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Decision Time: 94 Ex XLT-215,000 heads are off

RustyMacintosh

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City, State
Monterey
Year, Model & Trim Level
94 XLT 4x4 Exploder
So I got sick of the morning misfire--and a minute amount of anti freeze it was using. I have a very clean 94 4x4 XLT. It was towed to the shop.

Heads came off. #4 was wet. Headgasket.
Heads were taken to a very good machine shop that has built my motors for years, including a 16V GLI 2L in a 89 Jetta that is SCCA Sedan Class raced. 7000 rpm all day long, 10 years later it still is holding together. That engine is beat to hell and back and it still is holding together.

So the shop said one head has a noticeable crack between the EX and IT valve. He said JUNK. He told me if he put a hardened seat in there it more than likely very soon pop the seat and the crack expands. He also showed me where the exhaust valves were pounding the heads.

1-3-5 head looks from a visual chk not to have any cracks. He said he would chk it tomorrow.

I have a 93 4.0 77k motor I bought as a long block over the summer.

I took the used motor to the shop, told the kids to pull the heads on the 77k motor, chk for visusal cracks, then yank the shortblock out of the Exploder.

Machine shop showed me at least a dozen of these heads over in the corner. All cracked. He said ITC is a Chinese aftermarket bare block head that he has had decent experience with.

ASSUMING: All the 4 heads are crapola. ITC can get me bare new early style heads for about $200 each. My machine shop said he would assemble them. O'Reiley quoted $1050 for two rebuilt heads....

Since the 94 XLT is a keeper, I am leaning towards new heads on the low mile block.
IF---the heads on the low mile engine do not show cracks between the valves, should I risk them?

or buy new heads. Anyone wish to spin the bottle with me? ITC going to be OK heads? Seems everyone and their brother on-line are selling those Chinese heads.
 



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Rhett

Let Them Eat Cake
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Well, that's a bummer that one head is junk.

I would go with the 77k motor's heads. Or you could swap in the entire engine.
I would only use the Chinese heads as a last resort.
 






RustyMacintosh

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94 XLT 4x4 Exploder
Well, that's a bummer that one head is junk.

I would go with the 77k motor's heads. Or you could swap in the entire engine.
I would only use the Chinese heads as the last resort.
I'm heavily leaning that way....I did find a supplier off Ebay that has rebuilt factory heads (2) for about $340 shipped, they have (2) new complete heads which are Chinese for $380. They have 10000 + positives, few negs. I might if I go that way buy the Square trade insurance.

There is yet another supplier out of Portland Ore, who uses (what they say) only US products. Bare new heads are about $230 each.

I'm at the machine shop today finding out if the 2 off the 77k motor are any good.
 






RustyMacintosh

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94 XLT 4x4 Exploder
BAD NEWS...all four heads are cracked. Even on the low mile engine. Between the seats. Hairline and not-so-hairline cracks. Machine shop also pointed out how the exhaust valves have been pounding out the factory seats.

So, I did this --this morning. NEW 4.0 FORD RANGER CYLINDER HEADS 1990 - 1994 CASTING NUMBER 90TM OR 93TM | eBay

The machine shop showed me how the exhaust valves were beating out the seats on the orginial head.. We looked at various companies that would sell us bare new heads that are all made in China.

Either way one is very limited on what to do. If the original heads had hardened seats installed, the cracks will only get bigger then soon pop the seat out.

The alleged 77k motor. I bought it with my eyes open and have no one to blame but myself. The donor SUV was a 92, with a 5 digit speedo. The carbon ridges on the cylinders is very concerning. My 215k block looks 10times better than this block.

So I stick with the original block. Kudos to the previous owner for maintaining this Exploder like a swiss watch.

News and Updates at 5...stay tuned. When the heads arrive I will upload pictures.
 






massacre

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I went with new King cylinder heads, different castings and so far they have been great
 






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