I think I know the answer but want to clarify & confirm

I bought a used engine from eBay and pulled the head off, sent it for porting/polishing/bigger valves/worked manifolds etc. I also sent a USED camshaft to be included in the build and the valve lash has been set using solid shims which are NEW parts.

Does this combination of new&used valve train parts have any special requirements or techniques for running in? Or just drive it like normal and change the oil after a couple of hundred miles?

Looking forward to your responses


Cable ties should hold it
Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Olas] #4751701
05/09/18 03:18 AM
05/09/18 03:18 AM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 41,175
'Stralia
Shannow Online content
Shannow  Online Content
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 41,175
'Stralia
If it was flat tappet, then you are likely doomed to fail.

Wife's Captiva had a recall for bad rocker arms, which they were prepared to install on the old cam (fine really, not flat tappets)...they had to do the cam as well, so it's new cam/new lifters...half way through an OCI, and the tech said not to bother changing it early.

Which was fine by me, used oil has more reactive additives.

Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Olas] #4751724
05/09/18 05:40 AM
05/09/18 05:40 AM
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Trav Offline
Trav  Offline
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
The cam shouldn't be a problem but I would use some assembly lube on all the parts and lobes. Use a little zinc additive in the oil and bring the RPM up to about 2K for 15-20 min and it will be fine.
If this is a VW vacuum fill the cooling system so you don't have the bleeding fiasco and overheating issues. Leave the oil in for 1K then change it.


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.
Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Olas] #4751740
05/09/18 06:14 AM
05/09/18 06:14 AM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 366
West Yorkshire, UK
NGRhodes Offline
NGRhodes  Offline
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 366
West Yorkshire, UK
Get instructions from your builder to avoid invalidating any warranty due to following incorrect break in procedure.

Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Trav] #4751852
05/09/18 09:16 AM
05/09/18 09:16 AM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,221
Rabbit Creek, Alaska
jayg Offline
jayg  Offline
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,221
Rabbit Creek, Alaska
Originally Posted By: Trav
The cam shouldn't be a problem but I would use some assembly lube on all the parts and lobes. Use a little zinc additive in the oil and bring the RPM up to about 2K for 15-20 min and it will be fine.
If this is a VW vacuum fill the cooling system so you don't have the bleeding fiasco and overheating issues. Leave the oil in for 1K then change it.


Just curious why you do a cam break in procedure on a used cam? It obviously doesnt hurt it but if the lobes already have wear in, he should be able just to turn it on and go.


2017 Ram 1500 Ecodiesel- RT6 5w40
2015 Prius C Napa 0w20
1973 240Z 10w30 VWC from '73
1973 Triumph Bonneville 750 M1 5w50
1967 BSA 441 Victor Special M1 5w50




Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Olas] #4751861
05/09/18 09:32 AM
05/09/18 09:32 AM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 5,951
Kalifornia Kollective
BrocLuno Offline
BrocLuno  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 5,951
Kalifornia Kollective
The discussion does not sound like a flat tappet. More like an overhead cam with shim adjusters ... If that's the case, I would not be overly concerned. But ...

You are have some serious head work done. That means you are bumping the HP and likely moving the Tq peak up the RPM range. Which will put extra stress on the cam and valve train. So the question is have you made allowances for additional oiling?


Formerly in marine engineering. In an earlier life I owned my own petroleum tank truck, and hauled for the majors and independent's.
Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: jayg] #4751883
05/09/18 10:03 AM
05/09/18 10:03 AM
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Trav Offline
Trav  Offline
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted By: jayg
Originally Posted By: Trav
The cam shouldn't be a problem but I would use some assembly lube on all the parts and lobes. Use a little zinc additive in the oil and bring the RPM up to about 2K for 15-20 min and it will be fine.
If this is a VW vacuum fill the cooling system so you don't have the bleeding fiasco and overheating issues. Leave the oil in for 1K then change it.


Just curious why you do a cam break in procedure on a used cam? It obviously doesnt hurt it but if the lobes already have wear in, he should be able just to turn it on and go.


He said addition work with the valves was done its possible they used heavier springs that could put additional stress on the lobes.
New shims may look nice and shiny but they need some run in time also to match. Its usually no problem but I do anything I can to help old parts wear in to new parts, assy lube is cheap insurance.

VW have no oiling issues that I am aware of on the top end.


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.
Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Olas] #4751958
05/09/18 11:57 AM
05/09/18 11:57 AM
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,989
Manchester, England
Olas Offline OP
Olas  Offline OP
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 3,989
Manchester, England
I was thinking of buying a qt. of Redline Race oil and lubing the top end with it just before fitting the valve cover and starting it up for the first time but assembly lube will stick better if it doesn't fire on the first turn.
Wold it be worth changing the oil just before the head swap to minimise particulates or is it the case that if they're small enough to pass the filter they won't do any measurable damage?

Thanks for your input


Cable ties should hold it
Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Trav] #4751997
05/09/18 12:40 PM
05/09/18 12:40 PM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,221
Rabbit Creek, Alaska
jayg Offline
jayg  Offline
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,221
Rabbit Creek, Alaska
Originally Posted By: Trav


He said addition work with the valves was done its possible they used heavier springs that could put additional stress on the lobes.
New shims may look nice and shiny but they need some run in time also to match. Its usually no problem but I do anything I can to help old parts wear in to new parts, assy lube is cheap insurance.

VW have no oiling issues that I am aware of on the top end.


For sure, I would run assembly lube and a zinc additive for the for quick change if it's an old vehicle without sensitive emissions equipment (hopefully since it's getting this much head work cool ).


2017 Ram 1500 Ecodiesel- RT6 5w40
2015 Prius C Napa 0w20
1973 240Z 10w30 VWC from '73
1973 Triumph Bonneville 750 M1 5w50
1967 BSA 441 Victor Special M1 5w50




Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: NGRhodes] #4752006
05/09/18 12:47 PM
05/09/18 12:47 PM
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 6,003
Cajun Country, La.
BlueOvalFitter Offline
BlueOvalFitter  Offline
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 6,003
Cajun Country, La.
Originally Posted By: NGRhodes
Get instructions from your builder to avoid invalidating any warranty due to following incorrect break in procedure.

^^^ THIS!!!!!^^^

Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: BlueOvalFitter] #4752110
05/09/18 03:25 PM
05/09/18 03:25 PM
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Trav Offline
Trav  Offline
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
I think he is the builder, just a shop doing the machine work.


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.
Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: Trav] #4752113
05/09/18 03:27 PM
05/09/18 03:27 PM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 366
West Yorkshire, UK
NGRhodes Offline
NGRhodes  Offline
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 366
West Yorkshire, UK
Originally Posted By: Trav
I think he is the builder, just a shop doing the machine work.


I meant those that did the head work.

Re: Break in oils/procedures for new head/cam/valves/ [Re: NGRhodes] #4752603
05/10/18 06:03 AM
05/10/18 06:03 AM
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Trav Offline
Trav  Offline
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 20,106
MA, Mittelfranken.de
I don't know about machine shops in the UK but here they usually don't make any recommendations (at least in writing), they leave that up to you they dont want to held responsible if something goes afoul.
Remember this is a country where a old woman spilled coffee on her crotch and sued McDonald's because the coffee was hot and won 2.8 million. duh


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.

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