: From H/G replacement to engine replacement?

Night Wolf
01-12-08, 01:23 PM
So this headgasket job is coming up on 2 months now.... I'm starting to get tired of it, but its tough because I've been really busy lately, got some things going on...

anyway, I finally got around today to seperating the intake manifold from the head. The machine shop is closed today so Monday I'm gonna take the head to the shop to have them check it and clean it up, as well as install the Delta cam I have.

I also got around to replacing the leaking power steering pressure hose, and drained the old oil/coolant mixture and put the new oil filter on.

But, while cleaning the block mating surface today... I noticed something I didn't see before...

the h/g blew at the #4cyl compression ring... well it appears as if it took the piston with it. The cyl walls are fine, but the piston has a chip as well as some scuffing.

I am standing by for more opinions as to what to do, I posted it on the Isuzu site, so far the vibe is that it needs to be replaced.

Well, this really stinks, I want/need this thing done. If in fact it needs to be replaced, I have a few options... I can buy a reman short block, but I'd hate to buy a whole new short block for just 1 piston, a reman long block is too much money. Otherwise I'd have to locate a used engine and swap it. A final option, *may* be that I could replace that piston without removing the engine, my truck is 2wd, so its pretty open underneath, if I remove the front cross member and the steering center linkage, I can remove the upper oil pan (oil pan is 2 parts) In that case I'd be able to unbolt the rod from the crank shaft and remove the piston/rod.... *possibly*

But, the kicker is, I don't have the time or abality right now to do any of this... much less an engine swap right now... so I'd end up having to get the thing towed to a shop and either have them replace the piston, and probably put the rest of the engine back together, or just cut the loss now and locate a used engine to have them swap in.... it really stinks.

I'm worried that if put back together as is, the piston will end up cracking, someone also pointed out that the sharp edges on the piston will cause pre-detonation, it would be tough to file the edges down to be smooth with it in there and still manage for it to be fine.

So, I dunno... maybe others can give me insight on what to do here.... Of course my mind is drifting into fantasy world about swapping in an (Isuzu) 3.2 DOHC which is pretty much bolt-in... but I hardly have the time to finish the head gasket repair let alone do any work in the bottom end of the engine or get into swapping it out.

Kinda stinks, cause at 135k the engine is/was in great shape other then the h/g going, head appears to be fine too.








So when I seperated the intake manifold from the head, I came across this.... also on cyl #4, I don't think it has anything to do with the h/g failure, but still, not really good... I was thinking about just replacing the h/g and putting the head/intake right back on without taking it to the shop.... but then I would have never found this...




01-12-08, 01:33 PM
Just for grins, take a look at www.pawengineparts.com . They carry all sorts of long and short blocks, out of Chatsworth, CA. Good guys, fair prices, and my Olds 455 parts ordeers are always correct and mint.

01-12-08, 01:47 PM
Slap a 6V-92 in it and call it good. ;)

Night Wolf
01-12-08, 02:04 PM
Just for grins, take a look at www.pawengineparts.com . They carry all sorts of long and short blocks, out of Chatsworth, CA. Good guys, fair prices, and my Olds 455 parts ordeers are always correct and mint.

Just called them.... "no import parts" was the reply.

Now I miss my 20% employee discount from Advance Auto Parts.... they carry reman engines.

I dunno what to do... I could try to smooth the chip out... but I'd hate to take the head to the shop spend the money to get it checked over, cleaned up and the Delta cam installed, only to put it all back together and hope it dosn't blow up, posibly taking the cleaned up head with it.

It's just a horrible time right now.... not that there is really any good time to need a new engine, but I really need this thing running... but if it needs an engine replacement, then that will be put off, for a while.

Of course this is always an option.... the whole setup is pretty much bolt-in.... its hard to keep my mind from wandering...


Night Wolf
01-12-08, 04:28 PM
A guy on the Isuzu site made a very good observation....

the bad intake manifold gasket on cyl #4 caused a lean condition which in turn led to the gasket going out.

Still on the fence as to what to do with the darn thing... I dunno, with the truck being 2wd, its not nearly as hard to remove the upper oil pan, I may just be able to get away without removing the block from the truck and just work with it as is...... if I was to do that and replace the piston, then re-ring all the pistons and with new rod bearings.... I'll darn near have a rebuilt engine.

Truck is worth the work though, its really clean, no major body damage, no major rust (small rust bubble on roof I need to take care of) underbody is really clean. 135k is nothing on these things, I've had it almost a year and a half now and have done quite a bit of work, new brake pads front and back, 4 new Monroe Reflex shocks, new upper and lower ball joints. New clutch set, flywheel, master and slave cylinder, just put 4 brand new all-terrain tires on it weeks before the h/g blew, I rebuilt the sunroof (new gasket/latch) and replaced the headliner.... gosh I'm forgetting alot, I have the log book with the truck.

But, I am not gonna give up on it, and while an engine swap would be cool, I'd like to stick with the 2.6.... its a great engine, good amount of power, pretty darn good on gas and really reliable. Once I get this thing back together I'll defintily get my share of use out of it.