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Old 05-17-2013, 06:39 AM   #1
Charles Reese
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Default Water Outlet Gasket

I have seen a number of warnings about the ‘ears’ of the water outlet breaking off during torquing the head nuts, especially when using the thicker copper gaskets. Although I believe the copper gasket was original, many seem to suggest using a thin paper gasket or only a sealer. How do folks seeking to follow the Judging Standards deal with this concern?
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Old 05-17-2013, 06:59 AM   #2
BRENT in 10-uh-C
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

They won't break if both surfaces are flat just like when they were first machined. Some folks tend to 'band-aide' the issue by using a paper match on the outer edge to transfer the force towards the center but again, spending a few minutes with a flat file on both surfaces will correct the problem for a long time and a copper gasket can be used successfully.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:01 AM   #3
Mitch//pa
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

actually i have found that copper is least likely to break.
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:10 AM   #4
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

I just put one on my A. I used a paper gasket and red sealer. the neck can crake like ones on a small block chebby I have broken a few on chebbys
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:29 AM   #5
BRENT in 10-uh-C
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

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I just put one on my A. I used a paper gasket and red sealer. the neck can crake like ones on a small block chebby I have broken a few on chebbys

OK, but exactly "what" causes them to break?
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:49 AM   #6
Charles Reese
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

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Originally Posted by BRENT in 10-uh-C View Post
They won't break if both surfaces are flat just like when they were first machined. Some folks tend to 'band-aide' the issue by using a paper match on the outer edge to transfer the force towards the center but again, spending a few minutes with a flat file on both surfaces will correct the problem for a long time and a copper gasket can be used successfully.
Just what i was wanting to hear. i have already done the filing and, at least to my untrained eye, the mating surfaces are flat to each other. should i use sealer (copper kote) with the copper gasket or just plain?
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:47 AM   #7
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

I don't use a gasket, just a thin film of RTV
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:01 AM   #8
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

I have not used the copper gasket, but if I did, I would only use it if it had the inner hole edges sealed with a copper wrap. This prevents seepage and consequential squishing out of the jacketed material. I have experienced the distinction of being one of those people who have broken one. In my case it was due to the cardboard gasket. If you use those, it will break. Maybe not right away, but after the material soaks through and begins to squish out. In my case it took a few weeks.
Again, I have not used the copper. Someone please chime in and clarify if the copper gaskets have the inner edges sealed. In the end, I used only a skim coat of RTV. I know that is not a solution for you as from your posts, it sounds like you are doing a high point resto. I enjoy your posts.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:57 PM   #9
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

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Originally Posted by Mitch//pa View Post
actually i have found that copper is least likely to break.
Ditto. I've also draw filed the outlet to be a few thousandths high near the center. This will give a little less pressure in the center than at the ends. I've never broken an ear with a copper gasket, but have with paper gaskets. The paper gets wet and squeezes out.

Just to be sure what I said is understood, when I make the outlet high, that means there is a small air space in the center if I set it in place on the head.

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Old 05-17-2013, 01:56 PM   #10
H. L. Chauvin
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

Even though maybe not written, no doubt ear breaking was known early on by just about all vintage mechanics I knew & remember -- they knew to check both block & outlet longitudinal surfaces with a metal straight edge & take 1 or 2 thousandths out of the center with a flat file to avoid having a gap near either of the perimeter bolt holes.

High cast iron center, or shorter cast irron ends on one or both of these cast items, surfaces was known to be a disaster -- & money was very tight back then which increased one's pucker factor to at least an exponent of 4.

Like Brent & Tom, never broke one either.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:36 PM   #11
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

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Originally Posted by Russ/40 View Post
I have not used the copper gasket, but if I did, I would only use it if it had the inner hole edges sealed with a copper wrap. This prevents seepage and consequential squishing out of the jacketed material. I have experienced the distinction of being one of those people who have broken one. In my case it was due to the cardboard gasket. If you use those, it will break. Maybe not right away, but after the material soaks through and begins to squish out. In my case it took a few weeks.
Again, I have not used the copper. Someone please chime in and clarify if the copper gaskets have the inner edges sealed. In the end, I used only a skim coat of RTV. I know that is not a solution for you as from your posts, it sounds like you are doing a high point resto. I enjoy your posts.
Russ, the inner edges of the copper gasket are rolled so the inner liner is never exposed to the water.
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:08 PM   #12
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

I use the paper gasket and paper match trick. Last week I didn't have any paper matches so I cut a couple pieces of thick paper stock and used those instead. They worked fine. I don't know why, but that seems to be a solution.
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:51 PM   #13
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

Use a sealer like indian head on the paper gasket. let it dry before install then a light coat of grease to the filed surfaces should get you thru if paper, or gasket material is what you have. Not for a high point car. Bob
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:22 PM   #14
sethkestenbaum
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

Charles, I have this photo from when I had changed the water outlet on my car. I was glad to see that the crack had rust in it (so I can claim that it must have happened before I owned the old girl). I thought I would share it so folks could see exactly the break you are discussing.
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File Type: jpg broken ear.jpg (54.6 KB, 40 views)
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:30 PM   #15
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

The reason they break is very SIMPLE. With ANY thick gasket, the outer ends of the housing squishes down the gasket & the bottom of the neck surface becomes RAINBOW shaped-----&-----"POW" Sounds like a .22 rifle shot!!! I heard it on Minerva!!! Scares the pazootie out of you when you have your head UNDER the hood!! And remember, those 2 studs ARE head studs & MUST be torqued to 55 Ft # or you'll leak out the front of the head!! Bill W.
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Old 05-18-2013, 09:49 AM   #16
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

I do like CarlG. Get the surfaces flat and do not use a gasket. Use sealant only.
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Old 05-18-2013, 11:01 AM   #17
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Default Re: Water Outlet Gasket

Quote:
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Russ, the inner edges of the copper gasket are rolled so the inner liner is never exposed to the water.
Thanks for answering that question Jim!
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