Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

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Jay Wiener
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Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#1 Post by Jay Wiener » Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:40 pm

So I was just informed that my 57 Speedster has a "roller crank" in the 1600 normal engine. I've heard about roller cranks in the early 4 cams, but not in the pushrod motors. Any pros? Cons? Well, I know you need to keep the revs up, which I have no problem with, but in the event someone else drives it..... Aye. Advice?

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C J Murray
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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#2 Post by C J Murray » Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:47 pm

The Super engines had them standard until 1958(I think). They failed fairly often but keeping clean oil and keeping the revs up helps.
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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#3 Post by C J Murray » Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:49 pm

How do you know you have a roller crank? After around 1960 it was common practice to replace the roller crank with a plain bearing crank while the engine was being rebuilt.
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Vic Skirmants
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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#4 Post by Vic Skirmants » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:38 pm

Wouldn't expect a roller crank in a Normal. They were phased out in 1957.

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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#5 Post by C J Murray » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:58 pm

Vic Skirmants wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:38 pm
Wouldn't expect a roller crank in a Normal. They were phased out in 1957.
Jay, what we are saying is, only 1957 and older Super engines were equipped with roller cranks. The Normal engines had plain bearings from new. There was a Japanese company SPG who sold aftermarket roller cranks for the 356. So, your Normal should not have a roller crank but it may have one. After the factory stopped using roller cranks many racers and hot rodders continued to use them erroneously believing they were good for extra power.
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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#6 Post by Dick Weiss » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:37 pm

The roller crank was discontinued for the Super engine starting in Sept. '57 for the T2 series.
Possibly, depending on the case's serial # or maybe background/history, a R/B crank may exist.
You really can't see any part of the crank w/removal of the sump plate assembly due to the
tappet shelf being in the way.

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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#7 Post by Ron LaDow » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:41 pm

Dick,
No way to see whether the rods are beam/cap compared to full-circle?
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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#8 Post by Brad Ripley » Tue Nov 05, 2019 1:45 am

Below, see list from Spec Book and look for RB in the Crankcase column. Looks like a roller bearing crank was used only in Super engines with one exception in 1952.
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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#9 Post by Norm Miller » Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:07 am

I don't think they had any noticeable extra power but they could turn 7000 going down the straight on the final lap and my 58 couldn't.
It's a bitch to lose on the last lap when you led all the way!
This was in 1959/60 SCCA.
 

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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#10 Post by C J Murray » Tue Nov 05, 2019 8:33 am

Norm Miller wrote:
Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:07 am
I don't think they had any noticeable extra power but they could turn 7000 going down the straight on the final lap and my 58 couldn't.
It's a bitch to lose on the last lap when you led all the way!
This was in 1959/60 SCCA.
Geez Norm, try to get over it! :P

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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#11 Post by Dick Weiss » Tue Nov 05, 2019 10:48 am

I don't think so, Ron; I recently did an engine "look-see" thru the sump opening to investigate some
lost valve lift via wear of .005"on the camshaft's #1/3 intake lobe and the crank couldn't be seen.

Dick

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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#12 Post by Vic Skirmants » Tue Nov 05, 2019 10:56 am

Well, I remember pulling a sump plate and seeing the two-piece con rods versus the one piece roller crank rods.
This was a while back, but I don't think I was wrong? Time to look at an engine.

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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#13 Post by Jay Wiener » Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:30 pm

Thanks guys! My car is speedster #83454, 1600 normal, built in June of 1957. The engine I have is about 25 numbers prior (so close). I only think it is a roller crank as I was reading the papers from the rebuild and then contacted the late owners wife who confirms a roller crank. Vic, most likely the after market crank as you suggested. Shouldn't be a problem as I always keep the revs high and I change the oil every 3,000 miles, or roughly once a year as I drive my cars!

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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#14 Post by C J Murray » Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:56 pm

That Vic knows everything! :P
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Re: Roller Crank in 1600 Pushrod engine?

#15 Post by Vic Skirmants » Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:42 pm

I see all and know all. :D :) :( :o :shock: :? :P

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