sonett - still chasing ticking sound from heads

Ever since I rebuilt the engine (pistons, rings, camshaft, heads, etc.) the engine has made a very loud ticking noise. The noise is most noticable at low RPM and seems to dissapear entirely at high RPM, though that may just be because at that point you hear exhaust not engine noises. At low RPMs the motor sounds like a tractor.

I previously traced the noise to the left cylinder head. I took off the valve cover and found that one of the rocker arms was hitting a valve spring. There was visible shiny wear marks on the rocker arm. I rotated the spring and the noise went away briefly.

Now months later took the valve cover off again expecting to find that same contact point. This time, there was no evidence of new contact between any rocker arms and the springs. Instead, I found that the oil guide plate had wear marks on it. These marks could only come from the springs hitting the plate. I bent the plate back slight in some areas to keep the plate further away from the springs. When I reinstalled the rocker arm assembly I made sure to keep the plate aligned as far away from the springs as possible.

I fired it up and the ticking noise was much reduced. Then I went from a 200 mile drive and by the time I got home the ticking noise was just as bad as ever. I haven't opened up the valve cover to see what is contacting this time, but this is getting pretty annoying.


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