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How likely to have new heads cracked?

WilliamWallaceGS

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Well, it's been a while, so here is an update.

I never got my oil/water issue solved, i thought i did but turns out it didnt work. I even ended up buying a set of ARP head studs because I was tired of always having to get a new set of head bolts and still nothing. I think I actually went through about 5 sets of head gaskets with this crap. Tried fel pro and motorcraft head gaskets and still nothing. So I'm confident there is a crack somewhere. The engine is coming back a part/out soon. I'll take the heads first (for a second opinion from the first test) and if need be the block after.

I like the power of the 410 cam, but I've been itching to try the 422, so I'm conveniently using this as an excuse to upgrade to the 422. I order the 988 springs too, so ill take them to the machine shop with the heads. Just an FYI, SI discontinued our one piece stainless valves, I called them this week asking about them and there wasn't enough demand, so they stopped selling them. Bummer.

So anyway, that's that. I've put/am putting way too much money into this old truck, but it's my first vehicle and I love driving it, so I'm determined to get it running strong with no issues. I'll keep you updated on the machine shops results, might be a couple of weeks, but I'll keep this thread up to date.
 
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jd4242

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I may have a set of SI valves up for sale soon;)also the 422 is a much better cam
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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Heads pressure tested good...again. Like I said I had them pressure tested before in December, but I wanted a second opinion. Interestingly enough, they had to shave off about .003" off the heads to get them flat. Doesn't seem like much, but considering spec is around .006" or less warp, .003" seems considerable to me. I'm wondering if with the heads being a little warped, and the block possibly being warped, it was enough to not seal up. Hmmm.

But dang, these heads were new. Shouldn't they be flat from the get go??? I would expect "YES"

I just got back from talking to them and dropping off my block. It sucks I'm doing this again, but talking to them about the first go around, it seems as though the shop I took my stuff to last year didn't do the best job (obviously). These guys seem pretty good, so we'll see what happens. They hope to at least tear the block down and pressure test it this week, then check all of the dimensions to give me a quote for rebuild (granted the block isn't cracked). More to come.
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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Oh, my rear main seal was already starting to leak too, I noticed that once I got the engine out yesterday. That was replaced by the previous machine shop last year...yikes.
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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well, the block pressure tested good. On top of that, apparently the other shop missed the mark last year, all of my cylinders are out of round by .006" to .007" and need to be bored over. The shop quoted me around 2300 bucks for parts, labor and reassembly, or around 1500 bucks if I assemble everything (this includes the headwork and all already done). Shopping around online for a shortblock hasn't yielded anything much better as far as price, and I've never assembled a shortblock before, so I'm a bit timid with that. I told them I'd sleep on it, I hate to throw more money at this thing, but I've already come this far, ya know?

On top of that, both decks are flat, which leads to the question of why I kept getting oil in my water. I guess maybe the slight warp of the heads could cause this, or I just screwed up every time I did the gasket swap.
 
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jd4242

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well, the block pressure tested good. On top of that, apparently the other shop missed the mark last year, all of my cylinders are out of round by .006" to .007" and need to be bored over. The shop quoted me around 2300 bucks for parts, labor and reassembly, or around 1500 bucks if I assemble everything (this includes the headwork and all already done). Shopping around online for a shortblock hasn't yielded anything much better as far as price, and I've never assembled a shortblock before, so I'm a bit timid with that. I told them I'd sleep on it, I hate to throw more money at this thing, but I've already come this far, ya know?

On top of that, both decks are flat, which leads to the question of why I kept getting oil in my water. I guess maybe the slight warp of the heads could cause this, or I just screwed up every time I did the gasket swap.

I had a hole in my oil passage way into the water jacket on one of my heads.depending on how he tested it, it would be VERY hard to find.if your getting oil in the water and not other way around, the oil passage needs to be check very good.any where else if you have a crack or bad gasket you get water in the oil.I would ask him to double check that area.its the passage that goes up the middle bolt, only place oil comes through the head.
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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I was getting water in the oil as well, although not enough to make my oil look like a milkshake, it was there. I told them several times to pay close attention to the oil passageways because a crack there would cause this issue, and they told me they checked it very well. The uncertainty is driving me nuts, I'm still not sure what I'm going to do.
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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EUREKA!!!! I talked with the shop owner again yesterday, and asked for another pressure test. This time I told him (not the guy doing the test) that they should pay special attention to the oil ports. Well, this AM they did the test, and one passed and the other failed!!! So I'm going forward with my shortblock refresh part 2, and am going to call EQ up and see if they can do anything for me, even if I'm out of warranty. I'm just glad I found something. The new casting (will probably stick with EQ since the other one is fine) we will pressure test prior to assembly just in case.

After all this time it's nice to finally have some sort of closure, feels daggon good.
 
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jd4242

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EUREKA!!!! I talked with the shop owner again yesterday, and asked for another pressure test. This time I told him (not the guy doing the test) that they should pay special attention to the oil ports. Well, this AM they did the test, and one passed and the other failed!!! So I'm going forward with my shortblock refresh part 2, and am going to call EQ up and see if they can do anything for me, even if I'm out of warranty. I'm just glad I found something. The new casting (will probably stick with EQ since the other one is fine) we will pressure test prior to assembly just in case.

After all this time it's nice to finally have some sort of closure, feels daggon good.

I won't say it:shifty_ey:shifty_ey they should replace it, they did mine but I caught it before it was mounted. They also paid for shipping both ways:salute:
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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You can say it, "I TOLD YOU SO!!!", hahaha.

Naw man, I knew what you were saying. And I kept re-iterating to them that they need to check the oil port, but it wasn't until I got the owner on the phone and walked him through it with the head in front of him, and then him witnessing the test itself, that it all worked out. I just figured that a compentant machine shop would know what to look for, but they probably don't do very many of these with cracks in this particular area.
 
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jd4242

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You can say it, "I TOLD YOU SO!!!", hahaha.

Naw man, I knew what you were saying. And I kept re-iterating to them that they need to check the oil port, but it wasn't until I got the owner on the phone and walked him through it with the head in front of him, and then him witnessing the test itself, that it all worked out. I just figured that a compentant machine shop would know what to look for, but they probably don't do very many of these with cracks in this particular area.

Hahahahah:D

Yea I hear yea.the machine shop I use to use years ago did my stock heads and motor and I kept having problems with it.then one day I was at my friends house shooting pool (he owns a trans shop) when I was talk to his buddy.he ended up owning one of the best machine shops around here and I didn't even know.took my whole motor to him and redid EVERYTHING. Said first shop did a bad job and he was the one to find both cracks.one on stock head and one on the new head.said unless you knew you would over look it.he even heats the heads when he test them.

Just glad you found it:salute:
 
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malohnes

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Good Job with locating your issue.

Funny enough, I may be having the same issue. Further, I can't seem to located an very pesky oil leak that seems to come from around the head/block area. Milky oil, though no coolant contamination. Starting to wonder if this is my issue too.

My compression is 183-197 with 95TM heads and a 150K mile stock bottom end. I'm getting tired of messing with this problem. It looks like I may go ahead and try to rebuild my engine and get another set of heads. Good excuse to add a cam and SOHC pan and some go faster goodies, IF my wife is willing.
 
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jd4242

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Good Job with locating your issue.

Funny enough, I may be having the same issue. Further, I can't seem to located an very pesky oil leak that seems to come from around the head/block area. Milky oil, though no coolant contamination. Starting to wonder if this is my issue too.

My compression is 183-197 with 95TM heads and a 150K mile stock bottom end. I'm getting tired of messing with this problem. It looks like I may go ahead and try to rebuild my engine and get another set of heads. Good excuse to add a cam and SOHC pan and some go faster goodies, IF my wife is willing.

What heads do you have again? Milky oil would not be caused by this type of crack.milky oil could be gasket or crack in the water jacket.normally they crack at or around the valves or rear stud.a bad or misaligned lower intake can cause this two tho.its pretty important to tighten the heads and lower intake at the same time when using new heads, also check the bolts after a few heat cycles.

I went through 5 different builds finding cracks and leaks!!!:(once was my fault with the lower intake and this last time I'm pretty sure I blew the gasket off with to much boost.still in the process of tear it down
 
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malohnes

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Sorry for the late reply...

King heads, preassembled. You comment about misalignment is very curious and seems quite plausible. I did torque heads and intake together, but I'm concerned that the heads are fine but the intake is the source of my issues. I'll be digging into this issue next weekend after I finish another couple projects today.

Sad that we have to go through so much to find a good head...quality these days is the pits sometimes.
 
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jd4242

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Sorry for the late reply...

King heads, preassembled. You comment about misalignment is very curious and seems quite plausible. I did torque heads and intake together, but I'm concerned that the heads are fine but the intake is the source of my issues. I'll be digging into this issue next weekend after I finish another couple projects today.

Sad that we have to go through so much to find a good head...quality these days is the pits sometimes.

Yea its sad that machine shops don't check more of their work but when running off that many it would become very costly.just goes to say that if it is critical parg it should always be double checked before being installed. That I have found out the hard way:( all and all I'm still very happy with my EQ heads, they are quality heads but apparently they had a batch made where the oil passage was too thin.they told me there was no way to track these but would offer a free replacement with shipping. They have assured me it has been fixed and was only on the 95tm heads.that's why when I suggest them to people I tell them to order directly from them and not someone that may have a bad head thats been laying around in inventory for a while
 
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malohnes

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Yea its sad that machine shops don't check more of their work but when running off that many it would become very costly.just goes to say that if it is critical parg it should always be double checked before being installed. That I have found out the hard way:( all and all I'm still very happy with my EQ heads, they are quality heads but apparently they had a batch made where the oil passage was too thin.they told me there was no way to track these but would offer a free replacement with shipping. They have assured me it has been fixed and was only on the 95tm heads.that's why when I suggest them to people I tell them to order directly from them and not someone that may have a bad head thats been laying around in inventory for a while

Bingo, you're correct, the buck does stop with us. How often do we have to learn that lesson?
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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Yea its sad that machine shops don't check more of their work but when running off that many it would become very costly.just goes to say that if it is critical parg it should always be double checked before being installed. That I have found out the hard way:( all and all I'm still very happy with my EQ heads, they are quality heads but apparently they had a batch made where the oil passage was too thin.they told me there was no way to track these but would offer a free replacement with shipping. They have assured me it has been fixed and was only on the 95tm heads.that's why when I suggest them to people I tell them to order directly from them and not someone that may have a bad head thats been laying around in inventory for a while

That explains it, when I bought mine it was an overstock sale through AAmidwest, must have been trying to get rid of those crappy castings. And here I was thinking I was getting a good deal, dang.
 
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jd4242

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That explains it, when I bought mine it was an overstock sale through AAmidwest, must have been trying to get rid of those crappy castings. And here I was thinking I was getting a good deal, dang.

Well see that the catch 22.they sell them cheap but we have to spend a little to have them tested and make sure the fit right.which we should no matter who or what it is, the motor is the heart of our trucks.but if they test bad they ship and replace it free, but don't help us that cut the corner and mounted them without testing.

Me and you seem to be the only ones that ran into it through. I've used their 93tms and never had a problem with them.also know a bunch of other people that have run their 95tm with no problems also.so guess we got bad luck or they had them tested first:(
 
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malohnes

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Well, for me, I don't have a shop here in the sticks and the closest machine shop ain't much so I went for it. Doesn't mean mine are bad, but I haven't ruled out the other factors first like gaskets and other components. PAy a little now to save much later or vice versa. Most often we do the opposite that we really ought to and justify those decisions on others. Lessons learned the hard way are the ones we tend to live by the most.

If I find a bad head, I'll track down a good shop and spend the money. If I don't, come rebuild time I'll track down a good shop and spend the money and get it right.
 
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WilliamWallaceGS

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Well, the guy at EQ says that the 95TM head castings have been discontinued. They were looking for a "straggler" for me, but no such luck. They're still trying to figure out how to handle my claim, so we'll see what happens. I did find a place that shows them having 95TMs from EQ, but I need to call to verify.

Does anyone have any other recommendations if I can't source another EQ 95TM? To be honest, I may be better off ditching EQ altogether and just getting a brand new pair of something else, haven't given that a whole lot of thought yet. Looks like I may not be able to run my good head if I can't get a matching second. I see a lot of stuff around on Odessa, and they offer a 2 year warranty on their heads. I can get a bare set for just shy of 400 bucks. I've heard Kings is pretty decent too. At any rate, I don't want a straight 95TM head, and then one of the hybrid 95/98TMs that seem to be all over the place now (at this point, I don't care about the smaller exhaust ports of the hybrid heads, I just want my truck running).
 
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