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Old 03-14-2007, 08:45 PM
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SBC Front pan seal leak

I have a 383 I built all new except for the block. It is still on my test stand with all the kinks worked out but a front pan seal. I put a after market 7qt pan and a chrome timing cover on it and like everything else not sure what country they came from Today I flipped it over and put on another set of new gasgets and still get an after run drip.. From 1955 to 75 the seal was .225 thick and after was .410 thick. although it is a 72 block the cover and pan appear to need the .410 which I have used both times which seems to be a tad to much but the .250 seems way to small. One or the other must be wrong or junk either the pan or the timing cover or in this case both. Any suggestion? My thoughts are the pan must be post 1975 and the Felpro kit I had at first had both sizes.

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Old 03-14-2007, 09:37 PM
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I've heard the same stories from others who bought this chrome-plated crap. I guess if you want quality chrome stuff, you're gonna have to purchase good quality parts and have them chromed yourself.

I've never cared for chrome myself. I like paint and powder coat.
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Old 03-14-2007, 09:38 PM
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reply= oil leak

I had the same problem on my sbc 67 camaro. You need to get rid of that chrome thin timing cover, " they stink" . They flex as you tigten them. My engine always seem to leak right on the bottom lip of the timing cover. So I got rid the chrome cover and bought a polished cast aluminum timing cover. They are alot thicker than those flimsy chrome covers. Also I bought the one piece fel-pro oil pan gasket. And only use rtv silicone in the corners, not the whole gasket. Be careful not to pinch the gasket while tightening. That should cure your problem, it did on mine . Good Luck
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Old 03-14-2007, 10:15 PM
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I already pitched the original cover figuring it was history which begs the question ,what is a quality one? I'm all for it this suks.
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Old 03-14-2007, 10:33 PM
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I've had one experience with a Mr Gasket two-piece timing cover...leak city and probably Chinese. Other than that, I've stayed with the original GM covers as long as they weren't all bent up. Just insure the bolt holes are flat.

As Tech said, I've never understood the chrome stuff. There's an old saying, "If it don't go, chrome it."
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Old 03-15-2007, 12:58 AM
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good quality parts = original GM
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Old 03-15-2007, 03:39 AM
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Clean any chrome off the gasket surface and put a light coat of high tem silicone or #2 Permatex on the gasket. Worked on mine.
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Old 03-15-2007, 04:44 AM
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Sand paper is your friend. Remove the chrome from the sealing surface.
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Old 03-15-2007, 08:07 AM
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I could have been more specific , it is leaking at the corners. Someone also mentioned using thicker or two out side gasgets to help mate the corners better. I will get another cover today and 1 piece gasget and if I want it shiney I could take it to my brothers custom shop in Indy now that the weather is letting up.
It just wasn't this way 35 ,40 yrs ago was it? I don't know of any actual speed shops here near Indy and when you do order stuff it is a crap-shoot on where it may have been made
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Old 03-16-2007, 12:25 AM
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leaky

Look at the back of the cheap sbc chrome timing covers and compare it to an original one. Where the oil pan seal groove is welded to the cover, the chrome ones are only spot welded in several areas, whereas the oe covers are welded or joined all the way around. You can actually get leaks between the spot welded areas. Doesn't sound like this is your problem but now you know anyways. For anyone wanting to use a chrome cover, I would silicone that area inside the cover or even better, solder it. I just went with an aluminum one. Fel-Pro and some others sell a one piece oil pan gasket. I have one on my 400 SBC, but not on the road yet. Can't wait to see if it leaks.
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Old 03-16-2007, 12:44 AM
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Doc here,

Also let the gasket soak in oil for awhile before installing it, this will allow more expansion and flex to it when in place.

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