There are two words most people use when describing the process of putting an engine together: assembling or building. Davin is here to make sure you don’t confuse the two. The Cadillac is getting its pistons and connecting rods, and that requires the person holding the tools to be an engine builder—not an assembler.
“At times it can seems like building an engine is just putting parts together, and it sort of is,” Davin says about the progress on the 365 V-8, “but it is also a process that requires great care and precision at times. Knowing when those times are is very important.”
For instance, the pistons rings for this engine are not file-to-fit, but Davin still takes the time to check that the end gap is correct once fitted in the cylinder bores. A few of the rings came in a bit too tight, which would have ended badly if Davin had simply assembled the parts. A quick run on the ring filer sorted it out though.
The oil pan closes up the bottom end of the Caddy, and the final touch of the short block is the installation of the timing set. Similar to the pistons, this is a step that requires close attention. There are timing marks relative to crank and camshaft location that need to be properly aligned. This ensures that the two are in proper sync as the camshaft rotates at half speed relative to the crank.
From there on out, it’s tightening up a couple bolts before Davin calls it a day. It won’t be long now before the Cadillac is on the run stand for break in. If you want to see what’s left to be built, be sure to subscribe to the Hagerty YouTube channel to never miss an oily minute.