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HI all, looking for viewpoints. We all know that when we R/R the rings Hastings says 'dont idle for a long time, dont run under no load, etc, best to get the car under load for the 10 or so pulls to make sure rings break in well and dont glaze' or words to that effect.

What do you do when the whole magilla, including rebuilt fuel injection or carbs, is part of the motor work? Certainly cant slap the SPICA or carbs on and go for some hard pulls -- have to idle it, set idle and mixture, etc. Meanwhile while doing that, its being no-loaded up and down and with Spica 2900 RPM to set the mixture, plus the idle time to warm up the TA to set the gap! Lots of idling and no loading to set it up for the ring-setting pulls.

Views and approaches? TIA
 

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I rebuilt my motor about a year ago with parts sourced from or modified by Jim Steck and Richard Jemison and the break in period was 200 miles per their instructions. Initially run at about 2000 rpm no load for 20 - 30 minutes. Next day re-torque the head bolts then drive it around normally for 50 miles with rpm and load variation but taking it easy. This is the time to start making carb/timing adjustments. Then start incorporating some accelerations, not WOT to higher rpm but not max. After 100 miles change the oil filter. Then the same protocol with gradually increasing throttle and rpm so that by 200 miles you are doing WOT runs to max rpm in the intermediate gears. Then change the oil and filter again and you are ready to tune the carbs for WOT operation.

It has worked well for me and the rings have bedded in nicely. After 3000 miles I checked the valve clearances and made small adjustments.
 

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There are many views on this topic as there are oils and spark plugs. My thought is it would depend on the rings you are installing.as each manufacturer has recommended break-in rules. They don't want to have you build up a glaze on the walls or flood them with to much gas. I wouldn't worry too much about letting it idle for 15 minutes or so while you get the "house in order" to drive it.

My past experience is to warm the engine, torque the head once the engine gets to temperature, set the idle and rough mixture on the Spica pump, timing, etc as it gets to temp. Then go out and do 10 hard pulls and decel letting the rings push out on the walls of the liner. This can be done in <10 miles. By the time you get back to the garage, your rings should be seated. After that, I just drive the car letting the engine break-in by limiting hard-driving for 500 miles. The first 100 miles will be building up that sealing glaze on the liners.

Alfaparticle follows the factory recommended break-in.

Just as a note in passing, there is a video on the 750-101 group that shows the assembly line at the factory. The test drivers start the car and run the car on a dyno to get things broken in, then they go do 3-4 miles on the factory test track running the car through its paces. Did the test drivers do WOT driving on the dyno or test track? Hard to say unless you know more than I do. :)
 

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Yep, always follow the ring-maker's instructions on breaking them in.
Otherwise, a good 20-50 nonsynthetic, add some ZDDP or cam break-in additive for the cams.
Once it's running decently, happy temp, oil pressure, fuel, go drive it right away. Don't let it idle a lot. As long as it's running OK and numbers all look good, go break in right away. Don't thrash it but don't baby it either. Basically drive it in a normal way without going overboard, and don't lug it.
Torque head hot to slightly higher numbers (see Centerline's tech tips), torque cold again the next day. Torque again cold a few hundred miles later. Change the oil as often as you like. With honed cylinders and new rings you'll get a fair amount of fine swarf in the oil, so you want that out.
Keep an eye on it for leaks and other problems.
Andrew
 

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What do you do when the whole magilla, including rebuilt fuel injection or carbs, is part of the motor work? Certainly cant slap the SPICA or carbs on and go for some hard pulls -- have to idle it, set idle and mixture, etc. Meanwhile while doing that, its being no-loaded up and down and with Spica 2900 RPM to set the mixture, plus the idle time to warm up the TA to set the gap! Lots of idling and no loading to set it up for the ring-setting pulls.
You raise a good point - one that I too have pondered - and which I have no good answer for.

It gets worse when the completely rebuilt engine goes into a completely restored car. Yea, you have to idle the engine for a bit to adjust the carburetor/Spica and the ignition timing. Then you go for your first drive and find six things with the chassis that need adjusting (gee, that flex line on the electric fuel pump wasn't leaking in the garage!). And, of course, your first drive takes you through traffic, where you can't help but idle ("Alice! Dial 911! There's some nutty guy in an old car revving his engine to 4,000 rpm at a traffic light").

Obviously the solution is to get everything perfect the first time you assemble the engine and chassis. Then go out at 2 AM and tear up the canyons.
 

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I suggest doing whatever is necessary to run the motor at a steady 2000 - 2500 rpm for 20 - 30 minutes when you first start it. I believe that is the most critical part of the break-in.

I had 1700 miles on the last motor when it went on the dyno and made the very good numbers that I posted.
 

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Andrew brought up a great point about the oil. Do not use synthetic until your first oil change at 500 miles. If you use synthetic the rings will never seal. Use a good 20-50w non-synthetic oil with the ZDDP additive (cam break -in oil). Then switch over to synthetic as the walls of the liners will have a nice glaze on them. You won't need ZDDP additive as the Mobil-1 rep shared some time back with me as the molecule chains are long enough to protect the metal. The oil companies were required to reduce or eliminate the zinc in the oils as it was causing catalytic converter issues.

When you get everything dialed in and retorqued, take the car for a nice drive where you can shift the gears and help bed those rings in. What the ring people do not want you to do in the first few hundred miles is let the rings float away from the liners.by just cruising down the highway. Shifting the gears up and down helps with ring contact on the liners.

I have never had an issue doing this way. I did once get a set of bad rings that never seated and had to re-ring the pistons. Ugh!
 

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Paul Spruell says to use 30wt Non-Detergent oil for break-in. Any thoughts?
I always used 10w-30 conventional oil for start-up. Got the mixture set as best as possible, as quickly as possible, without letting it idle (at an idle speed below 1000rpm) for more than 10-20 seconds. Ran engine in bay until thermostat opened. Shut-off, checked fluid levels and went for a drive keeping RPMs below 3500 with no idling longer than 10-20 seconds. Keep blipping throttle as needed.10-15 minute drive, back to the shop. Reinspection for leaks, more tuning, and back out for another 10-15 minutes. Retorque head gasket hot, and change the oil and filter going to non-synthetic 20w-50. Retorque the hg the next day after a full nights rest. Run the next oil until 500-1000 miles, change again, and then continue with 20w-50 conventional, or synthetic. I don't remember any lubrication related / break-in related problems ever, using this procedure on dozens of engine since the 70's.
 

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I used my usual ****tail of Shell Rotella T 15W40 plus a bottle of Rislone engine treatment with ZDDP. They are good, inexpensive and easy to find. I lubricated the rings and liners with WD40, used a mixture of Rotella and STP for bearings, etc and Webcam break-in lube on the cam lobes and the cylinder head nuts and washers. The lube is still on the washers over a year later.
 

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Interesting topic!

Pete
 
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