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Factory LS engines offer surprisingly good durability. However, in the process of building/modifying any performance LS engine, if you plan to use factory rocker arms (whether re-using originals or using new factory rockers), you should be aware of the critical need to perform an upgrade to these rocker arms. Specifically, the original trunnions and trunnion bearings should be replaced with an aftermarket upgrade kit.
In high rpm situations and when used in conjunction with high valve spring pressures, the factory cageless trunnion needle bearings’s outer shell may begin walking out of the rocker arm’s pivot trunnion bore, resulting in individual needle bearings quickly falling out and scattering throughout the engine (the factory needles are captured by two separate housings, and the outer housing tends to walk out, releasing the needles). Obviously, this isn’t good for either the rockers (no bearings) or the rest of the engine. This situation is aggravated by camshaft upgrades that involve increased RPM and valve spring pressures.
If, during an oil change, you find small “mystery” needle bearings in the oil or stuck to the magnetic drain plug, this is clear evidence of rocker arm needle bearing failure (the needles have left the rockers and are now lying around on top of the heads and washing down through oil drain back holes on their way to the sump.
Knowing that this possibility exists, the best course of action is to address the issue before it becomes a problem, either by changing to high quality Crane Cams performance full-roller rockers which use high quality caged bearings in their rockers, or by upgrading the original rocker arms. Especially for those on a limited budget, upgrading the factory rockers is an excellent option.
Crane Cams offers a high quality trunnion bearing upgrade kit, part number 144790-16. This kit, applicable to LS1/LS2/LS3/LS6/LS7 Original equipment rockers, includes new 8620 steel trunnions, new fully caged and pre-lubed bearing assemblies, circlips and rocker arm mounting socket head cap screws (along with two thick installation-assist washers). The new trunnions feature extended width with circlip grooves. Instead of the bearing housings relying on a press fit, the additional circlips serve to prevent possible bearing assembly walk-out. These bearings aren’t going anywhere, so the rocker bearing issue is no longer a concern. This kit is designed to withstand higher RPM and high spring pressures, and deliver vastly-improve durability.
Crane Cams now offers a specially formulated 10W-40 conventional engine oil (#99300-1) to cope with the stresses created using flat-faced follower camshafts. This oil will ensure that the critical first hour of your camshaft’s life will lead to long-term reliability. A formula of advanced petroleum base, combined with an additive package used in Crane Cams Super Lube, using a proportioned zinc (ZDDP) component (such as contained in Crane Cams Super Lube), this oil is intended for use with all conventional fuel types, with no additional oil additives required.
Once your flat-faced lifter camshaft is properly broken in, you should continue to use a performance type ZDDP content oil for the remainder of the engine’s life, to ensure longevity. It’s more important than ever to use the properly formulated oil for the initial break-in of your flat-faced follower camshaft and lifters, either hydraulic or mechanical. Oils specified for today's hydraulic roller engines no longer contain the additives necessary to provide the optimum environment for sliding surfaces, especially for cam lobe and lifter interface of a flat face follower design. Fresh rebuilds also need load carrying protection in lifter bores, distributor gears and valve guides. Even in roller lifter equipped engines, this break-in oil is highly recommended and this oil’s additive package is mandatory for flat-faced follower designs.
Crane Cams Break-In Engine Oil (99300-1) or Crane Cams Super Lube (99003-1) MUST be used when installing a new Flat Tappet Camshaft and Lifters.
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NEW - Flat Tappet Camshaft Break-in Procedure
NEW - Reasons and Causes for Cam Failure
New Aluminium Roller Rocker Arms Available
New Generation Of Enhanced Hydraulic Roller Lifters
Steel Distributor Gears for use with Cast or Billet Cams
Flat Tappet Camshaft Break-in Procedure
Adjusting Hydraulic Lifter Pre-load
Three Distributor Models Cover Most Everything from Street to Speedway!
Ignitions for Racing and Street Applications
Cam & Lifter Recommendations
Crane’s Always Known How to Make Cams Go Rump, Whap and Thump!
Valve Spring Retainer Height Chart!
Mechanical Roller Lifters For Street & Competition!
Automotive Performance Distributors35 Chapel Street Norwood5067 South Australia
Ph. 08 firstname.lastname@example.org
Automotive Performance Distributors Pty. Ltd.(Formerly Crane Technologies Pty. Ltd) was set up in 1997 as a Joint Venture with Crane Cams in the USA, to distribute the range of Crane products to retailers & wholesalers throughout Australia.
Automotive Performance Distributors is 100% Australian Owned and Operated.