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Re: [Mgs] MGB Head gasket reuse anf head bolt torque

To: "Robert J. Guinness" <>, MG List <>
Subject: Re: [Mgs] MGB Head gasket reuse anf head bolt torque
From: Barney Gaylord <>
Date: Tue, 08 Apr 2008 11:56:27 -0500
At 10:50 PM 4/6/2008 -0500, Robert J. Guinness wrote:
>In reinstalling the head on my 1963 MGB engine I am using a new 
>Payen Head gasket.  When I torqued the #9 head bolt it broke at 40 
>ft/lbs  (I used new studs).  I have 2 question:s  1. Can I reuse the 
>new head gasket after it had been torqued to 40 ft/lbs?  2.  The 
>manual says the torque is 50 ft/lbs.  Is that correct, or should it 
>be lower? ....

1.)  I will be bold enough to to say yes, you can R&R the head and 
use the same gaket, as it was not pulled up to full torque and the 
engine was run.  The Payen head gaskets are very good quality and 
should have no problem with this.

2.)  50 lb-ft torque is correct for the iron head.  Some aluminum 
haed manufactures specify 40.  Head studs of original quality will 
tolerate 50-60 with some safety margin.  Any stud that breaks at 40 
is definitely sub-standard.  If you have just installed a complete 
new set of studs, one breaking at 40 makes the entire set 
suspect.  If you have no way of testing every individual stud, I 
would be inclined to return the entire set to the supplier and demand 
a refund, then buy the next set somewhere else.

3.)  You didn't ask this, but there is no reason to buy special high 
strength head studs for a street engine.  It is important for 
standard (normal strength) studs to be "strong enough" for the 
application, as in similar quality and strength compared to the 
original studs.  Most people have no way of testing the individual 
studs, so must rely on the suppliers to get it right.  IMHO, any 
supplier who would allow even one sub-standard stud into a customer's 
hands is negligent.  Customers should demand suitable quality control 
on fasteners, and suppliers should be responsible enough to do 
it.  If you accept a broken fastener without returning the whole set, 
the supplier has very little incentive to improve the situation.


Barney Gaylord
1958 MGA with an attitude (and lots of original head studs)
Support Team.Net

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