Bettie’s Engine status update from John Carey as of July10th 2019 - Update Aug1

Hi all,
I posted back in May an update and I just received another update from what is now becoming the slowest machine shop ever…

Your block is bored, line honed and top decked. Rods are done. Final hone to fit pistons and turn the crank and balance left to do. Hopefully soon.

I sure hope it is sooner than later because I entered the Ironstone Concours d’Elegance in September, think positive thoughts for me all.

You’re gonna be busy!

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I’d wager there are several hundred machine shops across the country that would take issue with that honor being bestowed on someone else.

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refreshing memory…was this a redo of a recent rebuild issue? conventry west doing current rebuild?
hope it goes well. as long as they know what they are doing be patient. the shop that did my mustang engine glued in the ear main seal(a no no per felpro), align bore 12 thou out of round, and a leaking freeze plug that was never replaced. still dealing with them after another shop fixed the issues.

Today is my first experience with dealing with a machine shop. Shop was recommended by shop that did work on my XK8. Dropped off head from E to this one and a half man shop. Small but looked like they knew what they were doing? The half man works there part time when he is not on drag strip crew. He has worked on Jag heads in the past and for $900. seems reasonable. I contemplated having him do the machine work and me the assembly but I have not done it before, would really like to add this to my resume Maybe next time?

My non original 4.2 motor they had rebuilt back in 2011 went bad, we’re now rebuilding my original 3.8. It’s a better thing to end up with my number matching original but it is taking forever!

Maybe I missed it, but did you determine the cause of your 4.2 engine issue? I know it necessitated a vehicle change for the GCOL. Best of luck getting the original 3.8 squared away. You have a beautiful car and I enjoy your Youtube videos.


how many miles on the 4.2 rebuild?
what was the cause of failure?

Dick has not had time to investigate what went wrong in the 4.2 engine yet. I’m now focused on getting my 3.8 engine done so I haven’t even asked about it lately.

They haven’t broken it down yet AFIK.

John, what were the symptoms you were experiencing?

“Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.”

Physicist Niels Bohr

Lots of oil coming out the exhaust pipe (droplets would form on a cardboard placed behind the pipes) and a clunking sound that couldn’t be located but sounded deep inside the motor to my ear. Also upon inspection I found cylinder 6 piston top was wet with oil. Dick suspected a broken ring but I never saw the piece(s) inside the cylinder?? I posted some video of the noise that you can listen to if you’re interested here:

Oh… yeh, now Iremember…

LLO… umm, Joe

“Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.”

Physicist Niels Bohr

John, is Dick emailing you pics of work so far ?


It’s rare a 4-stroke engine ever gets ring fragments into the combustion chamber: 2-strokes do it all the time!

Only to keep stray ring pegs and bits of piston company… :slight_smile:

Not yet, the machine shop is a third party so at this point Dick and his team aren’t doing the work yet.

I had contacted Dick about doing some work on cylinder head, had it crated and ready to go.
He had admitted the machine shop he uses is running behind. Found a local shop to do the work, keeping my fingers crossed that all will work out well?

Even a good speed shop may sink the valves, as a small sink won’t really hurt a 426 Hemi. With our heads you may not make the valve lash, so make darn sure they don’t sink them - new seats if you need them.

I had a local machinist that specializes only in heads work on mine with a little special Jag input from me. Awesome guy, replaced the seats and did a really nice 3 angle grind and lap.

He is in the Bonneville 200 MPH club with a mid-80’s Trans Am he built! Great stories :grin: