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Camaro V6 LFX Engine, Exhaust, and Bolt-Ons For all LFX related parts

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Old 06-17-2013, 12:15 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by intensifi View Post
I expected your valves and intake ports to still need the manual cleaning.

How did the composite intake manifold turn out?
The IM was already clean from when I removed it before. I cleaned it at that time with some throttle body cleaner. The seafoam left a clear oily film all over everything, though, which I'm not thrilled about.
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Old 06-17-2013, 03:06 PM   #52
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Ok, when I installed my Elite CC and CAI cai, I found oil in the stock intake from the clean side. Is this a problem? Do I need to install something for that side?
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Old 06-17-2013, 08:55 PM   #53
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That's where the breather comes in. It replaces the clean side air tube with an alternate, filtered inlet. Can you check where the clean side tube connects to your cai and see if it's still getting oil in there?
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Old 06-18-2013, 01:16 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by intensifi View Post
I expected your valves and intake ports to still need the manual cleaning.

How did the composite intake manifold turn out?
How hard is it to pull out and manually clean the valves?
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Old 06-18-2013, 02:42 PM   #55
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How hard is it to pull out and manually clean the valves?
We didn't actually remove the valves for cleaning. Just the manifold, then we cleaned the valves in place thru the intake runners. See here, if you haven't already: http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=288997
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Old 06-18-2013, 03:07 PM   #56
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Look for a Catch Can and Seafoam Combo kit from us shortly....


Great info for folks in this thread. Not just hocus pocus "buy a catch can and you'll be alright" jargon. I dig it!

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Old 06-18-2013, 06:28 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 911medic View Post
We didn't actually remove the valves for cleaning. Just the manifold, then we cleaned the valves in place thru the intake runners. See here, if you haven't already: http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=288997
But.....GM designed it to ingest oil....no need for a catchcan, right?

But.....GM states their is no issue with intake valve coking (except in the service bulletins to the dealers....)

But.....If it needed a catchcan, wouldn't it come with one from the factory?

But..... You all know the rest of the arguments.
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:25 PM   #58
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I don't understand why you do all that work & chance screwing something up, why not just have the dealer do their induction cleaning and be done with it?
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Old 06-18-2013, 07:55 PM   #59
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I don't understand why you do all that work & chance screwing something up, why not just have the dealer do their induction cleaning and be done with it?

Because most of them are turds and do not care enough about our cars like the owners do.
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:55 PM   #60
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I don't understand why you do all that work & chance screwing something up, why not just have the dealer do their induction cleaning and be done with it?
1) Intensifi actually did pay a dealer for their induction cleaning, and pulled his manifold afterwards and still found deposits.

2) Trust me, for a dealer to perform the cleaning I performed on my valves last weekend would have cost an arm and a leg.

3) I enjoy wrenching on my own car, and this procedure, if done carefully, is pretty dang low-risk, if you can twist a wrench.
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:58 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by Ivan @ Southwest Speed View Post
Look for a Catch Can and Seafoam Combo kit from us shortly....


Great info for folks in this thread. Not just hocus pocus "buy a catch can and you'll be alright" jargon. I dig it!

Ivan @ Southwest Speed
Thank you, I and others are trying to present real-world, owner experiences that hopefully are valuable.

And good idea on the combo kit!
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:05 PM   #62
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But.....GM designed it to ingest oil....no need for a catchcan, right?

But.....GM states their is no issue with intake valve coking (except in the service bulletins to the dealers....)

But.....If it needed a catchcan, wouldn't it come with one from the factory?

But..... You all know the rest of the arguments.
I think as DI engines gain popularity--and I think they're going to end up the new standard--manufacturers are going to have to acknowledge this issue, even if only internally.

They probably won't ever publicly admit there's a problem with current products, thanks to our litigious society. But I think we're already seeing design changes to deal with it, such as:

*Redesigned baffling in the PCV system to reduce oil consumption
*Changes in valve timing/cam phasing to reduce coking
*Changes in valve coatings to reduce deposit accumulation
*Adding factory remedies, like the clean side catch can on the high-performance Camaros
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Old 06-18-2013, 11:47 PM   #63
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1) Intensifi actually did pay a dealer for their induction cleaning, and pulled his manifold afterwards and still found deposits.

2) Trust me, for a dealer to perform the cleaning I performed on my valves last weekend would have cost an arm and a leg.

3) I enjoy wrenching on my own car, and this procedure, if done carefully, is pretty dang low-risk, if you can twist a wrench.
What he said!

Not only deposits after the cleaning, pooled oil in the gaskets, lots of crap in the intake ports and on the valves.

Check the DIY link a few posts up for pics.
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Old 06-18-2013, 11:50 PM   #64
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Look for a Catch Can and Seafoam Combo kit from us shortly....


Great info for folks in this thread. Not just hocus pocus "buy a catch can and you'll be alright" jargon. I dig it!

Ivan @ Southwest Speed
Cool!

Offer two kits.

One like you said and another with the tools/chemicals needed for a manual cleaning of the valves/intake ports.
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:59 AM   #65
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So it sounds like your finished with the cleaning. Unless I missed something, do you have any after pictures of your valves, or any new impressions of engine performance or anything like that?
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Old 06-19-2013, 12:54 PM   #66
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So it sounds like your finished with the cleaning. Unless I missed something, do you have any after pictures of your valves, or any new impressions of engine performance or anything like that?
I do have more pics. Just need to find time to post them (posting this via my phone at work).

As far as performance, maybe slightly smoother/stronger acceleration, but not a night and day difference. Going to log some more data to compare to the dirty data. Also going to continue to monitor fuel economy, but it's too early to tell on that front.
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Old 06-22-2013, 10:31 AM   #67
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It still baffles me that with all these pictures of how filthy the intake manifold gets without a catch can why Chevrolet didn't just put one in there.

If it's so mandatory, why was it even allowed to leave the factory? Seems like they cut corners.
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Old 06-22-2013, 02:27 PM   #68
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It still baffles me that with all these pictures of how filthy the intake manifold gets without a catch can why Chevrolet didn't just put one in there.

If it's so mandatory, why was it even allowed to leave the factory? Seems like they cut corners.
I think they decided that it would be easier/more acceptable to manage the problem with periodic intake cleanings than by requiring owners/oil change shops/other service centers to learn/remember to empty a new piece of equipment at each oil change.

Oh, and it's cheaper for them, too.
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Old 06-22-2013, 02:27 PM   #69
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I'm in the process of writing a big update for this thread, so stay tuned.
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Old 06-22-2013, 03:25 PM   #70
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Tear Down #2 and Manual Cleaning

All right, after a busy week, I finally have a bit of time to update this thread.

Last Saturday, my dad was down for Father's Day weekend and we removed the IM again to see how effective the Seafoam was at removing the carbon from my intake valves.

As I mentioned back in post #33, I wondered if using the brake booster vacuum hose to introduce Seafoam into the IM would actually introduce it to both cylinder banks, or just primarily one side.

As you can see in the photo below, the IM is internally divided into two banks, which in turn feed the intake runners on the opposite side of the engine:



The brake booster vacuum attachment (red arrow) comes in on the driver's side rear of the IM, which feeds the passenger side bank of cylinders (remember, the IM is upside-down in the pic, so things are reversed). I wondered if the internal division of the IM was continuous from where it splits near the throttle body, or if there was opportunity for the sides to "communicate" other than the very front of the IM.

So after pulling the IM, the first thing I did was turn it upside down and run my lighted borescope up each side of the IM. Running it up the passenger side showed light out each runner on the driver's side of the IM. I saw no light anywhere in the passenger side runners at all.

Next I ran it up the driver's side of the IM. When the borescope got right next to the brake booster vacuum connection, there was some very faint light visible in the rear runner opening on the driver's side (which is fed by the passenger side of the IM, remember?). As soon as the scope was moved slightly away from the vacuum connection, the light disappeared.

So it appears that there may be a small communication between the two halves of the IM near the vacuum attachment. I am not sure how much Seafoam would make it to the driver's side bank of cylinders via this communication; it seems to be very very small based on the amount of light that passed and how any small movement of the scope would make the passed light disappear from the other side.

In my opinion, to ensure a good Seafoam treatment on the LFX, you should not rely solely on the brake booster vacuum attachment. You should definitely use the Seafoam spray from the throttle body side of the manifold to ensure treatment of both cylinder banks, either in addition to the brake booster vacuum line or instead of it.

OK, on to the evaluation of the effectiveness of the treatment.

First thing I noticed was that the inside of the IM was coated with a clear, oily substance. I believe this was residual Seafoam and not PCV-related oil ingestion, as the appearance of the substance was clear and not oil-colored at all. I'm not thrilled about this coating after cleaning the IM previously with intake cleaner--which left no residue--but it's unavoidable.

I also found the same substance where the IM gasket meets the metal intake runners on the head:





Note in the close up the barely visible ring of clear fluid around each opening. Compare this to the pics of the same area I posted in the first post in this thread, and you'll see why I'm convinced this was Seafoam and not PCV products. Later in this thread I'll show what I drained from my catch can when I did my post-Seafoam oil change, and you'll see it's far from clear.

All right, on to the appearance of the valves themselves:













So, the Seafoam helped remove the big chunk of carbon off of the one valve, but still left a lot of residue on each valve trumpet and a "collar" of deposits on each valve stem. Not as clean as I had hoped.

While we had the IM off and the valves accessible, we decided to manually clean them. Again, we referred to intensifi's guide, although we sort of modified the technique a bit.

I purchased a gun cleaning kit at Walmart for about $20:





The various diameter brushes and extension handles worked well for accessing the valves down through the runners. I was able to bend the brushes into an "L" shape to get the rear of the valve stem and the back of the valve trumpet. The bristles bent/deformed easily, though, and I went through several of them during this procedure.

Another note about using the brushes: as they began to wear, I found an occasional stray bristle laying on the valve after cleaning. I was able to suck them out using the shop vac, which I will describe later. Just be aware and look for them if you use this procedure.

For a cleaning chemical I used my remaining Seafoam spray. I had purchased some intake/carb cleaner for this purpose, but after talking with my dad decided to use the Seafoam instead. The concern was that the stronger cleaner would potentially wash the cylinder walls and leave them dry at the next startup. The Seafoam has some lubricity, so even if it washed the cylinder walls there would be some level of lubrication remaining.

First, I sprayed a small amount of Seafoam into each runner that looked like it might be closed. If the fluid pooled and remained, the valves were closed and those were the areas we cleaned first:



In the pic above, the left valve shows how the Seafoam looked when sprayed onto the valve. It has a blue appearance. The right valve has been scrubbed on a bit, turning the seafoam gray. Eventually it would turn dark gray to black as the deposits were removed.

We had 4 of the 6 sets of intake valves closed initially, so we cleaned those first. The cleaning procedure consisted of:
  1. Spraying Seafoam in and letting them soak for 10-15 minutes
  2. Scrubbing with the wire brushes
  3. Stuffing a narrow strip of T-shirt cotton rag into each runner, wrapping it around the valve stem and using it to help scrub the valves and soak up the majority of the Seafoam gunk
  4. Using my shop-vac with an adapter and a length of 1/2" diameter plastic tubing to vacuum any remaining Seafoam and as much debris from around each valve as possible
This is us using the brushes to clean the valves:





Holding a flashlight in one hand and scrubbing with the other worked well, but by the end the hand holding the narrow brush handle was pretty fatigued.

I don't have any shots of using the rags, but I can tell you that narrow strips worked much better than larger pieces. It was easier to stuff them around the back of the valve stem and work them back and forth. They came out dripping with black gunk, so be prepared.

Next we used the shop vac adapter and with masking tape attached about a 2 foot length of 1/2" diameter tubing:



We could then insert the tubing down near the valve stem to suck up any remaining Seafoam, debris, or the occasional brush bristle from the valves.

After we did the initial 4 sets of valves, we used a 19mm socket and a breaker bar to rotate the crankshaft bolt by hand and close the remaining two sets of valves. We did not remove the spark plugs to release the compression, and while it was stiff to turn, it wasn't horrible.

One of us turned the crank while the other watched the open valves slowly close. At some point, the valve would seem to stop moving, even with further crank turning, and that's when we would test them for Seafoam pooling.

After all the valves were cleaned, here's what they looked like:











For some reason I only took 5 pics, but essentially they all looked similar.

A couple of notes about this technique:
  1. I was unable to get all the loosened carbon deposits either soaked up with the rags or vacuumed out. The loosened deposits settled around the perimeter of the valves and I couldn't extract them. They're particularly noticeable in the picture showing the valve after it was cleaned and then opened. I am hopeful that this debris was just kind of loosely wet-caked on these areas and that as soon as the engine was run that they were sucked into the chamber and burned.
  2. There was a hard "collar" of deposits on the valve stem that proved very stubborn to remove. I was unable to completely remove the collar from several of the valves despite prolonged scrubbing and repeated wetting with the Seafoam. However, I think I greatly reduced the size of the collar in all cases. Perhaps a stronger cleaner would have done a better job of softening/removing the collar.

After the cleaning was all done, I changed the oil/filter and drained the catch can. This is what my RX catch can collected in a little over 2,000 miles:



As you can see, it's definitely not the same stuff I found in the IM or around the port openings. Yuck. After I emptied it, I removed the hose from the center (input) fitting on the can and we carefully/slowly sprayed some intake/carb cleaner down into the can and out the open drain valve to flush the can and drain hose. (The pic above shows only what the can collected, not any additional liquid from flushing the can/hose.)

OK...there you have it, folks. My car ran ~28,000 miles without a catch can. You saw the resulting deposits, the effects of a Seafoam treatment on them, and how I manually cleaned them.

Hopefully my catch can will prevent any further deposits from forming. Perhaps in the future I will pull the IM again and check.

Thanks for reading!
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Old 06-22-2013, 04:09 PM   #71
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One more note on the Seafoam treatment process. Intensifi mentioned to me that the dealer intake chemical cleaning apparatus hooked up to the PCV intake port on the IM.

I tried to use this port to spray some Seafoam into the IM after the manual cleaning/reassembly, but the engine does not like the unrestricted airflow that came in through that port without the PCV line connected. It chugged and died almost instantly when the PCV line was removed, and would hardly restart, so the attempt was aborted.

Obviously the dealer system seals the opening better and only allows an appropriate amount of air to enter with the chemical.
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Old 06-22-2013, 07:09 PM   #72
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Great write up! Thanks for all the effort!

The difference between yours with 28K (Before Catch Can) miles and mine with 14K (BCC) miles, really shows the need for getting the catch can on early.

The next time I have my manifold off, I'm going to try throttle body cleaner on the closed valves.

I'll also check with the master tech at Boardwalk Chevrolet on the difference between Seafoam and BG 44K. As I recall he felt BG 44K cleaned better.
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Old 06-22-2013, 08:08 PM   #73
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you all are nuts,,

don't get me wrong, I put a RX on mine at 7,000 miles and did a aerosol seafoam treatment into the TB, for $150 what the hell,

But lets go back to the drawing board here,, now what harm does having deposits on your valves do?? As long as the valve seats keep themselves clean what's the difference?

It will be interesting to see if people without the catch cans have problems down the road... What are your predictions?
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Old 06-22-2013, 10:51 PM   #74
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Carbon builds up on valves.

Eventually it will break loose, fall off into the cylinders, then score the cylinder walls and damage the rings.
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Old 06-23-2013, 01:20 AM   #75
911medic

 
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Drives: 2012 SIM 2LT/1970 Camaro
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Near Minneapolis, MN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CyberPunk223 View Post
you all are nuts,,

don't get me wrong, I put a RX on mine at 7,000 miles and did a aerosol seafoam treatment into the TB, for $150 what the hell,

But lets go back to the drawing board here,, now what harm does having deposits on your valves do?? As long as the valve seats keep themselves clean what's the difference?

It will be interesting to see if people without the catch cans have problems down the road... What are your predictions?
So I'm nuts for documenting the same process you used (catch can, Seafoam treatment) and taking it a step further and actually physically cleaning the valves?

And you feel the shape of the valve surface itself has no effect on the flow into the cylinder, so crusty, rough carbon buildup will have no effect, right?

That's why BMW came up with the walnut shell blaster for cleaning the valves on their direct injection engines, right? Just for fun.

Sorry if I'm a little sensitive, but your post makes no sense. You call me crazy, then say you've done 2/3 of what I've done, then ask my predictions?

That's crazy.

Here's an article from a couple of years ago: http://www.edmunds.com/autoobserver-...-adopters.html

In it you'll find a description of one owner's decreasing horsepower as his valves collected carbon deposits.

And here's a quote from that article that should show you the potential "harm" that auto manufacturers themselves are concerned about:

"A U.S. patent application filed in 2002 by Volkswagen AG explains the DI-engine carbon-deposit dilemma this way: 'Gasoline engines with direct injection of the fuel into the combustion chamber…suffer especially from the problem of the formation of carbon deposits…especially in the neck region of the intake valves.'

The document describes these deposits as a sticky coating of oil and fuel constituents that, once formed, serves as a base for further deposits, creating 'a circular process, by which the coating thickness of the carbon deposits continuously increases.' Excessive carbon deposits 'have extremely negative effects,' the patent application concludes, citing significant performance losses, sporadic ignition failures and, potentially, holes burned in the structure of the catalytic converter (should bits of carbon break from the valves and pass though the combustion chamber)."

Hmm. Yeah, I'm crazy.
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