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Joined: Oct 20 2018
Posts: 155

I've been fiddling around trying to get the inlet manifold to sit properly. Used OEM gasket and end seals but the bolt holes wouldn't line up.
The problem seems to be the end seals won't allow the manifold to sit in the V even with the end seal torqued down.
There is a dab of RTV in the angles but not that much.
Should I just slice the excess off?

enter image description here

Member
Joined: Aug 19 2019
Posts: 223

Are you sure the manifold is seated correctly? I just did this on my Disco and I played around a bit with the bolts all installed loosely to make sure it was. I don't think you should slice the ends off.
I've only done one so I'm certainly not an expert on this.

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Joined: Oct 20 2018
Posts: 155

Hi Harv,

I tried it with the usual set up as per RAVE and setting the manifold on without torquing down the end seals and trying to get the bolts aligned but it was nowhere near. Even juggling around with bolt locations it wouldn't have it. With a blue bag gasket and no end seals it all lines up perfectly so maybe I'll try some cheap end seals.

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Joined: Aug 19 2019
Posts: 223

Interesting. I don't remember the brand of gaskets I used. I ordered them from Will Tillery in the US. Mine lined up nicely.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
Posts: 4913

The triangular bit on the end of the seal should push down between the top of the block and the head. From your photo it looks like it isn't seated properly. I put the ends in first and push them down then push the rest into place.

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Joined: Apr 23 2019
Posts: 571

As Richard says - I didn't need to trim mine either - simply sat in the V

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
Posts: 4913

and the gasket sits on top of the seal but under the metal thing. Your picture seems to show the gasket over the top.

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Joined: Apr 23 2019
Posts: 571

Ah yes, good spot - that wd definitely screw things up

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Joined: Oct 20 2018
Posts: 155

No, that was just to illustrate that the seal didn't sit properly.

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Joined: Oct 20 2018
Posts: 155

It was an oem seal and the ends did locate in but just seemed to hold the gasket up.

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Joined: Jan 16 2017
Posts: 764

Disco here too, but did that same gasket and seals job 2 weeks ago, used bearmach seals and gasket they seemed to fit well. The old seals had gone crispy on removal and had left bits of the same bit you have the issue with on your pic stuck in place.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
Posts: 4913

I tend to put a good dollop of RTV in each end, shove the triangular bits into the gaps, lay the gasket in and put the metal bit in place with the bolt finger tight. The bolt holes in the gasket don't line up at that point but then when the manifold is lowered into place that pushes everything down so the holes do line up.

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Joined: Oct 20 2018
Posts: 155

So having put the problem on one side for a while and talking to a few people the probable cause for my problems seems to be that the heads have been skimmed beyond the range of adjustment for the manifold gasket and manifold bolts.
It does seem to be a relatively common problem amongst the high performance engine boys.

The pictures show how the gasket overlaps the ports. This is with the end clamps tightened up just to pull the gasket down to roughly where it should be.

enter image description here

enter image description here

So the options I've seen on various sites are:-

  1. Drill out the manifold bolt holes to allow the bolts to line up and trim or cut the gasket in half and rejoin it.

  2. Get the faces of the manifold skimmed to drop it lower.

  3. Get thicker head gaskets.

The problem with 1 is that it seems a bit of a bodge.
The problem with 2 is that the coolant pipe on the manifold is already tight to the gasket.
The problem with 3 is I haven't seen such a thing anywhere.

Very interested to hear everyone's views.

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Joined: Jul 21 2020
Posts: 117

David. As discussed on Saturday, obviously your heads have been skimmed heavily.

Regarding cylinder head gaskets, when I assembled my 5.5 I used cometic gaskets. These are multi steel plate, although Each layer is thin and may well be thicker than standard gaskets. The downside is they are more expensive!

Regarding the V shaped ends that squeeze into the gap in between the heads and the block, I have had to trim them slightly but always use a smear of RTV.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
Posts: 4913

You'll find that when you start torquing the inlet manifold down, it will pull the valley gasket down so the bolt holes and ports line up. Hardest part is getting the first two bolts in (one on each side), but after that the others go in easily. That's why they say to only nip up the end seal plates finger tight and then torque them down once the manifold is properly torqued down.

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Joined: Oct 20 2018
Posts: 155

As always Richard is exactly right!!

I'd been trying to line all the bolts up first before torquing them down. Putting one in the centre and with a bit of leverage the opposite one will ease in and then torque it down a bit and the rest follow.

Thank you Richard you've saved me from pulling the heads and an acre of expense.