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about to attempt my very first head gasket! 

 

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 Post subject: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Fri Nov 23, 2012 7:52 pm 
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hi there ...long time knowledge vulture.. first time poster...i live in nw WA so cars do it tough in the heat here and when i arrived home after work (tradie) heard a hissing and radiator had split down right hand as u face the car side with a nice fountain of lumo green coolant doing its best to cool whole engine bay... now a friend that had tailed me recently mentioned seeing noticible moisture from exhaust and thermo fans had also stopped kicking in ( im lucky like that) but at this point i assumed just radiator prob... however after being reminded of moisture considered might be head gasket related with that ominus sinking feeling... after researching "radiator bursting" i wasnt suprised to find out that yes a faulty head gasket looked to be the underlying culprit...

ok.. so since im doing the rad anyway im replacing the whole cooling system ...ali rad , water pump,hoses , thermostat, i direct from battery with wire ran the thermo fans up and they are working- yet not kickn when all together b4 rad blew.( **also replacing pwr steering linesfrom pwr steering pump and as yet cant find any? will any oil resistant line matching diameter do?**)

will be having head planed and pressure tested if not warped -( i havent knowingly had it overheated) I have heard the opinion that an AU head gasket (multi layer?) is a good idea to install (with AU bolts and settings) as apposed to the XH ...what is the general consensus on this and if yes does anyone know part number or exact name etc as either i was the fool when trying to explain on the phone to parts person or they were...however thats not important ( prob me ) finding the right one is so please help if poss.

now for those true gurus that may happen across this wayyy drawn out post is there anything obvious im missing here,or havent thought of that may make my car into an explosive device soon after jumping happily in after attempting all this and turning the key...

had the xh since 10,000 km i refuse too let go LOL
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:15 pm 
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Go to your Repco store, the only reason I say Repco is because you don't have Bursons in WA, 2/5 Warambie Road, Karratha WA 6714, Phone: (08) 9144 4494.

Try also Autopro, Karratha Shop 54 Centro Shopping Centre Welcome Road, Karratha, W.A, 6714, 08 9144 2244.

Ask for a AU MLS head gasket as well as head bolts, they should also be able to order you a high pressure power steering hose.

If not try EBay for all the stuff you need, there are a number of Power steering hoses on there as well as head gaskets and head bolts.
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Fri Nov 23, 2012 9:56 pm 
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Genuine Ford AU MLS head gasket:
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/GENUINE-FORD ... 43ae278eda

Nason head bolts:
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/FORD-3-9-4-0 ... 2a263c8f30

Ford genuine head bolts (these should fit, same seller also has EA-ED, XH, XG but I'm sure they exactly the same since those head bolts have long been discontinued):
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/GENUINE-FORD ... 43b426755f


Also have a read of this to see what you might be missing.
fordmods-technical-documents-diy-f38/head-gasket-doco-t99962.html

Regarding the power steering hoses. You only really need to replace the high pressure hose which can be bought from some Ford dealers or look up your local power steering specialist. There are also plenty on Ebay if you have a search, not sure which one you need sorry.

Good luck with it :)

 

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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Fri Nov 23, 2012 11:15 pm 
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Ford charged me $60 something for the last MLS gasket I bought from them, less than 10mths ago. Ford should be cheaper for the HG than a parts store. I think Repco wanted $200 for an ACL gasket that was "probably steel, dont know".

Bolts - doesnt matter, probably all the same now. Pretty much all the bolts are advertised ea-au.

Shave the head 20thou while its off....

 

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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Fri Nov 23, 2012 11:48 pm 
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cheers sideways...
have tried coventrys but was told "no longer on the market" for the hoses mentioned but will run it past repco for after markets and big thanks for the au mls info- the guy told me there was only au vrc? or something available..will push on with it
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 1:10 am 
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After much research I decided with a graphite gasket instead as many professionals believe they're better than the the MLS. I found this all out after the guy who did my head (28yrs in the business) recommended graphite over MLS. Apparently the 2 different metals expanding at different rates is basically pseudoscience (this doesn't cause hg failure). A headshop can tell exactly where and how the gasket failed and in 28yrs he's found no evidence of this. They apparently fail 99% of the time due to a poorly maintained cooling system and he knows cars on the original gasket with 500 000k's on them (factory gaskets are prone to blowing between 5&6).

I was in two minds about which one, the idea of added compression with the MLS is nice but the downside is the surfaces have to be 100% spotless or it will leak/fail early and apparently still isn't as good as the graphite according to what I've read/heard. I guess they're just less sensitive than the MLS or something?
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 1:30 am 
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thanx phongus and krisisdog out of curiosity phongus does the 20 thou compensate for a differential in thickness of the gasket or is that just a standard when shaving the head?
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 3:16 am 
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too true illavitar....really any of the two gaskets may last longer than the other for countless reasons in the end but being reminded about the cooling system rings true considering the multiple symptoms in the lead up glitching or failing in and around that area.

well im replacing a decent chunk of the cooling system down the line and heres where it starts to get tricky with the thermo fan... again -after researching a bit i came to a general consensus with the four voices in my head LOL and will be testing back from rad to try and track usual suspects, however i will be hoping it doesnt trace as far as ecm as thats where i once upon a time u tubed my way through the entirety of the whole ignition system end to end ultimately installing a smartlock bypass mod...something i dont wanna re-live

oh well sunday it should with a bit of luck be a lil bit clearer lol

thanks again for the advice
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 7:33 am 
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AU MLS are already thinner than std gaskets. I said to shave a bit off so you gain a bit of compression.

You can use whatever gasket you want, but there's a reason Ford use MLS as well as pretty much any boosted car you see.

 

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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Sat Nov 24, 2012 11:27 am 
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ILLaViTaR wrote:
After much research I decided with a graphite gasket instead as many professionals believe they're better than the the MLS. I found this all out after the guy who did my head (28yrs in the business) recommended graphite over MLS. Apparently the 2 different metals expanding at different rates is basically pseudoscience (this doesn't cause hg failure). A headshop can tell exactly where and how the gasket failed and in 28yrs he's found no evidence of this. They apparently fail 99% of the time due to a poorly maintained cooling system and he knows cars on the original gasket with 500 000k's on them (factory gaskets are prone to blowing between 5&6).

I was in two minds about which one, the idea of added compression with the MLS is nice but the downside is the surfaces have to be 100% spotless or it will leak/fail early and apparently still isn't as good as the graphite according to what I've read/heard. I guess they're just less sensitive than the MLS or something?


Not attacking you here, but just an FYI. Different metals have different properties. One of them being thermal expansion rate. I'm not sure what the difference between alloy and steel is, but there is a difference.

A poorly maintained cooling system causes a differential in heat between head and block. Since alloy and steel have different properties, they will expand at different rates at different temperatures, therefore if you have poor cooling and an overheating engine, one of the metals expands faster. Assuming steel expands faster, this can mean that the block expands faster than the head when engine overheats, the block then compresses the gasket more than normal into the head, once more compressed some heat is transferred to the alloy block increasing the temp of the head causing it to either warp or compressing the gasket a little more. Then you cool the engine down, the block returns to its normal state as does the head (unless warped), but the compressed gasket, being sealed well to the head and block, can split causing minor fractures and that's where the issue begins. This is more prone to happen on composite gaskets over steel gaskets because steel can withstand compression/stress more than a composite material under high temperatures (in terms of head gasket materials here). Please note, this is just an example and my understanding, so someone correct me if I am wrong.

Regarding spotless 100% smooth surfaces...that is recommended regardless of what head gasket type you use, a workshop should know this. When I did my head gasket, the surface of the head was spotless, the block on the other hand was questionable, 160000km and still running. This is with overheating the engine once when I dumped coolant down the 1/4 mile half way through.

There is a reason why Ford went with MLS gaskets over composite...look at the reliability between AU and E-series engines. Yes this may be in part due better cooling, but from what I read, it was the head gasket that helped distribute coolant flow better by having smaller water jacket holes...someone correct me on that.

Hope that's a bit of help.

 

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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Sun Nov 25, 2012 1:19 am 
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The block will need to be as clean as this, and not too smooth in surface finish.

 

 

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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:12 pm 
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cjh wrote:
The block will need to be as clean as this, and not too smooth in surface finish.


wow I didn't manage to get mine near that clean. sure I got the gasket off and all but it looked a lot less shiny than that! I also forgot to clean all the crap out of the head bolt holes which is something I'm feeling uneasy about (would be a good idea to cover them before any block cleaning).
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 12:56 pm 
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ILLaViTaR wrote:
cjh wrote:
The block will need to be as clean as this, and not too smooth in surface finish.


wow I didn't manage to get mine near that clean. sure I got the gasket off and all but it looked a lot less shiny than that! I also forgot to clean all the crap out of the head bolt holes which is something I'm feeling uneasy about (would be a good idea to cover them before any block cleaning).


I put heavy paper towel down the oil return holes, and at the front timing cover.
I blew out all the bolts holes, with carby spray, and compressed air, to remove debris and oil residue.

 

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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 4:19 pm 
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Go AU MLS gasket bud.

there's a good reason why Ford changed to this in the AU.

Not only that your current graphite gasket is proof of what will surely happen again in the future.
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 Post subject: Re: about to attempt my very first head gasket!
Posted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 5:23 pm 
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http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/thermal-expansion-metals-d_859.html

High and Low Thermal Expansion Steels
There are cases in engine construction where steel has to work in conjunction with light alloys, such as cylinder-head bolts, valve seating, or cylinder liners in aero engines. The comparatively high thermal expansivity of aluminium leads to looseness unless the steel has a similar coefficient of expansion. The austenitic steel of the following composition

C, 0,59; Ni, 12; Mn, 5,1; Cr, 3,4

has a thermal expansion of 0,000021 per degree C up to 400°C, which is only slightly lower than that of aluminium, and it combines good mechanical properties with resistance to abrasion.
Cold rolled austenitic stainless steel is another alternative. Where an abnormally low coefficient of expansion is required, Inver, containing 36% Ni, is used.

Ball-race steel. A typical composition is C, 1,0; Mn, 0,5; Cr, 1,36%. After quenching in oil from 810°C the steel is usually tempered at 100-200°C to
a) reduce hardening stresses,
b) reduce cracks in grinding.
Tempering at 100°C also increases the hardness slightly, e.g.:

Tempering temperature nil 100 200 250 VPN 800 876 750 736
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