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REAR MAIN BEARING OIL SEAL LEAK


Phil 32DL6
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Some background: The rear main bearing seal on my '32 DL has been leaking a bit ever since I got the car in 2009. That's not an uncommon problem on these old engines. I had the same situation on my first DL back in the '60s and replacing the bottom half of the split seal stopped the leak. (I even bought one of the special tools for replacing the upper half of the seal at the time, but never used it.)

So, a few years ago I picked up a replacement seal kit to have on hand the next time I had the pan off on my newer DL. When I had the oil pan off this past winter I took a look at the lower seal and found that it was crimped into the metal housing. That was different than what I found 47 years ago, so I suspect that I may be dealing a replacement seal this time around. If the lower seal is crimped on, then probably the upper seal is too(?) That would make it very difficult to replace the upper seal using the special removal/insertion tool which relies on grabbing onto the end of the seal (like those Chinese finger grabbers) and pulling out the old one and pulling a new seal back in.

So, I chickened out and reinstalled the old seal, adding a dab of sealer at both ends of the seal.

I still have the leak...actually greater leaking after putting 1,600 miles on the car driving round trip to the 100th Centennial Meet in Detroit last month.

So, until I pony up and pull the engine (the only way to really get at that upper half of the seal) for a complete overhaul, I'm left wondering about using one of those "stop leak" products. What kind of experiences have people had with those? I've always shied away from "miracle cures" and that's what many of those leak-stoppers seem to be. What are they really doing to our engines? Are they only working on seals, or are they gumming up other engine components?

Any help here would be greatly appreciated and may be passed on as a tech article in the DBC News.

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