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View Full Version : RAM w/ Chevy V8/5.7 - how to change oil pan gasket?



bahari
25-09-10, 05:00 PM
Did anyone manage to change the oil pan gasket of a Chevy 5.7, then please let me know how!

I recently had to change my starter and bought a new one "100% compatible", which then revealed a bit bigger than the old one. I tried to unscrew the oil pan, which would have been sufficient to get the new starter in. I should have looked more carefully before doing so: you can't get the oil pan out, due to the crossbar of the chassis.

So I fixed the oil pan again and only changed the solenoid of the starter, which is OK for the starter, but now I have an oil leak and can't stop it with black heat resistant silicone. I tightened the screws several times and even managed to break one, but I got it out and replaced it.

Now I got a complete set of original new screws and a new gasket, but how do you change the oil pan gasket without completely removing the motor?

Thanks for your help!

Cheers,
Gunther

jonny427
26-09-10, 12:02 AM
Can you supply some pics? What about jacking the engine up to give more room?

bahari
26-09-10, 12:40 PM
Can you supply some pics? What about jacking the engine up to give more room?
Hi Jonny,

thanks for offering help. Before you can jack up the engine, there would be at least half the preparation work of taking it out all together.

I don't have a photo, but I can explain: the famous Raynard RAM Chassis has a crossbar just below the oil pan. When you unscrew the oil pan, you can lower it by approx. 4 cm, but the oil pump, which usually almost touches the bottom of the pan, prevents you from gliding it forwards or backwards. It's caught between motor and chassis, with the oil pump sticking in from above. And no possibility to remove the oil pump without dismantling the motor.

Someone suggested to cut the chassis and make the crossbar removable (use screws afterward to put it back). But I wouldn't dare to do that, the consequences could reveal disastrous.

A possible solution would be to try and get the new gasket in by lowering the oil pan to a maximum (~4 cm) and glide the new gasket, inside the oil pan, below the oil pump. Before trying that solution, I was hoping someone had tried and managed it in the past

jonny427
26-09-10, 04:19 PM
Ok Bahari, if I was there I'd give you a hand, didn't realise the pump was in the way, have you tried Cheng? If you want pm me I'll dig out his number, or you can Google thunder road cars. Good luck mate.

bahari
26-09-10, 04:39 PM
Ok Bahari, if I was there I'd give you a hand, didn't realise the pump was in the way, have you tried Cheng? If you want pm me I'll dig out his number, or you can Google thunder road cars. Good luck mate.

Thank you for your offer to lend a hand ;) , Jonny. I'll try Cheng, good idea. I have his email
Cheers,
Gunther

dolphinboy400
26-09-10, 09:43 PM
if it makes you feel any better i did exactly the same thing on my rover lump. Ended up taking the engine out anyway. :D
Cheng mods his chassis but only cos he's allways fiddling with it for races, he told me not to bother as an engine out only takes half a day :)
is there any other work you are planning on the car that would warrant you taking the engine out?

bahari
27-09-10, 05:40 AM
Hi Dolphinboy,

Probably there is no other solution. Can't let the oil trickle out and smear the car from below. It needs to be done.

The motor has less than 40,000 km, but once removed, I can always remove the cylinder-head and - if needed - clean or change the valves and gaskets. I can also clean and paint the bloc, change the exhaust headers etc. I intended to do all that this winter, remove the body and thoroughly overhaul the mechanics, change all worn parts (there is some clanking on bad roads). If I wait to do that, I won't be able to use the car until then.

Oh well...

bahari
04-10-10, 01:45 AM
Hi Dolphinboy,

Probably there is no other solution. Can't let the oil trickle out and smear the car from below. It needs to be done.

SOLVED! For those who may run one day into the same problem: you can do it from below! You will have to remove the starter, unbolt the oil pan, lower it as much as you can and remove the oil pan gasket around the outside of the oil pan.

When putting it back, both surface (bloc and oil pan) need to be clean and dry, and you should take a new gasket, put seal paste on both sides and replace it around the outside of the oil pan. Use new bolts and tighten them precisely.

Haynes recommends to replace the gasket when the engine is removed and upside down. Doing it from below, with only 4 cm of room between bloc and oil pan is a bit nerve racking, but it works: my leak is fixed!

dolphinboy400
04-10-10, 06:32 PM
well done, now you can enjoy the rest of the summer ;)

seriously, glad you got it done but i dont fancy doing it, maybe if you could turn the whole car upside down then i would give it a go :)

bahari
04-10-10, 07:56 PM
well done, now you can enjoy the rest of the summer ;) seriously, glad you got it done but i dont fancy doing it, maybe if you could turn the whole car upside down then i would give it a go :)

Thanks Danny. You should have suggested that a bit earlier, turning the car upside down would certainly be less troublesome than fixing the new oil pan gasket under the jacked up car :cool:

l'spa ram driver
08-10-10, 10:46 PM
I had a similar problem with my ram and eventually got Mike Broad of Magnum to modify the crossmember so that is removable/boltable-back-in-able - allowing me to drop the pan -and fix an oil leak - but I havent had to do it again in 15 years...! They also modified the front frame that supports the radiator so the engine lifts straight out, if needed, but guess what...

bahari
09-10-10, 07:50 AM
They also modified the front frame that supports the radiator so the engine lifts straight out, if needed, but guess what...

... you never had any need to lift it out, right? But how does the front frame interfere when you take out the motor?

dominik
11-11-10, 04:05 PM
The water pump pulley touches the crossmember of the radiator frame. Especially if it's a long version, or worse: a Big Block! You may even have to take the pump and pulleys out, can't remember.

You need all the space forward to disengage the bellhousing from block.

bahari
11-11-10, 05:12 PM
The water pump pulley touches the crossmember of the radiator frame. Especially if it's a long version, or worse: a Big Block! You may even have to take the pump and pulleys out, can't remember.

You need all the space forward to disengage the bellhousing from block.
Since my last entry, I have taken the motor out, because it leaked at another spot... I think you can't change the oil pan gasket properly from below, even with a removable crossbar.

Anyway, now I understand much better, the front frame is indeed in the way. But it is far easier to take the pump & pulleys out, as the bolts loosen easily, than to modify the chassis.

It was good that I took it out. Although the motor had only 22,000 miles, it wasn't running as smoothly as a V8 should do. When we took the cylinder-heads off, we noticed uneven wear. I had a complete overhaul, including surface grinding, valves reseated, new piston rings, new bolts, new gaskets, new clutch, starter & alternator (they were 20 years old)... and this weekend the motor gets back in. It all started with a stupid maneuver (unbolting the oil pan to change the starter) and ends up with a completely overhauled motor.

So, if you want a new motor, just unbolt the oil pan! :cool:

dominik
12-11-10, 05:54 AM
I suggested cutting out the crossmember in the german forum. I did it, and you can manage a lot of things from the underside now.

Strength of the chassis wasn't an issue for all the years, in fact I didn't have the bolt-in crossmember for the transmission either.

However, I mounted the engine solid to add stiffness and to avoid the header toching the frame when the engine moves.

Dominik ("Ken Miles")

bahari
12-11-10, 06:22 AM
However, I mounted the engine solid to add stiffness and to avoid the header toching the frame when the engine moves.
Could you show a few pics of what you mean with engine mounted solid, Dominik?

Doesn't that make the whole car vibrate much more? I got side-pipes and they are quite close to the frame where they come through the body (1-2 mm). That means they touch the chassis in idle mode, which causes an unnerving knocking noise.

dominik
12-11-10, 06:58 AM
Sorry, no pictures, but you can buy such mounts in the US (Moroso?) or KTS Hamburg.
Take the rubber ones out, put those in. 100% straight replacement.
There were 2 version for the Chev if I remember correctly, order both sets, throw one away.

No vibrations to complain about. I drove all my Cobras with solid mounts, since 1988...
It will solve a lot of problems. Don't listen to the bench racers that there "might be vibrations". Find out for yourself. IT's cheap and effective.

There is also a solid mount for the transmission.

bahari
12-11-10, 07:16 AM
OK, thanks Dominik, will try!