Initial breakin of new crate engine

streak

Member
Apr 27, 2021
51
Break-in oil and the ZDDP content would kill a catalytic converter relatively quickly. Part of why ZDDP content has gone down so much over the past 20 years is the EPA mandate to have emission systems warrantied 100K miles while having total overall emissions low as well.

Now the necessity for break-in oil for a hydraulic roller cam engine and modern machining tolerances? Not that much. Personally I still do the 600-1k mile oil and filter change though. But if you're doing a dyno tune/break-in then swap the oil right after that and run it through a screen.
 

1934chevycoupe

Veteran Member
Mar 12, 2013
326
Harleysville, Pa
Thanks guys. I'm going to stick w/ the Mobil 1 for breakin and do the prelube procedure before hand. Those prelubers are expensive. I saw an ad for the GM Kent Moore official preluber.... a plastic container, hose w/ a handpump........$900+. How do they justify a price like that for something that couldn't have cost more than $20 to manufacture. WOW. I need to go into business and make stuff like this. Hot Rod made a low buck one w/ a 5 gallon bucket w/ lid, an old small block oil pump and some hose and the adaptor fitting. I'm giving some thought to making my own. I think i could make it for about $75, and that's because i'd have to buy an oil pump. Cheapest one i saw was a Summit brand that used air to force the oil in, and that was $170.
 

DougD

Veteran Member
Dec 2, 2014
516
Bradenton, FL
I was always of the mindset of a bit hard on first start (without driving), drive it relatively normally for 500 miles, change oil, put another harder 1k and change oil. If all looks well, drive like you want.

Now, however, having been to the Corvette plant in Bowling Green, my opinion has changed. Watching the end of the line, I got the impression it was a timed race to get the car to the lot for ultimate loading. It was solid hammer down from the first start all the way out the door. Of course it's meant to have oil changed at whatever regular service interval, not even after a short break-in period.

Just blew my mind that GM would treat their flagship car that way, so now I'm not as worried. I'll still do a change early for any assembly lube and to check for metal. But I won't baby it.
 

biker

Veteran Member
Gold Member
Dec 7, 2014
4,849
Canada
As for GM and the way they treat the vettes, I'd bet the motor is run in on a dyno before it gets stuffed in the car. But more to your point, running something hard from the get go is not a bad strategy. I always did that with bikes and snowmobiles, new or rebuilt. Never had a failure and always had good ring seal.
 

G72Zed

Veteran Member
Sep 8, 2015
3,912
Canada
Not surprised at all on how GM treats the Vette's, I bet it's actually a requirement, and biker may be on the money as well with dyno testing, most likely wheel roller.

My build partner has done many LS builds, NA/nitrous/turbo or supercharged, temps up, check vitals, 10-10 semi-load runs and let er RIP WFO...a steady state, or taking it "easy" just makes it tougher to get things sealed up.

Was at the dyno awhile back, full fresh build loaded up, quick break in cycle, oil dropped, it was a Bonneville record holder....that thing got turned 8,200+ rpms all morning LOL.

Be it a $4,200 GM "crate" or an 80k custom build....break in is almost the same.
 

DougD

Veteran Member
Dec 2, 2014
516
Bradenton, FL
Not surprised at all on how GM treats the Vette's, I bet it's actually a requirement, and biker may be on the money as well with dyno testing, most likely wheel roller.

This was the first start in the car, so any dyno wouldn't have been a roller. But that's why I say it's a race that is apparently condoned :)
 

sandlapper

Veteran Member
Oct 9, 2020
1,345
SE CSA
Thanks guys. I'm going to stick w/ the Mobil 1 for breakin and do the prelube procedure before hand. Those prelubers are expensive. I saw an ad for the GM Kent Moore official preluber.... a plastic container, hose w/ a handpump........$900+. How do they justify a price like that for something that couldn't have cost more than $20 to manufacture. WOW. I need to go into business and make stuff like this. Hot Rod made a low buck one w/ a 5 gallon bucket w/ lid, an old small block oil pump and some hose and the adaptor fitting. I'm giving some thought to making my own. I think i could make it for about $75, and that's because i'd have to buy an oil pump. Cheapest one i saw was a Summit brand that used air to force the oil in, and that was $170.

Both Goodson & Melling also offer air over hydraulic primers.
If you have an air compressor; build your own A/H primer.
Frankly, spinning a roller motor over w/ plugs out ain't gonna abuse it.
 

sandlapper

Veteran Member
Oct 9, 2020
1,345
SE CSA
On behalf of US gov; I worked several months as hired-gun QA/QC auditor & test engineer at a (then) new (at first non-union) Mack truck plant near Winnsboro SC. Class 8 heavy OTR trucks (mostly CAT power). Near end of line was rolling chassis dyno where ALL trucks went thru a battery of tests & tune. Overall fun gig; but, was just as Renault & Mack merged.
 




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