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Ticking noise after Cam Head install

This is a discussion on Ticking noise after Cam Head install within the Internal Engine forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Ok so i have put around 500 miles on the car after the cam head install and at first the ...

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    Ticking noise after Cam Head install

    Ok so i have put around 500 miles on the car after the cam head install and at first the exhaust was leaking were the ypipe meets the header and i fixed that now no leaks. I still hear ticking. It is louder under the car coming from what seems to be the header than up in the engine bay but you can still hear it in the bay. It is a valve train tick. I use 5w30 mobil 1. When the car is cold there is no ticking.

    So i drove it today and stopped by advance auto and checked the oil and it is very thin. I went inside and purchased some lucas oil stabalizer and put a little in the car. Well it actually got quiet. I can still hear a little ticking but nothing like it was. So that does tell me its valve train. I have looked on this forum and other forums and they say all ls1's have that normal tick but this is my first head cam package and i want to make sure its ok.

    My question is do you think there is something wrong or is this normal and i just need to run a heavier wieght oil?

    Thanks,

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    dbl clutch'n like i shld WICKEDLS1's Avatar
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    yeah mine sometimes does it so loud i can hear it inside the car. however mine only does it when its cold but if it starts getting louder then pull the valve covers and check the rocker arms. if its not one of them thats loose then you might have a lifter thats starting to collapse or a bent push rod but most likely its just the notorious piston slap
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    Quote Originally Posted by WICKEDLS1 View Post
    yeah mine sometimes does it so loud i can hear it inside the car. however mine only does it when its cold but if it starts getting louder then pull the valve covers and check the rocker arms. if its not one of them thats loose then you might have a lifter thats starting to collapse or a bent push rod but most likely its just the notorious piston slap
    Yes it has the piston slap when it first starta up but once the car warms up it doesnt have any ticking. But once i drive it a while it starts to tick. I actually pulled the valve cover off and rechecked the torque of the rockers and they were all good.

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    Likes twisty roads bene's Avatar
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    Well, I'm not saying that this is happening to your LS1 but when I had a ticking sound with mine I took my engine apart and noticed that one of the cam lobes were pitted to shit. Initial thought was one of the lifters rotated and scarred the lobe but all of the original lifters were fine although that didn't stop me replacing them with LS7 lifters. I went ahead replaced everything else with EPS cam, 243 heads and supporting mods. No more tick however a little louder engine and exhaust.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bene View Post
    Well, I'm not saying that this is happening to your LS1 but when I had a ticking sound with mine I took my engine apart and noticed that one of the cam lobes were pitted to shit. Initial thought was one of the lifters rotated and scarred the lobe but all of the original lifters were fine although that didn't stop me replacing them with LS7 lifters. I went ahead replaced everything else with EPS cam, 243 heads and supporting mods. No more tick however a little louder engine and exhaust.
    With the LS7 lifters, are they the same length as the Stock ls1 lifters. Will i have to replace the exhisting 7.4 pushrods? Also, i guess its not ticking, may be a better way of describing would be chattering. You know how the injectors sound when they open and close, its close to that but its not the injectors and i hear it more under the car before the exhaust runs thru the cat. i hear nothing out of the cat.

    Do you use 5w30 mobil 1 oil?

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    if you hear it more 'under' the car, you have to consider the possibility of spun rod bearings.

    i find it hard to believe that it would be lifters. i would suggest that you shoot a short video of it and post it up for us to better help you pin-point the issue

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    did you go with an Ls6 oil pump, ported and shimmed? i don't see that in your list of mods. what is your oil pressure at, at startup and idle once warmed up?

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    Yes i will take a video and post it. It doesnt sound like a spun rod bearing, it sounds like chattering.

    Sorry i did go with a ls6 ported oilpump. Forgot that mention that. I have seen post that when the oring for the oil pump is not seated that it will make a ticking noise but you will see air bubbles when you check the oil when it is running. I have checked this and there is not 1 bubble.

    Oil pump pressure is good i have checked that multiple times when driving idling and so on. I am always keeping an eye on the temperature and oilpressure, but it is raining today and the forcast for tomorrow is rain so i wont be able to get a chance to check and post the oil pressure.
    Last edited by 1slowbusa; 08-13-2011 at 03:50 PM.

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    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    Since you just did a head/cam swap I'll assume it's valvetrain noise that wasn't there before.

    I hear this all the time, these LS1's sound like sewing machines. Everyone that does a cam swap goes with the ole standard 7.4 length pushrods. Since the valvetrains are non-adjustable the length of the pushrod is what is setting your preload. What I've seen and even witnessed here local is others going slightly longer on the pushrods for a little more preload. A car here local did that and it's now very quiet.

    Another alternative is to convert to an adjustable drivetrain and set preload exact. My wifes has a cam with adjustable valvetrain and it's extremely quiet compared to other 4th gens around here with cam installs using 7.4 pushrods on a non adjustable setup.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebirdjones View Post
    Since you just did a head/cam swap I'll assume it's valvetrain noise that wasn't there before.

    I hear this all the time, these LS1's sound like sewing machines. Everyone that does a cam swap goes with the ole standard 7.4 length pushrods. Since the valvetrains are non-adjustable the length of the pushrod is what is setting your preload. What I've seen and even witnessed here local is others going slightly longer on the pushrods for a little more preload. A car here local did that and it's now very quiet.

    Another alternative is to convert to an adjustable drivetrain and set preload exact. My wifes has a cam with adjustable valvetrain and it's extremely quiet compared to other 4th gens around here with cam installs using 7.4 pushrods on a non adjustable setup.
    Thanks,

    Thats a good way of saying it, it sounds like a sewing machine. I also asked my friend that used to be a mechanic and he says the same thing you are saying but i wanted to get an opinion from the forum.

    What brand adjust of adjustable valve train does your wife have?

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    Crane roller rockers converted to screw in studs and guides, just like a gen 1 setup would have. There are others made, some versions still use the shaft mount system etc....it's all relatively expensive to do though.

    Cheaper and easier to install a slightly longer set of pushrods for more preload. But I'd talk to whom ever sold the cam or ground the cam and see what they have to say about it. Most of them should know or have come accross this issue many times I would think. 99% just accept it as normal, and to some extent it is, but there are some that are addressing it.

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    When i was installing the heads and cam i spoke with LG Motorsports and they used the 7.4 on the same setup i have. I will call them on monday and see what they say about it sounding like a sewing machine. But like i mentioned earlier when i put the lucas stabalizer in the car got alot quieter but i could still hear it a little.
    thanks again

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    Likes twisty roads bene's Avatar
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    Yeah, mine is relatively quiet compare to other h/c LS1s I've heard. I'm using 7.425" PRs. Geoff recommended me to use longer PRs for his EPS cam.

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    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bene View Post
    Yeah, mine is relatively quiet compare to other h/c LS1s I've heard. I'm using 7.425" PRs. Geoff recommended me to use longer PRs for his EPS cam.
    Ya I'm seeing and hearing of that more and more. It doesn't take much. As in your case it's only another .025" preload.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1slowbusa View Post
    When i was installing the heads and cam i spoke with LG Motorsports and they used the 7.4 on the same setup i have. I will call them on monday and see what they say about it sounding like a sewing machine. But like i mentioned earlier when i put the lucas stabalizer in the car got alot quieter but i could still hear it a little.
    thanks again
    See what they have to say, but like I said, some shops just call it normal, and most people accept that. It doesn't hurt anything. But in my opinion only solid lifter cams should sound this way. Hydraulics should all be completely quiet, and they are with the correct lifter preload.
    The only hydraulics that tend to make a slight amount of noise are either cams with special bleed down lifters or, flat tappet hydraulic cams with very aggressive lobe profiles like the XE grinds will tend to make a little lifter noise. Most instances they should be completely quiet though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebirdjones View Post
    See what they have to say, but like I said, some shops just call it normal, and most people accept that. It doesn't hurt anything. But in my opinion only solid lifter cams should sound this way. Hydraulics should all be completely quiet, and they are with the correct lifter preload.
    The only hydraulics that tend to make a slight amount of noise are either cams with special bleed down lifters or, flat tappet hydraulic cams with very aggressive lobe profiles like the XE grinds will tend to make a little lifter noise. Most instances they should be completely quiet though.
    Ok thanks, i will let you know what there answer is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebirdjones View Post
    See what they have to say, but like I said, some shops just call it normal, and most people accept that. It doesn't hurt anything. But in my opinion only solid lifter cams should sound this way. Hydraulics should all be completely quiet, and they are with the correct lifter preload.
    The only hydraulics that tend to make a slight amount of noise are either cams with special bleed down lifters or, flat tappet hydraulic cams with very aggressive lobe profiles like the XE grinds will tend to make a little lifter noise. Most instances they should be completely quiet though.
    Ok thanks, i will let you know what there answer is.

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    You should ALWAYS check for pushrod length. If your pushrod is too short it can cause valvetrain noise as you have if there's too much it may hold your valves open causing running issues. Saying that some one else used your cam and they used xx.xx pushrod doesn't work many factors like heads, valvetrain, and lifters all change the number you will need. You need about .06 preload for your stock ls1 lifters, this is an easy way to check your preload without really having to spend any coin.


    Take your valve covers off and rotate the engine to where the 1st cylinder is at the base circle of the cam (both valves closed).

    Loosen the first rocker arm to where there is NO tension on the valve spring.

    Next tighten the bolt back down to where the valve spring is not pressured by the rocker and you can still spin the pushrod by hand however you should not be able to wiggle the rocker arm. You have now reached 0 lash.

    Once here get a GOOD torque wrench and torque the bolt down to 22 ft lbs counting the turns as you go. 1 full turn of the bolt is equal to .047 of preload and your shooting for .05-.08 with stock lifters so anywhere from 1.25-1.75 turns is what your after.

    If you get less than 1.25 or greater than 1.75 to get your rockers to torque correctly you need a different pushrod and it would be in your best interest to get an adjustable pushrod and measure what you need.

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    Sorry for the double post but I forgot this in my last. More than likely even when you get the proper pushrod length you will still have valvetrain noise due to the lobes on the cam. Aftermarket cams are ground on lobes such as xe or xr these lobes have high ramp speeds at which they reach max lift. In essence that makes the spring compress faster and is harder on the rest of the valvetrain thus giving the "sewing machine" noise. newer lobe designs like eps can achieve the same power levels if not higher that of the harsher lobes reach but use a less aggressive ramp rate thus allowing a smoother valvetrain operation and decreasing stress this is why so many people with eps cams report little to no noise at all.

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    No problem on the double post, members will learn from this thread.

    Thanks for posting.

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