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Thanks gentlemen. I was going to quit for the evening, but now I have no excuse.

When I removed the VVT, I saw that it was full of crud (see picture). Is that normal?

View attachment 565689
It's a 36mm socket to turn the front pulley.

Make sure you put rags under the chain BEFORE you start pulling the master link. If the chain drops into the engine it's not hard to get it with a long magnet but lose a part of the master, lose one of the 4 small pieces that make up the master link and you will be in for an engine pull.

Yes, that's normal for a 20 plus year old VVT that had or has an oil leak from the small o-ring. Might as we'll change it while the VVT is off.

Good luck.

Vin
 

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Discussion Starter #22
Is that o-ring on the VVT? What is it called? I searched for VVT o-ring on several sites but didn't find any matches. Is it included in the head gasket kit?

I got everything disconnected, but I can't pull the head. I'm letting the head studs soak in PB blaster and tapping periodically with a rubber mallet. So close...
 

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Is that o-ring on the VVT? What is it called? I searched for VVT o-ring on several sites but didn't find any matches. Is it included in the head gasket kit?

I got everything disconnected, but I can't pull the head. I'm letting the head studs soak in PB blaster and tapping periodically with a rubber mallet. So close...
The o ring is in the cam cover. Check the FAQ it in there. No not included in the kit.

The heads can get stuck. Good idea on the soak. Don't forget about the rope trick to get that stuck head off.

Good luck,

Vin
 

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Right- rope trick is way to go- I had to use it. Stuff a sturdy rope down 2 cylinders that are "down", and put in gear (5th?? cant remember), and rock car back/forth until you see it "pop". It wont make a "pop" sound, you will just see it.
 

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Or you can leave it in neutral, and turn the pulley with that 36mm socket, a breaker bar and your Popeye arms!

Thats how I did it. That way I could watch the head lift off.

Good luck.

Vin
 

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Dang- saturday morning, not much to do except yard work, (scratching 3 day old beard stubble, left elbow resting on desk) wish I had an alfa project like that to do right about now.........some guys have all the luck.
 

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To clean, use GOOP or GOJO and disposable electric toothbrush, maybe add a little TSP. Then if required major solvents sparingly.

Replace rubber intake mounts. Assume they are already past their half-life.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Whoo Hoo!

I removed my first cylinder head ever. Thanks for all the awesome advice and walkthrus. I used the rope trick to get it unstuck.

Here are some pictures of the lower engine and of the head. I am taking the head to a shop to get it checked out. Please let me know if you spot something on the pictures that needs special attention.

Also, I had significant about of oil on the passenger side above cylinder 1. Could it be coming from a VVT leak?
 

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Well, one thing- and this SHOULD have been included in your head gasket "set", the intake manifold should be removed/restored, with a new gasket, and whatever is appropriate for the stuff attached (injector tubing, etc). Are you gonna do that? Also, obviously, need cleaning of the valves, and then reseat them with valve grinding paste.........then check for tolerances for all parameters required.
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Yes, I have an intake manifold gasket and I was planning to replace the fuel injector hoses and lower seals. I will let the head shop clean and reseat the valves.
 

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Can't emphasize enough thourgh cleaning of all gasket mating surfaces. Brake cleaner and scotch brite. The clean area on #4 combustion chamber looks odd. Congratulations!
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Can't emphasize enough thourgh cleaning of all gasket mating surfaces. Brake cleaner and scotch brite.
What are the gasket mating surfaces?

The clean area on #4 combustion chamber looks odd. Congratulations!
#4 had a compression of 120. The other cylinders were 150 and above. Could low compression be related to clean area? My mechanic said I had coolant leaking into #4.
 

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Coolant leaking into a cylinder usually leaves it much "cleaner". It is a good diagnostic tool- looking for a clean piston when looking into the spark plug hole.
 

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Coolant would cause the clean streak, what you are doing should fix it. I assume you are replacing the valves and guides? If you are close to East Texas I would offer to cut the valve seats. I acquired a set of Neway cutting tools so I could do my own valve jobs right. It seems to have paid off on the last two heads I've done. Mating surfaces are where two parts touch generally with a gasket in between. When you have the head resurfaced tell them to take as little off as possible, minimum amount required to be straight and provide clean mating with block and headgasket. That will leave head height for the next head gasket in 2028 cause you're gonna do it right! :) When for example you clean the top of the block to accept the new headgasket it should be clean enough to eat off of which is where the scotch brite and break cleaner come in. Attention to detail is what will help insure success and qualify you for the "Order of Jano" award. Coveted by all, awarded to few.
 

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Discussion Starter #37
Thanks gigem.

Do I need to use a sealer on the head gasket such as RTV?

What is the current thinking on adding alumi seal to the coolant after a head gasket replacement?
 

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Discussion Starter #38
Do the three holes on the back of the block drain anywhere? Mine were filled with coolant when I pulled the head. I was wondering if there is a blockage that keeps them from draining.
 

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Sometimes scotchbrite will not do the job- gotta go with razor blade CAREFULLY!!!! Go slowly, shave off the stubborn/burnt/crusted crud. Brakecleaner/acetone is good for oily residues, but will not take off burnt deposits as nothing dissolves carbon. I did this but occasionally you may "feel" the razor cutting into the aluminum. Watch out and STOP, and go back, and continue slowly, at a less severe angle.
 
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