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Author Topic: More Head Woes  (Read 1407 times)
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« on: June 07, 2011, 11:55:50 AM »

After enduring head problems with my Monte of March this year which resulted in head removal and the replacement of bent valves by my Local garage.
I have again in the space of less than 3 months now been beset with at the very least a head gasket failure in my Beta Spyder.
Following a lovely summer day at the Tatton Park show on Saturday on the 40+ mile journey home on leaving the motorway where I had been cruising effortlessly at 70 mph my spyder started to pull/snatch akin to points sticking etc at low speed the car seemed way down on power and a bit rattleing again almost like points "pinking".On stopping examing the engine bay I could find nothing wrong,so proceed to drive the remaining 15 miles home gingerly with one eye on the temp gauge and oil pressure.
about five miles from home the temp gauge rose (not entering the red) then dropped away and 1 mile from home the oil pressure guage dropped just above the red, and evertime I turned a corner the orange warning light came on ever so breifly and then went off so I guesseed the oil was amiss.
Being virtually on my doorstep by now I crawlled the car home and opened the bonnet to find the engine compartment amass with oil (Black) expunged from where I dont know ~ maybee the filter and on checking the expansion bottle I found it empty.
The expansion bottle only needed topping up less than a pint and there was still water in the top hose but on filling the expansion bottle creamy sludge was clearly evident so I know the head gasket has gone and I have oil in the water.
I let the car cool down and filled the car up again with oil and started the car and after a bit of persusaion the car started.The oil pressure went back to over halfway again.I have turned the car off and following 2 days of feeling sorry for myself I have now got back in the saddle with an effort to repair.
I am not that great with a spanner so it will be going to my local garage for the repairs but as allways he asks me to source the parts.
From what I have explained does it sound like just a head gasket problem or mayable something else in the head has failed leading to a blown gasket ?
Am I right is assuming because the oil pressure has returned any damage should be limited to the head ?
On the subject of parts I have been looking for a head gasket set but most of them state HPE.I assume it is the same gasket set for a spyder.The car is a MK2 1981 1995cc and the gasket set I have come accross states  part no UDP130 UPG6774 - engine series 828C bore 84 diameter ?Is this the right gasket?
There are plenty of gasket sets about but I am having difficulty with the head bolts are they common with any other later Lancia or Fiat models or can anyone recomend a reasonably priced source.
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« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2011, 06:47:59 PM »

First my sympathy for what must have been a stressful ride home. I am going to suggest you spend an unreasonable ammount on an uprated head gasket and new bolts from Guy Croft racing engines which will come with detailed instructions. This is because FL themselves changed the gasket designs for IE VX and Strada 105 /130 due to a high rate of head gasket failure. They also changed the top water rail to add a link to the heater feed from number 4 end so try to find a VX top water rail.

This was because with the heater off there was limited cooling to Number 4 end which combined with a poor gasket and weak bolts resulted in a lot of failures. Your mechanic MUST clean the threads in the block with a thread tap where the head bolts fit and cross your fingers that the head has not warped from over heating. With a high quality gasket and new 12.9 grade bolts you stand a very good chance of never having to face the issue again. The old bolts are very un-reliable and could be badly stretched. Obviously you will be getting fresh oil and filter and the coolant system flushed. With the whole engine compartment cleaned you need to check there are no other leaks of either oil or water.

With Head Gaskets and head bolts you get what you pay for and the cheap copies of the early gasket design floating arround are a nightmare, but they are cheap until the whole job has to be done again!

Good Luck

Eric owner of highly tuned Montecarlo reving beyond 8,500 rpm.     
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« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2011, 08:51:00 PM »

Thanks Eric I will take on board your comments and source the uprated parts.
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