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Old 05-24-2020, 03:06 PM   #1
Russ/40
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Default Would You Use it?

The photo below shows a block with two head gaskets in place, one on top of the other. The top one matches the block with the trapezoidal holes. I don't have those, but I do have the round hole gaskets that match the heads. Will I have any potential water leaks if I go ahead with the gaskets I have, the round hole ones. Would you use the round hole ones without worry,

I know, I'm cheap, but why spend $50 if the ones i have will be fine?
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Old 05-24-2020, 03:41 PM   #2
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

There’s another thread on here currently about having coolant leaking on a $9000 motor......for $50 bucks....I’d get the right gaskets....Mark
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:06 PM   #3
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Not worth the gamble. Do the right thing, and the right thing happens.
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:15 PM   #4
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

I'm a cheapskate myself, but after thinking about it; these guys are right!
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:22 PM   #5
19Fordy
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Sell the "wrong" gaskets and that will help pay for the correct ones.
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:29 PM   #6
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Russ/40 View Post
The photo below shows a block with two head gaskets in place, one on top of the other. The top one matches the block with the trapezoidal holes. I don't have those, but I do have the round hole gaskets that match the heads. Will I have any potential water leaks if I go ahead with the gaskets I have, the round hole ones. Would you use the round hole ones without worry,

I know, I'm cheap, but why spend $50 if the ones i have will be fine?

Just something to research: Could the round hole gasket be better because

it will force more coolant to the back of the block for better cooling?
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Wouldn’t the edging on the holes need to be sandwiched between surfaces in order to seal properly?
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:41 PM   #8
Mart
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

You ideally want the part of the gasket with the metal folded over sealing area making contact with metal on both deck face and head face. If the folded over metal part is overlapping a hole you are not making a proper seal and will be risking a leak in that area.

For what it costs you might as well just buy the correct gaskets.
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Old 05-24-2020, 05:18 PM   #9
Jay in Mass
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

I think that the verdict is in.
With the new parts in it, that engine looks nice and clean. It's not worth the risk. Get the correct head gaskets.
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Old 05-24-2020, 11:22 PM   #10
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

I'd have to look at the rest of the gasket water holes , But I think the round hole gasket is a better gasket than the original f Ford gasket. The parts of an engine go throu an evaluation over time and the industry comer up with little improvement. Like controling the water flow thru the block for better cooling.
I could be wrong here because I very rarely work on stock engines.
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Old 05-25-2020, 12:16 AM   #11
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

When mixing and matching...using older heads on new block we use the gasket that match the heads...not the block...just my 2c.
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Old 05-25-2020, 07:03 AM   #12
51 MERC-CT
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

There were two different replacement gaskets available from Ford.
The holes in the heads determined which to use.
#6051 for small holes in heads.
#6051-A for large holes.
If small holes in the heads, use the one with small holes.
Also less areas that are susceptible to blowout.
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Old 05-25-2020, 09:42 AM   #13
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Do any modern gasket manufacturers make a set of quality head gaskets with the trapazoid style water holes? I don't believe I've seen any?

If it was mine, I'd run Best Gaskets Graphtite composite head gaskets and maybe put a bit of copper-coat type sealer on the block surface/side of the gasket. All you're trying to do is seal the water - not compression in this area and I don't believe you'd have an issue.

So there yah have it . . . yet another man's opinion!
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Old 05-25-2020, 01:30 PM   #14
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Doesn't apply here but the early pump in head head gaskets did indeed have larger holes in back and smaller holes in front . The intent was to get equal water flow to the front and back areas of the head . Cannot find pics right now but this is in the books .
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Old 05-25-2020, 02:31 PM   #15
Russ/40
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bored&Stroked View Post
Do any modern gasket manufacturers make a set of quality head gaskets with the trapazoid style water holes? I don't believe I've seen any?

FYI, All the vendors carry them, Rock Auto does too for the best price - Felpro $19.00 ea.
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Old 05-25-2020, 07:42 PM   #16
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Russ/40 View Post
FYI, All the vendors carry them, Rock Auto does too for the best price - Felpro $19.00 ea.
If you want to run Felpro head gaskets and are worried about the trapezoidal water holes, then by all means do. They will surely work - and the price is a whole lot cheaper than others (like Best)

But, just to make us all think a bit (on the need for gaskets to match the center water jackets) . . . lets talk about three different block water jacket configurations (39 - 48):

1) 39-42 Ford 221: It has three trapezoidal water jackets (the one you show).
2) A 99A or 239 style Merc block has TWO trapezoidal water jackets - with a circular one in the middle. This is the block referred to as the 'Keystone' Merc block that is part of Flathead rumors and lore . . .
3) A 59x series block has one trapezoidal water jacket - up at the top.

Best gasket makes ONE style of gaskets for ALL of the above - whether copper or composite. Given that I've had nothing but good experiences with their gaskets (in all three of the above water jacket configurations) and I've heard nothing but positive reviews of their gaskets, one would think there is no need to have a different version for the different water jacket styles in the middle of the block.

I use the GraphTite gaskets on just about all of my builds - except high-end blown motors (they're a whole different beast).

See below:

1) 99A - 239 Merc - WWII Production:

DeckComplete copy.jpg

2) 59x Deck Surface:

BlockDesk-Porting-80.jpg

3) Best Gaskets: Copper:

BG-Copper.jpg

4) Best Gaskets: GraphTite:

BG-GraphTite.jpg

5) And here is a Cometic MLS Gaskets (which I'm running on the 42 Merc block shown above):

Cometic.jpg
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Old 05-25-2020, 07:51 PM   #17
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Here's something to thinking about with those gaskets with the small round holes. A wise and respected engine builder told me this. Why would you want to restrict the water from leaving the block?

The water surrounding the cylinders is acting like a heat sink and trying to carry heat away from these areas. If you keep it in there or restrict it's flow, the water is only getting hotter.

This engine builder opens those holes to match the holes in the block to allow the water to get out of the block, into the heads, and up into the radiator to be cooled.

Just something to think about.

** To answer the original question, get the proper gaskets.
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Old 05-25-2020, 08:10 PM   #18
Bored&Stroked
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Hey Tim: Something to think about is not only flow, but where does the flow actually go to pull the heat out of the block.

In the 49-53 block design they deliberately put the LARGER water jacket holes at the rear of the block. From what I gather and in thinking about it, this was do give the water a better chance of flowing to the BACK of the block to pull some of the extra heat out of the rear cylinders (which tend to run hot).

So - one could also ponder how much water do we want to let out of the middle of the water jackets - versus maybe a better distribution to the rear of the block (in the 39-48 blocks). Is letting too much of it out "early" a good thing or not? (Don't know).

Obviously I have not done any scientific testing (with various deck/gasket combinations), but I do believe it is a good thing to try to get the cooler water from the front of the engine to the rear. In some big HP race engines, they put water manifolds down at the base of the block (above the pan rails) to deliberately direct water flow to the back of the block. Another method was to put a sort of "water tube" inside the block that was fed up by the water pump - to have a special flow to the rear of the block.

So - letting too much of the cool water out the middle of the block MAY actually NOT be a good thing (again, never tested by me and probably nobody else alive that I know - other than maybe Pete!). I am more inclined to expand the water holes at the rear of a 39-48 block - to try to get more water flow from the back of the block . . .
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Old 05-26-2020, 01:03 AM   #19
Russ/40
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

Another thing we are not putting in the equation, is the water hole configuration on the head. Those huge centerline trapezoidal holes in the block do not determine much, as the head and gasket holes open or shut the gates anyway. The worst consequence of those 3 large centerline trapezoidal holes is the corosion damage they do to the heads as they meter the flow with smaller holes.

I agree with B&S on the issue I was presenting with my early concern about using the round hole gaskets and water leaks. Using what you find when inspecting gaskets for how they match the block, you will find, the gasket designs do not reflect any need for water holes copper rings, need for a crush upon installation. Frequently we find copper ringed holes without crush as a design rule.

As to water flow and how much heat it carries, that is an age old argument we need not try to settle here.
The answer to my original question then is basically, - they both would be fine.

Last edited by Russ/40; 05-26-2020 at 01:11 AM.
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Old 05-26-2020, 01:21 AM   #20
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Default Re: Would You Use it?

As long as it seals, i'd guess the head/block corrosion in our life time would be minimal at best. In my thinking. From the original pictures, the crush rings don't completely cover the open areas, I'd be concerned more about that. my .02$


Having a head gasket with some water constriction might be an issue. But we run temps also to constrict water flow. Most gasket constrictions are made to force water to the back of the block, the biggest issue to the rear of the block is flow. Water is like electricity, easiest path without resistance. Maybe a issue but maybe not that big of deal either.


A good seal is important. Gaskets are cheaper then.

Last edited by Tinker; 05-26-2020 at 01:37 AM.
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