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Thread: 87 Ram 50 4x4 "junkyard" rescue,

  1. #326

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    ^never knew something like that even existed! Sounds old school... 60ft is a lot of cloth tape, but for $20 you don't have to worry about wasting it.
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  2. #327

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    Quote Originally Posted by WarStryker13
    I'm not looking to take that much off of the journals, I'm just trying to get them to a polished finish.

    I will measure the clearance just to be sure, but if it's 6 thousandths or less I'm calling it good enough.
    Plastigauge?? or Telescoping Gauge & Micrometer ??

  3. #328

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    Plastigauge, because a bore gauge and micrometer are much more expensive. I'll measure in multiple places on the journals, but it'll have to do.

  4. #329

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    Small update:

    I've gotten the block almost completely cleaned, just a few more small spots to take care of before it's ready for paint. Side note: it took two different razor scrapers and 6 razor blades just to get the old paper oil pan gasket off. Timing cover gasket was only slightly easier to remove.

    I'm going to be spraying it Chrysler Hemi Orange, because hemi, and because there was no way I was going to go with black after the amount of effort I've put into it so far.

    I'm leaving the timing cover and rear cover as bare aluminum, along with the head and valve cover. I will be fogging the oil pan orange once it's cleaned up as well.



    I did have a question about the rocker assembly: do the shafts press out of the caps, or am I missing something? I don't want to destroy something by accident, but those rocker shafts need to come apart so I can get them as clean as possible.

    I understand that I most likely won't get every single last particle of bearing material out of the engine, but I'm trying to get enough out that the oil filter will catch whatever's left, and the moly lube will grab what the oil filter doesn't.

    And no, I haven't started polishing the crankshaft yet. I had an extremely busy two weeks at work before going on holiday leave and I did not actually get the crocus cloth ordered. At this point I don't know if I even will order it, because I found a few sheets of 2,000 grit sandpaper in a drawer that I forgot about, and I might just use that for the final polish.



    I haven't made as much progress as I would have liked to have made by this point, but progress has been made.

  5. #330

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    It's been a while, but I seem to remember that there was a retaining ring on the end of the rocker shaft. Once you removed it, everything slid right off. Next time your fighting a paper gasket, get out a propane torch. I've found burning the gasket does a great job of getting it to let go. Also, the "surface conditioning discs" on a die grinder work great. They are basically a very coarse scotch brite pad. Just be extra careful on aluminum that you don't dig into the mating surface. They are about all I use now for cleaning gasket surfaces. Blocks, heads, water pumps, etc. Road salt and oil/grease will make your timing cover look nasty in short order. Consider a silver brake caliper paint. Will look close to aluminum, and not get as crusty.
    Progress is progress, keep it up!

  6. #331

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    Thanks for the reply about the rocker shafts.

    I wish I had thought about the scotch brite wheel before, probably would have saved me so much time.

    I've still got to soak the pistons, main caps, rocker shafts, front and rear covers, the head, and assorted hardware in some degreaser/cleaner, clean the oil pan and prep it for paint, and all the front accessories still to clean...

    All that, and I still don't have all the parts and gaskets to reassemble the engine.

    I really wish this engine had held together until after the holidays. Lol

  7. #332

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    Quick update:

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    Block is painted Chrysler Hemi Orange.

    Almost ready to assemble the short block, still have quite a bit left to clean before I can get the entire engine back together.

    Progress is painfully slow, but it is still progress.

  8. #333

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    The hemi orange is out of control! There is nothing like a freshly painted block to raise an engine bay a level or 2. Nice
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  9. #334

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    Made some decent progress...

    I de-glazed the cylinder walls with a homemade tool, basically a stack of ScotchBrite pads, a few washers, and some all-thread.

    I measured all of the clearances, they're all either within spec or close enough. I would list all of the individual measurements, but I don't remember them exactly. I did at least write down the min/max of the measurements that I took, which are as follows:

    Main bearing oil clearances are all between 0.001" and 0.002", rod bearing oil clearances are all between 0.0015" and 0.0025". Service limit is 0.004" oil clearance for the main and rod bearings.

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    Piston ring end gaps are between 0.016" and 0.019" for the top compression rings, 0.012" and 0.016" for the second rings, and 0.014" and 0.016" for the oil rings.
    Service limit is 0.031" end gap for the top and second ring, 0.039" for the oil ring.

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    I slammed the pistons back in last night for the final assembly, after letting them soak in some SAE 40 oil for a few hours, and I officially have a (mostly) assembled short block.

    I did have some questions now that I'm at this point:

    1. Is there a specific number of ft-lbs for the amount of torque it should take to rotate the crank? Right now I have the crank bolt and washer threaded into the end of the crankshaft, and using that I'm measuring it at approximately 65 ft-lbs. Once it starts rotating, it becomes easier to keep it rotating with a ratchet on the end of the crank bolt.

    2. I know that there are certain engines which are very difficult to rotate when freshly built/rebuilt, and once the bearings are "broken in" the engine rotates much easier. Is the G54B similar?

    3. I'm planning on using break-in oil for the first start-up and first 500(ish) miles. Is there any recommendation on what brand of break-in oil would be best?

    4. Is there any recommendation on what weight of oil to run in this engine AFTER the break-in period, considering the oil clearances are only slightly more than standard specifications, but well below the service limits?



    The new gaskets and seals should be here by the end of today, but I might not get anything else done until after the weekend.

    I did get a good look at the old oil pump... It's completely worn out. There's deep grooves cut into the housing by one of the gears, and both gear shafts have a lot of play in their bores, even with the pump assembled. The balance shaft chain rubber guides are completely mangled, the timing chain rubber guides are cracked and missing chunks, and the timing chain tensioner spring was completely stuck inside the oil pump housing. The timing gears themselves don't show signs of excessive wear, but the teeth on the crankshaft gear for the balance shaft chain look like shark fins and both of the smaller gears have quite a bit of damage to the teeth, likely from the chain failure.

    It's gonna be a while before I can afford a new timing set, new oil pump, the balance shaft elimination kit and the new gears and chain guide for it, new head bolts, and all the fluids and miscellaneous things that are keeping me from getting this engine back in the truck.

    Thanks for taking the time to read my brain-dump, and thanks in advance for any and all feedback.

  10. #335

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    Oh, and there is about half of a 16oz tube of moly lube in the short block right now, because you can never have too much lubrication.

  11. #336

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    I've had nothing to do but think about it while at work these past few days, and I'm not happy with the cylinder walls.

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    I just want to get rid of the wear marks and get a proper crosshatch pattern.

    The ScotchBrite barely touched the buildup at the top of the cylinder... I'm gonna need an actual cylinder hone.

  12. #337

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    How many passes did you make? I used the same technique with a little fresh engine oil just to prevent it from ripping into the cylinder walls and, although my bores weren't vertically scored like yours are, I managed to completely de-glaze the surface (might need to use a coarser finished pad... I tried with the spring loaded stone tool and I was scared that it was too aggressive so I gave this method a shot) If you are going to hone it you may be going beyond the tolerancing for 'stock' pistons and rings. I think the rule is that if your thumb nail can catch on the score marks, it's time to rebore the cylinders.
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  13. #338

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    I went at the cylinders for a solid 30 seconds each, but I'm gonna say it's because the "tool" I made just doesn't have enough material to put enough pressure against the cylinder walls. I could probably buy more ScotchBrite pads and make it thick enough to do the job, but it would end up costing more than just getting one of those spring loaded cylinder hones.

    According to the factory specs, the piston-to-bore clearance in a brand new G54B should be 0.0009", and the limit is 0.0008" to 0.0016". Right now I've got a piston-to-bore clearance of 0.0008" to 0.001".

    So as long as I'm particularly careful with the hone, I should be able to get a good crosshatch pattern and get rid of all of the score marks without going too far past the clearance limit. Considering the nature of this rebuild, I would still feel comfortable if I ended up at 0.002" piston-to-bore clearance. It might not be optimal, but it will run and right now that's all I'm going for.

  14. #339

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    It's looking good. I'm sure it'll run just fine!

  15. #340

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    Finally ordered the new timing set, balance shaft delete kit, new guides, new sprockets, new oil pump, new head bolts, and a new oil pickup tube.

    I got a new oil pickup tube because I didn't want to try un-crimping and re-crimping the old oil pickup screen, and the new one was $16.

    I still have to buy a clutch alignment tool, some gasket sealer goop, the oil and coolant, some fresh gas to put in the tank...

    And one of those universal triple gauge sets. I'm not gonna try starting this engine without knowing exactly how much oil pressure it has... Plus I'd like to know actual numbers for temperature and volts.

    The total for this rebuild is currently right around $250, not including tools or cleaning supplies.

  16. #341

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    Everything except the oil pump has shown up...that won't be here until the 22nd. I'm actually pleasantly surprised by the timing set. It's from ITM Engine Components, and everything looks to be of decent quality. I found it on Amazon for $44, P/N 053-93800, and it has everything. It's a regular timing set, with a balance shaft delete kit and all of the sprockets and guides included.

    I went ahead and bought that spring-loaded cylinder hone, on my next day off I'm going to tear the engine apart (again) and get the cylinders honed (properly).

    I picked up some high-tack gasket sealer for the cork gaskets, Indian Head shellac for the paper gaskets, PTFE thread sealant for the block plugs, valve lapping compound, more RTV, a couple extra fuel filters, and the clutch alignment tool.

    I had to get a 1/8" NPT female to 1/8" BSPT male adapter fitting in order to run the new oil pressure gauge, and it was hell to track one down.

    I also picked up a jug of Super Clean and way too many cans of brake clean from Walmart, because cheap, and I'm going to try and finish cleaning everything that's left before the oil pump shows up.

    I'm gonna soak the head overnight to try and break up all of the carbon deposits that I can't reach, finish cleaning the oil pan so it can be painted, clean up all of the valvetrain and hardware, and clean up the front accessories and brackets.

    The only things I still need to purchase is the engine oil and filter, a fresh set of spark plugs, and some fresh coolant. I'm still considering grabbing a bottle of engine break-in oil additive, or one of those fancy engine treatments with friction modifiers and micro-lubricants that soak into metal surfaces.


    I'm excited. I can see the finish line, and it feels absolutely fantastic.

  17. #342

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    yeah, i have an 82 motor going in 87, i am getting my restricted license in 2 weeks (finally got all as and bs [all shit and bull shit] for that lower insurance) i cant wait to be driving. mom says i drive like hell on wheels, which means i drive good. i took a 05 yukon through gorgia mountains at 80 mph last summer and dad said i done real good. cant wain to go on my first camping trip, i have a camper top and a 6' cot which fits perfectly in the bed. i like that red color, trimming my silver 87 in red. Click image for larger version. 

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    here:

  18. #343

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    Shame that 82 has so much rust, those are pretty rare...

    If you're willing to listen to it, I've got a little bit of advice for you: Take some driving classes.

    You'll learn a hell of a lot more about how to drive than you thought was possible. I got the chance to take a few driving classes at a legitimate racetrack, and it completely changed the way I think and how I drive on a regular basis.

    It will keep that "hell on wheels" away from public roads where one tiny mistake could put yourself and others in danger, and you'll learn how to use it like a weapon... There's a reason why professional drivers get paid well.

    As for your 87, I would suggest keeping the red subtle. If you have to follow the stereotypical teenager thing and make everything look gaudy with bright colors in weird places, at least use vinyl wrap or plasti-dip. It's much easier to remove than paint, and you don't run the risk of permanent stains or damage.



    Now, more updates.

    The cylinder head, camshaft, valves, springs, retainers, keepers, spring seats, rocker shafts, rocker shaft caps, and a few other bits are soaking in Super Clean... I think 48 hours should do the trick.

    I got the inside of the oil pan almost completely clean, there's still a bit of sludge/buildup inside the baffle but I'm reasonably confident that all of the bearing material is out of it. I'm going to do this the easy way and just fill the oil pan with full strength Super Clean and let it soak.

    I absolutely love this Super Clean stuff. I wish I had started using it sooner...

  19. #344

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    Quote Originally Posted by WarStryker13 View Post
    Shame that 82 has so much rust, those are pretty rare...

    If you're willing to listen to it, I've got a little bit of advice for you: Take some driving classes.

    You'll learn a hell of a lot more about how to drive than you thought was possible. I got the chance to take a few driving classes at a legitimate racetrack, and it completely changed the way I think and how I drive on a regular basis.

    It will keep that "hell on wheels" away from public roads where one tiny mistake could put yourself and others in danger, and you'll learn how to use it like a weapon... There's a reason why professional drivers get paid well.

    As for your 87, I would suggest keeping the red subtle. If you have to follow the stereotypical teenager thing and make everything look gaudy with bright colors in weird places, at least use vinyl wrap or plasti-dip. It's much easier to remove than paint, and you don't run the risk of permanent stains or damage
    I highly agree with this! Back in high school I had worked a summer job 2-3 years saving up for my dream car, a starquest, I finally saved up to buy one and traveled out of state to acquire this dream car of mine. It took me many months and disappointing times of calling on ads only to have the car sell within hours of its posting. well I went to the bank to get the money to go buy the car out of state hoping that the 1 or 2 other people looking to buy it before me would flake out. When I was in the bank getting the money the lady at the counter asked me what kind of car I had saved up for. when I told her she said she used to have one and absolutely loved it...until her boyfriend went and raced it and blew up the engine. after that my family went up to Portland Oregon to buy this car and we lucked out in that the other parties didn't buy it so I did! the guy I bought it from, the original owner warned me that it was a tail happy car. later that night we stopped at a motel with the car on the trailer in front of the lobby. the guy at the desk came out and said it was the same car he was looking at to buy but didn't for some reason I cant remember but he said his dad owned one when he was a kid but said his sisters boyfriend stole it and wrapped it around a pole! I should have gotten the message by now!

    fast forward a while and after I had replaced the bad clutch that the car needed when I bought it and had some miles under my belt both driving normally and crazy, a close friend of mine went driving one night and I decided for some reason that I should show off. I was approaching a corner that seemed much wider than I had thought and decided to punch it in 3rd and send the car sideways around the turn and before I knew it I had screwed up big time! the car went too far and I had the wheels locked in the opposite direction when the back end decided to grab and send the car right into an rock embankment.
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    All that hard work was gone in a second. I was in a pretty hard spot in my life and it nearly put me over the edge. I regrouped and lucked out and found an identical parts car and went to work. over 200 hours later I found myself with a car that was never quite the same. I hope to eventually fix it the right way but thats besides the point. had things gone differently me or my friend could have been seriously hurt or even killed. sure I only hit the wall at about 30-35mph but the car almost rolled and had it hit differently the force could have been more head on and really hurt us more. I had neck issues for the next few years after that but had things happened differently it could have been worse. I learned that as fun as driving is you never really understand how wrong things can go when they do.

    as to the modding of your truck its yours and you can do as you please of course, but try to avoid anything permanent because your tastes will change. When I got my truck at age 14 I did all kinds of mods that I came to regret later and took a lot of work to change later. I painted my dash black and it was a nightmare to fix which eventually required replacing with a donor, I cut holes in the door panels for some cheapo walmart speakers that I then realized kept the windows from opening all the way. I learned more about speakers and found some quality ones that fit in the stock location that sounded way better. Im sure there are a million things I have done only to regret later but luckily none involved any cutting metal on the body or anything too permanent. my advice is if you modify anything keep the original part and if you have to cut up a part try to use a donor part to use if possible and when it comes to aftermarket radios use an adapter harness, its a million times nicer that cutting up the stock wiring and you'l thank me when you go to replace it in the future hope all this saves you (or anyone else reading this) some future grief

  20. #345

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    Quote Originally Posted by WarStryker13 View Post
    Shame that 82 has so much rust, those are pretty rare...

    If you're willing to listen to it, I've got a little bit of advice for you: Take some driving classes.

    You'll learn a hell of a lot more about how to drive than you thought was possible. I got the chance to take a few driving classes at a legitimate racetrack, and it completely changed the way I think and how I drive on a regular basis.

    It will keep that "hell on wheels" away from public roads where one tiny mistake could put yourself and others in danger, and you'll learn how to use it like a weapon... There's a reason why professional drivers get paid well.

    As for your 87, I would suggest keeping the red subtle. If you have to follow the stereotypical teenager thing and make everything look gaudy with bright colors in weird places, at least use vinyl wrap or plasti-dip. It's much easier to remove than paint, and you don't run the risk of permanent stains or damage.



    Now, more updates.

    The cylinder head, camshaft, valves, springs, retainers, keepers, spring seats, rocker shafts, rocker shaft caps, and a few other bits are soaking in Super Clean... I think 48 hours should do the trick.

    I got the inside of the oil pan almost completely clean, there's still a bit of sludge/buildup inside the baffle but I'm reasonably confident that all of the bearing material is out of it. I'm going to do this the easy way and just fill the oil pan with full strength Super Clean and let it soak.

    I absolutely love this Super Clean stuff. I wish I had started using it sooner...
    I have done this, mom said I drove like hell on wheels when I started (which is her way of saying I drove good) and dad said I do good too. I took a 05 yukon through the Georgia mountains at 60 -80 mph last summer and it was honestly really fun. And dad said that was some of my best driving. I have studied my book up and down and have learned from a man who can drive a semi truck for 28 hours straight only stopping to pee and eat. That's a round trip from SC to MI and back. I started on a dirtbike when I was 4, been using clutch since 8 years old or so. I am 15. My first truck I ever drove was a 1980's model Touota Pickup that dad sold to some Cubans who imported it back to Cuba. I miss that truck. But yes, I know how to drive, I am not saying i know everything, but i fair better than most, you could say.

  21. #346

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    As in hell on wheels being a big exaggeration lol

  22. #347

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    I had forgot about my earlier post, sorry if it's literally a repeat. Cant edit.

  23. #348

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    I wasn't saying you were inexperienced or didn't know how to drive, but you sound like I did when I was 15 and I don't want you to learn the hard way... like I did.

    I've been driving since I was 10, and I started racing dirt track and jr. drags at 13. I won close to 75% of the races I entered, and there's a closet full of trophies at my parents house that told me I knew what I was doing. I truly believed I knew how to drive by the time I was 15, but life will almost always kick you in the nuts and make sure you understand that you should never be comfortable in your own abilities, or your knowledge of something.

    When you get comfortable, you get complacent. When you get complacent, you let yourself make little mistakes because you trust your own ability to deal with the situation. Those little mistakes always add up, and they will always come back to bite you when you don't expect it.

    I got that lesson at 19 years old, when I rolled my first car that I bought on my own 2 1/2 times. I was going the speed limit, I had good tires, good brakes, good suspension and steering, and none of that mattered when a fox darted out in front of the car while I was going around a corner. I saw it in time to hit the brakes and slow down enough for the damn thing to make it across the road, but that didn't happen. The fox decided to turn around right before I hit it. It managed to bend the driver's side tie rod in and I couldn't countersteer when the tail end of the car started swinging around. I went off the road and the back driver's side tire caught the outside of the ditch, and all of this happened in a fraction of a second. I tore my left rotator cuff, and my passenger ended up with a couple of fractured vertebra in his neck.

    It wasn't until I took those racing classes that I figured out why I had that accident. I realized that even the best driver in the world can make no mistakes and still wreck, because there is no way to control what happens outside of the vehicle, or someone else's actions.

    That's why I suggested taking driving lessons, because they can teach you how to react to something you've never encountered before AND have you physically experience it in a controlled, safe environment. It doesn't matter how long you've been driving or how much you know, because as soon as an accident happens your brain gets flooded with adrenaline and you can't think about what you should do, you just react by muscle memory.

    Those driving courses will help you teach your body how to react before your brain can react by forcing you to make split second decisions and avoid moving obstacles while going 60+ mph in heavy rain, or by having you hydroplane at 100+ mph twenty times in a row, or by having you roll a cage car until you throw up. The most important part of these classes is when they teach you the little details and techniques that have taken every professional racer decades of failure to figure out.

    My point is, you don't ever want to think that you have enough knowledge or experience. That is how you end up learning this particular life lesson the hard way, and the hard way could cost you your life...or someone else's life. That's a risk I sincerely hope you are not willing to take.

  24. #349

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    Location

    Newburgh, NY
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    1987 Dodge Power Ram 50
    Engine

    G54B
    Now I want to take some classes

  25. #350

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    01-08-2019
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    Location

    Frederick, MD
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    1987 Dodge Power Ram 50
    Engine

    G54B
    I highly recommend it, even if you're never going to be on a race track.

    On another note, I pulled the hoses off of the coolant pipe to clean it up and now I'm sad.

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    The ends are paper thin and already collapsing just from handling, and there's plenty of evidence that someone tried using stop-leak in the cooling system at some point.

    I've already flushed out the heater core with distilled water, I'll work on flushing out the radiator at some point before it goes back in the truck.

    Now I get to look for a used coolant pipe in decent shape; see if I can fab one up myself or find a shop to do it for a reasonable price; or dredge through the oem-auto-source-warehouse-direct-parts sites to find it at a reasonable shipping rate. I might call some of the local dealerships, see if they've got one sitting on the back shelf that hasn't been touched in 25 years... eBay is my last choice because the shipping is usually more than it realistically should be for me.

    Just gotta keep telling myself that I'm getting close, I'm in the home stretch....

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