What is Babbitting?
Babbitt (or white metal) work is the method of removing and replacing worn bearing material from main bearings, connecting rods, and some cam bearings on vintage engines. The general era of engine applications that used babbitted bearings range from the early 1900s to the middle 1930s. A notable exception being the Chevrolet 216cid and 235cid engines, which used babbitt for the connecting rod bearings as late as 1953.
Babbitted bearings typically consist of two parts: An outer shell made of either steel or bronze, and a machined inner layer of babbitt or bearing material bonded to the inside of the bearing shell. In some engine applications, there are no bearing shells and, instead, the babbitt is poured directly in the block and main bearing caps. The bearings are then machined to a semi finish or the proper undersize.
Egge uses "4X Nickel" babbitt material, which is a nickel based aircraft quality babbitt material selected for its top quality and long life. Babbitt material is soft and has an “embeddability” factor, allowing it to collect and remove tiny particles and debris suspended in the oil before engine damage occurs.
Babbitt Bearings - Semi Finished
The old babbitt material is melted and removed before the bearing shells are cleaned, inspected, and prepped to receive new babbitt. Then, with the help of a specialized jig or fixture, a new layer of babbitt material is poured directly into bearing shell/s. Finally, the bearing is machined to SEMI-FINISHED condition. This semi-finished bearing includes any special oil grooves and/or oil pockets specific to the engine application.
Like the bearing shell process, the old babbitt material is melted and removed before the connecting rods are cleaned, inspected, and prepped to receive new babbitt. Then, with the help of a specialized jig or fixture, a new layer of babbitt material is poured directly into the connecting rod/s. Finally, the connecting rods are machined to the correct undersize size.
Main Bearings - Align Bore
The last step in the process is to align-bore the block. Using an align bore fixture, the main bearings are finished to the proper undersize to fit the crankshaft. Once the crankshaft is set, all bearing cap bolts are torqued to the manufacturer’s recommended specifications.
Reminder to our DIYers and shop mechanics:
Please do not discard any worn parts from your vintage engine as those parts may be crucial for proper identification of the correct replacement part or required for the remanufacturing process.
Please note : All pricing for babbitt work is quoted on a case by case basis. Pricing is calculated based on the level of difficulty and time required to perform the work properly. Customers are always made aware of any special circumstances and/or challenges with doing the work before we start the job. Should anything new or different be discovered during the process, all work is stopped and the customer is notified immediately.
Contact us at 800-866-3443 or firstname.lastname@example.org to send in your Babbitt work.