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Author Topic: Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?  (Read 511 times)

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Offline Autocrat

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Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?
« on: November 24, 2018, 05:46:24 PM »
1974 Pinto 2.3. Leaky valve cover gasket. Ordered the Fel-Pro VS 50043 R-1, rubber valve cover gasket. Their website claims it fits my '74.
 Doesn't have the two holes for the bolts in the cover up on the side of the cam tower.
Bought off Rock Auto, iirc.

Doesn't look right or fit right on my '74 2.3. Doesn't naturally align in the front.
I sure don't want to resort to a cork gasket, but a look at Rock Auto; only one cork gasket has the two holes.

Anyone else run into this problem?
Was there a running change in valve covers that eliminated the cam tower bolts?

Offline oldkayaker

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Re: Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2018, 04:00:11 AM »
If your valve cover and engine have holes for bolts in the side of the front cam tower,  I suspect you have the 2.0 engine.  Both the 2.0 and 2.3 fours were available in 1974.  The 2.3 valve covers that I have seen, only have vertical bolts (none into the cam tower).
Have Fun.
Jerry J - Jupiter, Florida

Offline Autocrat

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Re: Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2018, 09:45:35 AM »
Thanks, oldkayaker, you gave me pause.
No, it's a 2.3 according to the VIN, and visual identification .
The 1974 Ford shop manual shows the side holes and a torque sequence for the 2.3 valve cover. Do the head deck first, then the two side bolts. Also, the illustrations in the manual confirm it's a 2.3.

I put the gasket on, left the cam tower bolts off, for now. Seems to fit everywhere else.
I'll see if it leaks.....😳
I can use a hollow punch on the exposed ribbed gasket to fit the cam tower bolts, maybe🤞
Thanks again.

Offline Autocrat

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Re: Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2018, 09:49:51 AM »
Here's a much better photo:

Offline Wittsend

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Re: Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2018, 10:49:55 AM »
As they say, "Pictures don't lie."  Perhaps the tower bolts were a one year only configuration. Then Ford got one of their "Better Ideas" and eliminated them. Likely they either didn't find them necessary, or perhaps they even caused distortion.  Maybe a gasket redesign or Ford's willingness to use a sealant in the tight corners is the reason.   I took a quick look for a Ford service bulletin but did not find anything.

Judging by the bulge in the open hole (tight fitting gasket) I'm thinking the bolts aren't needed. If you opt to put a hole in the gasket be careful as the silicone can tear.  When I need something like that I burn a hole with say..., an old solderng iron tip.  Can't say I have any experience with this situation but offer it as an option to consider (at your own risk).

Offline oldkayaker

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Re: Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2018, 05:20:38 AM »
Thanks for the pictures, always learning here.  Hope the new gasket is leak free.
Jerry J - Jupiter, Florida

Offline 65ShelbyClone

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Re: Fel-pro 2.3 valve cover gasket wrong?
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2018, 08:51:49 PM »
That's a new one for me. I have never seen a 2.3 head nor even heard of one that had those bolts like a 2.0 does. I have a selection of Pinto 2.3 heads and the D4 (1974) casting doesn't have it.
I'll add that the typical gasket for any '70s/'80s 2.3 is cork. The one for '85 turbo motor is and the one I recently pulled out of a '77 engine was too.
'72 Runabout - 2.3T, T5, MegaSquirt-II, 8", 5-lugs, big brakes.
'68 Mustang - Built roller 302, Toploader, 9", etc.