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Old 09-15-2008, 04:52 AM
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Head bolt retorque on SBC?

Just completed a ton of work on my 350 SBC (new cam, heads, valvetrain, etc) and now have oil seeping from both head gaskets. The cam broke-in fine and I've had the car out for a few shakedown runs. Noticed oil has dripped onto the fuel pump housing and noticed a little oil seeping from the other side, too. I'm using aluminum heads that were flatted before installation, standard Victor Reinz gaskets, Victor Reinz head bolts and Loctite 572 thread sealer on all bolts. Does this sound like I just need to re-torque the head bolts?

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Old 09-15-2008, 06:10 AM
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While I've never personally had this happen,could the oil actually be coming out at the intake seal
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Old 09-15-2008, 07:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TroyBoy
While I've never personally had this happen,could the oil actually be coming out at the intake seal
I have actually got a leak at the rear of the intake, but the leak I'm talking about in this thread is definitely coming from the head-to-block interface (hence drops of oil on the top of the fuel pump, for example).
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Old 09-15-2008, 07:28 AM
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how would oil show at the head agsket?
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Old 09-15-2008, 07:40 AM
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could it be valve cover gasket leaking?
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Old 09-15-2008, 07:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yevgenievich
could it be valve cover gasket leaking?
Nope. Definitely seeping past the head gaskets by the looks of things.
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Old 09-15-2008, 09:24 AM
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There is no oil that passes through or by the head gaskets on a SBC.
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Old 09-15-2008, 09:35 AM
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not possible... there is no oil that is sealed by the head gasket. It must be coming from somewhere else.

Its very common for oil to seep past intake bolts. If that's happening, it would collect in the gap around the head gasket and then drain at the lowest point.
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Old 09-15-2008, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curtis73
not possible... there is no oil that is sealed by the head gasket. It must be coming from somewhere else.

Its very common for oil to seep past intake bolts. If that's happening, it would collect in the gap around the head gasket and then drain at the lowest point.
Hmm... I don't have any sign of oil or coolant pooling around the intake bolt heads. Is there somewhere else I should be looking (except the end seals where I know I have a fairly significant leak at the rear seal)? Not sure what you mean by collecting in the gap around the head gasket.

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Old 09-15-2008, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by v8hed
Just completed a ton of work on my 350 SBC (new cam, heads, valvetrain, etc) and now have oil seeping from both head gaskets. The cam broke-in fine and I've had the car out for a few shakedown runs. Noticed oil has dripped onto the fuel pump housing and noticed a little oil seeping from the other side, too. I'm using aluminum heads that were flatted before installation, standard Victor Reinz gaskets, Victor Reinz head bolts and Loctite 572 thread sealer on all bolts. Does this sound like I just need to re-torque the head bolts?

Thanks.
I always re-torque aluminum heads. It's an old practice from before graphite head gaskets which are advertised as to not needing re-torquing. But old habits found to be effective die hard in my shop. So anytime I'm building with aluminum, it sees the torque wrench a few weeks after building another follow up at 6 months then at a year and yearly there-after.

Bogie
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Old 09-15-2008, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by v8hed
Hmm... I don't have any sign of oil or coolant pooling around the intake bolt heads. Is there somewhere else I should be looking (except the end seals where I know I have a fairly significant leak at the rear seal)? Not sure what you mean by collecting in the gap around the head gasket.

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I just mean the gap between the head and block at the edge of the gasket. Its a little channel that is collecting the oil from a manifold leak and it falls out of that gap at the lowest point - above the fuel pump.

But I re-state. There is absolutely NO oil that is sealed by the head gasket. The head gasket on an SBC only seals water and compression. I promise that there can't be oil leaking from the head gasket.

Put it this way, if you're leaking oil out of the head gasket, then you have a lot more troubles than oil spots on your driveway.
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Old 09-15-2008, 12:14 PM
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Take a look at this picture. If you have an intake manifold leak (specifically at the corners) the oil seeps into the crack shown by the blue arrow. It drains around the head in that gap and drips out at the lowest point.
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Old 09-15-2008, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curtis73
I just mean the gap between the head and block at the edge of the gasket. Its a little channel that is collecting the oil from a manifold leak and it falls out of that gap at the lowest point - above the fuel pump.

But I re-state. There is absolutely NO oil that is sealed by the head gasket. The head gasket on an SBC only seals water and compression. I promise that there can't be oil leaking from the head gasket.

Put it this way, if you're leaking oil out of the head gasket, then you have a lot more troubles than oil spots on your driveway.
Return oil at each end of the head drains thru the head gasket.

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Old 09-15-2008, 01:38 PM
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It does drain through on some gaskets depending on the gaskets shape and design but it's not under any significant pressure and goes directly to the lifter valley.

I would say it's working it's way to the bottom of the head like Curtis is saying.
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Old 09-15-2008, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by engineczar
It does drain through on some gaskets depending on the gaskets shape and design but it's not under any significant pressure and goes directly to the lifter valley.

I would say it's working it's way to the bottom of the head like Curtis is saying.
Yeah, Im not disagreeing with the source, I'm sure he's seeing the generic Chevy leak in the corner where the intake and heads meet. I've never been able to seal these up 100%, I get several years with non hardending Permatex where I only got from weeks to months with RTV. But in the end the oil wins.

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