Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

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Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby Maaso » Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:17 pm

Part of modifying my valve covers to clear my roller rockers included me having to removed the bulky baffles. I read somewhere that roller lifters wont build much oil pressure to shoot up through the pushrods.
Current owner: '99 ZR2, 383 Vortec L31
Previous owner: '93 GMC Typhoon #2025

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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby excaliber » Wed Jan 20, 2010 11:06 pm

I can agree with the above statement, my retrofit roller lifters do not squirt oil from the pushrod like a normal lifter, if you run a stud girdle, I would say no, as the oil will squirt up into the bottom of the stud girdle, otherwise, I would say it depends on the style valve cover, some have the PVC hole right over the rocker, and in that case I would say yes, probably, even though at idol, the oil may not squirt up, but at 6,000 rpm, the oil pump is spinning a lot faster and probably pushing the oil out of the pushrod pretty good. I had to go with taller valve covers to clear the stud girldes.

you could modify it with a home made baffle, I done this once using an aluminum Pepsi can, just cut the aluminum, bend it to fit and tap a couple holes and screwed it in. worked fine.
or try it without it, and see how it runs, worse case scenario you start fouling plugs from the PVC pulling oil into the intake.
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby Maaso » Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:37 am

I got centerbolts, the PCV hole isn't right over the rockers, it's like....between them. Where that little gap is between in intake rockers for cylinder 1 and 3.
Current owner: '99 ZR2, 383 Vortec L31
Previous owner: '93 GMC Typhoon #2025

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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby excaliber » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:45 am

thats a good thing, I have had valve covers that the hole was exactly perfectly right over the top of a rocker and the oil would shoot directly into the PVC valve
you might still pull a little "mist" in to it without a baffle, don't know, at 6 grand the oil up top is getting slung and beat up pretty good.
Jamie Sanders
Searcy, Arkansas
Owner: 1989 S-10 383 SBC
Former owner: Syclone #0252,
Former Owner big block 427 S-10

I believe in the right to bear arms, because when seconds count,,, the police are only minutes away.Image
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby speeder » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:57 am

I had some issues with a valvecover with no baffles at high RPM oil would end up on the outside of the engine. You can get baffled gromets from Mr Gasket if you want but they did not work for me. They stuck down a bit and they were touching the rocker arms on mine. I tried a puke can from summit that I connected to valvecover breather and that eliminated the oil on the outside, but now I had to empty the can and replenish in the engine with oil. I had to just buy some new valve covers to really resolve it.
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby Telco » Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:06 pm

speeder wrote:I had some issues with a valvecover with no baffles at high RPM oil would end up on the outside of the engine. You can get baffled gromets from Mr Gasket if you want but they did not work for me. They stuck down a bit and they were touching the rocker arms on mine. I tried a puke can from summit that I connected to valvecover breather and that eliminated the oil on the outside, but now I had to empty the can and replenish in the engine with oil. I had to just buy some new valve covers to really resolve it.


That idea might still work if you were to put a drain on the bottom that would drain back into the valve cover, or even back down to the oil pan. It would need to be a metal line of a fair size diameter, say half inch, and be routed to stay close to the block to keep it from getting gummed up and blocked inside when it's cold. Even in the winter, the block would keep the whole line warm long enough for any oil inside the line to drain back. Might also have to clean it regularly, like every oil change or something.
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby speeder » Thu Jan 21, 2010 2:57 pm

so this draining is happening up hill or do you propose to put the puke can above the engine? sorry.... I am on a roll :) Also how much oil are you talking about? I had maybe a cup a week would accumulate. Anyway I tried to have the excess oil drain back, but the top of the valve cover is higher than I can have the bottom of my can. Therefore that scenario did not work. If it was a closed system then it could push the oil back, but then there is no breather. So I just forked out the cash and hooked the puke can back up. It is now low maintenance and the outside of the engine is oil free.
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby Telco » Fri Jan 22, 2010 7:23 am

You are on a roll, but with flat tires. At least I attempt to help out with problems regardless of how I might feel about a person's opinions. Obviously you'd want to mount the catch can higher than the valve cover, which would not be an issue because you wouldn't need a large can if the can were draining back every day.
RIP 1987 GMC S15 ext cab, 2000 Silverado reg cab 4x4 5.3, 2003 Lincoln LS 3.9L V8
Read this before buying Eagle cranks!

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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby speeder » Fri Jan 22, 2010 7:27 am

You are correct. It would have to be a small can. I could not find one small enough that would be the right price/location combo. I am sorry if I hurt your feelings, but I am just full of observations. And both you and I are sort of easily categorized and described from time to time. A sinusoidal thing.
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby Telco » Fri Jan 22, 2010 8:47 am

Hurt feelings? No, just irritated that I try to offer a fix that may have helped you and may help the OP and you try poking fun at it. Sometimes I forget what it is I'm dealing with, I really shouldn't get irritated. It's not your fault. :tard: I'll try to show more patience in the future... :mrgreen:
RIP 1987 GMC S15 ext cab, 2000 Silverado reg cab 4x4 5.3, 2003 Lincoln LS 3.9L V8
Read this before buying Eagle cranks!

Paul Hsieh wrote:Rights are freedoms of action (such as the right to free speech), not automatic claims on goods and services that must be produced by another. There is no such thing as a right to a car – or a tonsillectomy.
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby TomZ » Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:42 am

I use a pair of fabricated valve covers on the 383 in my boat... they have no baffles. After a hard run, oil will collect around the PCV valve causing a puff of oil smoke at the next start (just enough gets through before engine vaccuum closes the valve). Really annoying! But I hafve to use them because the allow the use of my roller rockers and still fit the exhaust headers (boats use an upswept exhaust arrangement... keeps water out of the engine).
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby Telco » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:59 pm

TomZ wrote:I use a pair of fabricated valve covers on the 383 in my boat... they have no baffles. After a hard run, oil will collect around the PCV valve causing a puff of oil smoke at the next start (just enough gets through before engine vaccuum closes the valve). Really annoying! But I hafve to use them because the allow the use of my roller rockers and still fit the exhaust headers (boats use an upswept exhaust arrangement... keeps water out of the engine).


Might try putting a cheap plastic 1970s Jap fuel filter inline between your PCV and the vacuum source then. These filters are cheap enough to toss from time to time and should keep the oil vapor out. I'm going to be doing this on my truck as soon as I can get around to getting a bracket made to hold it. The filter I speak of will have both the inlet and outlet on one side, with the filter hanging underneath. I'm having to do this because on the LSx truck engines the PCV vacuum source is right in front of the throttle blade, and it will cause the throttle to stick requiring a periodic cleaning.
RIP 1987 GMC S15 ext cab, 2000 Silverado reg cab 4x4 5.3, 2003 Lincoln LS 3.9L V8
Read this before buying Eagle cranks!

Paul Hsieh wrote:Rights are freedoms of action (such as the right to free speech), not automatic claims on goods and services that must be produced by another. There is no such thing as a right to a car – or a tonsillectomy.
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby TomZ » Fri Jan 22, 2010 3:23 pm

Cool! Thanks for the tip!
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Re: Do I need baffles in my valve covers?

Postby Maaso » Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:49 pm

This isn't a race engine, it's a deep down-torque monster for my daily driver (cruise speeds around ~1400RPM) and my weekend off road and towing rig. I doubt it will ever see higher than ~5000RPM. And if it does it wont be there long.
Current owner: '99 ZR2, 383 Vortec L31
Previous owner: '93 GMC Typhoon #2025

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