antifreeze leaking from heads - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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antifreeze leaking from heads

Well to say I'm pissed is just PC.
I filled the radiator with 50/50 and cycled engine several times.. saw water dripping on the floor and found this pin hole leaking from my passenger side head.....Ugg I was almost ready to fire up.

Before the big mechanical rebuild and disassembly there was no leaks.....
I sent the motor to a local performance machine shop for tear down and inspection. It was determined that I only needed rings/bearings/timing chain. The heads were accordingly inspected and new valves installed, seats reground, seals and guides inspected. The head was also hot tanked and surfaced. I guess I thought is was standard practice to magnaflux before machining to verify no problems.

Should the shop have found this pin hole? More importantly is this a repairable problem?

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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 05:55 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Machine shop should have picked up on that. Can be repaired,but head must be removed.
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 06:02 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

I ain't never heard of a pin hole in a cast iron head unless it's coming from one of the freeze plugs!
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 06:05 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

They did all that work to the heads and didn't pressure test hem first ? I'd be over there on Monday with the head telling them they owe me the repair & a top end gasket set at the very least and then I'd find another shop for any future machine work. Badbird click on his pics. It's a smallblock. What freezeplugs ? In the first pic it looks like it's coming out right through the casting between the exhaust port & the sparkplug hole. Is that the leak you're referring to ? Never seen anything like that either. If the heads don't have any special casting dates I'd be looking for a different head (same casting numbers of course)
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Yes the leak is that small black spot near the head bolt. What could have caused this? Rust ??
I will call them on Mon Am.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 06:19 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

They should have found this.
If they are a reputable shop they should take care of this problem.

The only Mustang I'd ever own is a Fender.

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'14 5.0 Mustang
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 06:31 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Upon checking the pics, I am totally baffled as I've never heard of or seen anything like that!....That's a weak spot in the casting for sure!.....I don't like it and I think you should be looking for another pair of heads!....If you can't afford then get this welded up and hope for the best!
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 06:50 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by ace's68 View Post
They should have found this.
If they are a reputable shop they should take care of this problem.
Guys,

Dont be so hard on the machine shop.

It is very very very very very (did I say very ) rare to pressure test a cast iron head unless you suspect a problem in the first place. We magnaflux every cast iron head that comes into the shop, but magnaflux would not have found a pin hole like this. We only pressure test cast iron heads if there is some evidence of leakage. This is where a good set of eyes "might" have caught it while it was being machined, but that is not an area you look at expecting to see a pin hole. Would have to say this is the first one I have ever seen.

My biggest concern at this point is if that head is corroded through from the inside, what is the other one like ? Was this possibly a marine engine at one time ?

If that pinhole is the only problem, it should be very easy to repair. Personally, if it was my own car I would not even pull the head off the engine. Drill it out and tap it for a tapered crack stitching pin and be done with it but ..... it would probably be a good idea to look at the rest of the casting through the water jacket holes in the deck.

Lousy situation no matter which way you look at it

Bill Koustenis
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1971 Chevelle "Heavy Chevy" original owner


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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 06:56 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larrys68Camaro View Post
Yes the leak is that small black spot near the head bolt. What could have caused this? Rust ??
I will call them on Mon Am.
If that's rust it goes all the way through into the water jacket. Personally I'd never trust that head and would try to find a replacement. What's the casting number ? It's probably 40 years old and spent half it's life outside in the weather. I know you've already tied up a bunch of money at this point but when I was doing my latest engine for my 67 project I had 2 pretty decent pairs of double hump heads. Both sets were 461s if I remember correctly. Either set would have needed new valves, guides, resurface, maybe a seat or 2, new springs, etc. which equals $ spent on 40+ year old technology. Instead I spent $650 on a brand spanking new pair of RHS heads with new stainless 2.02 valves, new performance springs, etc. and don't have to worry about having a problem. Got a set of hardened pushrods thrown in for free. It was a guy who was selling them on Ebay a couple years ago so prices may have changed but I'd have probably had to spend close to that amount to rebuild one of my sets of 40 year old heads and had less horsepower when I was finished.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

The Block is a numbers matching 327 but the heads were replaced in "1986"
Bertfam had decoded the numbers last week.

"The heads are either 1.94 or 2.02 "Fulie" heads, common in just about every mid to high performance small block from 1964 through 1966. Double check your date code (A143 - January 14th, 1963), because this is too early a casting date for these heads."

I looked everything over when I got everything back from the shop and didnt see evidence of excessive corrosion.

I have more pics on webshots of the bare head but it doesnt show anything to me
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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 07:40 PM
 
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

I'm w/ bill here and would stitch-pin it and go!

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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 10th, 09, 09:10 PM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Wow, I have never seen anything like that in any make or model! Very strange to say the least. One thing I did notice is the paint in the spark plug holes. That isn't good since the threads are the ground side of the plug.
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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 11th, 09, 04:19 AM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Guys,


If that pinhole is the only problem, it should be very easy to repair. Personally, if it was my own car I would not even pull the head off the engine. Drill it out and tap it for a tapered crack stitching pin and be done with it but ..... it would probably be a good idea to look at the rest of the casting through the water jacket holes in the deck.

Lousy situation no matter which way you look at it
I agree with Bill. Try to fix it without pulling it. If it were mine I probably would JB Weld that hole because I don't know how to "pin" it.

I would also be worrying about how corroded inside the heads are and hope nothing rusts through later on.

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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 11th, 09, 06:09 AM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

I would just run a tap through it and put a screw/plug in it...looks like its easy to get to.

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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old Jan 11th, 09, 08:46 AM
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Re: antifreeze leaking from heads

Like someone mentioned, the inside was rusting , loosing metal content long before the head job, when head was hot tanked or vat, the little flake fell out of position. This is the first I have ever heard of. Stitch or tap . If the head was off and out of alternatives, I may even try to brass weld but its real close to the head clamping area. JB weld also works wonders but needs to be dry .

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