: Cleaning Heads and Block

08-12-09, 10:59 PM
Hey All,

I've got my Northstar out, the left cylinder head off, and the stud kit waiting to be installed.

My question is what is the best way to clean the head gasket mating surfaces?

Scott - Palmer, AK

08-12-09, 11:24 PM
Whatever you do, DO NOT use Scotchbrite.

08-12-09, 11:28 PM
Is that 'cause all those little remants get into the passages?

08-12-09, 11:32 PM

08-12-09, 11:41 PM
Thanks Ranger, informative post.

What about mineral spirits? Brake parts cleaner? Do you know what Jake does/uses? (I called him today but he's on vacation until next week so I can't ask him).

08-13-09, 10:30 AM
Don't know what Jake uses, but I would not hesitate to use any the the stuff you mentioned.

08-13-09, 06:57 PM
I used brake cleaner. Be sure to do both banks - left and right.

08-13-09, 11:56 PM
I've had some luck with the brake cleaner, so I think I'll stick with that.

On a side note, I got tired of cleaning, so I went ahead and drilled and tapped the left side block for the studs that I got on Tuesday. Eight out of ten lined up pretty good, but two of them will have to be removed and bent per Jake's instructions.

I should probably start a new thread with my stud install questions.

Thanks for the input guys.

Scott - Palmer, AK

08-15-09, 12:32 AM
Permatex makes a "gasket remover" product that I've found very useful. It is a spray on product and reminds me a lot of oven cleaner. It does a good job of softening old and hardened gasket material. I've used this product with a razor blade scraper and I've had excellent results more than once. Make sure to wear rubber gloves when using this stuff and keep the work area well ventilated.


08-15-09, 01:51 AM
Thanks for the permatex suggestion, I might give that a try.

I don't have any old gasket material, just those "dimples" from the original gasket. Trying to get my block and head to look as good as Jake's. I'm sure my wrenching skills are no where near comparable.