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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wasn't sure where to post this, but I'll try here.

I installed my repro 69 BB valve covers tonight. They are the top of the line imports carried by Rick's and the other vendors. Made in Taiwan, but very heavy, look good and generally correct.

The problem came when I tried to install the top three bolts. The recesses are not deep enough to allow you to get a socket on them. I ended up doing a lot of open end wrench flipping, a microsnick at a time to get them fairly tight.

Do the original GM covers have enough room to get a socket on the top bolts?

Has anyone else had this problem with the repros? What was the magic trick you found to get them tight?

If it is a known issue with the repros, I will just go get some smaller headed 1/4 inch bolts and live with it. If no one else using the repro covers has run into this, I may get another set to try.
 

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Just installed a set myself. Same issues, but I don't think mine was as bad as yours as maybey on 2 bolts on each side were a bit tough. I uused a deep well 1/4 drive 12 point socket, as the wall is apparantly a little thinner on it. I would also think given the low torque required, you could chuck the socket into a lathe and trim the wall thickness down some.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Like I said in my original, these are Taiwan made. Again, they are generally correct with the right locations for ignition wire looms and the driver side has the tab for the temp sender wire. The driver side does not have the bump out at the rear like OE.

I tried loosening them and shifting them down to get more clearance for the top bolts, but that was a no go. I ended up using 1/4 - 20 transmission pan bolts (3/8 inch head) from the Help aisle for now.

I looked at the Crane covers (man does their website make my head hurt), but since I am not doing a "correct" resto (having a 123 VIN on the dash makes a lot of decisions pretty easy ;) ), I decided to use these overseas repros.

So, I guess the moral for anyone doing a later search is that the top quality imported repro big block valve covers are nice, if not 100% correct, but be prepared to have some issues getting the top three bolts installed.
 

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I found the correct ones and had them chromed. Paid about $150 for pair, and chroming cost about $250!! but at least the bolts fit :)

Right about the low torque.....about 80 inch-pounds as I recall. Note I said INCH-pounds.
 

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I also had the same clearance problem but with the bottom 4 bolts on each cover, not the top 3 bolts. These were also the ones that Rick's sells with the bump in for the brake booster. I was able to use an open end wrench to install them but there was no room for any washers.
 

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I also had the same clearance problem but with the bottom 4 bolts on each cover, not the top 3 bolts. These were also the ones that Rick's sells with the bump in for the brake booster. I was able to use an open end wrench to install them but there was no room for any washers.
The bump-out I'm talking about is small, about the size of the last joint on your pinky. The recess on the ones you often see is not correct. Of course, I bought that pair first. The resto houses are often not too quick point out that the parts are "functional" but not correct. Especially if the correct ones are not available.
 
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