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Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
#1375426 Mon Aug 31 2020 06:42 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 352
G
Goach2 Offline OP
Shop Shark
Hello all, new thread here for a new endeavor. First a little background:

I love my '48 1600 (3600 south of the border) and it's original 216 has always done me well. I'm also a realist and I know that nothing lasts forever. From the years on this site, I've learned that:

1 - It's likely not worth the time and effort to rebuild a 216, should something go wrong
2 - A full-pressure 235 and beyond are worth the extra dependability, HP and a relatively simple swap.

With this in mind, I've been watching for something to come up, local to me, but with no real pressure or timelines associated with it. I have yet to jump on anything, until just recently:

https://www.stovebolt.com/ubbthread...ne-code-starting-with-w.html#Post1371828

Needless to say, after finding the first Canadian Pontiac 261, I was hooked and quickly located and picked up a second one.

There are a number of good articles and discussions that define the American 261's that were mainly intended for big trucks, but the Canadian Pontiac story goes a little further.

In a nutshell, Pontiac Canada wanted something different for their cars, so they took the truck 261, added hydraulic lifters, a fiber cam gear cam out of a Corvette and did not add the full-flow oil filter.

This brings us to the present, where I have this engine sitting in my garage and no clue what to do with it grin

https://photos.app.goo.gl/PKRN2o6en3evxF15A

I can struggle through swapping engines and turning wrenches, but measuring clearances and identifying wear are not skills I currently possess. I would like to 'freshen-up' this engine and get it as reliable as possible. I also need to make some alterations to it to make sure it is compatible with my truck. I would like to do some of the work myself, and send it out for the work that I'm not comfortable in doing.

So to start off this thread (which will likely go on for some time), I was hoping to get some suggestions:

1 - What should I do to fully assess the condition of the engine as it sits?
2 - What actions do I need to add to the game plan to freshen this up?

Some specifics:

Engine ID: W9204502 - GM documentation says it is from a 1960 Canadian Pontiac, apparently it came out of a 1959 Pontiac.
Block: 3769717 - 261 for sure
Head: 3836848 - May not be original, but has higher compression! Steam holes may be an issue...

Thanks!


1948 Chevrolet Thriftmaster 3/4 Ton
There are only 10 types of people in this world, those who can read binary and those who can't.
Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375429 Mon Aug 31 2020 08:04 PM
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 9,031
Master Gabster
I would say that some disassembly would be in order. You would want to measure cylinder wear to see if a rebore is necessary. It would be good to examine the bottom end too to see what is needed there. If you want to pay for a complete rebuild, a place like Parry Automotive could do that for you. I have used them to bore both of my 216s. By the way both my 216s are thriving in the respective vehicles.


1951 GMC 1 Ton Flatbed -- It is finally on the road and what a great time I have driving it!
1951 1 Ton Completed


My Chevy Master 4 Door is on the Road!
Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375435 Mon Aug 31 2020 10:14 PM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 810
D
Shop Shark


Mike
Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375442 Mon Aug 31 2020 11:26 PM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,485
P
Shop Shark
I would like to 'freshen-up' this engine and get it as reliable as possible

If you're looking for things that need to be fixed, you're going to find them. Bring money.

Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375481 Tue Sep 01 2020 12:30 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 352
G
Goach2 Offline OP
Shop Shark
Thanks Dragsix, I had read through that link, but I didn't know if I should start off that way, or run any tests (like compression) before I open it up. I'm not sure that I can clearly identify 'bad' scoring, but I will share pics here as I go and hopefully get some words from the wise wink I am especially curious to see if this head has the 'steam holes' for the 261 block, as the previous engine I bought did not and two of the cylinders were blown.


1948 Chevrolet Thriftmaster 3/4 Ton
There are only 10 types of people in this world, those who can read binary and those who can't.
Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375490 Tue Sep 01 2020 02:17 PM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 1,485
P
Shop Shark
two of the cylinders were blown?

Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375491 Tue Sep 01 2020 02:17 PM
Joined: Oct 2015
Posts: 248
P
Shop Shark
I had 2 Pontiac 261's here ,a 56 and a 59 , both 848 heads and both had steam holes . I believe this was the norm for Canadian Pontiac 261 "s

John


good planning is no substitute for dumb luck
Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375493 Tue Sep 01 2020 03:03 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 352
G
Goach2 Offline OP
Shop Shark
Panic, check it out: https://photos.app.goo.gl/f6Wiqx6P3Y5R1CQVA

John - that's encouraging to know. Any idea if they were original or added later? Others, more knowledgeable than I have said that they did not come with these heads originally.


1948 Chevrolet Thriftmaster 3/4 Ton
There are only 10 types of people in this world, those who can read binary and those who can't.
Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375500 Tue Sep 01 2020 04:03 PM
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 218
6
Shop Shark
Pull the spark plugs, how do they look?
Run a compression check, and leak down. Pull the dip stick, what do you see?
If all is OK, change the oil, give it some gas and crank it!

Re: Canadian 'Poncho' Rebuild
Goach2 #1375502 Tue Sep 01 2020 05:03 PM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 21,062
H
Boltergeist
Those cylinders look like they were full of water and broken by freezing. It's pretty unlikely the absence of coolant holes in the head had anything to do with it. Those "steam holes" are needed on the siamesed cylinders of engines like the 261 and the small block 400 V8 to promote coolant flow up the sides of the cylinders and prevent the formation of localized boiling where the coolant can't flow between cylinders.
Jerry


The murder victim was drowned in a bathtub full of Rice Krispies and milk.
The coroner blamed the crime on a cereal killer!

Cringe and wail in fear, Eloi- - - - -we Morlocks are on the hunt!
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