Sam and Nate fire up the 1600cc long block and it runs really well, despite a leaking valve cover.


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Watch as Sam and Nate geth this 1600cc long block engine started for the first time.

This engine originally came out of Nathan's Baja Bug and although Nate did replace the top end on the donor engine that came along with this sand rail, this is the first complete engine that Nathan has built. It fires up and runs really well actually, despite a leaking valve cover! This exhaust system doesn't leave much room for installing and removing them, but it does sound good!

Video Transcript

Hi guys, I'm Sam, and I'm Nate, and we're going to start this engine for the very first time.

Pray to God it works. Yeah. We've been very engine heavy lately, but it's all going to stop because we're going to be all hands on deck in that Baja Bug for the next couple of nights and one weekend. Because on the 20th of this month, I want to take Nathan and that Baja Bug, and I want to drive the Baja Bug onto a trailer and drive it off and drive it into a spot down at the Desert Dubs Show in Tempe coming up on April 20th this month. I got a lot of work to do. We've got a lot of work to do to get that Baja Bug to the point where it can run, well it already runs, where it can drive and stop, especially considering we're putting a 002 Bus transmission in it, 3x3 trailing arms in the rear. We don't even have wheels at the moment. Sorry, we've been super engine heavy. We're going to crank this thing over, make sure that we've got oil pressure.

Right now, we've got spark plugs out, rocker assemblies are off, that way we can cycle oil through the engine for the first time, make sure that we've got the filter filled with oil and that we've got oil pressure. But yeah, all right, we're good on the oil pressure. All right, oh, I can smell that dinosaur oil in there now.

So now we've got to put all our pushrod or rocker assemblies on. I guess we'll start over here since this is the leaking side. We have to put the spark plugs back into. You want to grab a spark plug wrench and a ratchet that will fit that tight.

Woo, well, I'd like to run it some more, but this valve cover's leaking like a sieve. That's part of working on cars and figuring things out. She fired right up, instantly, in a heartbeat. I got to figure out why this valve cover leaks so badly. I might do that right now, make sure it's got some oil, and do a little bit more break-in run before this thing cools off too much. It's pinched pretty good right there, and it's completely missing off of there. I don't know that I have any more. Probably just go steal one out of Nate's baja.

Let's check the oil, probably have to top that off. You might have noted all that smoke at the very beginning. That's all the oil and paint and everything else burning off this exhaust. That's just going to happen. Look at that, that one's down to raw steel already. Still above the empty line, so that's good. We're about half a quart low. So, even with all that oil draining, we weren't totally low, but that was scaring me. Definitely did not want to run this, or this engine, low on oil during a break-in run. I'm going to put a little bit more oil in this guy, just because, and then we'll run it for a little bit longer here.

And I really like this oil filler slash breather box.

All right, with that, I'm going to spend a few moments and get this carburetor dialed in. Good gracious, that's what happens when you're tired.

That'll do. All right, so I found Nathan. He's back. We've got our carburetor dialed in. We've got the cam broken in. At this point, now that this engine is working and running, I'm going to, or rather, we, we are going to go all hands on deck and full steam ahead on trying to get that Baja Bug running and driving. Running and driving, I mean it runs well, yeah, driving and stopping, how's that? Driving and stopping because it already runs. But now we're going to pull out the transmission, put a 002 transmission in, put 3x3 arms, 930 CVs, longer axles, everything, disc brakes front, yeah, and we'll put disc rotors on the back. I don't know that we're going to be able to plumb the rear brakes in time, but we're going to have some new wheels that we're debuting on Nathan's that JBugs will be offering.

And on that note, life's full of good people. If can't find one, be one. Later, guys.

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