5.3L Engine Rebuild Page 9

Front cover painted with VHT SP402 Copper Engine Paint
Figure 33

Figure 33. Masked and painted the front cover. Same method as before, several coats of primer, then several coats of engine enamel. We used the VHT SP402 Engine Metallic Burnt Copper Paint Can.

Filing the piston rings
Figure 34

Figure 34. Ground the piston ring gap. When doing this, you grind one side only. Grind a little bit, then measure, then repeat until the desired gap is acheived. Grind in the direction from the outside in, as grinding in the other direction can damage the coating on the ring. One thing you must also do is take a small file and remove the burr from grinding that is left on the piston ring.

Piston Rings Installed
Figure 35

Figure 35. The rings are now installed on the piston. Pay careful attention to where the ring gaps are placed on the piston. There are many diagarams available on the internet that show how to orient the rings properly. One thing you should not skimp on is set of ring pliers. They are cheap insurance against breaking a ring when installing them. The OTC 4839 Adjustable Piston Ring Expander Plier has a limit screw on it so they can not be opened to far and break the ring.

Tapping the piston into place
Figure 36

Figure 36. This is the 3.780" piston ring compressor tool purchased from Summit Racing. This tool makes it so much easier than the ones where you have to tighten a clamp on a sheet metal piece. These tools come in various bore sizes and are very inexpensive and well worth the money. ARP 899-7800 3.780" Tapered Ring Compressor is a nice one too.

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