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MG MGA - HRG head back from the machinist

Got my cylinder head back from the machinist today. The guy did I really good job, you can't even tell where he welded (3 places) after he resurfaced it. The hole for the water is still not perfectly round, but he assured me that wouldn't matter.

I've circled the most damaged part in blue.

Here it is before:

And now:

Some parts are still dirty inside, I circled one of them in yellow.

(Sorry about the plastic. I don't want to take it out until this weekend when I install it.)

I was planning on torquing it 45 lbs, which is what I've been told. Someone else told me that it is a good idea to spray paint the head gasket with silver spray paint to help it seal better. Anyone else heard of this?
Darian Henderson

Looks good Darian.What did you end up doing with the valves and seats?Did you end up having someone local do it? I have heard of painting the gasket,but don't know if it works.
gary starr

I had someone do it locally. I can't stress enough how important it is to join an MG club since they know the people who can do these things. The good news is that apparently aluminum heads already came with hardened seats, so you don't need to have them hardened. (Just guessing here, but is it because aluminum is so soft that they had to use hard seats to begin with?)

The guy did say that I might want to use the lead substitute, but he didn't think I had to.
Darian Henderson

Aluminium heads have valve seat inserts but they are not necessarily lead free tolerant.
Chris at Octarine Services

Alloy heads must have seat inserts but as Chris says, the specification varies. You are almost definitely better off than with a head that has seats cut in the cast iron, and perhaps not as good as a modern hardened seat.

Torque to 40 lbs. as per factory (HRG) specs - see
and make sure you use thick washers!
Bill Spohn

This thread was discussed between 29/03/2007 and 31/03/2007

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This thread is from the archive. The Live MG MGA BBS is active now.