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RonW
Buffalo

44 Posts

Posted - 09 Jul 2016 :  12:17:44 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Just had an idea. Would it be easier to put studs in the heads and use nuts to tighten the headers?
Anyone ever try this?

Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4797 Posts

Posted - 09 Jul 2016 :  08:06:34 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Ron--I've thought about using studs/nuts to secure headers, but never gave it a try. I've used different sized heads on header bolts to gain better tool access so they could be tightened and finally settled on the smallest hex head in SS.

With some header design, and I speculate here, there may be insufficient room to clear studs when trying to mount the header on to the studs. Moreover, the headers I've installed on my 79 TA (Hooker Super Comp #4109 and Heddman's) all had key hole slots in the flange to help start the location of the header on to the head. I'm not sure any header manufactured for Pontiac engines (d or round port heads) specifically designed them for anything other than using bolts.

If anyone has tried and used studs/nuts to fasten headers to heads, I'd sure like to know about it too.

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.
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Chicagogoat
Cochise

USA
823 Posts

Posted - 09 Jul 2016 :  3:59:50 PM  Show Profile  Visit Chicagogoat's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Bill is right! The 6 point SS bolts work the on Pontiacs. No need for studs nor would they be practical, especially the hard turns on #5 & 6. Those are the hardest to start, but SS bolts look purdy and a little high heat anti seize on the threads is the ticket!

Pure Pontiac: learn it, live it, love it!
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DanM
Buffalo

80 Posts

Posted - 21 Dec 2016 :  5:07:51 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
this past March I had my mechanic install Doug's headers. I spent quite a bit of time researching all the different versions to find the set that fit with the least amount of customization. I wasn't there the day they installed them but based on the amount of work it was removing this and that and lifting the engine on one side etc I would strongly - strongly - recommend against using studs on the manifolds because they will most likely get in the way and possible even prevent installation all together. I'm not saying it's not possible, but headers are already very difficult just to get in place that you won't want to make your life any more difficult.

BTW. Doug's look fantastic and fit impressively well. No need to move the oil filter.

Meanwhile I've worked out a way to reconnect the back-lock linkage I just haven't reinstalled it. fingers crossed.

P.S. The reverse lights won't work anymore without an adapter. Fortunately my mechanic knows me and so he didn't fail me on inspection.

71 LeMans Sport Convertible with 310,000 miles driven year round since 1994.
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Lee
Sitting Bull

101 Posts

Posted - 22 Dec 2016 :  12:15:01 PM  Show Profile  Visit Lee's Homepage  Reply with Quote
MOST Pontiac headers have a "keyway" 4th (from the front) bolt hole. Install the 4th bolt without the headers in place, but only tighten it about 3 or 4 turns.

Then you can pop the header flange OVER that bolt, and then slide the header back in place.

Using that bolt as a pivot, rotate the headed up/down so that you can install (LOOSELY! only 3 or 4 turns) the bolts on the very end.

One the end bolts are installed, remove the #4 bolt. Virtually all Pontiac header gaskets have "U" shaped ends, which allow you to drop the gasket down between the header and the head, catching on the end bolts.

With the gasket in place, get the remaining 4 bolts installed. Do not tighten any of them until they are all installed.

I do have an old double-offset Phillips head screwdriver (looks sort of like a stretched-out "Z") that fits nicely into the exhaust bolt holes. I've used it MANY times to gain leverage, or to hold one end of the header in place while I start a bolt on the other end.

CURRENT: '73 T/A clone, boring at the moment...
67 Firebird (sold) 11.27 @ 119.6 Feb. '05 issue HPP
69 Falcon wagon, 10.51 @ 130mph Feb. '10 issue PHR (sold)
72 Cutlass Convertible, first car, owned since '82, now with a 6.0 LS, mild, putting just under 400 hp/tq to the wheels.
www.LNLPD.com
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DanM
Buffalo

80 Posts

Posted - 27 Mar 2017 :  09:58:58 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Last week I finally got my LeMans back on the road. One of the most challenging tasks was reattaching the headers and it had nothing to do with what you might think. Since I only removed the heads and rebuilt another set everything else was in place. All I had to do was put in 12 bolts and tighten them.

It took like an hour just to get the last three in. I didn't tighten anything until all 12 were in but for some reason the threads just wouldn't grab and start. Eventually I had to get a big lever arm to push up on the bolt and then use the open end wrench to slowly turn it. With enough force the stupid threads grabbed and the bolt finally went in.

I was almost ready to give up and grind the bolts to a point so they were sort of self tapping. But I didn't have a grinder.

WTF?

Since there is no room to get a torque wrench in there I had to tighten by feel "until I was red faced" with effort. Since the wrench was only 3/8 or something stupid small like that it was short and I cannot get much leverage. I think I will keep my eyes out for a longer than normal 3/8" (or is it 5/16th") wrench for future re-tightening.

71 LeMans Sport Convertible with 310,000 miles driven year round since 1994.
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Scott J
Buffalo

USA
61 Posts

Posted - 18 Jun 2017 :  5:38:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Studs would be a headache, you need the clearance to remove and install.

Lee's method is the way i go...it's a little bit of a Lord of the Rings quest LOL.

I use the 7/16" headed bolts and have a wrench customized for these nightmares. Actually they really aren't that bad. There are 1 3/4" super comps on my 68 A body and they are a really great fit....once in.


Now HERE'S something interesting....I was talking to some racers yesterday and most all are using Ultra Grey Permatex and no gaskets! These were Poncho people too! I use it in lieu of valley pan gaskets and other apps like that.

Just take this ONE particular job at leisure. LOL.
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cortcomp
Coyote

USA
5338 Posts

Posted - 18 Jun 2017 :  8:03:58 PM  Show Profile  Visit cortcomp's Homepage  Reply with Quote
When they broke my SBC in at the dyno, they used only ultra grey. I guess from the factory, GM didn't even use gaskets on manifolds? (at least when researching when restoring my 66 truck)
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Scott J
Buffalo

USA
61 Posts

Posted - 19 Jun 2017 :  09:05:27 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I've sometimes seen none and then the odd steel or asbestos.

If both surfaces are straight and machined clean and true I would use the sealer only; I think the ultra grey would help in the heat cycling and any small deformations caused by it.

Maybe Ultra grey and a gasket for a REAL good time LOL.
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DanM
Buffalo

80 Posts

Posted - 26 Jun 2017 :  09:47:10 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I used ultra copper (red gasket goo) and the gaskets that Doug's sells with their headers.

note: I notice one small but important assembly problem with the Dougs. The flange does indeed match their gasket perfectly but their rear (#s 7 and 8) exhaust tubes are about 1/8th" forward from stock. This means if you do port work on your heads using the standard exhaust gasket your rear two exhaust ports will be misaligned just the slightest amount. If you do port work and match the exhaust ports to the Dougs header gasket (if you use dougs headers) then everything will line up perfectly.

So back to the point. I used the gaskets and the ultra copper. So far so good but that's only a few thousand miles. I'll let you know how things hold over the next 100,000 miles.

71 LeMans Sport Convertible with 310,000 miles driven year round since 1994.
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