73 Mustang 351 Cleveland Tear Down Video 6 – Mains and Pistons Part 1

We are getting to the good stuff.  We’ll be looking at the bearings, piston, crank and cam in the next few posts.  I’ll be able to determine what was causing the knocking in the bottom end  and  if the 351 Cleveland in #ProjectSportsRoof is going to make it.

So I’m starting with removing the mains.  Now I started early to avoid the heat here in Southern AZ.  Doing so I had to also be a bit considerate of my neighbors. So the garage door is closed as the compressor is loud – and there’s just no good way to loosen the mains while on a stand without an impact wrench or air ratchet.  So I loosened up all the bolts on the mains and fatefully the first set of bolt on piston rod (just to see if I needed the impact wrench).


There’s a few of things to keep in mind with contradict a few of my comments during the next few videos. First it seems that the bottom end of the Cleveland has never been apart. The piston rods are original Ford part with the Ford logo and Ford date code (in this case the rod are all “D0” indicated 1970 – which is not a stretch to find them in a 1972 engine) and I’m assuming the piston themselves are as well.  Second is the fact that I haven’t torn an engine apart since in over 35 years so I’m not an expert.  Third, I mention that there appears to have been ample oil flow at the time of tear down, but that might not have always been the case (like when the valve was not operating) – you’ll see the relevance of that qualification coming up.

Coming up in the next post is a good look at the main bearings.

Thanks for reading and drop me your comments and thoughts.  Love to hear from you.



Mains and Crank

1973 Mustang 351 Cleveland Tear Down Part 1

Aug 13, 2016 Welcome back to the 1973 Mustang project dubbed: #ProjectSportsRoof. We have the 351 Cleveland out and now I’m going to begin …
Tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to 73 Mustang 351 Cleveland Tear Down Video 6 – Mains and Pistons Part 1

  1. Tim Sweet says:

    From Reddit: hatguywillt88GT

    Does/did the crank turn? Curious as to why you unbolted the crank before all the rods and pistons were out.

    • Tim Sweet says:

      Unbolting the center bolt doesn’t impact hand turning the crank. It turns – but in an effort to see if I needed the impact gun on the piston rod nuts. I left one unscrewed and it did not clear the block while I was trying to turn by hand.

  2. Bill says:

    Impressed that the main caps are numbered! How’d you get the motor so clean inside?

    • Tim Sweet says:

      It was cleaned up when the heads were put on. Only had a few miles on it when it started knocking. Didn’t drive it after that.

Let me hear from you!!! Drop a note!!