Tonight's project: Replace leaking head gasket.
I've got a few gaskets to choose from. I have two copper gaskets, one with a white filler between the copper, and one with a black filler. I seem to recall that the black filled gaskets are not as good? Anyone have any experience or background with those?
I think it is the other way around. The one with the white filler is made out a recycled product and is not very good. The one with what appears to be a black filler, as I recall, is made out of a modern crushable material that is used in head gaskets for modern engines. It is suppose to be very good stuff.
Now if you happen to have a Victor #1 available....
Personally I just use what ever is at hand including used. Knock on wood I have had good luck with used ones or what ever comes from Snyders or Langs.
Engine; Stock compression (about 50 LBS), 40-45 FTP on the bolts, checking the bolts a couple of times, relatively flat block/head and copper coat at least one side or both or just grease.
I used one from Lang's and it has worked fine.
I have examples of all of those, including a Victor #1. Looks like I'll use the #1.
The gasket I just got done removing is a steel one. Surprised dad used that. He didn't care for the steel ones. However, it did last 35 years and wasn't so bad looking once I had a look at it. Just weeping some from the corner "steam holes". No big blow out was eminent, but I only know that now. Really surprised I didn't break any bolts as a few were super tight from rust. However, I think they were tightest in the head holes and not the threads.
Thanks for the information all!
Mark, when you say copper coat or grease, what does that mean? Do you grease the gasket before installing?
If you use the very sticky copper spray, AND if you're a bit shaky or triple-sighted, cut the heads off a few old bolts and spin them into the block finger tight. Then slid the gasket into place and Bob's yer Uncle!
google "Copper coat" and yes I have used just plain grease. The grease is an old time thing used when putting gaskets on.
And in addition to grease or copper spray-a-gasket, I am a believer in soaking them in hot water. Boiling one in a roasting pan when I was a kid got my mother all pee -oed.
I've never heard about soaking them in boiling water. Supposedly, soaking a used copper clad gasket in water then freezing it will expand it so it can be crushed again. I have never tried that.
I have tried KW Copper Coat. During installation of a cylinder head I broke a head bolt. The Copper Coat glued that head on so good that I had to take a 6 ft pry bar, stuck inside the water outlet, to pry it off. I was afraid I was going to break the head. The gasket was ruined. That is the last time used Copper Coat. One might be able to get the head off after using Copper Coat and running it for a while to heat it up. For now, grease or silver paint is my preferred method.
The white filler in copper head gaskets is asbestos.
I've had the best luck using Krylon Dull Aluminum paint on head gaskets. It is available at Wal Mart P/N KO1403 for $7 including tax.
Been using this for many years, it is the way to go.
Really can't see using grease. Not much of a sealant.
The white filler in OLD head gaskets is asbestos. After asbestos became a no-no, a substitute filler was used and it is also white.
Here's the Copper Coat spray. I always use it!
Snyders carries it, as does most auto parts stores. I use two heavy coats and put the gasket on while the copper coat is still tacky.
Your headgsaket replacement post is something I`ve been thinking about---Toured 50 miles in my `24 touring this past weekend and found my radiator needed a full gallon of water to fill it up. Car running at high monometer but not boiling...Where is the water going? car running fine, no apparent leaks. I suspect a head gasket leak? What do you think ? thanks, Paul
Have you checked your oil lately? Has the level gone up or gotten milky?
Oil level stable---not milky so I don`t think water is getting in there....What caused you to replace the gasket? I`m thinking of a compression test, first...Had the same water loss problem during The T Jamboree---100 miles. Thanks, paul
I had some coolant weeping out of the gasket at the corners and some wetness down the back of the block. None of it was enough to noticeably lower my coolant level, but since the gasket was so old and I have the Covered Bridge Tour to do next week, I wanted to be sure.
Charlie -i don't consider the grease as a sealant. Use it to get the gasket to stick to the head while positioning the back bolts under the firewall.
Jim & Charlie - I'm a fan of copper coat but years ago, I was led to believe that grease instead (both sides of gasket) is also a good idea, but not necessarily as a sealant. I guess the theory is that the grease enables the gasket (to a very minute degree of course) to sort of "spread" and flatten out better as pressure is being applied as head bolts are torqued in proper order, all of which one would think would be "a good thing" in enabling the gasket to "seal" as effectively as possible.
Can't remember where I learned the above, however, I have used grease numerous times over the years since I was a kid with a Model A, and I can truthfully say that I have never had a head gasket failure of any kind on one that I personally installed. So, I sure can't say that grease is the way to go, but I can say that it always did work for me! FWIW,......harold
P.S. I should add that one reason I was persuaded to go with the copper coat is that I feel that spraying copper coat just before installing would also provide a coat that is still soft enough to "lubricate" to some degree and to provide for the gasket to move that tiny little bit wherever necessary to allow the gasket to flatten out, ......(???)
Bud Scudder installed a new head gasket on his rusty 1917 touring a week before the MTFCA national tour in Kerrville TX. He used grease on both sides of the gasket.
The first day of the tour he blew the head gasket. We installed a new one with KW Copper Coat. It was fine after that.
I have re-used many head gaskets,even on much higher compression engines. New or used,I always coat with some sort of metal paint IE: silver,copper, gold, also my favorite is cold galvanize, I have never had a good used gasket leak. Oh and I never have trouble getting it apart.