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  #1  
Old 04-08-2008, 12:30 PM
andy2175m4 andy2175m4 is offline
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Default calling all 390 experts intake manifold gaskets

Now I find not only the valve covers leaking, but the intake manifold also...If you have worked on Ford 390's you know that the intake manifold is a beast, and the gaskets at the front and back of the manifold, where it meets the block, are somewhat cheezy, hard to install in any case, and tend to leak.

The last time I rebuilt a 390 (1983) I recall the gaskets for the ends of the intake were just flat shaped strips of cork that were to be glued to the block flange. There are no edges, or lips, or any other feature on the block, manifold, or the gasket itself, to keep these gaskets in place, just two edges coming together. I could see the gasket at the back (next to the fire wall) was bulging out and the back of the block was wet with oil .

I have the Fel-Pro top end rebuild gasket set and all it has is the same old flat cork gaskets that will surely leak not long after I install them.

Before I go off and re-engineer something from scratch, does anyone out there have a suggestion for an alternative on how to gasket this interface so it won't leak ever again???
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  #2  
Old 04-08-2008, 05:56 PM
Petrolhead Petrolhead is offline
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Default

Hi

I'm no 390 expert, hopefully someone can confirm or correct me here.
I've had a lot of 289/302 Windsors, and it sounds like the same set-up. After similar frustration with adhesive strips of gasket cork bulging out between the back of the block and the intake I followed many workshop manuals' advice and left the gasket out. Instead, you clean both surfaces completely, then run a bead of high temp RTV silicone along the block's gasket face.
To avoid positioning the intake incorrectly and having to shift it slighty, and therefore upsetting the silicone bead, I cut the heads off some long bolls, cut a screwdriver slot in the end, and used them as temporary head studs for alignment purposes.
Voila, no more leaks.
Hope this applies to the 390 FE
Cheers

Alistair
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  #3  
Old 04-08-2008, 06:20 PM
RustyNCa RustyNCa is offline
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Petrolhead View Post
Hi

To avoid positioning the intake incorrectly and having to shift it slighty, and therefore upsetting the silicone bead, I cut the heads off some long bolls, cut a screwdriver slot in the end, and used them as temporary head studs for alignment purposes.

Alistair
Hey, that's a very good idea on the studs.

On my 390, I used the felpro set, tossed the end gaskets and got a tube of rightstuff that works from a caulking gun, run a bead on either end, making sure you get the rtv down into the end by the heads, let it setup and get a bit tacky, set the manifold on and tighten it down, and when it has tacked up well, run a finger very very gently along the rtv and it will give you a nice looking smooth bead if you don't have one.

Worked like a charm on the 390 and on my 455, both haven't leaked at all.

the rightstuff in a caulking tube.... genious
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  #4  
Old 04-09-2008, 01:58 PM
ncbird ncbird is offline
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Default great resource

For anything related to the Ford Fe engine I go here
http://www.network54.com/Forum/74182/
Its how I found out about building my 352 into a 390.
Search on 390 intake or intake and you will get gobs of info including what gaskets people like and dislike and the best install technique for success. I wouldnt touch an FE with out searching here. Grant
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  #5  
Old 04-09-2008, 05:21 PM
Petrolhead Petrolhead is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncbird View Post
For anything related to the Ford Fe engine I go here
http://www.network54.com/Forum/74182/
Grant
Thanks Grant, I'm about to start fiddling around with my 390 so the link will come in real handy. Alistair
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  #6  
Old 08-10-2010, 11:13 AM
Larry Jones Larry Jones is offline
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Default gaskets leaking in the rear also

Hello Andy. Iam having the same problem you had. Iam taking mind to a authorized ford dealer to have my done. I get a quarantee for 12 months or 12000 miles. Now I have a question for you. Did your idle advance to a higher rpms. I dialed mind to 475 rpm but when I took the car out it would go back to 675 rpms. The accerator rod was straight and I shot some wd40 on it but I couldnt hold the rpms to 475. I own a 62 ford convertible with a fe390 engine in it. My wife cousin did all the work on it now he wont stand behind it. I also had a new matching number engine put into it to. Larry
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