Comparison with the 195.6 L-head's camshaft

The OHV and L-head camshafts are tantalizingly similar. given that the L-head engine's valve lift of 0.340" is achieved without the advantage of rocker ratio multiplication, I had hope that the L-head camshaft would be a candidate for regrinding for the OHV. Alas this is not the case.

here are the two camshafts compared.

 lift at lobelift at valvebase circlecomments
L-head camshaft (1958).340".340"1.045"narrow lobes, narrow center journals
OHV camshaft (1965).262".393"1.200"wide lobes, wide center journals

(base circle measurement is approximate).

Physically, the L-head stick is thinner, and both lobes and journals are much narrower. Oiling would be problematic, lifters would be stressed worse than they are already, and they probably wouldn't rotate right.

the L-head cam profile is a sharp pointy triangle; a quick check with a ruler seems to indicate that truncating that pyramid to even the stock OHV duration would result in less overall lift. if the L-head cam had the same shaft diameter/base circle diameter it might be a decent base for an OHV regrind. but the problem with OHV regrinds -- too little metal to work with -- is even worse with the L-head cam.

there is also the issue of the absolute height of the base circle relative to the camshaft centerline; an L-head cam in the OHV block woult have the lifters drop down further to meet the cam lobe. the adjusters may, or may not, have thre range to take up the slack.

however, an OHV cam in a flathead block would be interesting, if it weren't for the lack of lift. this time the lifter/follower might be too deep (up into the block) but grinding would probably solve that -- but without the lift, what's the point?

1956 L head1962 L head1962 OHV

Here's the remaining photos I took. I didn't bother with precision measurement since it's fairly obvious this isn't gonna work.

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