While trying to rotate my big block Chevy engine over on the engine stand it was mounted to, one of the welds on the stand failed. I had an engine hoist partially connected but it didn't provide enough support to stop it from impacting the ground. The engine landed on the front of the crank/block, chipping the concrete away where it landed but I dont see much indication of damage to the engine assembly. What should be checked before moving forward with installing it?

1 Answer 1


I'm going to assume you had the harmonic balancer on the engine. If so, you'll need to rotate the engine and see if it is out of round. Check it to ensure the rubber has not been damaged which would hold the outer ring of the balancer in place. If it has, plan on replacing it. While you're spinning the engine, and the harmonic balancer appears to be out of round, double check that it's not the whole thing which is wobbling. If it is, you've bent the crankshaft, which means the engine isn't going into the car. The crank will either need to be fixed by bending it correctly, or if it's too bad of a bend, the crank will need to be replaced. Next, if the engine was dry, meaning you've not pre-lubed it (priming the pump and getting oil dispersed throughout the engine), you'll need to see if you've damaged the front main bearing. You can only do this by pulling the crankshaft out of the engine, then using a micrometer to check the front bearing to see if it's out of round. You could possibly visually check the bearing for damage, which may be evident. Also, with the crank out, you should double check it to see if it is bent. This may require you to take it to a machinist who can measure it. If it is bent, they can usually straighten it if it isn't too far out of whack. If it is, replacement may be the only way forward.

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    Could be worse... I was once the guy "on call" on the night shift at a jet engine manufacturer, to agree and sign off any urgent but minor non-compliance maintenance issues. The phone rang and a nervous sounding maintenance tech said "We were doing an engine change and we just dropped the replacement engine. Is it OK to carry on?" Me: "What do you mean you just 'dropped' it?" "Well, we were moving it on a fork lift truck and it fell off onto the floor. It only fell about 4 feet" Me: "NO WAY is anybody going to sign that off as safe to fly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
    – alephzero
    Commented Oct 2, 2021 at 1:28
  • @alephzero - OUCH! No doubt, lol! Commented Oct 2, 2021 at 2:03

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