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2014 LT program car, Pull Me Over Red
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Thank you!!! Hahaha, I'm sure too once I'm all finished and there will be a ton of questions. I'd say ask now as things are unfolding and participate.

I have the springs off now. I need to straight up and find my dial calipers to get measurements so I can see what'll work. I don't know much about the 1.4 springs, but I was surprised to see the stock springs on the 1.8 are beehive style springs. Perhaps a second inner spring would be enough to keep valve float under control at higher RPMS. I would be nice to get the motor revving up to 8k and still building power, but as it sits now, or while I had things up and running, the car falls on it's face around 5,500 which I'm resolving while the car is apart.
I was thinking about the aftermarket 72# valve springs for the 1.4. I think they are from ZZP or BNR. You should be able to ask for specs from them.
 

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I got a lot done over this weekend on the Cruze...

I Chem Dipped the pistons (they practically look like new) as well as the chambers while the valves were in. Simply laid the head flat and poured it into the chambers. No fluid leaked past the valves, so they are in good working order. I do plan to at least lap them to clean them up. It took about 4 hours per piston, and 4 for the head.

View attachment 287810 View attachment 287811


I then disassembled (no disassemble Johny 5! if you get that, we're getting old) the cylinder head using the proper cam locking tool, and a good old fashioned tried and true way of using a socket and hammer. Wear and play on all parts look good after 120k miles. So a refresh is all that will be needed here.

I kept things organized with a valve train organizing tray. We're keeping with the theme of LOW BUCK, which will include the rebuild of the head. A pizza box with holes can save you some $$$, but I'm cool with the $25 expense because something tells me it's not the last engine I'll do.

The valve springs are a beehive style, which is great. I'll get dimensions to see if there's anything I can find that will help with valve float at higher RPMs.

I have new valve seals on the way, and new cam seals are already in. Let's just consider these consumables like oil. They're cheap, and while I'm in there, this is the best time to do it.




Speaking of, I went ahead and gasket matched the intake ports, and polished the intake runners as well. It took me about 4 hours total from start to finish for the intake side.



I started to work on the exhaust ports, but ran out of time for the weekend and my carbide bit started gumming up with carbon. I should have poured chem dip in the exhaust ports will I had things together. Live and learn.

Lastly some key parts came in. Some good news and bad news though...

Upgraded rods from MaXpeeding Rods... They are the same size, come with ARP studs, but I still need to check the width with dial calipers, but the small and big ends are the same size diameter wise. I install a pin from the stock rods, perfect clearance. Install bearings, good to go. The weight isn't too far off, so I may be able to balance the big and small ends myself without the machine shop costs. I'll update you on that.

The bad... The tangs on the rod body are on the other side. After all these are made for the 1.6 guys on the other side of the pond. Solution maybe to just get two sets of rod bearings.
Did you CC the chambers? You should be able to do that yourself.

If the rods don't work you can have them shot peened to strengthen and stress relieve them and magnafluxed to look for cracks.
 

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Discussion Starter #123
Did you CC the chambers? You should be able to do that yourself.

If the rods don't work you can have them shot peened to strengthen and stress relieve them and magnafluxed to look for cracks.
I haven't yet. When I was sucking out the Chem Dip with a syringe, I thought I should have kept track of the fluid. I'll do that with some alcohol when I get a moment.

Speaking off...
 

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Discussion Starter #124
I was thinking about the aftermarket 72# valve springs for the 1.4. I think they are from ZZP or BNR. You should be able to ask for specs from them.
Thanks. I'm going to look into those. Once I get a moment I'll measure the springs.
 

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Discussion Starter #125

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Discussion Starter #127
Everything checks out on the MaXpeeding Rods... rods... They're within specs. Mine are a little on the looser end because of wear in, but they're good to go! A solution for the bearings will be just to order the 1.6L variants so the tangs will match up.
 

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Discussion Starter #128
Some boost sounds!!! This is while I was tuning and doing a ton of logs before the system got lined with oil.

 

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Discussion Starter #129
I just got off the phone with ARP, since both attempts at buying a kit, that's supposed to work with the Cruze, have been a big fail. The gentle man the answered the phone was nice enough to send me a couple head studs. 1 option is a single stud from a Toyota, and the other will be an oversized stud for a Dodge Neon. Should the Toyota stud not work, the plan is to see whether or not they can machine the block for a larger 11mm stud. I'll keep you guys posted once I get that situated / figured out.
 

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Discussion Starter #132
Ton of research going into this... The ARP studs arrived which I'll check if what they sent will work tomorrow and get some work done on the car.

After taking measurements, looks like SuperTech's Beehive SPR-MC56BE valve springs will work. They're about $130 and work with the stock retainers. I'm going to place an order for some and from my measurements, they should work. My only concern is the top ID of the spring seem a little tight. The springs are rated at:

Press.Seat: 65 @33.6mm
Press.Open: 163 @10

This weekend I'll finish up porting and polishing the exhaust ports. The plan is to hand lap the valves. The head deck is FLAT. Just needs a little cleaning and will be good to go. The block will come out as well as any other accessories on the block, then off to the machine shop for crankshaft balancing, a light hone, and decking enough to clean up the surfaces.

I've order a ton of new parts to freshen up the block. New seals, gaskets, thermostat, water pump, belts, etc, etc... full rebuild.

I've been racking my brain about camshaft options and have called many places, including comp cams, with no success in search of custom camshafts, and or a regrind. That or they're just not interested in working with me on this one off project. I have found a few options overseas, but they do not seem to have the camshaft position sensor exciters for both cams which could cause an issue with the ECU and a constant check engine light. There are Z18XE options, but it has to be the Z18XER, A18XER or their 1.6L variants that utilize VVT with the hydraulic sprockets.

Dbilas Sport Camshafts

Piper Camshafts - Couple options

That about it really. And at $800, It's quite the gamble? Uh... go fund me account???? lol
 

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Discussion Starter #134
Time for all the 1.8ers to rally round!
Heck, I own a screen printing shop so maybe it'll be more enticing if I created a design and some shirts. I'm thinking for the design, a 3/4 view with the hood off, fat turbo in this style...

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Tagline... Moon Tune with some turbos as the "O's"? At $25 a shirt, I would need to sell about 35 to order the cams and you guys could decide which set I should spring for...
 

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Discussion Starter #135
The new rod bearings came in for the forged MaXpeeding Rods connecting rods. They're Top Line. I'm not familiar with them, but have read some good reviews about them. They look like a great fit thus far, but I'm going to grab some plastigage and make sure everything is within spec before sending the rotating assembly to the machine shop for balancing. There's not many options for these engines as far as Clevitte, etc.. so stock STD size GM OEM bearings will go in place of the main bearings.

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Discussion Starter #136
Got a lot done over the weekend. Finished porting and polishing the exhaust side of the cylinder head. Matched up the ports to the exhaust manifold.

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Discussion Starter #137
I ordered the SuperTech SPR-MC56BE springs and they came in today. They fit the stock replacement valve seals, but the stock retainers are a no go, which I kinda knew from my measurements and their specs, but I figured it was worth a shot. So I'm going to have to order their RET-MC56/T1 titanium retainers. They should work fine since the valves are 5mm. Fingers crossed :rolleyes:😂

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Indiana! I'm just south of fort wayne!
 
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Discussion Starter #139
Last but not least, I've found a place called, Web Cams, that does a hardweld and regrind on stock cams. You send your cams in, they weld em up, treat em, and grind them to your specs. Kicker is the price. $963, plus I would have to buy new lifters / cups which is about another $250. I'm thinking about springing for it with their reputation and trying to break some new ground here.

Now I just need to wait for the retainers to come in, then the head and block will go off to the machine shop. I'll see if my guys can flow test the heads at different lifts so I can get an idea of what lift I should go for. While everything was together, the car had a lot of mid range pull, so perhaps something with a little higher LSA would benefit the build and give it a little bit of a lope, which I would be sick!

Any cam grind suggestions (duration º, duration @ .050 and LSA) would be great if you want to play along. The build is for street and weekend warrior drag strip fun. After cylinder head decking, and block decking, the static CR will be closer to 10.75:1. I'm personally thinking something around 270+º, 230+º @.050 and a LSA of 109-111.
 
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