Corvair knocks but doesn’t start

So I have recently got a 1965 corvair and it knocks but it doesn’t start. I did the tube seal repair so it could stop leaking oil but I took all of the push tubes off instead of one cylinder at a time I put it back together and didn’t know how to tighten the rocker arms I just tightened them till they didn’t have any play and tried starting my corvair I haven’t checked if the belt fell off I just read that it could be that but also when I bought it it was leaking oil but I didn’t know because the guy parked on the grass And I drove it home for 3-4 hours I saw smoke come out at each gas stop but asked the guy if that was normal since it’s an air cooled engine and he said yes and came home and there was oil leaking and I tried starting it up and drove it for a bit with low oil (because he said he just didn’t oil change and didn’t think to much of it since I didn’t know it leaked) And at one point I tried starting it up but it still ran fine after I put some oil until I did the tube seal on it. Can someone help me diagnose what’s wrong with my car with the info I just gave. If I take it to a mechanic how much would it cost for the repair?

When adjusting valves, the camshaft must be in a certain position so the the lifter of the valve being adjusted is on the base circle of the cam. The lifters should be preloaded past the point of zero lash. One turn of the rocker nut is what the manual calls for. The procedure is in the shop manual.

If you don’t have a copy of the shop manual, you can download a copy from this Corvair site’s tech page.

If interested, you can also download a pdf of the original Corvair specs from GM here (direct link to PDF file).

Oil burning can be caused by bad valve seals or bad rings, or just general engine wear.

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Good luck on finding a repair place that even works on these vehicles . As for cost , who knows .
Sorry but it sounds like you are in way over your head .

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Thanks for the tips I just spoke to the previous owner for help fortunately he answered and he said about the same thing

I know a place already idk why your being rude I was literally asking for a price it’s not like I said if I can get it for free

Not being rude. Just stating a fact. No one can give you a price that means anything over the web for something like this .


. If I take it to a mechanic how much would it cost for the repair?

No one here can give you the cost as we don’t know where you are at price’s vary from different part’s of the country.


Don’r ever drive a car you know is low on oil and if the oil pressure light comes on , shut off the engine.


A quick search found a place in Illinois, they remove, rebuild, reinstall and drive it 25 miles to ensure everything is working. They store your car while engine is rebuilt. Starting cost is $5000.
You did not say if you checked and filled the oil on your trip. You are both leaking and burning oil. You said you ran it with low oil. The knocking may be internal damage.

In order to adjust the valves, the engine must be running and up to operating temperature.

Then a set of rocker stoppers is installed to prevent oil from splashing everywhere while the engine idles.


As the engine idles, loosen the rocker arm nut until the rocker arm starts to clatter.

Tighten the rocker arm nut slowly until the rocker arm stops clattering. This is zero lash position.

Turn the nut down 1/4 turn and wait ten seconds.

Then turn another 1/4 turn . Wait ten seconds

Repeat 1/4 turns until one complete turn has been made from zero lash.


Some may prefer hot adjusting, but the factory shop manual only gives the cold (non-running) procedure.


I recall adjusting vw lifters. Corvair had hyd lifters?

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How did you get air to the radiator?