head removal tool - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-30-2006, 02:59 PM Thread Starter
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head removal tool

Giorgio

Per our discussion this morning, here's a pic of what I rigged up to pull my head last June, <$10 at the local hardware store and worked like a charm.

Bill
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-08-2006, 07:40 AM
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DYI Head Puller Tool

Being new to this I'm thinking that you welded spark plug ends to the vertical pipes right? And the plywood rests on the studs?
How long are the pipe nipples you used? 1/2" pipe?

Thanks-

John
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-08-2006, 09:31 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CTALFA
Being new to this I'm thinking that you welded spark plug ends to the vertical pipes right? And the plywood rests on the studs?
How long are the pipe nipples you used? 1/2" pipe?

Thanks-

John
John

I bought a 2' piece of 7/8 black pipe, cut off each threaded end at 4 7/8" and shortened the middle piece to 7 1/8". I used a conical die grinder to bevel the inside of the non-threaded end of the 2 short pieces so that they would slip flush down to the hex part of the plugs (I didn't remove the ceramic part) and tack welded them together. The rest is as you imagine, screw on the tees, screw the plugs into #1 and #4 until they seat and then back them out enough to align the tees, slide a 1' 5/8 treaded rod in, using the remaining black pipe as a sleeve (probably unnecessary but I didn't know how much force would be required I wasn't about to risk the rod bowing) and one nut one the front end. Yes, the scrap of 1' ply sits on the studs. My head had never been removed before and was stuck on there really tight, mainly because of corrosion on the studs I assume, but this lifted it very smoothly and easily, and I could keep it raised with one hand and chock the head with pine blocks. The other great thing about this is, especially if you're doing it alone like I was, is that it serves as an enormous handle for lifting it off and out of the engine bay. I did mine whole (ie, with intake manifold and carbs attached) from the drivers side with my right elbow resting on the brake booster.

Well, that's probably way more than you were asking,

Bill

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-08-2006, 05:52 PM
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With the ease you described on pulling the head, it is obvious that you have not been buying engines from the same sources I have!!!!

"For sale: heads and blocks, uhh.. still together. Will not seperate "

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-09-2006, 06:24 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George Willet
With the ease you described on pulling the head, it is obvious that you have not been buying engines from the same sources I have!!!!

"For sale: heads and blocks, uhh.. still together. Will not seperate "

I'll lend it to you anytime you want. I don't expect to be pulling any more heads soon. FLW

Bill

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-10-2006, 01:35 AM
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DIY Head Removal Tool Info

Bill-

Thanks for the detailed info.

John
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-11-2006, 06:08 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CTALFA
Bill-

Thanks for the detailed info.

John
My pleasure. If you ever need to remove your head just drop me line.

If by chance you can't afford LSD, buy yourself a color TV. - Godard

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-30-2007, 07:14 AM
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Seeking tribal knowledge....head gasket replacement

All all of the classic symptoms at hand, the last being my baby ('84 L-Jet)spewing forth large, sweet smelling clouds of vaporized antifreeze from her behind, I've begun to get into pulling the head and hopefully find that all she needs is a new head gasket.

I've got the Braden books, the Alfa manual, the Alfa engine manual, etc.

What I'm seeking are those things people have learned from having done this that don't appear in any of the books.

Thanks in advance for any "sharing".
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-30-2007, 07:46 PM
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My advice to you after taking the head out, take it to a machine shop for resurfacing no matter what. Be very careful with the tensioner not to loosen it too much, just a slight turn, because if somehow the tensioner comes off when head in place it will be very difficult to put it back together.
Also use dye nut for the studs to minimize anything obstructing when tightening the nut. Use a nice scrapper to clean all the residue gasket left on the block.
Be very careful when putting the new O-rings in place betwen the gasket holes not to drop anything when putting the head back.
Drain all the antifreeze including the block, it has a brass nut I believe 23mm size to the left of the block.
When torquing the nuts start with 45lb ft in a sequence as the manual says, then 60lb ft, then 65lb ft, you should be fine.
If you have any other questions let me know.

Good luck!!!

Giorgio



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Originally Posted by CTALFA View Post
All all of the classic symptoms at hand, the last being my baby ('84 L-Jet)spewing forth large, sweet smelling clouds of vaporized antifreeze from her behind, I've begun to get into pulling the head and hopefully find that all she needs is a new head gasket.

I've got the Braden books, the Alfa manual, the Alfa engine manual, etc.

What I'm seeking are those things people have learned from having done this that don't appear in any of the books.

Thanks in advance for any "sharing".

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 04:21 AM
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Thanks Giorgio!

Progress report: Right now the head is loose, but what a bugger to lift off the studs. It's loose, and I can lift it nearly all the way off the studs, but it's just an issue of not being able to get a really good grip on it, and being bent over at a bad angle try to lift it. Sooooo...I've built a head removal tool not for breaking it free of the block but rather to give myself a "handle" to pull and lift it off with.
More info later today-
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 05:44 AM Thread Starter
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Hi CTALFA

Glad to hear it came loose without too much difficulty. As it turned out, one of the pluses to the tool I made was that it made a great handle for lifting the head off. I used some pine blocks to chock it up part way and then could rest my elbow on the brake booster and lift from there. I took mine out carbs still attached. As for tips, like Giorgio said, definitely chase the stud and nut threads. Also, I found Goof Off to be great at softening old gasket material on the block which I then removed with a razor and blocked smooth with emery paper. The only 'Oh Crap' moment I had was fortunately when I was getting ready to take the head off. I had been dutifully covering the timing chain hole with a towel to prevent things falling in there, but then I went and fumbled one of the rear cam journal nuts and it went right down one of the rear oil drains in the head. Thankfully, with the head off I could retrieve it with a telescopic magnet. Now I always fold up paper towel and stuff those two holes.

Bill

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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 07:27 PM
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Bill,

I'm a pretty good size guy, and even with it only being aluminum, there wasn't any way to get a good grip on it UNTIL I made one of your handy tools, and then off it came. And the same thing held true for the reinstall, your idea and subsequent tool was really a life saver.

Thanks again for sharing this.

And like yourself I too used Goof Off along with a razor scraper with a final clean up with a 3M Roloc Rubber disc style (picture many very small fine rubber fingers) abrasive chucked in a hand drill motor that cleaned every trace of gasket without removing any metal. I don't know if they even make them any more, it's been probably 10 years that I've had it.

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-08-2007, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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BTW - don't forget to do the regular hot torquing of the head as described in the owner's manual.

Bill

If by chance you can't afford LSD, buy yourself a color TV. - Godard

1982 GTV6
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1971 Karmann Ghia Vert
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-06-2007, 02:27 PM
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Thanks Bill2000!

Bought the parts for your homemade puller months ago when this thread first appeared but just put it together last night. About 1/2 hour to make - less if you have a decent hacksaw blade Works great, thanks for sharing it. Another pat on the back from a grateful bb'r.

Bill Sinclair
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-06-2007, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Bill2000!

Bought the parts for your homemade puller months ago when this thread first appeared but just put it together last night. About 1/2 hour to make - less if you have a decent hacksaw blade Works great, thanks for sharing it. Another pat on the back from a grateful bb'r.
Great! I'm glad it worked for you too. Nice to have something so simple and cheap be so effective.

Bill

If by chance you can't afford LSD, buy yourself a color TV. - Godard

1982 GTV6
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1971 Karmann Ghia Vert
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