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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i found what appeared to be metal shavings on my oil dipstick the other day. any advice for me?

i am expecting that a look under the valve cover is in order.

i am not having any problems otherwise.
 

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how many miles are on the motor?if not many it would be normal to see some from break in.if more than a few thousand then i would be checking those cams.
 

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If it's a brand new engine, it's fairly normal, so long as you're talking very small flakes and not chunks. If you've got more than 500 miles on it, and have done at least one oil change, it's probably something very unhappy.

If the engine has a few thousand miles on it, I'd dump the oil and have a look at it, pull the pan and inspect things, and section the oil filter to see what's in there.

Make sure you flush out your oil coolers once the problem is resolved.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
how many miles are on the motor?if not many it would be normal to see some from break in.if more than a few thousand then i would be checking those cams.
about 18,000

my first thought was cams, but i was hoping someone would say that it could be something benign.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Intake cam and rocker wear?

edit: I noticed you're in Detroit. Bring it by if you want us to check it out.
i will be taking the valve cover off to take a look.

is there a common approach now to deal with the cam-rocker problem? especially at an early stage (nothing broken yet) like mine probably is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If it's a brand new engine, it's fairly normal, so long as you're talking very small flakes and not chunks. If you've got more than 500 miles on it, and have done at least one oil change, it's probably something very unhappy.

If the engine has a few thousand miles on it, I'd dump the oil and have a look at it, pull the pan and inspect things, and section the oil filter to see what's in there.

Make sure you flush out your oil coolers once the problem is resolved.
is taking the pan off difficult?
 

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i will be taking the valve cover off to take a look.

is there a common approach now to deal with the cam-rocker problem? especially at an early stage (nothing broken yet) like mine probably is.
The only way to fix it is to replace the cams and rockers. Be sure you do both at the same time. If you do factory cams I think they are like 400-500 for the set. Piper stage 2 cams are between 800 and 900. Rockers are 200.00.

The piper stage 2 cams do not need to have the ECU tuned.
 

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What color was the metal? If they were copper color then it's most likely bearing material, silver being cam shaft / rocker arm stuff... You should put in a magnetic oil plug as it will catch some of the debris and keep it from being recycled threw the system...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
What color was the metal? If they were copper color then it's most likely bearing material, silver being cam shaft / rocker arm stuff... You should put in a magnetic oil plug as it will catch some of the debris and keep it from being recycled threw the system...
dark grey
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The only way to fix it is to replace the cams and rockers. Be sure you do both at the same time. If you do factory cams I think they are like 400-500 for the set. Piper stage 2 cams are between 800 and 900. Rockers are 200.00.

The piper stage 2 cams do not need to have the ECU tuned.
does that really fix it though? what i mean is: if it's something like inadequate oil delivery then it will come back again.

is there any advantage to using piper stage 2 cams?
 

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Cam / rocker would not be grey but silver. That's a good thing cause wear on these should be about zero. Any particles from them would be fatal. My guess is alum. Not sure where from but common areas would be piston skirt, chains contacting castings, etc. Are you sure it's not paint that was rubbed off the dipstick tube by the dipstick?
If you keep putting the dipstick back in the tube and pulling it out, are there more shavings on it each time? How big are the particles?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Cam / rocker would not be grey but silver. That's a good thing cause wear on these should be about zero. Any particles from them would be fatal. My guess is alum. Not sure where from but common areas would be piston skirt, chains contacting castings, etc. Are you sure it's not paint that was rubbed off the dipstick tube by the dipstick?
If you keep putting the dipstick back in the tube and pulling it out, are there more shavings on it each time? How big are the particles?
could something silver soaked by oil look grey?

i am not sure that it is not paint from the dipstick tube: i hope it is - the dipstick is hard to get in and out and, as much as i try, it scrapes the tube now and then.

the size is about 2 mm x 2 mm.

i did not find the shavings repeatedly, although i did not try that many times.

i have driven the car since without engaging the second cam.

i am still planning to look under the valve cover - i need to get back some tools i lent out and also i need to figure out the part number of gasket that i have heard is replaced every time the valve cover is taken off.
 

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could something silver soaked by oil look grey?

i am not sure that it is not paint from the dipstick tube: i hope it is - the dipstick is hard to get in and out and, as much as i try, it scrapes the tube now and then.

the size is about 2 mm x 2 mm.

i did not find the shavings repeatedly, although i did not try that many times.

i have driven the car since without engaging the second cam.

i am still planning to look under the valve cover - i need to get back some tools i lent out and also i need to figure out the part number of gasket that i have heard is replaced every time the valve cover is taken off.
I would use a magnet to see if it is metal. Obviously if it is copper, aluminum,or paint (suggestions on this thread) it won't stick. If it does stick to the magnet, then more concern is in order. Just my .02.

I hope for your sake it's paint!

Andy
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
i looked under the valve cover tonight. i took some pictures, but can't post them right now. but i have seen the same pictures before, basically some bluish discoloration and some white streaks, but everything feels perfectly smooth to the touch and does not look distorted. i don't know if that is normal, or a sign of trouble. i posted about it here where the pictures like mine are:

http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f25...g-rocker-arm-breakage-p1302-50594/index9.html

my post is #355. my engine looks like pictures in posts 73 and 346.

so is that normal?

(i don't think the shavings i found came from the camshaft as that would have been obvious. - i am guessing they are from the oil dipstick tube. i am also sending my oil for analysis.)
 
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