1956 Does it have solid lifters?

woodeye

Active Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1956
Good morning
I was told by the previous owner of my recently purchased car that it had solid lifters. It has one lifter that is loud at startup and quiets down some but not completely as motor warms up. The motor has a little bit of tappet noise through out but about what I would expect if it had solid lifters.
Thanks Jeff

By the way it has a 312 and looks as if it has had some motor work. I don't know how extensive though.
Sorry
 

cokefirst

Active Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2018
Thunderbird Year
1955
All Y blocks had solid lifters. If it quiets down too much you will loose power, fuel economy and it can cause valve train damage. the valves should be set at .018 or .019 inches of clearance.
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1955
Lincoln y-blocks have hydraulic lifters, but all Ford y-block engines have mechanical/solid lifters.

I don't agree with a tighter valve lash decreasing power. Although some lash is necessary, reducing lash increases lift and duration, thereby increasing power. However, the increase probably would be minimal. Engine temperature and oil grade can have similar effect. I have a Schneider Racing camshaft. Schneider recommends a cold-lash setting of .012-.015.
 

jack-in-sac

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2018
Thunderbird Year
1957
Good morning
I was told by the previous owner of my recently purchased car that it had solid lifters. It has one lifter that is loud at startup and quiets down some but not completely as motor warms up. The motor has a little bit of tappet noise through out but about what I would expect if it had solid lifters.
Thanks Jeff
Cokefirst is correct. When was the last time the valves were adjusted? i suggest using a P&G valve gapper for easy, quick, and accurate valve lash setting. Another problem area can be insufficient oil flow to the rocker arms. What condition does the oil appear to be in; clear and light or dark and thick? That too can make a difference in oil flow. Additionally what is the oil pressure? If you do not have a shop manual, get one.
 

cokefirst

Active Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2018
Thunderbird Year
1955
Thanks good information are the exhaust and the intake both the same
Yes, they are. the factory spec is .019. The suggestion to use a P & G Valve Gapper is a good one, but these tools are obsolete and finding one that isn't missing some of the parts is tough. The advantage of these is it will give you the actual gap of the valve lash. Many rockers that have some age and use have worn a dimple in the rocker arm where it contacts the top of the valve. If you use a standard feeler gauge it does not fill in that gap and you will wind up with a larger gap that spec. if you have good rockers, without wear at the contact point, this will not matter. If you are a couple of thousands off in either directions, it is not the end of the world.

Yes the Lincoln has hydraulic valves, but that is a completely different block with no sharing of parts with the Ford. Yes it is a Y block but when I am talking about Y blocks, I am talking about the Ford car Y block.
 

jack-in-sac

Active Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2018
Thunderbird Year
1957
yes the Valve Gappers are well out of production and Mr.Gasket bought out P&G many years ago. Odly I still have a nos P&G top-loader shifter. There are two variations to look for: 1. Model 111F is for Y-blocks. 2. the model 300 with sliding cylinder 2 and adapter X. I prefer the 300. That said I have at least 15 valve gappers on my shelves, maybe more.. They are out there, if you look.
 

doug7740

Active Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Thunderbird Year
1955
For those who do not know what a Valve Gapper is the P&G valve gapper as the best tool ever for adjusting the valves on the 292/312 engine. It is a dial indicator type tool designed to adjust the valve lash on several types of engines with solid lifters. This tool allows the gap to be adjusted precisely to the desired amount. A feeler gage does not compensate for wear because it bridges the gap and is almost impossible to get a perfect adjustment. With the P&G gapper and patience the valve lash can be perfectly adjusted. The P&G valve gapper was made in the 50’s and 60’s and is obsolete, but they keep turning up at swap meets and usually in perfect condition.

doug7740
1955 Thunderbird Blue
P&G Valve Gapper Box.jpgP&G Valve Gapper.jpg
 
Last edited by a moderator:

55birdman

Active Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2016
Thunderbird Year
1955
Be sure to use an oil suitable for your solid lifter motor. Not all modern oils are.
I'm sure members will chime in with more specifics.
Think I'll use Rotella diesel oil.
 

knuckle47

Active Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1956
Bought a model 300 P&G valve Gapper and it has several feet and tubes…is there s special size with this instrument that is used on the ford thunderbird 312. This thing is new to me….feeler gauges were always a go to method
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jan 1, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1955
.019 is the hot lash setting. Subtract .004 for cold lash, and then recheck lash once engine is warmed up. +/- a couple of thousandths won't hurt, but the bigger the gap, the louder the ticking.
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1956
For those who do not know what a Valve Gapper is the P&G valve gapper as the best tool ever for adjusting the valves on the 292/312 engine. It is a dial indicator type tool designed to adjust the valve lash on several types of engines with solid lifters. This tool allows the gap to be adjusted precisely to the desired amount. A feeler gage does not compensate for wear because it bridges the gap and is almost impossible to get a perfect adjustment. With the P&G gapper and patience the valve lash can be perfectly adjusted. The P&G valve gapper was made in the 50’s and 60’s and is obsolete, but they keep turning up at swap meets and usually in perfect condition.

doug7740
1955 Thunderbird Blue
View attachment 18805View attachment 18806
I have the Model 111, series 2, shown on the back of the unit. It appears to be the lower one shown in your photo, but I do not have the upper cylinder item you show in the upper part of the wooden box. Do I have all I need, or is the other part needed for Y blocks?
Thanks, Ralph
 

doug7740

Active Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Thunderbird Year
1955
The P&G valve gapper comes with different size barrels so it can be used on different size engines. Barrel number 111 1B is the correct one for 272, 292 and 312 Ford engines. The number is on the inner barrel on the top edge.

doug7740
1955 Thunderbird Blue
 

doug7740

Active Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Thunderbird Year
1955
Bought a model 300 P&G valve Gapper and it has several feet and tubes…is there s special size with this instrument that is used on the ford thunderbird 312. This thing is new to me….feeler gauges were always a go to method
Here are the instructions on how to use the P&G Valve Gapper.

doug7740
1955 Thunderbird Blue

P&G Valve Gapper Model 111 Instructions - 1.jpgP&G Valve Gapper Model 111 Instructions - 2.jpg
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1956
Doug, thanks for the great info. I am not sure what barrel I have because I have not figured how to get it out of the tool.. Here is what I have and hopefully it is all I need for a 312.
I hope the photo tells you something.
Thanks, Ralph
208BD950-F8A2-49FA-8B21-69D5184EE52B.jpeg
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Joined
Jul 10, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1956
Doug, thanks again. I think I am much older than the P&G Gapper, evidently mechanically challenged, and I find their instructions less than helpful.
I was hoping you could advise me as to the photo I posted, if I have what I need for a 312. Do you attach the slip-on adapter in my photo, or is that for some other purpose? I am wondering if I a missing the inner barrel you referenced.
Sorry to be so dense, but I am really trying to understand this tool.
Ralph
 
Joined
Aug 14, 2019
Thunderbird Year
1957
I just love old school tools and methods. They were well built worked well and would last a lifetime. Good tools are expensive but work. I can't think of the number of times I bought cheap sockets sets and have the socket not fit well or split or the ratchet gears would strip. Re-Learned my forgotten lessons. If you want it to last buy the best you can afford. There is nothing wrong with 'Old School' and rely on it often.
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2021
Thunderbird Year
1956
Doug, thanks so much. I think I have the mechanics down now.
I was just curious if I had all the proper barrel parts with the stuff I bought on the internet. Will have to try it and see.
Thanks again. Ralph
 
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