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Which head gasket to buy?


davidbradley

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My 1970 Vitesse has been fitted with a change of engine, but suffers from huge water consumption, such that the steam from the exhaust fills a garage so you cant see out in about 30 seconds.
I've just finished taking the head off.
I think I can see a failure point between No.6 & the water jacket - which is better than a cracked block that the previous owner believed.
Now the tricky bit.
The engine number is KE11396HE (the letters are right, I may have got a few digits wrong on the number).
The tops of the bores are recessed, something like 18 thou, maybe even 20 - hard to tell.
The old gasket - but it's been recently as part of a rebuild has  - has the gasket ring round the bore hole folded over, but on the underside of the gasket it only stands around 10thou proud.
To my mind this leaves 8thou(ish) of a gap waiting to allow gases to force their way into the water jacket.

Is anyone please familiar with what the lip on the gasket should be like, on what I think is in fact a GT6 engine
There was no tag on the gasket that showed when the head was in place, which I think there should be - at least on the original gaskets
Thanks

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KE does indeed sound like a GT6 engine and must be a fairly late one if it has recessed bore for the fire-rings (domed pistons too?)

The head gasket should have quite a thick rolled metal section around the bores - thicker on one side (the bottom) to match the recesses in the block.  It should also have a tag which sticks out of the back of the engine and one side of which should be marked "top".  No tag means wrong gasket and not surprising you have issues....

For best results, buy Payen gaskets, probably still available from your local motor factors.  If you happen to be in SW England, I have one in my garage bought in error.

Cheers

Nick

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KE11****** would be a domed-piston GT6 engine and would require the tabbed head gasket for the recessed bores. Payen are good, talk to Chic Doig in Scotland 01592 722666 and he'll get you the correct one.
With luck a proper gasket is all you'll require.

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