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Thread: Cu head gasket

  1. #1
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    Default Cu head gasket

    I would like to attemp making the h.g. in copper;
    my question is: which thickness should I use, bearing in mind, I do not own (like most of us) a rolling mill - or a mill for that matter - to bring the plate to the exact tickness, so will have to be in one of the commercial measures i.e. 1mm 1,5mm or 2mm.

    Could the heat treatment matter, I think in the hardened state, it would be eassier to manufacture, what do you reckon?

    Also, do you think that, going all copper, I still need the two studs viton o-rings?

    Thanks very much for your help.
    Last edited by Lorenzo; 05-05-2021 at 07:59 AM.
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    Reason for going against widely accepted wisdom, is a somewhat bothersom seep, which had me already change two sets (base, head, tappets cover).

    Original gasket is 1,5mm (1/16") so I'll be able to find the correct copper sheet;

    from what I've gathered, work in a crude state and anneal before install.
    Last edited by Lorenzo; 05-09-2021 at 05:38 AM.
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    As a general rule for making copper gaskets.
    Cut the copper as bought and then anneal.
    Heat to cherry red and either let cool naturally or quench .
    Both methods have the same result but quenching removes the oxides.
    Use Loctite 3020 spray as a sealer.
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    Gorminrider is offline Forum Sage Past Site Supporter
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    some ideas? .I vaguely remember a few things from my Seagull outboard. You will want to practise a bit first so here's a few vague ideas to try on a scrap ......I think folds and crimps in a copper gasket are hard to completely remove completely so be careful. A sharp blade can be better than shears on SOFT copper but is harder to control. ...Without a perfect "cutting mat" ,punching into a tough piece of wood's endgrain,might give the cleanest hole.

    Also, do you think that, going all copper, I still need the two studs viton o-rings?
    Why wouldn't you? I seem to remember my suzuki block is recessed for it there but I could be mistaken....

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    Copper head gaskets are for racing vehicles and are prone to weeping. You sure that's what you want?

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    No mat no punching; the cutting is gonna be made by a saw frame for the piston holes, trimmed by half round file.
    OK for the spry, absolutely no silicon RTV, just a spry on both surfaces, Loctite 3020, as Zed1015 suggested, or KW Copper Coat or Hylomar for copper head gasket, or perhaps, any copper flange spry, allowed to get tacky, for about two hours, and is paramount that the mating surfaces are flat, no warping (max 0.05mm (0.0019") and with an almost mirror like finish, with very shallow peaks and valleys.

    Also important, to re-torque the bolts, after a complete heat cycle, which involves heathing the engine with no load, and letting it cool for a night, after which, the head can be retorqued.

    This is what I gathered so far, hoping of it being the correct procedure.

    Still uncertain 'bout the Cooper rings (being copper washers clad in viton rubber. being originally mounted in a non copper gasket, so, whith a copper one, there should be probably no use for them (?).

    Any suggestions welcomed.
    Last edited by Lorenzo; 06-09-2021 at 02:02 AM. Reason: Loctite 3020 instead of Loctite 1015
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    Use O rings - but make sure they're thicker than the gasket.
    1.5mm copper, I'd use 2.0mm O rings - ensuring they fit reasonably snugly in the holes.
    And lightly countersink the holes you bore for studs etc.

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    Thanks GregT;
    Anyone happens to have the said rings at hand, so I can order them in the meanwhile, getting the correct OD?

    I suppose I could determine it by taking the head off, but in a cosy and rather crowded environment, leaving as less stuff around, the better... Or, perhaps, measuring the holes in the old gasket and accounting for a mm or two, for the squash? First option would be better.

    In case, the 40x20 cm ( 15,7"x7,8") of the gasket, does not add with the use of a fretsaw, I think I'm gonna cut the gasket in two parts, leaving the big rectangular o-ring to take care of the cam-chain tunnel.
    Last edited by Lorenzo; 05-09-2021 at 06:00 AM.
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    It's not clear why you're doing this when the OEM gasket is easily available and has a far greater odds of success. If the OEM gasket isn't sealing, you have some other problem, and copper will make things worse.

    It has become pretty clear that the available aftermarket gaskets are very poor quality, so it's always best to use OEM.


    If you have a peek at some Allen Millyard videos, he makes and anneals copper head gaskets and paper base gaskets for his six cylinder and other franken-engines.

    This one goes into great detail. He uses 1.2mm 99.9% pure copper sheet.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZvDnOMf8C0

    The correct Swiss army knife appears to be essential...

    On McMaster-Carr here in the states, a 0.05" (1.27mm) sheet of 101 copper (99.9% pure) in a size I think would work for a head gasket (6"x24", about 150x600mm) is close to $50, plus shipping. Wherever you are, it's expensive stuff.
    https://www.mcmaster.com/89675K745
    Last edited by bwringer; 05-09-2021 at 08:40 AM.
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    We have copper;
    I think I'm gonna start with something easier or rather, simpler, just to cut my teeth and re-aquaint myself with the material.

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