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1)  "O" Ring installation Pdf file


2)    Gasket Installation

The copper gasket can be cleaned with solvent and gently brushed with a "Scotch Bright" pad to remove any old residue prior to and after annealing. Use the entire pad and the flat of your hand and brush the gasket on a flat hard and clean surface. This process flattens the gasket as well. DO NOT EVER BEAD BLAST- it work hardens and distorts the metal. DO NOT EVER HAMMER- IT WILL DESTROY IT. If it bends by accident it can be restraightened -as long as it is not kinked. It may need to be annealed after straitening. Bending the gasket and then re-straitening will "work harden" the copper. If this is done too much it will crack.

Note: Prior to applying any gasket dressing and final application confirm that all the holes line up properly.

If the gasket has been customized, check it for good fit around all the head studs. The fit should be tight. It is best to remove all the studs and lay the gasket on the deck first then replace the studs. If there is a bit of a bind around any of the head stud holes just relieve that location a bit with a deburring tool or a smooth round file. If this is necessary make sure you clean the burr that remains. Use a fine sandpaper (100grit) on a sanding block.



NOTE: It is unclear if annealing is needed in all applications. There are no controlled tests to date that definitively prove the benefit of annealing. It is felt that annealing will allow copper to "deform" slightly to fill in the surface marks left by machining and to deform where a steel wire "O" ring has been placed around the cylinder bore. Annealing makes the copper soft. This may defeat your purpose if you are trying to optimize on head gasket strength.

If our GWG P/5 gasket dressing is used we believe that annealing is not needed in most cases.

After the gasket has been worked to proper size it is ready for use. It may be necessary to re-anneal the gasket if it has work hardened. Annealing is a heat treatment that softens copper. The gasket may work harden somewhat if you have worked with it but it still should be soft enough for use.

Since there is oxygen within the copper it can only be annealed (using flame heat) a few times before it becomes somewhat brittle. I don't rec. reannealing more than three times.


Heat the metal until it appears just dark red while in a dark location. More red or orange is not necessary. Ideally, a temperature of about 900d F is optimal. Let air cool. Once cool (in about five - ten minutes) brush with the "Scotch-Brite" pad on a flat hard surface to clean and flatten. A flaky post annealing residue is normal after annealing in air. Bright annealing in an inert gas oven is optimal and prevents this oxidation.


It is best to use a gasket dressing to install the head gasket. GASKET WORKS USA copper gaskets do not crush appreciably and therefore need a coating of other material to fill in the minute imperfections on the head and deck. GASKET WORKS USA recommends using our GWG P/5 gasket dressing which has been formulated to meet this need. (See the "What's New section for more details).

Please clean the gasket with a suitable solvent (carburator cleaner, brake cleaner) to remove any oil. Finger prints should be avoided. Gasket dressings don't adhere to oily impurities and interfere with optimal sealing.

I spray the gasket with about 4-5 thin "DUSTING" coats on both sides building the thickness of the dressing. (This dressing will compress substantially and fill in the nooks and small imperfections.) I let the gasket air dry for about 15-20 minutes, preferably longer (over night). Applying any gasket dressing too soon and torquing immediately will just force the dressing out prematurely. The coated gasket should feel dry but not cured. I place the gasket on the block and place the head and torque to 10 lbs and let sit for a while (overnight if I can). At the track If I'm rushed I torque up at 20% increments until done. Otherwise I'll wait until morning to finalize the torque procedure.

I don't have an answer for re-torquing the head after initial firing-up of the motor. Realistically, re-torquing is useful if the gasket "sets" or compresses and changes thickness. GASKET WORKS Copper gaskets don't compress.

For engines that seem to leak water and oil, sometimes YAMMABOND(tm), a product sold only in YAMAHA motorcycle shops will work. This product is similar to Hylomar but is more tenacious and definitely more forgiving. It is very hard to apply and harder to remove.

If you want to use an RTV silicone be gentle and apply sparingly. If you do use it - use it around the coolant and oil passageways only. You can apply this directly to the block with a thin bead. Then apply the gasket (previously coated with P/5) and apply some more RTV on top of the gasket. Remember to not torque too much too soon. You will only prematurely expel the RTV.

Sometimes, using a high quality rubber "O" ring within a gasket passageway that seems to be a leaky spot will work to seal it. Make sure that the "O" ring is thicker than the gasket. When the head is installed it squeezes the "O" ring and makes a good seal.

Post installation: radiator coolant "stop-leak".

Once the engine is back together it sometimes may be necessary to use a coolant "stop-leak". There are many on the market. If you have a favorite use it. I have found that this may prevent an engine "tear-down".



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