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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How can I ensure repair shop used solid steel ("hardened") valve seats when they repair the cylinder head? My thought is to have them show me a copy of the purchase order / invoice from whoever they got it from- shouldn't there be something on it stating valve seats are of the solid steel type?

Any help is appreciated - have to start talking to repair shops this week.

Thanks, dcm59
 

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I would get a rebuild head from cylinder heads international. You shod be able to find them on eBay if the repair shop allows you to supply them with parts
 

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I guess take a couple good close up pictures of before and compare with after. Also measure the seats, I think the replacements are a smidge larger OD.
 

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I would agree the replacement valve seats would be larger, but it might only be a couple of thousandths.
But the 'solid steel' seats might not be better. The original sintered kind are much harder and more durable in terms of wear in the valve train. And the technology of sintered valve seat inserts is more evolved now. I would go with whatever the rebuilder (or the machine shop that repaired your replacement head), than insisting on using a technology that is old.
But good luck!
I fixed up two 2nd gen escorts that had swallowed an inlet valve seat insert. I got two rebuilt escort heads from the ebay seller who made "valves only heads' They supplied me a rebuilt head into which I swapped the parts from my old head, i.e. cam, lifters, rockers, all of the studs, then I shipped the unpopulated head back to them in the box they sent me the rebuilt. The return shipping was free. My cost was $200 for the first one, about $225 when I fixed up another 2nd gen escort a few year later.

I dont know if your repair shop knows they need to take out the pistons to make sure none of them are distorted - which ruins them. ANY pockmarks on the top of a piston is fatal. Just putting on a new gasket and rebuilt head will NOT be enough.... if there is any piston top damage. It will run just fine for a couple of thousand miles, then the distorted piston will fracture, causing worse damage, such as punching a hole in the side of the cylinder wall. The damage to the piston was obvious when held in the hand; the piston was slightly stiff on the wrist pin, and the top compression ring was jammed into the groove. In both engines I replaced the damaged pistons with used ones I took from a junkyard engine I bought for parts. Also put pistons rings on the old pistons, after getting the cylinders honed.

And with this much engine work on a 26year old motor, I would insist they replace the original freeze plugs. Four them are the same size; 1-3/8th inch. The fifth one is 2-3/16' I think, and located on the end of the engine block, where it an only replaced when the transmission is out of the car, and the flywheel is removed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How can I ensure repair shop used solid steel ("hardened") valve seats when they repair the cylinder head? My thought is to have them show me a copy of the purchase order / invoice from whoever they got it from- shouldn't there be something on it stating valve seats are of the solid steel type?

Any help is appreciated - have to start talking to repair shops this week.

Thanks, dcm59
Thanks to all who replied, appreciate it...
 

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pretty much every head comes with the updated seats now. this was a common thing 20 years ago, but all the NOS heads have been circulated. most shops get a reciept from the rebuilder, and it does not specifically say anything about the seats. its common knowledge they get replaced.
 
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