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One of the long-term projects I’ve been putting off is replacing the front crank seal. Like most old rope seals, the front crank seal on this Buick 455 was leaking oil, seeping out onto the timing cover and being blown all over the front of the engine. It wasn’t a large quantity with a puddle under the car, but it was enough to coat the block and emit a strong burnt oil smell that I just didn’t dig.
In this case, this being a non-A/C car made the job a bit simpler. Everything is pretty easy to get to, and you have to remove the timing cover to replace the seal. This is one of those jobs that can easily grow, so I had to telegraph any scope-creep and “might as well” syndrome to make sure this didn’t turn into a frame-off restoration because of an oil leak!