piston ring question - Dodge Cummins Diesel Forum
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post #1 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-06-2010, 11:20 PM Thread Starter
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piston ring question

ok so i was going to file my rings for my rebuild today and test fit the top rings in the cylinder to get a measurement to file them to specs... well as luck turns out they are between .005-.010 out of spec... so i measure the middle ring i need to file about that much off to be in the correct range. and the oil ring is set perfect... the question is should i go ahead and use the top rings out of spec? or try to take them back and get a new set? 5 cylinders were honed and the 6th was bored and sleeved then honed also. all 6 cyls are the same. any suggestions?


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post #2 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-06-2010, 11:31 PM
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How much did they take off when they honed the cylinders??

2004.5 3500 a few upgrades. big turbo and big sticks
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post #3 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-06-2010, 11:46 PM
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So you're saying your compression rings end gaps are .005-.010 too big? If all the cyls are the same ID they should all have the same end gaps, out of spec or not. Are these cummins parts?

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post #4 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 12:06 AM Thread Starter
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no most parts were oem or clevite. the rings are enginetech or something like that. i was nervous about getting them but according to my machine shop guy they are a good brand

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post #5 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 12:14 AM Thread Starter
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as far as i know they just cross hatched the cyls. all cyls measure the same. and yes im saying the gap is too big on the top ring by .005-.010 mm just barely out of spec

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post #6 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 12:43 AM
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MM?, I assumed you meant thousands of an inch, maybe somebody who has more experience than me will chime in. If I ever go that far into mine it's getting genuine cummins parts and I'd shoot for the middle of the spec window on the ring end gap.

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post #7 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 12:58 AM
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Too big a gap is better than too small a gap. You'll have a really bad day if the ring ends touch, it'll ruin a cylinder before you realize anything's wrong.

However too big a gap indicates more than just potential blowby through the gap. That means the ring is too small for the cylinder and won't have sufficient static tension to properly seal the cylinder. At our cylinder pressures ring tension is pretty important.

I'd measure the cylinders to find their actual finished size, make sure your piston wall clearance is correct, take the rings back and see if they have some to fit. Stock honed walls wouldn't need much, you can usually find .0005-.001 oversized rings.

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post #8 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 06:39 AM
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are you saying that the measured top ring gap is 0.005" to 0.010" too large or 0.005mm to 0.010mm?

the Cummins spec is Top Ring 0.30 - 0.46 mm 0.012 - 0.018 in
if your's is a mm measurement, you're slightly wide gapped but OK less than 10% overgapped.

if your's is an inch measurement, you're 30% overgapped get tighter rings.

try rotating the ring around in the bore to see if egg shape. also measure top middle and bottom. take the average as value to use.

I would only use Mahle (what comes in the Cummins box).
but you're kinda stuck now with what you got if you've put them on the pistons. most won't take back rings that have been on pistons.

stock engine with stock turbo, I'd gap at the top spec. 0.018" 0.46 mm and have far less ring/piston heating and less ring engine drag with more HP with possible slightly more blowby
the late injection tightly controller computer timing of the HPCR 5.9 produces far less blowby than older engine designs

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Last edited by steelhead01; 11-07-2010 at 06:50 AM.
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post #9 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 08:30 AM Thread Starter
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that is the specs for the 6.7 steelhead. if the 6.7 specs work for the 5.9 then everything is fine. im just at the very limit of the ring gap. the rings havent been on a piston yet, just in the bore. its impossible to measure the gap in the cylinder with a piston too lol

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post #10 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 08:59 AM
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According to Mitchell Ondemand, the top ring spec on the 5.9 is 0.26mm-0.36mm, or 0.010"-0.014". They are also saying that it needs to be squared in the bore approximately 3.5" below the head surface. Hope this helps.

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post #11 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 09:12 AM Thread Starter
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thanks cascius, i will slide them down a bit and remeasure. your specs are the ones i was going by. i had them pushed in to the 3rd ringland when i measured and they were squared by using the piston. i shall remeasure a little deeper and see what i find. probably just more bad news.

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post #12 of 45 (permalink) Old 11-07-2010, 10:04 AM Thread Starter
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well i was right... they measure the same on all 6 cylinders all the way down the bore and 90* rotation. .65 MM so i guess tomorrow i will call the machine shop and ask him whats up with it. and then call enginetech and ask them. either way im not happy. and besides that the sleeve they installed is sticking up about .05mm which in my opinion should be even with the block surface.

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