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Old 02-24-2013, 05:40 PM   #81 (permalink)
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Not much smoother. Those grooves are are way deeper than they should be.

I inspected the old head gaskets and did not find evidence of leakage around those grooves. The place where the gasket blew is where they typically blow on the 3.8L.

It's a long read, but pretty comprehensive information on the history of the Ford 3.8L.

Rebuilding The Ford 3.8L Engine: Engine Builder

I hope this link works.
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Old 02-26-2013, 06:57 AM   #82 (permalink)
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behlinla: "Well, I guess they look about the same but I assume they felt a little smoother after sanding?"

The only way to properly remedy the grooves would be to pull the block, strip it down and and have the decks milled by a competent shop. The engine would then require the thicker head gaskets made for engines that require a lot of material taken off the heads or block. I did not aggressively hand sand because what I may have ended up with may have been worse.

Just guessing, I'd say a thicker head gasket may reduce longevity. Head gaskets are thin for a reason, less area exposed to the high pressures of combustion.

What have I lost if this job does not work? About $200, for gaskets and stuff. Everything else I have bought for this engine can be reused (heads, belt, pulleys, water pump, spark plugs, etc.).

When this car is running again, it will have cost a total $1,500 for the car, head job, water pump, etc., tires. Not too bad. A/C, brakes, trans all appear to be good at this time. Book resale on this model is about $2,500. So, I still have some wiggle room on spending.

I have lost a lot of time, but it beats watching TV after work.

If it doesn't work out, I have located a number of 3.8L engines for scrap price. And I will end up knowing something about 3.8L's.

This car, thankfully, is not a daily driver and can set in the carport.

Edit: I am reasonably certain what is going together on this LX will work, at least for a while. If I get 40K -50K before the head gaskets start leaking again, that will be sufficient payback for the effort. I have already determined the LX will be driven a maximum of 5K miles per year. So the car may be useable for 8-10 years.

If it doesn't work, I'll post an update at that time.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:27 AM   #83 (permalink)
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Update:

1. Using a dial gauge indicator and machinists' vee blocks, the push rods were checked for run-out (bent, or not). I found one with .003" TIR and am rejecting it as bent. A couple others had .001" TIR (total indicator readout). The rest were right on. Haynes says to roll the push rod on a piece of glass. That may work when a dial indicator is not available.

2. While transporting the bags with rocker arm parts, one of the fulcrum bolts fell out of a hole in the bag. Lost it in the yard some where. It isn't worth it to use cheap bags. Never again.

More to come...
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Old 02-26-2013, 04:33 PM   #84 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barkentine View Post
The only way to properly remedy the grooves would be to pull the block, strip it down and and have the decks milled by a competent shop. The engine would then require the thicker head gaskets made for engines that require a lot of material taken off the heads or block. I did not aggressively hand sand because what I may have ended up with may have been worse.
Sorry if you misconstrued my comment. I fully realize it would be impossible to sand all that out without pulling the block so I was just asking more of a yes/no-type question.
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Old 02-27-2013, 03:02 AM   #85 (permalink)
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behlinla,

No problem. I knew what you were asking. The grooves are a little more rounded than before the sanding, but not much.

This particular 3.8L will put the ability of the Victor head gasket to conform to irregularities to a test.
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:00 PM   #86 (permalink)
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Update:

1. Installed front and rear exhaust manifolds and new manifold gaskets. The exhaust flange is bolted to the studs using some ACE Hardware M8-1.25 coupling nuts rather than the OEM flanged hex nuts. The coupling nuts cover all exposed threads so it will be easier to remove next head gasket time, or what ever.

2. Rotated the engine several times by hand using a breaker bar on the crank pulley.

3. Installed new Motorcraft #SP-482 Platinum plugs. These are suppose to last 60K - 100K. Gapped the plugs to .054". (The old plugs (same part number) were all gapped at .045". The new ones came all set at .045".)

4. Installed pushrods, rockers and toqued in pattern, two steps to 26 ft-lbs.
The fulcrums must be oriented correctly in the rocker arm. They will install either way, but only one way is correct. It's possible to feel the roughness if installed wrong. Sort of notchy.

5. Rotated the engine by breaker bar several times after plugs and rockers installed.

More to come...
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Old 03-02-2013, 07:10 PM   #87 (permalink)
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Update from Friday 01 Mar 2013:

1. Cleaned the intake manifold (lower) and valve covers and other parts.
2. Flushed inside of crankcase to try and get any grit out. Poured solvent and oil mix into lifter valley and drained out. Did this (3) times.
3. Drained flush fluid and added (4) fresh qts. of 10W-40 oil.
4. Installed intake manifold, torqueing in (3) steps, following the bolt pattern in the Haynes manual. BTW, I have some reservations about the cork gaskets provided by Victor to seal each end of the manifold. I may pull the manifold back off and buy a Fel-Pro intake set. The old neoprene (?) rubber seals that were on it didn't leak. The new cork ones may degrade and start leaking.

More....
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Old 03-04-2013, 06:31 PM   #88 (permalink)
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Another Update:

1. Removed intake manifold and the Victor gaskets.
2. Cleaned the intake and cylinder head surfaces and did a final wipe-down with alcohol. I also checked the mating surfaces with the tool steel bar. All surfaces are flat, no warpage at all.
3. Installed the Fel-Pro gaskets (P.N. MS94045). See photo. Used a thin coat of high temp RTV silicone sealer around the water passages and to secure the blue end seals. Let set for a few minutes.
4. Installed the intake manifold using some of the hardware I bought at the TCCA meeting yesterday at Pull-A-Part. Torqued manifold per sequences, and then went back over all bolts to ensure proper torque. The Fel-Pro gaskets are better, imho. I used a small dab of anti-seize on all the intake bolts.
5. Installed the new injector O'rings that came with the Fel-Pro set. Amazingly, Victor does not supply those O'rings in their head gasket set.
6. Installed injectors/rails assembly on intake. See photo.

Next will be the valve covers. Then the new water pump, pulleys, etc. and re-installing the P/S pump and brackets.

After the valve covers are on and while the thermostat is still out, I plan on flushing the water jacket to get as much debris out as possible before buttoning up the cooling system.
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Old 03-07-2013, 09:45 AM   #89 (permalink)
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Update:

1. Installed valve covers using the Victor black neoprene/silicone molded gaskets. (Victor also provides (2) metal "substrated" cork valve cover gaskets.)
Used small amount of anti-seize on bolts.

2. Took delivery of used Ford Taurus 16" wheels (225/55-16's) bought at the last chapter meeting in Columbia.

3. Worked on cleaning up water pump gasket surface and hardware.

4. Purchased a new manufacture GMB water pump (#1251600)
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Old 03-07-2013, 05:34 PM   #90 (permalink)
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Update:

(I'm glad it was a sunny, warm day here. Did not make a lot of progress on putting this 3.8L back together today.)

1. New water pumps for the '93 Taurus 3.8L's do not come with an inlet extension tube. If the old one is good, it can be re-used. (I don't know what the status is for new inlet tubes or how much they cost, or if they are even available. Rock Auto does not list them.) I've never had a water pump on anything that had a tube like this, though I've seen such things on military vehicles and other equipment. The inlet tube is held in place and sealed with a large 'O'ring which fits in a groove inside the water pump. Normally, the tube can be twisted and wiggled out. The one with this 3.8L felt like it had been welded in place.

Using a propane torch, the tube, and that part of the pump, was heated. I had to pretty much incinerate the 'O'ring to get the tube to come out. After it was out, it looked like someone, or the factory, used a glue for sealing and holding the pipe in place. No instructions found on that.

The tube got cleaned up and painted. The new 'O'ring was installed and Tack 'n Seal non-hardening sealer was used liberally inside the sleeve where the tube fits on the pump. When the tube is inserted, it is hand pressed into place until it bottoms on a machined shoulder inside the pump. There is a welded tab on the tube that needs to be oriented so it's parallel with the pump gasket surface.

2. Went to install the pump on the engine and could not. There is not enough room to get the pump body over the studs on this car. The front (passenger side) of the engine is too close to the frame. Not enough room.

I had to remove the (2) engine mount nuts (1) front, (1) back, and using a floor jack and a piece of 2 X 4, jack the engine up about 2". I used the oil pan as the lift point.

After doing that, the pump went right on. Note: after the pump bolts/stud nuts are torqued, the pump pulley should go on before letting the engine back down. There is the same clearance problem with the frame. It's not difficult to lift the engine, if a floor jack is available.

more to come...
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Last edited by Barkentine; 03-08-2013 at 08:15 AM. Reason: added adjective and comment, corrected nomenclature
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