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Episode 25: Project-COVID 1953 – Test Firing The Engine & Radiator

Episode 25 – Another milestone achieved! Rick is ready to test-fire the engine! After running into a small setback, Rick put in the starter plus, hooked up the fuel hose to a gas can, and fired the engine up. The engine ran great! A soft knocking noise sparked a minor scare, until discovering a valve cover had slid off the rocker arm. A quick, easy fix, and everything is good.

      Episode 25 – Video Transcript

Rick Drewry: Hi, everybody.

Welcome back to Project COVID-1953, our 1953 Chevy 150. Want to talk to you about the engine. So, there were plenty of posts where I talk about me building the engine and everything. I’m getting to the point where I was going to test fire it. I was just going to test fire it in the car; I’ve got everything bolted together with the transmission, the clutch, and everything. I mounted the engine in place. I was getting everything together and ran into a little bit of a snafu. The radiator that I bought… I bought an aluminum radiator for it, and after I added the electric fan to it, drilled the holes, mounted it, that’s when I noticed that the top of the neck was pushed down into the upper tank, and it was damaged. Luckily, I took pictures of it, called the people I bought it from, and they sent me a new one. So, no harm, no foul.  Except it put me back a week to test-fire the engine.

But anyway, I got that, and I got the engine in place and put in the starter plugs. Basically, I hooked up a fuel hose to a can versus going ahead and doing the tank. I just went in and ran it off a gas can and fired it up. Ran great, no issues. The only thing I had at the end, it was a little scary, was I heard this knocking noise on the passenger side. Now for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out where it was coming from. Well, it turned out that the valve cover. I’ve got these aluminum valve covers, and it slid just enough so the rocker arm was tapping the inside of the valve cover. It turned out to be nothing, which is good.

I ran it twice. 20 minutes the first time, another 30 minutes the next time. Everything’s good. And then when I was done, I went ahead and pulled it back out because I’m going to be doing bodywork and I’m going to have to do a lot of work on the frame, the suspension, the firewall, and all that. So, I can’t do that with the engine in there, but I did want to test fire it. Happy I did, everything worked out as planned.

Onto the next step and another milestone, getting the engine broke in and getting it ready so the next time it goes in, it’ll be the last time, hopefully, it goes in for a long time. So, stay tuned.

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