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Stripped thermostat housing threads on intake manifold

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nmb86

Farmall Cub
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All the bolts I've removed from the engine have grade 5 markings (3 lines), except for the flange head bolts for the valve and rocker arm covers. As far as I can tell, they're stock. I got my torque value from the manual,.

As far as bolt length, it's as I said. If I use the three inch long bolts, it bottoms out way before the bolt head comes anywhere near contacting the housing.

I do not have AC on the truck.

In the case of the thermostat housing, the bolt didn't stretch. I did have the one intake manifold bolt that strentched, and I will pull a couple others to see if they stretched as well.
 

TBAKPhi22

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Had that happen on one of my engines... I just used a tap to make it a 7/16" instead of a 3/8" thread. Been fine ever since.
I don't even think I had to drill out the thermostat housing for the bolt to go through? Could be wrong about that though
 

Dana Strong

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Another way to repair this might be to accurately bore the old hole a bit larger and machine a threaded insert to be a slip/press fit, then use a Loctite Retaining Compound when assembling, perhaps #620:
620 Description
When it comes to bonding locating pins in radiator assemblies, sleeves in pump housings and bearings in auto transmissions – especially when you need high temperature resistance up to 232°C (450°F) – LOCTITE® 620 is a good choice. This high strength, anaerobic-curing retaining compound is designed for bonding cylindrical fitting parts to prevent loosening and leakage due to shock and vibration. It cures when confined in the absence of air between close-fitting metal surfaces, and can fill gaps from 0.15mm - 0.25mm (0.006" - 0.01").

Ideal for shafts, gears, pulleys and similar cylindrical parts

Operating temperature: -55°C to 230°C (-65°F to 450°F)
Here's a link to all the Loctite retaining compounds:

BTW, the new material can be found much cheaper on Ebay and perhaps elsewhere.
 

nmb86

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Understood. I had not read your posts thoroughly enough. You explained it pretty well back in post #7.
No worries, hopefully I didn't come off sounding curt.

I appreciate all of the suggestions from everyone. Of course, now a whole new can of worms has been opened up.

I just looked at the torque chart again and realize I COMPLETELY MISREAD THE DAMN THING! I should have been torquing all the 3/8-16 bolts I've done to between 25 and 30 except the water pump mounting (housing or pump itself?) which does call for 40-45. I must have read mixed the two lines up and went from there. Looks like I'm going back through and checking bolts on everything using 3/8-16 I've installed since I've overtorqued everything except maybe the oil filter base. Hopefully I didn't damage any other threads on the engine itself. This really sucks with the intake manifold as I put RTV on the bolt threads based on some of the suggestions I've read on here.

Out of curiousity, I went out to the garage and took another look at the bolts I pulled from the engine. The intake manifold bolts are a mix of grade 5 and grade 8. The valve cover flange bolts don't have markings on the head other than an E in the middle. The two thermostat housing bolts are grade 8 and the threads are pretty bad.
 

Patrick Morris

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The valve cover flange bolts don't have markings on the head other than an E in the middle. The two thermostat housing bolts are grade 8 and the threads are pretty bad.
I wouldn't worry about the grade of the valve cover bolts since they need a light torque, probably better measured in inch-lbs Hah. (I don't remember what the book says about them.) You don't want to squish down too hard on the valve cover. It's just sheet metal on gaskets material. The bolt holes will crater inward with too much torque, as you compress the gasket in those small areas. This leads to another procedure when you've removed the VC. Check with with a straight edge that the mating surface is flat. If not, you can knock the bent-inward bolt hole areas flat again with a ball peen hammer. Carefully.

On the t-stat holes stripping, you could be right that some PO got the process started by overdoing them.
 

Don B

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While I’ve used helicoil a lot the first thing I try is some heat followed by a liquid wrench soak and then drill out the bolt with a LEFT hand drill bit. Very often the bolt comes out with no further action required for a new bolt installation other than a clean up of the old hole with a thread chasing bit, not a tap. Works for me for the most part.
 

nmb86

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I wouldn't worry about the grade of the valve cover bolts since they need a light torque, probably better measured in inch-lbs Hah. (I don't remember what the book says about them.) You don't want to squish down too hard on the valve cover. It's just sheet metal on gaskets material. The bolt holes will crater inward with too much torque, as you compress the gasket in those small areas. This leads to another procedure when you've removed the VC. Check with with a straight edge that the mating surface is flat. If not, you can knock the bent-inward bolt hole areas flat again with a ball peen hammer. Carefully.

I used regular Ultra-Black RTV for the valley pan and valve covers. Even after straightening the bolt holes on both, the gasket wouldn't compress much at the ends where there are no bolts holding it down. I'm also not a fan of cork gaskets. For both, I ran the bolts down until the sealant started to squeeze out then gave it an hour or so before torquing in steps to 172 inch pounds (manual says 14-16 foot pounds). Those are all 5/16-18, I didn't screw that torque up.

While I’ve used helicoil a lot the first thing I try is some heat followed by a liquid wrench soak and then drill out the bolt with a LEFT hand drill bit. Very often the bolt comes out with no further action required for a new bolt installation other than a clean up of the old hole with a thread chasing bit, not a tap. Works for me for the most part.

On the t-stat holes stripping, you could be right that some PO got the process started by overdoing them.

In this case, the threads themselves are stripped out of the intake block. The intake bolts themselves will probably come out fine, I'm just worried about leaving overtorqued bolts in place. I've used plenty of left hand drill bits to drill out stuck/sheared bolts.
 

Patrick Morris

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I used regular Ultra-Black RTV for the valley pan and valve covers. Even after straightening the bolt holes on both, the gasket wouldn't compress much at the ends where there are no bolts holding it down. I'm also not a fan of cork gaskets. For both, I ran the bolts down until the sealant started to squeeze out then gave it an hour or so before torquing in steps to 172 inch pounds (manual says 14-16 foot pounds). Those are all 5/16-18, I didn't screw that torque up.
Sounds like you did the best you can. Are you saying you did or did not use the cork gaskets? (Did you go with straight RTV only?)

Getting a little off your main topic, but I sure hate valve cover leaks. Mine wept oil onto the exhaust manifold for years and stinking up the joint. It's why I "paid the big bucks" for the cast aluminum ones from IHPA a couple of years ago. I wanted rigidity there, plus a nice, flat machined surface for even clamping all around. More or less. It's over two years later now and, so far so good. I did the cork gaskets though. Not much choice these days, I only have one of the older rubber looking gaskets so that one remains a spare. I did the sealing with Hylomar this time, not RTV. It's a non-hardening sealant. That also seems to be working fine.

And I only went with a light-to-med hand torque. I don't think it's anything near 14 ft-lbs. I don't think they need that much with these covers. The aluminum covers came with stainless cap screws plus lock washers. They take a 1/4" hex, so use something like this to tighten them periodically:

1713981113616.png
 

Bo185

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25-30ft is nothing. Basically good and tight. I would torque a few things with correct torque to get a feel for what that is. Then just use a wrench and tighen. Its not putting the space shuttle in orbit so you can do it by feel. LOL Yes there are some things that need torqued everytime. Water neck ain't that big a deal for one.

If you haven't had your torque wench cal'ed depending on what brand it is, it could be way off too. Name brand units usually will be in cal and stay in cal. Usually for $50-75 is the cost. I have mine done after I buy new then will recal every 4-5 years just to make sure. 2 seconds of googleing shows 5 places in your area that do tool cal. Check insurance.
 

nmb86

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Sounds like you did the best you can. Are you saying you did or did not use the cork gaskets? (Did you go with straight RTV only?)

I installed the valley pan cover with the cork gasket and even after straightening the bolt holes as best I could, the front edge was barely making contact, much less actually compressed. I doubt the back edge was any better. I've not had much luck when it comes to mixing cork gaskets with RTV, so I tossed the cork gasket and just used RTV. I didn't bother to even try with the cork gaskets with the valve covers, just used RTV. My Mazda pickup has a few engine parts that either call for RTV specifically, or don't have gaskets available without purchasing an entire engine kit, so I'm use to it anyway.

25-30ft is nothing. Basically good and tight. I would torque a few things with correct torque to get a feel for what that is. Then just use a wrench and tighen. Its not putting the space shuttle in orbit so you can do it by feel. LOL Yes there are some things that need torqued everytime. Water neck ain't that big a deal for one.

If you haven't had your torque wench cal'ed depending on what brand it is, it could be way off too. Name brand units usually will be in cal and stay in cal. Usually for $50-75 is the cost. I have mine done after I buy new then will recal every 4-5 years just to make sure. 2 seconds of googleing shows 5 places in your area that do tool cal. Check insurance.

My torque wrenches are Craftsman, pre Sears closing. I've called three of the calibration labs in the area, I have yet to get ahold of someone or be called back. Customer service has gone to crap. One is near my office, so next time I go into work, I'll just drop in. While I'm not putting the space shuttle in orbit, I am use to working on helicopters and aircraft and the shops I've worked at required us to torque everything, so it's habbit. I know it's overkill on bolts not part of the rotating assembly itself or the cylinder heads.
 

Bo185

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I installed the valley pan cover with the cork gasket and even after straightening the bolt holes as best I could, the front edge was barely making contact, much less actually compressed. I doubt the back edge was any better. I've not had much luck when it comes to mixing cork gaskets with RTV, so I tossed the cork gasket and just used RTV. I didn't bother to even try with the cork gaskets with the valve covers, just used RTV. My Mazda pickup has a few engine parts that either call for RTV specifically, or don't have gaskets available without purchasing an entire engine kit, so I'm use to it anyway.

I use RTV, I make a bead for it to sit in at the front and back and a tiny amount on the sides. Let it flash over then install over. Much easier as you have found.

My torque wrenches are Craftsman, pre Sears closing. I've called three of the calibration labs in the area, I have yet to get ahold of someone or be called back. Customer service has gone to crap. One is near my office, so next time I go into work, I'll just drop in.
Just realize they usually handle large shops so there typically isn't someone sitting in the office waiting to answer a random call. But they should call you back. Place I use locally I drop off and get them back in 3-4 days if not sooner.

While I'm not putting the space shuttle in orbit, I am use to working on helicopters and aircraft and the shops I've worked at required us to torque everything, so it's habbit. I know it's overkill on bolts not part of the rotating assembly itself or the cylinder heads.
Nice are you an A&P? I been an A&P for 20 years. You should have a feel for the torque. I can usually tell the torque by feel now over the years. So I don't bother with the simple bolts. The intake, heads, etc I do torque.

Also I used my own torque winches at the shops I worked and and the company cal'ed them for free. So if you work at a shop directly as in the tool room if they will do that. They will log it in so have to keep up with cal but you can take it home to use etc.
 

nmb86

Farmall Cub
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Brighton, CO
Nice are you an A&P? I been an A&P for 20 years. You should have a feel for the torque. I can usually tell the torque by feel now over the years. So I don't bother with the simple bolts. The intake, heads, etc I do torque.

Also I used my own torque winches at the shops I worked and and the company cal'ed them for free. So if you work at a shop directly as in the tool room if they will do that. They will log it in so have to keep up with cal but you can take it home to use etc.

Nope, started off as avionics and never got an A&P. I've always been in business aviation and worked for one manufacturer where production and service center were all under repair station and used inspectors. Between there and the military though, I've done way more than enough to qualify, except because of the processes had never been able to properly document sign-offs, so the couple times I tried I got denied to take the tests, even with letters of recommendation. I no longer work on aircraft, I've been a technical trainer for about 10 years now, except there was a year break when I went back to the hangar floor to get our of the department I was in, but now I work for a hardware/service provider in their training department. I asked the repair station area where they repair the boxes that come back with faults, but they won't calibrate personal tools.

As far as the repair station procedures, all screws and bolts required torque verified by an inspector with torque stripe applied. Like I said, it's just habbit now and it's a step that make me feel better at the end of the job (at least when I don't misread the manual and overtorque them all). Each team had a shared toolbox, it was easier for tool control purposes, no personal tools allowed on the floor. All torque wrenches were kept in the tool room, but I didn't trust half of them because I'd check one out and it was either bottomed out below the lowest torque or signed in and put away still set. Plus watching people double torque or use the torque wrench to break torque always made me surprised when tools came back having passed calibration.
 

Patrick Morris

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I installed the valley pan cover with the cork gasket and even after straightening the bolt holes as best I could, the front edge was barely making contact, much less actually compressed. I doubt the back edge was any better. I've not had much luck when it comes to mixing cork gaskets with RTV, so I tossed the cork gasket and just used RTV. I didn't bother to even try with the cork gaskets with the valve covers, just used RTV. My Mazda pickup has a few engine parts that either call for RTV specifically, or don't have gaskets available without purchasing an entire engine kit, so I'm use to it anyway.
I did my valley pan gasket with whatever gasket came in the Fel-Pro kit, plus black RTV of some type. That was about 25 years ago. I recall not being impressed with how the cover and gasket fit at some points around the valley. But it's worked pretty well. For a number of years I thought it was failing because I always developed a little puddle of oil at the back of the pan that I needed to swab up every so often. But I eventually discovered that it had always been due to the PCV valve!... which was ancient by that time. After replacing it plus the PCV hose, no more leakage in that area.

TBH, I don't know that the valley pan gasket is subject to leaks much anyway. Not like any portion of it is ever immersed in oil, unlike the valve covers. Just gets a little spray of vapor I think. Probably just serves equal function in keeping dirt out of the engine.

Only thing that really leaks chronically on my engine anymore is the oil pan gasket. That resealed at the same time as the valley pan and using exactly the same method. But the oil pan obviously sees a lot more splashing and sloshing of oil in its liquid form.

Boy, I wish someone would make something like these oil pan reinforcement rails for the SV engine like is made for other engines:


Someone with a CNC plasma cutter could make fast work of them, maybe out of .120" steel? Or even 3/16". Just need a gasket and a pan to perfect the design. This would be to get a higher and more even pressure all around the edge of the pan.

The valve cover on my old Dodge 4-cyl engines was similar to your Mazda. The FSM called for using a couple of U-shaped rubber seals over the ends (camshaft caps?) and a bead of RTV along everywhere else.
 

nmb86

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Only thing that really leaks chronically on my engine anymore is the oil pan gasket. That resealed at the same time as the valley pan and using exactly the same method. But the oil pan obviously sees a lot more splashing and sloshing of oil in its liquid form.

Boy, I wish someone would make something like these oil pan reinforcement rails for the SV engine like is made for other engines:

The valve cover on my old Dodge 4-cyl engines was similar to your Mazda. The FSM called for using a couple of U-shaped rubber seals over the ends (camshaft caps?) and a bead of RTV along everywhere else.

I ditched the FE2 engine a few years ago and installed a 2.0 DOHC from a first gen Kia Sportage. It's the same engine Mazda used in the 626 and other cars outside the US, but rear wheel drive instead of front wheel drive. Kia used it under license through 2002. Doubled by torque and horsepower and gave me fuel injection. The only modifcation besides wiring was drilling a hole in the bellhousing for a crank position sensor.

In both cases, those engines have a tray between the block and the oil pan itself. They call for RTV. I considered using RTV on the V304, but the ridge on the mating surface go up towards the block instead of down to give additional space for RTV to sit. I wasn't as confident in RTV with that, though I'm sure it would work. For that I used the cork gasket with Permatex (well, knockoff brand Veraseal) no. 3. At least the pan has bolts on all sides and enough to evenly compress the gasket.

The camshaft end caps call for RTV, but I use anaerobic sealer, same as the rear main bearing cap on AMC 4.2/4.0.
 
Last edited:

Patrick Morris

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I considered using RTV on the V304, but the ridge on the mating surface go up towards the block instead of down to give additional space for RTV to sit. I wasn't as confident in RTV with that, though I'm sure it would work. For that I used the cork gasket with Permatex (well, knockoff brand Veraseal) no. 3. At least the pan has bolts on all sides and enough to evenly compress the gasket.
I assume you're talking about these formed features, which are indentations if looking at the pan upside down, like this. Yeah I think that's to pinch down on a gasket and form a tight spot. Should work well with a gasket and some small amount of goop on both sides.

1713995949407.png

Still, though. I'll bet an extra piece of metal along there around most of the pan sure wouldn't hurt things I'll bet. I just bought a plasma cutter. Maybe I'll buy a gasket (for a pattern to start) and some steel, and try to make a set of those someday. Those bolts are 5/16"-18 Gr5? What's the chart say say for torque? 13 or 17 ft lbs, depending on if the bolts are plain or plated.
 

nmb86

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I assume you're talking about these formed features, which are indentations if looking at the pan upside down, like this. Yeah I think that's to pinch down on a gasket and form a tight spot. Should work well with a gasket and some small amount of goop on both sides.

View attachment 249895

Still, though. I'll bet an extra piece of metal along there around most of the pan sure wouldn't hurt things I'll bet. I just bought a plasma cutter. Maybe I'll buy a gasket (for a pattern to start) and some steel, and try to make a set of those someday. Those bolts are 5/16"-18 Gr5? What's the chart say say for torque? 13 or 17 ft lbs, depending on if the bolts are plain or plated.
Yep, those are the indentions I'm talking about. On the oil pans I've pulled that call for normal RTV only, the indentions go into the top side of the pan and create a channel. The bolts on the IH are 5/16-18, the manual calls 14-16 foot pounds.
 
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