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Thread: Replacing piston rings with out removing top end!

  1. #1 Replacing piston rings with out removing top end! 
    Car Enthusiast CF Member
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    This is my new crazy idea. I DO NOT want to take my top end apart again. It was absolutely horrible and I BARELY got it back together last time.

    I have a crazy idea though. I would appreciate it if there was not any criticism because I HAVE NOT taken the bottom end of an engine apart. And not sure if my idea will work.

    So, on my truck...1991 Toyota pickup 22re 5spd...the #3 cylinder is bad. It has 30 psi.

    Can I remove the piston from the bottom of the engine, hone it, and replace it?

    Thanks for all the help! I can not honestly see why this would not work. Please tell me if it would...it would be awesome
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  2. #2  
    CF BMW consultant CF Senior Member
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    never thought about it. I cant see why not...


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  3. #3  
    pro-liberty CF Senior Member LS1FC3's Avatar
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    My first concern would be cylinder taper and that make removal very difficult and installation near impossible. The lack of a good chamfer on the bottom of the cylinder alone will make this difficult to reassemble. This may or may not affect the cylinder.

    Secondly, honing the cylinder will send a lot of tiny metallic particles into the air that will be very hard to keep from getting in the crankcase and lubrication system. You could isolate the area with some plastic wrap and tape but having the crankshaft and rods in there will make it more difficult and more risky.

    I guess if it doesn't work out you can just disassemble and rebuild or buy another engine. It doesn't sound like a very good idea but there is a slight chance for success, I suppose.
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  4. #4  
    Cars R A Habit nota Hobby CF Senior Member
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    Impossible. Piston must be removed out of the top of the block. The head or heads and intake must come off. Its also a good idea to check the hone on the bores and rehone if it needs it.
    Drive fast, take chances.
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  5. #5  
    ------ CF Senior Member
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    First of all, are you SURE it's the rings?

    Have you done a wet compression test?

    I've seen many "just rebuilt" heads with crooked valve guides, bent valves, etc........


    Secondly....While you MIGHT be able to get it apart from underneath, but I doubt if you will be able to get it back together from underneath since there is no flat, square surface for the ring compressor to sit on while you install the piston from underneath. Good chance of breaking a ring or two.
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  6. #6  
    Car Fanatic CF Senior Member
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    It is EASY to take apart without removing the head,but impossible to reinstall the pistons w/ rings...There is NO way to get the pistons back in the bores from below because you HAVE to use a tool to compress the piston rings,and this is ONLY possible with the head off.Simple as that...hint hint..i have built a couple of engines and a few thousand transmissions.
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