need help with the lifters on my 87 tbird - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-10-2005, 12:08 AM Thread Starter
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Exclamation need help with the lifters on my 87 tbird

I just replaced the head gasket and put two on in its place and it helps and the lifters are tapping. Is there a way i can stop this or is it something I'm gonna have to live with. I tightened the rocker bolts to the factory specs and this started. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Also the oil light stays on when I drive, how much would one cost and how hard are they to replace?
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-10-2005, 01:24 AM
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The reason the lifters are tapping is because the head is now about 0.008" farther from the block, so the oil clearance btw the lifters and the pushrods is an extra 0.008". This is probably preventing oil from getting to the top of the valvetrain.

You need to either get longer pushrods or machine the head to compensate. You could also get some adjustable rockers and studs that would allow you to adjust out the slack, but that would mean getting new pushrods anyways.

I would recommend taking the 2nd head gasket out as it's going to just cause you more headache down the road. Just machine the head and block and use a single gasket and new head bolts and you should be fine, no?

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-10-2005, 02:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lonerepairman
I just replaced the head gasket and put two on in its place and it helps and the lifters are tapping.
You installed two headgaskets on one side? Why?

As thebigslide mentioned, that is likely the problem.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-10-2005, 03:43 AM Thread Starter
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The car had a problem blowing head gaskets and there was nothing wrong with the block or the head, and its the only way to stop it from blowing head gaskets. It shouldnt of caused any problems cuz all of the lifters are tight but the ones for the #3 cylinder are tapping and havent gotten better.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-10-2005, 04:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lonerepairman
The car had a problem blowing head gaskets and there was nothing wrong with the block or the head, and its the only way to stop it from blowing head gaskets. It shouldnt of caused any problems cuz all of the lifters are tight but the ones for the #3 cylinder are tapping and havent gotten better.
The only way I can think of to tighten the slack is to 'carefully' remove some material from the top of the rocker pedestal of the offending lifter with a grinder. To take 0.008" of slack out of the lifter and pushrod, you'll want to take about 0.003" off of the pedestal. 0.008" / (1+1.6) = 0.003" - look up the compressed height of your head gasket. It may not be 0.008" I just pulled that out of the back corner of my memory.

Check them first with feeler guages though as it might just be a worn lifter that needs replacing. If both of the #3 lifters are noisy, it may mean that you have some minute warpage or uneven compression of your gaskets.

Did you reuse the head bolts when you changed the gaskets the first time? This will cause them to blow again even on a plane head and deck. The head bolts on these engines should have been angle torque spec'd. You have to crank them down if you're re-using them to get them to stretch correctly and it's iffy because they're so skinny. It's normally OK to reuse them if you haven't run the engine much though.

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Last edited by thebigslide; 11-10-2005 at 04:37 AM. Reason: Clarification
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-11-2005, 12:51 AM Thread Starter
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I did all the torque specs and replaced the head bolts like the parts store recommended. The best that i can figure is that i might have a lifter sticking.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-11-2005, 05:23 AM
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You can rebuild them, sort of. You can take the plunger out and clean/lube it and make sure nothing's scored, but you'll probably just want to replace the lifter since you have it all apart already.

PS, I find that if you're using a cork gasket on the intake, a bead of RTV on the rear and around the water passages of the intake side of the gasket helps keep it from leaking as that's where they usually let go first.

If you're using cork, you'll probably also want to RTV the whole head surface on the side you didn't double-stack the head gasket as well as the block as the one head is now taller than the other. It might also help to torque the intake in 2 or 3 steps.

Primer is lighter than basecoat/clearcoat... besides, going fast IS looking good.

Anyone want parts. I got BBQ'd
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