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Draining Engine Oil

Posts: 63
Joined: Mon Feb 29, 2016 10:56 am
Location: South Australia

Draining Engine Oil

Post by fredeuce »

Having removed the heads, sump and camshaft from my engine it becomes obvious that when draining the oil from the sump there is a considerable volume of oil that remains in the camshaft galley . Refer to picture attached.

The question is , how is this oil ever drained when conducting routine oil changes?

It seems to me that this can only be removed once the tappet block and cover assembly is removed. That means there is a considerable amount of old oil that remains in the engine when conducting a routine oil change. The fresh oil is then contaminated from the outset. I can only assume that more frequent oil changes are appropriate.

Anyone with any thoughts on this?


Ian Slade
Posts: 547
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 9:54 am
Location: Scotland

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by Ian Slade »

I always poured in new oil until it ran out of the sump drain, about 1.5l was required, seemed to work as the oil was very green after starting the engine (Duckhams)
Owner since the 70's, Genghis is slightly to my left.

David S
Posts: 188
Joined: Sun Feb 21, 2016 9:23 am
Location: Forest of Dean

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by David S »

The owner of chassis No: 102515 has "camshaft valley drilled to drain into timing cover", maybe this is why....
[see pasSPort].

Posts: 196
Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2016 2:19 pm

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by Sonus »

I've been told that it won't be drained and the reason for not using oils with too much detergent. It also creates an oil bath the cam dips into to lube it while turning. For this reason I guess it would be a bad idea to drill drainage holes to drain this oil quicker into the sump by letting it drip down on the crank? I might be fully mistaken here so would like others views on these arguments.

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Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 5:26 pm
Location: Guildford

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by russcarpenter »

that cam galley holds a little over half a gallon (4.5 pints) so you will only ever push a small amount out when changing the oil. it is vital that oil remains as it is the only lubrication the cam system gets the chap who has drilled holes in the bottom of the galley will now starve the cam of oil unless he has installed a substantial spray pipe system to replace the oil bath

User avatar
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Joined: Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:01 pm

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by Kbeal »

I use the vacuum suction kit that I used to use to drain the sump of a boat engine to get the oil out of the cam galley. Seems to work ok. I guess that an oil suction gun would work just as well.

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Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:25 pm
Location: Worcestershire Herefordshire border

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by Phillmore »

Just a thought . . . . how long does it take to fill the cam galley up with the engine running if it's been sucked out? Presumably the cam would be running dry until it had filled again risking damage.

1954 Conquest Mk1, 1956 Conquest Mk2, 1957 Conquest Century Mk2, 1955 Austin A90 Westminster

Posts: 70
Joined: Mon Feb 29, 2016 9:31 pm

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by faeton »

I also use a vacuum pump to change oil from the dipstick tube, One of the best bits of kit I have ever purchased , I think Sealey sell one for around £50 As a marine engineer unless the engine is fitted with a pump its the only way to change oil , works better when the oil is warm , No mess pump holds five litre and automatically stops when full, Obviously the v8 holds more . just empty container and resume As a trial I have taken the sump plug out after and negligible oil is left .

In the twenty years of Dart ownership I have found it difficult to get a consistent dipstick reading ,one day 1/4 inch above mark another day 1/4 inch below.


Big Col
Posts: 491
Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2016 12:45 pm
Location: Leeds

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by Big Col »

Yes the chest stays full of oil when doing a normal oil change. That’s why the fresh oil gets dirty within a few miles.
Frequent oil and filter changes with old fashioned oil put my mind at ease.
Saloon engines tend to wear shells etc quicker due to the heavier work load they perform. It is amazing the amount of crud and worn materials that settle in the very bottom which you see when rebuilds are performed. It is however safe down there and won’t cause issue. Just don’t try the loop the loop in a sewer pipe ‘Italian Job’ style.
I may be slow but I’m rough as well !

Posts: 63
Joined: Mon Feb 29, 2016 10:56 am
Location: South Australia

Re: Draining Engine Oil

Post by fredeuce »

Thanks for all of the replies. That all helps to better understand these engines and their somewhat quirky nature.

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