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Old 02-27-2002, 09:29 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I am in the middle of replacing a head gasket. When I start putting everything back, what can I use to hold the gaskets secure while I place the cylinder head, exhaust manifold, and intake manifold back into their positions. I am trying to do this by myself with the motor in the car and it seems like this could be a concern when I try to be as careful as possible returning these parts to original position.

ALSO;
* It looks like the previous rebuilder used some kind of black silicone to help seal around the intake. What do you recommend?

*What are good gaskets to use?

*What is the best tool to remove exhaust manifold bolts with engine in car. There is very limited space. (I don't know how you big block boys could possibly get these out with out lifting the engine!)
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Old 02-27-2002, 10:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I use blue silicone to attach the intake gaskets to the heads and to make seals for the ends of the intake. Don't use the cork gaskets that come with the gasket set. You might also try screwing three or four studs into the heads and using them to guide the intake into position. Then remove the studs and replace with the intake bolts.

Last time I changed head gaskets, I used copper coat gasket sealer on the block and placed the gaskets on that to hold them securely.

Red silicone works on exhaust manifold gaskets.

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Old 02-27-2002, 10:24 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I use:
[color:blue]blue RTV around the water passages.
I use black RTV around the cork on the front and rear of the intake.
The head gasket should sit fine on the rings on the corners of the block.
I use an Xacto #18 blade (like this ) to scrape things off the head. Be careful, as these blades are extremely sharp!
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Old 02-27-2002, 10:30 AM   #4 (permalink)
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What are good gaskets to use?

I've always used Fel-Pro's....the quality, in the past anyway, seemed to be superior to the lower priced alternatives...

What is the best tool to remove exhaust manifold bolts with engine in car.

This is where professional quality wrenches and sockets pay off....they are thinner and some have offset heads to get repetitive bites on these hard to remove fasteners....also, the professional u-joints seem to work much smoother too....
I'm talking about Mac and Snap-On....those are the only ones I have experience with...
I love my Craftsman tool set but there are just some times it feels awkward and clunky...

I use siliconce (a very thin film) primarily to hold the gaskets in place....I've never been a silicone glopper.......blue or black on most everything except exhaust...there you can use a bit of red on the gaskets or you can, if the surfaces are true and smooth, use beads of red around the ports (let them skin up a bit) and go gasketless....as tight as things are in your situation, I'd probably use the gasket though...

Remember, you can always loosen a motor mount and jack the engine up a bit if necessary...

Have fun!
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Old 02-27-2002, 10:51 AM   #5 (permalink)
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NAPA Auto Parts has some Gasket sealer called "Indian Head Gasket Sealer". This can be used around any gasket. I would deffinatly put this around any water jacket and around the intake. This stuff is very sticky and you can use it to hold your head gaskets on. If your local store does not have the stuff I can get you a part # and they can order it. Tell them it's part of their "Balkamp" line.
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Old 02-27-2002, 12:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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There should be about 1 inch hollow dowells in the block. They will hold the head gasket. There are pins in the heads that will hold the intake pan gasket in place. For the exhaust just get some gasket tack. Personally I have a 351c 4v and don't run a exhaust gasket. I just smear a little grease where it's to seal it solidifies and seals, and you have less of a chance of manifold cracking. Mine sealed and after 9 years they came right off.Just make sure that you lay the manifolds in where go. The driverside can be a real bear I mean droping the steering box. Believe it or not I installed and removed long tube headers without a problem, but had to drop the steering box for the driverside manifold.
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Old 02-27-2002, 12:15 PM   #7 (permalink)
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For the head gaskets, the two dowel pins should keep things in alignment. They are still available from Ford, base part number is "6A008".

For intake gasket, scrape old gasket material, wipe down with acetone. THIN bead of blue RTV on both head, intake. Allow to "skin" over, then assemble.

For exhaust gasket, again, make sure both mating surfaces are scraped and clean. THIN bead of red RTV, if you can get it in there. Install front/rear bolts first, two turns each. Let the gasket/manifold hang on these two bolts while you install the rest. Some gasket are slotted on the front/rear bolts to allow you to drop it in once those two bolts are threaded in.

Not too difficult. Take it slow, ask questions, and get a repair manual. Don't forget to adjust the valves when you're done.
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Old 02-27-2002, 01:15 PM   #8 (permalink)
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All above are excellent suggestions, I use a thin film of silicone only on the intake gasket coolant passages and a dab on the four corners of the intale end gaskets. I use black 3M Super Weatherstrip adhesive to retain the cork end gaskets on the block.

I used to pitch the intake end gaskets and use a bead of silicone, but I found that over time, engine oil will start to dissolve the silicone sealant, or the silicone stuck so good, I was afraid of damaging my intake when I removed it.
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Old 02-27-2002, 01:36 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I am extremely appreciative of all the suggestions. I have never done this before and knew I could count on people to help me. One question: When I go to the parts store, I need to know what RTV stand for.
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Old 02-27-2002, 01:44 PM   #10 (permalink)
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RTV="room temperature vulcanization." It's silicone sealant.
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