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The 365 Cadillac is quickly becoming less of a mess of parts on a table and more of a tidy beautiful blue engine. The process is not a game of simply fitting parts and tightening bolts, however. Davin encountered a few hiccups while assembling the long block of this V-8, but luckily the cameras were around to show you how he got around them.
“Every engine is a little different, and how some of these vintage engines were built new is not nearly as precise as we build them now,” Davin says as he sorts through the valvetrain components on the large table. “Taking the time now to make sure reproduction parts and original pieces play nice together is important, and that might require doing a little extra work.”
For instance, assembling the cylinder heads is always a careful and time-consuming process. This go around was even more so because the special micrometer Davin uses to help set the correct assembled spring height and pressure didn’t fit with the design of the valve seals and cylinder head casting. That’s no problem though. A standard digital caliper did the job with a little bit of ingenuity.
In the same way that a caliper is modern technology being put to work on a vintage project, Davin highlights a great tech tip while rebuilding the mechanical fuel pump. We are all likely guilty of taking something apart and telling ourselves, “I’ll remember how that goes back together. No big deal.” And then we’ve all likely been caught by the err of our ways when we went to reassemble those small bits and pieces, too. Instead of relying on our fleeting memory, reach for your phone (or a small digital camera) and snap a couple quick pictures. It has never been cheaper or easier to document how items are assembled. Keep the photos as long as you need them and delete them when the project is done. It’s that simple.
The Cadillac has come a long way, and now it only has a few final steps in the Redline Rebuild garage. It’s time for the test stand to roll in before this beautiful engine rolls out. Be sure to subscribe to the Hagerty YouTube channel to receive a notification when the next video goes live—we know you want to be the first to hear it run.