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Center lube cams?

Is there any advantage to this? Back in the old days this was popular as an "upgrade", but what is the consensus now a days?

I have a new set of Elgin Solex cams with the center lube holes. Is it worth the cost to get this hooked up or just forget it and run them without? See the seals are ridiculously prices now as well. Not to mention finding the correct covers.
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2000 VW TDI 224HP/400FT TQ.
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1973 Porsche 914/6 2.4L Engine rebuild in progress
Old 09-12-2010, 07:48 PM
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Max Sluiter
 
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Well, the very early engines had them but I believe the reason they switched was insufficient lubrication at low revs, where street cars spend lots of time. The racing engines, of course, used both, at least on 935s. Is this a race engine or one where you will be driving spiritedly enough to have sufficient revs?
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Old 09-12-2010, 08:03 PM
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Will be 2.4, w/ 2.2s pistons, webers for now and the Solex cams. Small port heads as I think the torque will be more fun to drive. Will be a track and street car. More track, but I would like to drive it on the street as well. Been part for 10+ years....about time to get it running again in my 1973 914 chassis.
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2000 VW TDI 224HP/400FT TQ.
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1973 Porsche 914/6 2.4L Engine rebuild in progress
Old 09-12-2010, 08:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TdiRacing View Post
Will be 2.4, w/ 2.2s pistons, webers for now and the Solex cams. Small port heads as I think the torque will be more fun to drive. Will be a track and street car. More track, but I would like to drive it on the street as well. Been part for 10+ years....about time to get it running again in my 1973 914 chassis.
Its a waste of money & time for street cars; just retain the spraybars and use a good oil for proper lubrication.
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:29 PM
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I just installed a set of Solex's and plugged the ends. I am running the spray bars.
Old 09-13-2010, 02:11 AM
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I will have to agree with Steve, I think for a street machine / track weekend machine it is not very cost effective. I would rather emphasize on improving the oil cooling system, just give you're self a cool down lap or two before you plan to pit. Also when you pit to relax a moment or so, check the oil and make sure things are where they should be.

I think if you were like going to flat out race, doing 8-11K and running the car at full pace for beyond 40min with a close ratio gear box, then I'd start to consider options, and so on.

Have fun.
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Old 09-13-2010, 02:18 AM
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I'll defer to the mighty Steve for I am not worthy, but my two cents would be you've got the expensive part. Seems ashame to waste that.

The little I've read on the subject, thats why porsche abandoned them was cost. If there is an engineering problem I've never seen that discussed. \

Seals are $200, not real outragous given the price we accept for other things - like bearings. As for the covers... the 901/01 covers are typically 3-400 bucks, but you can pick up the 901/05 which have all the bosses cast but no machining for $50. Since you don't need the fuel pump mount its just drill and tap two holes and a backside endmill plunge for the seals. A good machinist should make short work of it in an hour or less (if I can do it myself the first time in two hours, a professional should get it done quicker me thinks ).

There are plenty of pics on pelican of failed rockers from clogged spraybar holes. The holes in the cams are large, I could never seem them plugging from crud. Use a big oil pump and feed both cams and spraybar. Damn near fail safe.

t
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Old 09-13-2010, 02:19 PM
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The biggest issue with center lube cams is getting the cam end seals that mate the oil hole on the cam end to the lines/cam covers. They are NLA and there are NONE in the Porsche pipeline either...I got the last set into my '65, which are concidentally the same as the last of the center lube cars, the 935s...IIRC.
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Old 09-14-2010, 02:46 PM
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The centerlube cams were an effort to reduce wear from stiffer springs and provide more cooling in racing engines that saw a LOT more sustained heat than street motors.

The spraybar system works VERY well as long as people use a good oil and change it often enough to prevent them from becoming clogged. In short, its ALL in the hands of the "pilot".

JMHO,..naturally.
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Old 09-14-2010, 03:51 PM
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If the seals are that hard to get, then that answers my question. Just thought it would be cool to have it it was not so expensive to accomplish being that I have the correct cams for it. I have the 2.4l stock 73 cam towers, so will have the checked and trued and go with them then.
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1973 Porsche 914/6 2.4L Engine rebuild in progress
Old 09-14-2010, 05:02 PM
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See, told you you should listen to the Steve . He is a master! That said, he is great at getting you to where YOU want to be. If your gung ho on something he will help you get there. His thoughts and work on my little toy have been invaluable.

Loony finge types such as myself need to be avoided . I'll toss kenik in that group too.

Perhaps sell the centerlubers to generate some cash now that you have a plan?

t
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Old 09-14-2010, 05:35 PM
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I just bought them. New Elgin's regrinds I guess is what they are. I have a set of 4 bearing "S" cams as well, but I want more torque and told that the Solex cams will be better all around cams for that.

Will have the following:

2.4 7R case
2.2 S pistons and cylinders
Small port 2.4 Heads, ASSCO springs w/ ti retainers
Solex cams
Weber 40 Carbs for now until I decide what EFI controllers to use in future.


914/6 has been apart for 12 years now without an engine. So sad. Goal is to have it running before spring.

Case is out at machine shop, heads are done, most of the other parts are semi clean and ready for final prep and install.

It is amazing how long it takes to get machine work done...lol Make that good machine work
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2000 VW TDI 224HP/400FT TQ.
Pikes Peak World Record Holder 2007 "Fastest Diesel Car"

1973 Porsche 914/6 2.4L Engine rebuild in progress
Old 09-14-2010, 06:21 PM
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center lube seals

I have an old centerlube engine, been sitting in my garage since 1995..What are the chances of the seals being good today!.......
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Old 03-23-2013, 11:02 AM
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Believe In Murphy's Law!

Allow me to give you an example of why "simple" is better. I had a 65 911 with the center fed camshafts, such as the arrangement of which you are questioning.

I developed an oil leak from the chain boxes that was easy to fix, so I attempted it (with very limited Porsche wrench time experience at that time). In removing the covers, I noted the carbon faced rotating seal that Porsche used to seal the oil delivery system against the end of the rotating camshaft. These seals appeared to be press fitted to the cover plate. Lack of any tribal knowledge allowed Murphy's Law to take charge (you rememeber Murphy's Law that states that "if anything can go wrong.....it usually does"). As it turned out, that carbon seal was a loose fit in the cam box cover! As I placed the cover plate in place, my oversight lead to me not paying attention to the fact that the carbon seal dropped out of the cover and into the chain box.

On start up, the car ran for about five minutes before the loss of oil supply to the cams made itself known with destruction of cam lobes . Cost me a fortune to have the camshaft pulled and replaced!

If I were you, I would take Steve's sage advice and delete this upgrade!
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Old 03-24-2013, 04:25 AM
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Just for fun, if you have a set of center lube cams in a spray bar engine you can easily / inexpensively use the center feed feature by simply grooving the center cam journal, boring a feed hole from the journal groove to the center of the cam and plug the feed end of the cam.
The end result is a center feed cam with spray bar lubrication.
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Old 03-24-2013, 06:43 AM
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