Oil test results

My dad has a '91 Chevy with a 350 in it (around 150,000 miles on it), the intake manifold gasket was recently replaced by a mechanic but shortly after
that the oil pressure dropped to about half that it used to be so we sent in an oil sample to a lab. Finally got the results, although so far just verbal not the actual print out:
The mechanic said there was significant amount of anti-freeze and traces of steel and aluminum. He said the aluminum comes from the bearings.
Aluminum from bearings??? I am not expert but I cannot fathom that any bearings would be made out of aluminum!? I'm wondering if he used poor technique when he was removing the old gasket and got aluminum in there from the scouring pad and now is just trying to cover his tracks? He is a well known mechanic at a small town so its not like he is a scam artist but this still sounds very fishy to me. What do you think?
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Bearings are an Aluminum matrix. He's right.
Al
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Al is right.Bearings are made from Aluminum.No way there`s metal in there from new intake gaskets.It`s from something else.Anti-freeze yes. If it`s alot of metal,maybe the motor is just pooping out. Metal shavings are normal.I`ve seen that on every vehicle I`ve had,on every oil change.
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Depends on what traces mean. Small amounts of metal are from normal wear. Aluminum may come from piston wear. Some bearings do have a sacrificial soft metal but I'm not sure about factory bearings. You are correct that aluminum may be in there from his cleaning methods. I'd be worried about the antifreeze. But then it all comes down to amounts. Get the printout, the lab that does my oil samples (Detroit Diesel) allows viewing online as soon as the sample is complete.

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First thing. I would flat out ask the mechanic if he used a 3M roloc disk for removing the intake gasket material. There is actually a TSB out from chevrolet about NOT using these. THe problem is the disk it self has some aluminum particals in ti and also they throw things everywhere. I know becuse I had to replace my OWN motor after using one of these. My advice to everyone on this grorp.... STAY AWAY from the roloc disks they are a major problem waiting to happen.

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Did you cover up the motor once the intake was off? I`ve never had any of these problems,and I`ve done about 30 of these on my car.Just cuz I keep changing cams.
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JL wrote:

    I use 3M Medium Grit Roloc disks, 3M Rust removial disks (black made for drills) and 3M light sanding disks (again for drills) on engine parts. They key is with heads on a block, and the block, to plug any holes with shop towels, cover the lifter valley. Then blow everything off with compressed air from a blow gun. Steps often overlooked.
    Any sanding/cutting/rust removing grit/material in a engine can cause damage. Including dust from emery cloth (also a type of sand paper).
    Around 11 years ago I did a stint working at a company that made sand paper products. We did D/A paper, Long Board Paper, Cartridge rolls, flapper wheels, even scotch-brite pads. All sand paper products start out in the same way. Large rolls from the manufactor that get cut in to strips. The stirps come out of a machine cut to lienght. Then someone uses a sheer or a stamper to cut them down. In the case of cartridge rolls a foot sheer. Then they are either glued on the back side, or come with a "glue-bond" already applied. then they get set around a arbor, the press winds them, heats, compresses them tight. From there they go in to a box. Even if the brand is different the paper used may be 3M.
Charles BTW: the company I worked for was bought out by Standard Abrasives a few years back.
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JD wrote:

It was real common to encounter the type of problem that you are describing if someone was not careful cleaning the old intake gasket material off. Those old gaskets would weld themselves to the head surfaces...especially around the exhaust crossover ports. A lot of guys would use the roloc discs and grind away at the gasket....which would be okay....if you take the proper care and cover the intake valley and the intake ports up. But if you don't, you get both roloc material and the ground up gasket material in the engine. This will destroy the engine usually within a week. I've seen it happen in our shop. In theory, we are not allowed to use the roloc discs when doing internal engine gasket cleaning. I think the key is knowledge...knowing when and where you can use them....and keeping internal parts and passages covered while cleaning gaskets off. This even applies if you are not using any kind of disc...you still have to be careful that gasket parts don't get into the engine.
Ian
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This might sound strange,but if your worried about metal shavings getting in after taking the intake off,spray shaving cream in there,and then use a shop vac to suck it out. I was taught that years ago,and it works great.
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