Managed to get a few bits and pieces done this week….
First one was the water pump. You can see the four holes in the front of the engine…two into the block and two into the heads.
I put the gaskets and bolts out in the correct place so I got it right the first time.
I then put a coat of Aviation Form-a-Gasket No. 3 around each opening and used it to hold the 4 gaskets in place. I then put a coat of Aviation on the water pump openings. Then it was just a matter of bringing the two together and doing up the bolts! I used stainless bolts, and gave each thread a coat of copper grease so they don’t bind.
The thermostat and thermostat housing is next. I bought a 170 degree (fahrenheit) thermostat which is only slightly cooler than the original 175 degree unit. First job was to make sure that both of the mating faces are flat. It seems obvious but it is surprising how often it goes unchecked. I gave both surfaces a once over with a mill file, and we are ready to go.
I coated both surfaces with Aviation No. 3, inserted the thermostat and then placed the gasket on top of it. It is critical for the Cadillac engine to make sure the thermostat is placed with the support lined up with the axis of the engine (apologies for the blurry pic). This ensures the coolant flow is optimized and unrestricted, as it flows in from the sides.
I used new stainless bolts, and gave them all a coat of copper grease to ensure they don’t bind.
Once I had tightened it all up, I reached in the top of the neck and was able to move the thermostat around. This is not how it is supposed to be – the thermostat should be firm, and it should seal. I put my mouth over the neck and blew, and could hear air hissing out past the thermostat.
I undid the bolts and remove it all!
I put some Aviation No. 3 in the thermostat recess, and also put a smear on the rim of the thermostat. This time when I assembled it, the thermostat was firm. Once the Aviation No. 3 has done its job (i.e. formed a gasket!), we will be laughing. This time when I blew on the neck there was no air leak….great success
Time to paint the engine…hooray! I masked off everything I don’t need painted. I rolled up pieces of rag and poked them on the spark plug holes as well as the oil gallery holes on the engine. I had already wiped the block and heads with carby cleaner to remove all of the oil and grease, so I was ready to start painting primer.
I forgot to take a picture of the primer coat, so lets jump straight to the top coat. It is starting to look like an engine now.
Once the colour coats have dried for 10 minutes, I followed up with a coat of clear. This really makes the colour come to life (not sure if you can see the difference in the photos).