Original Pistons ID

For those who obsess about exactly how their 356 left the factory!
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Dennis Vogel
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Original Pistons ID

#1 Post by Dennis Vogel » Sat Dec 15, 2018 10:54 pm

How would I determine if the pistons in my 1960 Super 90 are original? I'm tearing down the engine, and am curious if it has been rebuilt previously. So far, everything has appeared original. Consistently dirty. Correct fasteners and sizes (per Harry Pellow). Though I'm guessing these pistons are not. They seem pretty clean on the outside, and the bands around them seem out of place.

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1960 356 S90 Sunroof Coupe
2014 Carrera S

Martin Benade
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#2 Post by Martin Benade » Sat Dec 15, 2018 11:32 pm

Those are not stock, probably MC racing pistons with a pretty high dome.

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Dennis Vogel
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#3 Post by Dennis Vogel » Sun Dec 16, 2018 11:37 am

Martin Benade wrote:Those are not stock, probably MC racing pistons with a pretty high dome.
Thanks Martin. As I feared. Not the all original, unmolested engine I was slowly gaining confidence in. Oh well. Further justification for a complete overhaul. Also makes me feel less guilty going down the big bore kit route, instead of all original spec.
1960 356 S90 Sunroof Coupe
2014 Carrera S

Martin Benade
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#4 Post by Martin Benade » Sun Dec 16, 2018 11:52 pm

Nothing to feel guilty about. Build it that way that pleases you. It is nobody else's concern what kind of pistons you have.

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Vic Skirmants
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#5 Post by Vic Skirmants » Mon Dec 17, 2018 9:05 am

Those MC pistons will rattle like marbles in a coffee can when cold. For you young guys, coffee cans used to be made from steel.

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Jules Dielen
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#6 Post by Jules Dielen » Mon Dec 17, 2018 2:34 pm

Vic Skirmants wrote:For you young guys, coffee cans used to be made from steel.
:P :D :) :shock: :P
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Air never freezes nor overheats

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Dennis Vogel
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#7 Post by Dennis Vogel » Mon Dec 17, 2018 3:40 pm

Martin Benade wrote:Those are not stock, probably MC racing pistons with a pretty high dome.
Good call Martin. After I got them out, I was able to find an "MC" mark inside one of them. Nice to know what to look for! Thanks.
1960 356 S90 Sunroof Coupe
2014 Carrera S

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Steve Proctor
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#8 Post by Steve Proctor » Mon Dec 17, 2018 4:19 pm

MC rattling is right. When the 86mm Shasta pistons first came out, I sent a nice set of original barrels and the pistons to Ray Litz. He did not believe that the Shastas could run the tight clearances specified and machined the barrels like he did for MCs. They rattled like crazy!! I asked Duane Spenser about it at the 1998 WCH and he started his engine. *quiet*
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Martin Benade
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#9 Post by Martin Benade » Mon Dec 17, 2018 10:13 pm

I had a set of worn out MCs in a hot rod engine years ago. It used about 5 quarts of oil on the 90 mile trip to an autocross. It was extra noisy because the Scca cam and stock springs let the exhaust valves hit the pistons at high revs. They left obvious marks but nothing got bent. I sure was dumb! Probably nearing 80 hp out of my cleverly modified S90.

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Vic Skirmants
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Re: Original Pistons ID

#10 Post by Vic Skirmants » Tue Dec 18, 2018 8:45 am

" Probably nearing 80 hp out of my cleverly modified S90."
:)

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