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110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: corvairdude1 ()
Date: January 06, 2020 03:48PM

A few years ago I purchased a 1961 Rampside off of Craig's List. Actually; I purchased it from a trucker who bought it then brought it to the Missouri Ozarks, so I technically bought it from him. I had been following it on Craig's List even though it was in another state. The ad said it had a new rebuilt 1964 110 FC motor in it. It did have the 1964 110/4 speed combination in it, however I think the motor was rebuilt by a non-Corvair shade tree mechanic. The price was low enough, so I knew I wasn't going to get hurt.

After the purchase I was hit in the driver's door of my Mercury Grand Marquis by a semi truck going over 70 miles an hour as I was turning off of a county highway. Now, raising my hands over my head, cold weather and broken bones have made it very difficult for me to work on it. I have done a compression check and it is as follows:
1st Cyl. = 125
3rd Cyl = 120
5th Cyl = 120

2nd Cyl. = 110
4rd Cyl. = 100
6th Cyl = 90

I can't find the information if a 110hp FC motor is high compression or low compression. Also, are the compression numbers on right side (1,3,5) normal or is this basically a total rebuild instead of heads only? Any input would be appreciated.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/06/2020 06:18PM by MattNall.

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...niow what.
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: January 06, 2020 04:18PM

did you make certain the throttles and chokes were blocked wide open on both sides when testing. Also may have head gasket seat shaved on one side and not the other, maybe even different heads

J.O.

65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo

Bethlehem,Pa


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Re: 110 compression test went bad...niow what.
Posted by: steve c goodman ()
Date: January 06, 2020 04:27PM

Did you ever hear it run?

Valve adjustment check is first thing that comes to mind. Might give a little dab of marvel mystery oil into each cyl and crank over a few times too. Probably not much lube left on pistons/rings and cyl OR valve stems after sitting.

best wishes, Steve
Rear Engine Spec. Inc. Golden, Colo.

1962 spyder 3.0L turbo---1965 Crown V8
1967 monza 110/4---1968 monza 110/4
1971 amante gt 110/4
CORSA/RMC/PPCC/V8 Registry

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...niow what.
Posted by: Lane66m ()
Date: January 06, 2020 04:28PM

High performance 9.25:1

Al Lane
Ellabell, GA 31308

1966 Monza Coupe, 110 hp, 4 Spd
1966 Monza More Door 110 hp, PG
1968 Camaro SS Coupe 350 CI 295+ hp PG
1964 Greenbrier Deluxe, 6 dr, 80 hp car engine, PG
1947 Farmall A tractor 15 hp


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Re: 110 compression test went bad...niow what.
Posted by: 2manyvairs2fix ()
Date: January 06, 2020 04:33PM

On a Corvair engine in good condition you really want readings in the 140+ range + or - 10 points.
That being said, did you also do a leak down test? That will help pinpoint where the leaks are from.
Has the engine been running already, or was this after a long dormancy?
Even with those numbers it should still run. I have seen worse on cars that are daily drivers.
All of this is relevant info for recommendations.

Rod Kennen- In Newton, NC
42 years in collision and restoration.
Corvair fixation since 1977
Member of CORSA and NC Mountain Corvairs
1966 Corsa A/C coupe- Mechanically repaired driver
1966 Corsa "140" conv. former Crown project
1969 Monza "110/4" conv. 4280 original miles.
Finally in process- body panels fitted by late spring 2020

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...niow what.
Posted by: alphasud ()
Date: January 06, 2020 04:48PM

Like others have mentioned try to get it running up to operating temps, preform a running valve adjustment and recheck making sure throttle and choke is open. If the compression does not improve then a leak down is needed on the low cylinders.

David North Idaho
1965 Corsa Turbo converted to 140
1971 Super Beetle with 2.5L Subaru engine
1965 Corsa mid engine project
1973 Mercedes 280 project

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...niow what.
Posted by: TerribleTed ()
Date: January 06, 2020 05:03PM

Yup very good chance it just need to be operated some and I would also do a running valve adjustment after I got it running nice before rechecking the compression. The numbers you posted are not terrible for a engine that has been sitting around. Even if it has been run recently I would not be concerned until I had tuned and adjusted valves. I would likely operate it and not worry about it as long as I saw a minimum of 110 everywhere.

Be sure to compression test with all plugs out and throttle and chokes wide open.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Avid Corvair hobbiest since 1984.
I have personally performed ground up restoration on over 20 Corvairs.
I currently work full time at restoring and repairing Corvairs.
Located in the Atlanta Georgia area.
[www.facebook.com]

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...niow what.
Posted by: vairmech ()
Date: January 06, 2020 05:53PM

The numbers aren't that bad. Low on the left side but before you do anything run it! You can set the valves NON-running and cold! But why? I know everyone always says hold the throttle open but that is only if you are trying to impress someone with the cranking pressures. Anything over 110 is good and the only one at 90 is almost suspect. Run it first and even drive it if it runs good before you do anything.

Ken Hand
Handy Car Care
248 613 8586

Vairmech@aol.com

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: January 06, 2020 06:37PM

Yes, run it!

I've had Corvair engines run fairly well with all cylinders at 80 or less.... A little thirsty for oil....grinning smiley

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: JimBrandberg ()
Date: January 07, 2020 04:15AM

Yes, quite often they "come in" after running for a while.

The only thing different I have is that I rarely adjust the lifters with the engine running anymore, only as something to try when having trouble.

Jim Brandberg
Isanti, MN
CorvairRepair.com



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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: alphasud ()
Date: January 07, 2020 05:28AM

Jim I’m with you on that one. I prefer the static valve adjustment myself. Just seems like a lot of people on this forum prefer the running method. Also a certain skill is needed to feel when you are at zero lash.

David North Idaho
1965 Corsa Turbo converted to 140
1971 Super Beetle with 2.5L Subaru engine
1965 Corsa mid engine project
1973 Mercedes 280 project

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: jjohnsonjo ()
Date: January 07, 2020 08:03AM

alphasud Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
Also a certain skill is needed to feel when you are at zero lash.


Just use a .001" feeler gauge, that removes most of the guess work and your close enough to zero that it doesn't matter.

J.O.

65 Corsa Turbo Vert
79 Honda XL 500S
69 Honda CL 160 D
2010 BMW F 650 GS
2003 Bounder 36D
2013 KIA Optima SX turbo-AKA ZIPPY (wife,s car)
69 Newport Holiday Sailboat
Baja 150 dune buggy cart
Coleman HS 500 UTV
2016 KIA Sorento SXL Turbo

Bethlehem,Pa


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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: Lane66m ()
Date: January 07, 2020 08:55AM

X2 with J.O.

Al Lane
Ellabell, GA 31308

1966 Monza Coupe, 110 hp, 4 Spd
1966 Monza More Door 110 hp, PG
1968 Camaro SS Coupe 350 CI 295+ hp PG
1964 Greenbrier Deluxe, 6 dr, 80 hp car engine, PG
1947 Farmall A tractor 15 hp


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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: January 07, 2020 09:26PM

All the practice with Corvair static valve setting made the 94 LT-1 I had to do recently a breeze!thumbs up

I did a lot of hot oil treatments (adjusting valves running) back in the day when I was keeping worn out engines running. It gives you a feel of stuck and weak lifters/springs. Can adjust the stuck ones as solid lifters and keep 'em running..... that and the valve covers were already off due to replacing the o-rings.winking smiley

But on good engines I just do static adjustments and all is typically well. Then there is the "turn the nuts until three threads show" method....grinning smiley

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Date: January 08, 2020 12:44PM

Like others have said, run it and retest it. Incidentally, lower compression on three cylinders served by the same cylinder head may indicate the need for retorquing that cylinder head.

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: corvairdude1 ()
Date: January 10, 2020 01:31AM

Let me give you a little more information, and my solution. The motor does run and I have been seen driving it around our town....quite often....almost daily. OK daily. I can't help it, I've had the Corvair addiction since I was 20 (35 years ago). I have worked out a solution to both the motor problem and the lack of a qualified mechanic anywhere even remotely near me.

I want to rebuild it and pass it on to my oldest son when I get called to the Great Corvair Roundup. My oldest son is a computer network engineer that has owned a few Corvairs before. Due to my deteriorating health, he will be the guardian of my handicapped 33 year old son. He had a seizure when he was seven months old and has brain damage because of that. We are very happy to have more than a few drive in movie theaters in an easy commuting range so the '61 Corvan is being rebuilt with going to movies in mind.

I have always rebuilt my Corvairs to back to stock except for converting earlies from generator to alternator. I will be doing "resto mods" on this one and a '61 Corvan. So far I have done the following to the Rampside:

*Front disc brakes. This was done thanks to a long post on C.C. that listed the parts needed and where to order them online (Speedway Auto Parts).
*Front springs and shocks from Ken Hand, and yes; it does ride like a Cadillac! Thanks Ken!
*All new heavy duty bushings for A arms, front and back
*Fuel tank kit from Clark's along with both sensors.
*Petronix and flame thrower coil.
*Rebuilt carbs from Wolf Enterprises.
*New throttle shaft with bearings.
*Many more little things, but you get the gist.

What I need to finish:
*Clutch/pressure plate/throw out bearing
*Conversion to fuel injection.
*Body work, lots of body work. Tons of body work. On the FC as well as myself.

Final Goal: Get it running so I can drive it to St. Louis's Krispy Kreme Doughnut Shop and not have to walk 120 miles back home (I would never make it back. It would just be easier to walk to the nearest hospital and just have a heart attack there and have a zipper installed).

I arrived at a two-part solution:
1. The engine cannot stay in the vehicle as is. I am not comfortable with any quick fix, so it has to come out. I do have a rebuilt 110 in my garage. When I bought it from a VW guy he thought it was a reverse rotation motor. I finally checked it and its not. Engine problem solved.

2. The greater problem is my body is falling apart. I have limited use of my left arm and hand....so being left handed is now a problem. However; I have two gentlemen who know nothing about mechanics but want to learn that will be my arms and hands. I will instruct and we will all learn. They will learn the joy of working on vehicles; especially Corvairs and I will learn the meaning of true patience.

I have attached a picture of the '64 engine that is now in the '61 Rampside.
Thanks to all of you for your input and advice.

Attachments:
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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: corvairdude1 ()
Date: January 10, 2020 01:36AM

One more thing: It doesn't leak any oil at all nope not a drop. It's to busy throwing smoke out of the exhaust. I look like a WWII destroyer laying a smoke screen. Its a real attention getter...everyone sees and smells me coming... and going.

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: Darrin ()
Date: January 10, 2020 03:54AM

Sounds like a plan. Keep us posted on how using remote hands works out.

Darrin Hartzler
Bethesda, MD/Catlett, VA

Northern Virginia Corvairs & Group Corvair

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: American Mel ()
Date: January 11, 2020 05:38PM

Since the engine is now installed in an FC, plug the dipstick hole in your shroud so you do not lose valuable cooling air. thumbs up
I can see that there is no Fresh-air hose connected to the heater.
If you have not plugged THAT hole on the shroud, DO SO NOW!
Sounds like you have a great operational plan in place!

-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-
WA. state, 1 mile south of the Canadian border,
I am not at the end of the world, but you can see it from here.
Have; '66 Monza Coupe - 140, 4-spd. Daily driver beater
'67 Monza Vert. - 140, 4-spd. Daily driver beater
'67 A/C Moredoor Monza
Have had; '61 Monza coupe, '62 Monza Wagon, '63 Spyder, '65 Corsa
.
non-vair
'04 Dodge Cummins Quad Dualy, approaching 400K
17'Terry

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Re: 110 compression test went bad...now what?
Posted by: Lane66m ()
Date: January 11, 2020 05:46PM

Needs a better vent system to hook up to air cleaners and balance tube. That cap will vent oil all over the compartment.

Al Lane
Ellabell, GA 31308

1966 Monza Coupe, 110 hp, 4 Spd
1966 Monza More Door 110 hp, PG
1968 Camaro SS Coupe 350 CI 295+ hp PG
1964 Greenbrier Deluxe, 6 dr, 80 hp car engine, PG
1947 Farmall A tractor 15 hp


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