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Head work and questions

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  • Head work and questions

    Hi! Today I pulled the head off my 998 due to leaking valves. I am looking for recommendations of a local, hopefully eastside, machine shop that can re-condition the head and convert it to unleaded. I saw C&D Engines in Kirkland, has anyone used them in the past?

    Also any tips on removing the exhaust manifold? I have everything loose but I can’t seem to get it free from the tube under the car to pull it out. Do I need to remove the entire exhaust?

    Thanks in advance.

    1978 New Zealand Mini1000

  • #2
    Can't help with an eastside machine shop. The one I use is just south of Renton.

    What type of exhaust manifold do you have? Standard 1000? 3-into one (Cooper type), or LCB?
    The more I know about Minis, the more I know I don't know about Minis.


    • #3
      Thanks Chuck.. it is the 3 into 1 there is a clamp that head it to the body (or sub frame it is hard to see) that I removed and then it is clamped to the exhaust tube after a 90deg bend. I loosened that clamp and I can get some motion but I can't seem to get enough clearance or leverage to pull it free.


      • #4
        One additional question.. I'm replacing the head gasket, manifold gasket, thermostat gasket and heater gasket. Do you recommend any type of sealant on the gaskets?


        • #5
          There should be no clamp holding the 3 into 1 to the body or the subframe. There should be a clamp holding the manifold to the side of the differential. That has to come off. Then you should be able to wiggle the manifold back and forth enough to loosen it from the rest of the exhaust. A little WD40 wouldn't hurt. You may need to remove one end of the engine stabilizer (engine or body end) so that the engine can be moved to help get the manifold off. If you have the head off that makes removal of the manifold easier.

          Nothing should be needed on the head gasket if the head and block surface are well prepared (including chamfering the stud holes in the block).
          Nothing on the manifold gasket.
          I use a little Permatex Form-A-Gasket sealant on the other two.
          The more I know about Minis, the more I know I don't know about Minis.


          • #6
            Ok got it all out and ready to clean it up and rebuild it. Chuck any thoughts on dual springs vs. single on a 998 daily driver? Any advantages to dual springs while I have it all apart?


            • #7
              Keep it standard for a daily driver. No need to spend the extra money on a close to stock car. Save it for disc brakes!
              The more I know about Minis, the more I know I don't know about Minis.


              • #8
                I had a head redone by AutoSport in the Ballard area of Seattle and can highly recommend them. John, the owner, is a very knowledgeable and approachable guy who owns several Mini's and so is well versed in "LBC" (Little British Car) speak.



                When I put the head back on John and several others recommended using metallic copper coat spay sealant (from K&W or Permatex) with the new head gasket. I also used a bit of Permatex #22071 grey sealant with the new thermostat housing gasket. Can highly recommend both.
                Last edited by Bertam; 08-30-2017, 07:06 PM.


                • #9
                  Thanks all I’m putting it all back together now and the gasket kit came with 8 little o rings. They are tiny and I think they go on top of each valve. But hoping someone can confirm.


                  • #10
                    You can use those seals, but I suggest these, instead:
                    The more I know about Minis, the more I know I don't know about Minis.


                    • #11
                      Ok, I got the head on and everything put back together but I'm having and issue. The car will start but will only run for a few seconds. I see oil pressure building up to like 90-100 and then it stalls.

                      I have been looking on the forums and internet and I'm wondering if they sent me a pre-a+ head. I'm pretty sure my 1978 Mini1000 is an A+ but hoping there is an easy way to tell if the block or head is A+ or pre A+.