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Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: September 09, 2020 01:38AM

This is something that has been tickling my ear for almost the entire time I've owned the car (so, 2.5 years).

The car is a 1966 true Corsa with a Turbo conversion. The body tag makes it clear the car rolled off the line with a 140. The thing is, the engine block is an RX, so that raises a few questions.

It is very unlikely that this is the original engine. Yes, RX could mean (in 1966) that the engine was a 140, but only AIR and only with a Powerglide. In 1965, some 110 engines were RX, Coupe or FC, but again only with a PG. This car is a 4-speed manual.

Since I have owned it I have replaced the carburetor with a rebuilt one, verified that the Turbo fan is correct for the year, and replaced the heads with rebuilt ones. I have also replaced the flywheel, pressure plate, and clutch with new ones. The harmonic balancer is a rebuilt one.

The car drives great. It's a kick on the highway. But I have no idea what sort of crankshaft is in there. An engine built for a PG will have a different style than a manual, will it not? I know the turbo crank is different in general, so what are the odds that whomever installed this engine originally replaced the crankshaft? As I said, it runs fine, but I am a bit of a leadfoot when it comes to this car so I want to be sure. Am I stuck wondering unless I pull and disassemble the engine (not likely), or is there another way to tell?

____________________________________________

Eric C. Player, Porterville, CA, USA (Seriously! It's the USA out here!)
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and the San Joaquin Valley Corvair Club.
THEN:
1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow
1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red
1966 Monza 110, Purple
1967 Monza 140, Red
1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow"
1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW:
1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"

"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: Lane66m ()
Date: September 09, 2020 02:17AM

Pull the harmonic balancer and look at end of crankshaft. If no ampersand (&), the non-nitrided crankshaft. If &, then nitrided crankshaft used on high HP engines 140 & 180.

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


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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: vairmech ()
Date: September 09, 2020 04:04AM

Lane66m Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Pull the harmonic balancer and look at end of crankshaft. If no ampersand (&), the non-nitrided crankshaft. If &, then nitrided crankshaft used on high HP engines 140 & 180.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

UMMM, Nope!

The & is on the flywheel end of the crank.

Ken Hand
Handy Car Care
248 613 8586

Vairmech@aol.com

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: vairmech ()
Date: September 09, 2020 04:06AM

With that the 140 PG crank was still nitrided the same as all 140 and 180 engines. What makes this good for a turbo would be the cam and then the timing change on the crank gear for the 140PG.

If the crank was ground then the nitride is gone and it becomes a non-nitrided crank.

Ken Hand
Handy Car Care
248 613 8586

Vairmech@aol.com



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/09/2020 04:08AM by vairmech.

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: Lane66m ()
Date: September 09, 2020 05:02AM

My forgetfulness. Sorry. No way to tell without dropping transaxle and knowing what the owner had done to the crankshaft.

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


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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: 66vairman ()
Date: September 09, 2020 09:45AM

Originally an RX 140HP PG would have had a nitrided crank shaft with the unique crank gear that was used to shift the cam timing and probably a 95HP cam. Of course by this time other parts may reside in your RX case.

Years ago I bought a used 66 140HP PG RX engine. I took it apart to build up a 140HP manual engine. The crank is the same as the manual 140HP engine, but I did have to change the crank gear (I think I still have the "unique" 140HP PG crank gear). It was a great engine buy as the crank and heads indicated it was a low mileage engine. Yes I did have the heads rebuilt with the deep seats.

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: September 09, 2020 09:49AM

Thanks guys.

I had the balancer off when I lost the woodruff key and had to go replace it; I don't know that my pictures at the time would be helpful, but here they are. I guess I will ask the PO. He still lives nearby and I can't remember ever having asked him about the crank.

Also, Corsas were never Powerglide, were they? If there is a remote chance that this is the original engine block (and so would have been built as a PG) what signs are there that the transmission was swapped? Sloppy hole for the shifter stick? PO has said it was always a four speed as far as he knew.

____________________________________________

Eric C. Player, Porterville, CA, USA (Seriously! It's the USA out here!)
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and the San Joaquin Valley Corvair Club.
THEN:
1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow
1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red
1966 Monza 110, Purple
1967 Monza 140, Red
1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow"
1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW:
1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"

"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/09/2020 09:52AM by playerpage.

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: 66vairman ()
Date: September 09, 2020 10:58AM

The 140HP PG drivetrain was NEVER available in the Corsa, but was available in the other models.

Maybe one of the rarest combo's in 1966 was 140HP, PG, and A/C. A fellow in L.A., CA has one. No 140HP A/C cars in 1965. I'm not sure about 1967.

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: gnvair ()
Date: September 09, 2020 01:03PM

No 140's with a/c in 1967.
The 1966 140/PG with a/c is a one year only combo. Rare stuff. Good friend has an LA built one with 30k original miles on it.

Lee J

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: American Mel ()
Date: September 09, 2020 02:19PM

playerpage Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Thanks guys.
>
> I had the balancer off when I lost the woodruff key and had to go replace it; I don't know that my pictures at the time would be helpful, but here they are. I guess I will ask the PO. He still lives nearby and I can't remember ever having asked him about the crank.
>
> Also, Corsas were never Powerglide, were they? If there is a remote chance that this is the original engine block (and so would have been built as a PG) what signs are there that the transmission was swapped? Sloppy hole for the shifter stick? PO has said it was always a four speed as far as he knew.


Eric, unfortunately the ampersand would be on the opposite end of the crank shaft.

-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-
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, 80hp, PG
'62 Monza Wagon, 4spd.
'63 Spyder,
'65 Corsa
.
non-vair
'04 Dodge Cummins Quad Dually, approaching 400K
'03 Honda Del Sol
17'Terry

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: September 10, 2020 07:47AM

Yeah, so that crank photo tells us nothing.

Except that it is extremely unlikely that I'm running around on the original engine.

I've got to say it's never been a big deal to me to have the engine the car was born with, as long as it has a Corvair engine!

The last couple of years reading here though, has taught me that there are things that can make a difference. Again, I'll double-check with the PO as soon as I can and get back to you all.

____________________________________________

Eric C. Player, Porterville, CA, USA (Seriously! It's the USA out here!)
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and the San Joaquin Valley Corvair Club.
THEN:
1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow
1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red
1966 Monza 110, Purple
1967 Monza 140, Red
1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow"
1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW:
1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"

"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: REM654DPG ()
Date: September 10, 2020 11:51AM

The nitrided crankshafts have a distinct color to them and in a sense are color coded. They have either a dull gray or brownish color on the surface and when they are clean and set next to a regular non-nitrided shaft you can see the obvious difference. Of course, if it is dirty and covered with black carbon/oil it’s too hard to tell.

Going by the picture above, if that is a clean low mile engine, I would say that the color on the snout shows it to be a nitrided shaft. But pictures are deceiving so please don’t quote me on this.

Regan Metcalf
Portland, OR

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Date: September 10, 2020 02:20PM

Eric, the RX code appears on two distinctly different engine configurations:
1965 - Greenbrier optional 110 HP with Powerglide transmission. - quite rare!
1966 - Monza/500 series optional 140 HP with A.I.R. & Powerglide - also rare!

A.I.R. = Air Injection Reaction which is the California Only Air-Pump equpped anti-smog installation.

Does your engine have the provision for the oil filler/dipstick tube on the right rear of the crankcase? Would be removed & plugged most likely if installed into a car.

Do you know what heads were on yours? Were they 140 heads with two carburetor pads on the intake manifold of each one?

Inquiring minds....


Dan Davis ~ Pierce County, WA ~ CORSA Western Director + Corvairs NW + North Cascades Corvairs + Corvanatics
1966 Corsa Turbo coupe ~ ~ 1966 Corsa 140 Coupe ~ ~ 1965 Monza 140/4 Convertible Sierra Tan/Fawn ~ 1964 Monza Spyder Convertible ~ 1960 Monza Ermine White/Red PG ++ ~ 1965 Monza 140/4 CoupeEvening Orchid w/ ivory/black interior ~ 1962 Monza Wagon 102/4 ~ 1963 Rampside/Scamper ~ 1963 Red/Greenbrier ~ 1969 Ultra Van #468

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: September 11, 2020 01:48PM

I got in touch with the P.O. He says as far as he knew the shaft was the reinforced one. That, coupled with the diagnosis by Regan, reassures me.

The heads, when I bought the car, were Turbo heads correct for a 66. I replaced them both in between November 2018 and April 2019 because they both had a dropped valve. (One dropped suddenly in November, the other was revealed to be bad when I examined it at that time.) The heads now are a 95 head on the drivers side, and a 1966 Turbo head on the passenger side. Both were rebuilt for me (the driver by Corvair Guy Don Brown of Visalia, the passenger by a local machine shop called Spanky's).

The block is the same that it has always been since I bought it. So it seems that someone put it together as I found it. As a turbo, it runs great. If I were to ever restore it to the 140 configuration, it would probably be under a scenario where I bought a Monza to restore it, and switched out the engine. This Corsa would then get a rebuilt (ground up) turbo engine. I like it as a turbo. The first Corvair I ever drove was a turbo.

Are the pictures enough to see the AIR hookup? Where else would I look?

____________________________________________

Eric C. Player, Porterville, CA, USA (Seriously! It's the USA out here!)
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and the San Joaquin Valley Corvair Club.
THEN:
1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow
1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red
1966 Monza 110, Purple
1967 Monza 140, Red
1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow"
1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW:
1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"

"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'

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Re: Likely Internals on a Turbo with an RX code
Posted by: 66vairman ()
Date: September 11, 2020 02:38PM

If it runs fine then good. If you ever pull the engine to build it as a 140HP do not forget to verify the crank gear as normal (std. tranmission) or the unique PG 140HP only crank gear.

Just me, but I would not use the PG crank gear on a manual transmission 140HP engine.

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