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  #91 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 10:31 AM
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Thank you Sir! Thats a relief...

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  #92 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 10:38 AM
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lost bolt

you need to get that lost bolt out of there. take a light and shine it down an ajacent hole while looking down the hole you think it went into. it should be hung up against a lifter or something. you will need a magnet. try not to send it further down.
have you done ay of these checks yet:
-cooling system pressure test, at the pressure that your rad cap is set for. don'toverpressure the system or you could blow a hole in the rad, heater core or a gasket somewhere. also, check the under side of the oil filler cap for a white milky substance. that would indicate a leak somewhere from the coolant into the engine oil, condensation from that collects on the under side of things like the oil filler cap and valve covers, but may not show in the oil on th dipstick yet.
-check the spark plugs for a rusty looking one, like if that cylinder has a cracked head or leaky head gasket, it would leave that spark plug looking rusty.
-check for bubbles in the rad when the engine is running, possible head gasket leak.
- a timing chain slack test, turn the engine over by hand till you come to the timing marks. take the ditributor cap off and make a detailed note on where the rotor is pointing. use some tape on the edge of the distributor housing. also note where the timing marks are pointing to on the harmonic balancer. now turn the engine backwards slowly until the rotor just starts to turn and "catches up" to the crank (from slack in the timing chain). the number of degrees the harmonic balancer moved before the rotor caught up is a good indicator of how loose the chain is. a new engine would basically be zero. some of those old sbc had plastic covered timing geras and the plastic would wear or break off. instant loose chain. they can skip over a tooth pretty easily, causing the cam to be out of time with the crank.
-vacuum check at idle. does the needle skip around a lot or hold pretty steady?
-valve adjustment. include looking for broken valve springs and also check to see if all the valves are opening the same amount. some of the older sbc had soft cams and the lobes would wear off.
-cylinder leak down test. air up the cylinders at tdc ready to fire, see if air leaks past the valves down into exhaust or up into intake. checks for leaking or burnt valves.
-compression test, wet and dry. dry first for obvious reasons.
-carb adjustment, including check to see if the throttle shafts are worn out. also a choke set up.
-heat riser valve check.
-egr valve check, if equipped.
-pcv valve check
-vacuum hose check. inccluding the one that goes to the auto trans modulator (if equipped).
-distributor mechanical and vacuum advance check. include check of wear on the mechanical advance weights and springs and freedom of movement. also base and total advance. vacuum advance hose routing from proper connection at carb and (if equipped) does the vacuum temp switch operate properly to allow vacuum to the distributor when the engine warms up.
-condition of the spark plug wires and distributor cap, rotor, coil, plugs. rest of tune up parts like fuel filters, air filter, pcv valve.
-adjust timing correctly at operating temp.
hopefully that helped. sometimes a problem like yours is a combination of a bunch of things being out of whack, or it's something that was overlooked. go through the list and see if all is good.
on the valve cover leak, what works for me is to flip the valve cover upside down with the gasket surface on the edge of your workbench or something flat. the rest of the cover has to be supported by a buddy (or your belly or knee) because it will be hanging out in mid air. take a ball pien hammer upside down so the ball is in the bolt hole of the valve cover, give the hammer a tap with a dead blow hammer and watch the bend come out of the cover. when it is all flat, make sure the surface is clean of old gasket material and then glue a new gasket to the cover and wait till the glue is cured, then install it with those little butterfly washers, or get some longer ones at a speed shop. I have seen some that are couple of inches long, they work well. don't overtorque the bolts or you will split the cork gasket. i like to use the neoprene gaskets for that reason. felpro sells a good set but i don't remember the number.
good luck and keep us posted,
dsraven
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  #93 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 12:14 PM
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hey dsraven,
Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
you need to get that lost bolt out of there. take a light and shine it down an ajacent hole while looking down the hole you think it went into. it should be hung up against a lifter or something. you will need a magnet. try not to send it further down.
I did quickly try to put a magnet in there, but it wasn't pickup anything and I became afraid that it have fallen into the engine (now I know it hasn't). I have a serious space/access issue in that area. I have the gigantic brake booster in my way, along with the carburetor on the other side. I must admit it didn't seem the bolt fell into that opening, but not having found it, it seems like the only place it would have gone. plus, the magnet I am using might be too large for the opening (about 1/2" diameter). I will do a double check tonight after work. I am very much tempted to invest in a borescope.




Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
have you done ay of these checks yet:
-cooling system pressure test, at the pressure that your rad cap is set for. don'toverpressure the system or you could blow a hole in the rad, heater core or a gasket somewhere. also, check the under side of the oil filler cap for a white milky substance. that would indicate a leak somewhere from the coolant into the engine oil, condensation from that collects on the under side of things like the oil filler cap and valve covers, but may not show in the oil on th dipstick yet.
-check the spark plugs for a rusty looking one, like if that cylinder has a cracked head or leaky head gasket, it would leave that spark plug looking rusty. - The spark plugs were replaced. To be honest, the old ones seemed fine, just had a bit of oil on them.
-check for bubbles in the rad when the engine is running, possible head gasket leak.
- a timing chain slack test, turn the engine over by hand till you come to the timing marks. take the ditributor cap off and make a detailed note on where the rotor is pointing. use some tape on the edge of the distributor housing. also note where the timing marks are pointing to on the harmonic balancer. now turn the engine backwards slowly until the rotor just starts to turn and "catches up" to the crank (from slack in the timing chain). the number of degrees the harmonic balancer moved before the rotor caught up is a good indicator of how loose the chain is. a new engine would basically be zero. some of those old sbc had plastic covered timing geras and the plastic would wear or break off. instant loose chain. they can skip over a tooth pretty easily, causing the cam to be out of time with the crank.
-vacuum check at idle. does the needle skip around a lot or hold pretty steady?
-valve adjustment. include looking for broken valve springs and also check to see if all the valves are opening the same amount. some of the older sbc had soft cams and the lobes would wear off.
-cylinder leak down test. air up the cylinders at tdc ready to fire, see if air leaks past the valves down into exhaust or up into intake. checks for leaking or burnt valves.
-compression test, wet and dry. dry first for obvious reasons.
-carb adjustment, including check to see if the throttle shafts are worn out. also a choke set up. - Carburetor was rebuilt.
-heat riser valve check. - Doesn't appear to have one.
-egr valve check, if equipped. - The intake manifold doesn't have the provisions for one, but it seems it should have one.
-pcv valve check - Working fine.
-vacuum hose check. inccluding the one that goes to the auto trans modulator (if equipped).
-distributor mechanical and vacuum advance check. include check of wear on the mechanical advance weights and springs and freedom of movement. also base and total advance. vacuum advance hose routing from proper connection at carb and (if equipped) does the vacuum temp switch operate properly to allow vacuum to the distributor when the engine warms up.
-condition of the spark plug wires and distributor cap, rotor, coil, plugs. rest of tune up parts like fuel filters, air filter, pcv valve.
All of these were recently replaced.
-adjust timing correctly at operating temp. - I recently messed with it a little and it appears to be fine. However, a test with the timing light is coming soon.
hopefully that helped. sometimes a problem like yours is a combination of a bunch of things being out of whack, or it's something that was overlooked. go through the list and see if all is good.
I underlined the things I have done or checked. It did turn out to be a combination of issues. The truck originally began backfiring after the tune was done last year. Then, someone poured water and debris into the gas tank, which eventually led to the fuel filters being cleaned and/or replaced and the carburetor rebuilt. . Then, the plugs were re-gapped properly and some of the spark plug wires had to be replaced because they were burned. The problem was finally narrowed down to timing. I missed with a bit on Sunday and got it to where the truck idles and revs with no backfires. The only problem left was the oil leaking from the recently replaced valve covers gaskets. Passenger-side was a breeze. Driver-side has given me nothing but trouble. I have now lost two bolts for the same hole by the distributor and firewall.




Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
on the valve cover leak, what works for me is to flip the valve cover upside down with the gasket surface on the edge of your workbench or something flat. the rest of the cover has to be supported by a buddy (or your belly or knee) because it will be hanging out in mid air. take a ball pien hammer upside down so the ball is in the bolt hole of the valve cover, give the hammer a tap with a dead blow hammer and watch the bend come out of the cover. when it is all flat, make sure the surface is clean of old gasket material and then glue a new gasket to the cover and wait till the glue is cured, then install it with those little butterfly washers, or get some longer ones at a speed shop. I have seen some that are couple of inches long, they work well. don't overtorque the bolts or you will split the cork gasket. i like to use the neoprene gaskets for that reason. felpro sells a good set but i don't remember the number.
I think I definitely went to town went bolting down the covers. I read somewhere it should be no more than 15 lb/ft. Not sure how accurate that is. I used the rubber gaskets because my experience with cork has been bad in the past. Of course, it could just been have me all along.




Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
good luck and keep us posted,
dsraven
Thanks for all the help and tips dsraven! I will post back with results soon (hopefully good ones).




P.S. Good to know I am not the only one who's done something like this:
Edelbrock: Made in U.S.A. - Dyno Room Stories: Manifold Bolt Roulette



----
EDIT: Found this neat trick over at Thirdgen.org :

Quote:
Another trick is to take the magnet off the holder they sell at the auto parts place, thread or clamp it in place onto a piece of flexible rubber hose, and snake it down the runner, it will follow its contours and u can pull it up... pls post a follow up, K?

I am sure this will work, but I want to hear how it goes, thanks.

By jethro, Post #3

Last edited by lt1silverhawk; 04-12-2011 at 12:26 PM.
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  #94 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 12:41 PM
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lost

before you buy a boroscope, make sure it will fit in the hole you are going through. I have used a boroscope and they are great, but sometimes they are hard to see because everything is so close. you will also need a magnet to fit somewhere at the same time as the scope. try to get one with a strong magnet and a flexible handle. some of them have a light in the magnet. I use that one quite a bit over the one without the magnet (ya, I have dropsey too. common ailment of diy'ers). hopefully you don't end up taking the intake off. i f you,though, you would be able to clean the heat riser runner under the carb in the intake manifold. there has to be a bonus somewhere here. just remember, don't let your carb get upside down or some of those "undesirables" from the water/debris episode could end up in places they shouldn't.
dsraven
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  #95 (permalink)  
Old 04-12-2011, 12:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
before you buy a boroscope, make sure it will fit in the hole you are going through. I have used a boroscope and they are great, but sometimes they are hard to see because everything is so close. you will also need a magnet to fit somewhere at the same time as the scope. try to get one with a strong magnet and a flexible handle. some of them have a light in the magnet. I use that one quite a bit over the one without the magnet (ya, I have dropsey too. common ailment of diy'ers).
I'll probably try the magnet on a hose trick first before dishing out $100. I'll see if I can find the magnet with the light locally .




Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
hopefully you don't end up taking the intake off. i f you,though, you would be able to clean the heat riser runner under the carb in the intake manifold. there has to be a bonus somewhere here. just remember, don't let your carb get upside down or some of those "undesirables" from the water/debris episode could end up in places they shouldn't.
dsraven
Worse comes to worse, I remove the manifold and replace it with one that can house the EGR valve. Win win?
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  #96 (permalink)  
Old 04-13-2011, 11:24 AM
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Last night, I went to Autozone and picked up a can of the Right Stuff. I couldn't find the three-in-one magnetic claw with light tool there (its apparently a special-order item) so I bought a Flexible pickup tool with light. I was a bit concerned that the tip might be too wide. However, I gave it a quick try this morning and it fit properly and went in quite deep. I could feel it bending as it was pushed further. I did try all four opening and unfortunately nothing was found (or, at least nothing came back attached to the magnetic tip).

That's two bolts now that have gone the way of the Bermuda Triangle in my truck. Btw, what are those openings at the top of the heads called? Intake ports?

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Old 04-13-2011, 11:53 AM
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bolts

too bad your bolts didn't come out with the magnet. you may end up pulling the intake to retrieve them, or rent a boroscope and take a good look.
those holes in the head up by the pushrods are just holes for oil drain back and breathing. the intake runners or ports are what you would see if you took the intake manifold off. if you have a stock intake manifold and look at it where it mates to the cylinder head, you will see numbers that designate cylinder numbering. those numbers are cast into the top of an intake runner/port. the oil from the valve train oiling would overfill the valve covers in short order without some drains back to the oil pan. they also make the head lighter so less cost to build. back in the day, guys would deburr the engine block and take all the rough casting slag etc off. then they would coat the interior of the engine with glyptol electric motor paint, like regular paint but made for high heat and sticks like **** to a blanket. anyway, that would allow the engine oil to make it's way back to the oil pan in a hurry so it could get pumped out again with the high volume oil pump.
if you look down one of those holes you will be looking directly at the lifters and the lifter valley. it has drain holes too, but they are more long and narrow. you don't want those bolts to go through the drain holes in the lifter valley because below that is the cam and lifters and then the crankshaft and con rods. lots of stuff to get jammed up in. make sure you account for those bolts. intake gaskets are fairly cheap if you can't find the bolts any other way. can you see anythiong from one of the other holes farther forward or on the head on the other side of the engine? use a good light and a mirror if need be. you could also try the library or online and get a pic of the engine with the intake manifold off so you know what you are dealing with when going in blind.
dsraven
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  #98 (permalink)  
Old 04-16-2011, 08:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
too bad your bolts didn't come out with the magnet. you may end up pulling the intake to retrieve them, or rent a boroscope and take a good look.
It was a quick check before going to work. But if they aren't there to begin with, Im chasing ghosts. Removal of the intake remains a last resort for me at this point. I did remove the carburetor to get more space and clearance for searching and working. I'm trying to check the area behind the engine and on top of the transmission in case they fell and got stuck there.







Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
those holes in the head up by the pushrods are just holes for oil drain back and breathing. the intake runners or ports are what you would see if you took the intake manifold off. if you have a stock intake manifold and look at it where it mates to the cylinder head, you will see numbers that designate cylinder numbering. those numbers are cast into the top of an intake runner/port. the oil from the valve train oiling would overfill the valve covers in short order without some drains back to the oil pan. they also make the head lighter so less cost to build. back in the day, guys would deburr the engine block and take all the rough casting slag etc off. then they would coat the interior of the engine with glyptol electric motor paint, like regular paint but made for high heat and sticks like **** to a blanket. anyway, that would allow the engine oil to make it's way back to the oil pan in a hurry so it could get pumped out again with the high volume oil pump.
if you look down one of those holes you will be looking directly at the lifters and the lifter valley. it has drain holes too, but they are more long and narrow. you don't want those bolts to go through the drain holes in the lifter valley because below that is the cam and lifters and then the crankshaft and con rods. lots of stuff to get jammed up in. make sure you account for those bolts. intake gaskets are fairly cheap if you can't find the bolts any other way. can you see anythiong from one of the other holes farther forward or on the head on the other side of the engine? use a good light and a mirror if need be. you could also try the library or online and get a pic of the engine with the intake manifold off so you know what you are dealing with when going in blind.
dsraven
I tried the magnetic pick up again today. The pickup went in quite deep, but nothing came back attached to it. I did take pictures of the drain ports to see if I could perhaps identify something that might be a bolt. I over-exposed and sharpened the images so that things could be identified. If I end up finding nothing behind the engine or around the transmission (the bolts never made a sound when they fell), then I will tackle the intake manifold. Might do the mirror and light tonight. The flexible magnetic pickup has a strong LED.







Will report back. Thanks for the continued help!

Last edited by lt1silverhawk; 04-16-2011 at 09:00 PM.
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Old 04-17-2011, 04:13 AM
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Check the crossmember and control arms.
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  #100 (permalink)  
Old 04-23-2011, 08:11 PM
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After almost a week, I got a chance to work on the truck today. As a refresher, I am trying to locate two valve cover bolts, one of which may have fallen into the oil drain-back port on top of the driver-side head. Both of the bolts are from the driver-side valve cover, nearest to the firewall and distributor. I never actually saw where any of the two bolts fell, nor did I hear them make a noise.




Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Check the crossmember and control arms.
I tried the flexible magnetic pick up with light again. I stuck it down the drain back ports, behind the engine (a few spark flew), and all over the top of the transmission. I even scrapped around with my hand everywhere I could reach, including the crossmember and control arms. All I got was lots of dried up grime. I even went and bought a gigantic magnet from Harbor Freight. But it was too strong to get anywhere near where I wanted it to be.


At this point, I'm inching more and more towards removing the intake manifold. The next step for me is distributor removal to see if I can find anything else behind the engine. I have never removed and reinstalled a distributor this before so any tips and warnings would be greatly appreciated. (All I really have to do is note which way the rotor is pointing, right? Or do I have to find TDC first?)


I plan to have a boroscope/digital inspection camera by tomorrow. Perfect timing as tomorrow Harbor Freight has the 25% off deal for Easter. I am split between the two models they carry: #67979 and #67980. Presently, I am leaning towards the pricier one because it has recording capability and, according to the reviews, is better suited for spark plug holes. If you have used one of these, feedback is welcome and much appreciated.


As always, thank you for the continued help.
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Old 04-24-2011, 05:11 AM
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The best advise I can give on the distributor removal is to just yank it out so you're forced to learn the reinstall.

This way , you'll understand how the valves open, close, the position of the balancer and the relationship between the crank and camshaft.

We can walk you thru it, so anytime you're ready just yank it out.

Oh yeah, one important note:

Don't go dropping your bolts in the hole.

Edit: I got to get me one of those scopes. I like the one can hook up to the laptop.
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Old 04-24-2011, 11:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
The best advise I can give on the distributor removal is to just yank it out so you're forced to learn the reinstall.

This way , you'll understand how the valves open, close, the position of the balancer and the relationship between the crank and camshaft.

We can walk you thru it, so anytime you're ready just yank it out.
Excellent suggestion. Might as well learn now what needs to be learned sooner or later. Pretty soon, this thread is gonna need a whole new title...




Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Oh yeah, one important note:

Don't go dropping your bolts in the hole.
LOL! You know what the worse part is? When all is said and done, those bolts will be right in front of my face, right where they've been all along. A real much ado about nothin'...




Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Edit: I got to get me one of those scopes. I like the one can hook up to the laptop.
I just picked it up 30 minutes ago. Didn't get to test it out in the truck yet (raining outside), but indoors, the image is not bad. Will have to check out how good it is when connected to a computer. I used the 25% off coupon for Easter Sunday (good for today only) and paid $195 and change altogether.




I will try the boroscope first and post back results. If that proves fruitless, I'll tackle the distributor next.




Thanks pugsy!
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Oh yeah, one important note:

Don't go dropping your bolts in the hole.
Sunday evening, I went ahead and used the boroscope to look for the missing bolts. After some fiddling around (its tricky to control the flexible lens shaft, and oil can cover the lens), I found the second bolt exactly where I thought it had fallen: inside the oil drain back port nearest to the firewall. You can see a 30 second video of the discovery here . Previously, the bolt was not visible when pictures were taken of every port, unless one considers the sparkly reflection in image 4 the bolt head. (see post # 98). The two magnets never picked it up in the past either.

Below are the images of the bolt from the boroscope, completely unedited.





Excited and relieved that at least one bolt had been found, I went ahead and attempted to retrieve it, first with the magnetic pick up attachment on the boroscope. Here are the videos: first attempt (3:49), second attempt (1:52). As hard as I tried, the magnetic tip just could hold the bolt, perhaps due to oil.

I then went ahead and tried the flexible lighted magnetic pick up, and set up the boroscope to assist in viewing what was going on. The magnet did pick up the bolt, but the it fell off as the magnet reached the surface and the bolt scraped against the top of the port. This time when the bolt fell back in, it made a clanking noise for an uncomfortably long time. See the dramatic 18 second video here.




Quote:
Originally Posted by dsraven
if you look down one of those holes you will be looking directly at the lifters and the lifter valley. it has drain holes too, but they are more long and narrow. you don't want those bolts to go through the drain holes in the lifter valley because below that is the cam and lifters and then the crankshaft and con rods. lots of stuff to get jammed up in.
I used the boroscope for a long time to try and find out where the bolt may have landed this time, but no luck. Even tried the mirror attachment but found it limiting as to how far and deep the lens would go. I believe I did see the smaller drain holes. Below are the pictures taken using the boroscope.







------------------------




I went ahead tackled the distributor and also drained the radiator in preparation for removing the intake manifold. I am photographing everything as I go along. Updates coming soon.
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Old 04-25-2011, 04:31 PM
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Quite the handy tool.
Good luck with the hunting.
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 123pugsy
Good luck with the hunting.
That, and some steady hands and Im in business.




Quote:
I went ahead tackled the distributor and also drained the radiator in preparation for removing the intake manifold. I am photographing everything as I go along. Updates coming soon.
I removed the distributor on Sunday.









I took a brief look around the firewall area to see if I could locate the black valve cover bolt I lost the first time. I even checked using the boroscope but nothing turned up.







------------------------------------




Today, I worked on removing the intake manifold again. I first went ahead and removed all the hoses, including the one from the A.I.R. pump running across the front of the engine. Is the middle one the bypass hose?






I then removed the control valve on top of the manifold that is for the Throttle Lever Actuator on the carburetor. The I tackled the bracket for the alternator.


I had some difficult removing what I believe is the thermostat/electric fan relay on top of the thermostat housing. Not wanting to break anything, I decided to leave it alone for the time being and removed the thermostat housing. It was filled with brown gunk.






I imagine these bolts for the thermostat housing will be fine after a trip to the Chem-Dip spa. Or should they be replaced?







Lastly, I removed the sensor pictured below. Not sure what it is for. It may be the water temperature switch, according to the exploded diagram of a typical gasoline V8 intake manifold on page 131 of "Chilton's Chevy/GMC Pick-Ups and Suburbans 1970-87" (copyright 1988; 1998 edition available here). See attached image below for reference.


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