Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

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memsiej
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Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:08 pm

Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby memsiej » Sat May 18, 2019 9:55 am

OK so long story short, restored for my sister an 87 Wagoneer. Drove it out to Montana and that seemed to be the last of it's life. Her HOA wouldn't let the car sit in her driveway so it was in a field all winter. It's now back home, ready to be towed from shop to home to shop and back.
A few mechanics have confirmed that the head gasket is blown, and last time we went to start it there was a brutal grinding that I can only assume is a damaged flywheel grinding on the starter.

Shop quoted a few thousand to repair the head gaskets. My brother in law bought a new engine, but apparently it would be too much work to convert that engine to the Jeep so that's a money sucking option too. Original engine has about 155,000 miles on it.

SO
Question is, how hard is it to do the head gaskets? I can't get out to Bozeman for another month and a half to even attempt it.
Should we look for another (actually compatible) engine?
Pay to have the original one repaired?
Or try the repair on my own?
What to do about the grinding noise?
1984 Grand Wagoneer V8 5.9

GrandW
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Re: Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby GrandW » Sat May 18, 2019 3:21 pm

For the head gasket, it's less about "hard" and more about time. Everything on top of engine should probably be removed to allow access. With 150K miles on it, may consider rebuilding the engine depending on how long you want to own it. If you do a rebuild yourself, it's going to take a lot of new tools too if you're measuring all the tolerances.

Good luck.
1987 Jeep Grand Wagoneer

candymancan
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Re: Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby candymancan » Sat May 18, 2019 4:31 pm

Tbh with 155k miles id consider rrbuilding the entire engine like he said specially if there going to charge a couple grand just for head gaskets.

That or find a low mileage engine that works if you can to swap.. Or even get a reman from Jasper. But if it were my Jeep id replace the head gaskets mysrlf. My engine has 135k on it and it drives fine daily but thats my engine i dunno how yours runs.

Grimding noise.. id replace the starter first if that doesnt work then you might need a new flexplate (flywheel is for manual trans) in which case you need to remove the transnission or engine. So you might as well rebuild or find a replacement 360 or buy a reman.
2013 SS camaro, cammed, and modded too much to say 500 RWHP/650 crank 40k
1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee 5.9L Limited 195k
1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.0 I6 laredo 274k
1990 Jeep Grand Wagoneer 132k

memsiej
Posts: 140
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:08 pm

Re: Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby memsiej » Sat May 18, 2019 5:33 pm

candymancan wrote:Tbh with 155k miles id consider rrbuilding the entire engine like he said specially if there going to charge a couple grand just for head gaskets.

That or find a low mileage engine that works if you can to swap.. Or even get a reman from Jasper. But if it were my Jeep id replace the head gaskets mysrlf. My engine has 135k on it and it drives fine daily but thats my engine i dunno how yours runs.

Grimding noise.. id replace the starter first if that doesnt work then you might need a new flexplate (flywheel is for manual trans) in which case you need to remove the transnission or engine. So you might as well rebuild or find a replacement 360 or buy a reman.



Good info. Thanks! I am somewhat mechanically inclined, but definitely still a lot to learn. The starter was replaced right before we put it into storage for the winter, and then it started grinding, so i doubt it's the starter. Ugh.

Just questioning whether this is the engine for me to learn to rebuild on. :(
1984 Grand Wagoneer V8 5.9

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dodgerammit
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Location: Middle TN

Re: Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby dodgerammit » Sat May 18, 2019 6:32 pm

At that cost, I second rebuilding or a reman. If you decide rebuild, get a cam that will get rid of the sleepyness. You want a cam for torque from off idle to 3K rpm. Go for economy, smooth idle, and low end power. Also a good 4 barrel intake and carb of your choice will really wake them up without sacrificing what fuel economy it had. In fact, it may improve it.
84 Grand Waggy-Radio Flyer (Garnet Red/3M Ebony Metallic woodgrain, with tan interior) AMC 360/727/229 TFI conversion, MSD streetfire ignition, D44/AMC20 Serehill tailgate and headlight harnesses :fsj:

memsiej
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Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:08 pm

Re: Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby memsiej » Sun May 19, 2019 10:29 am

dodgerammit wrote:At that cost, I second rebuilding or a reman. If you decide rebuild, get a cam that will get rid of the sleepyness. You want a cam for torque from off idle to 3K rpm. Go for economy, smooth idle, and low end power. Also a good 4 barrel intake and carb of your choice will really wake them up without sacrificing what fuel economy it had. In fact, it may improve it.


So much of what you said doesn't make sense- +1 for just paying someone to do it I guess :(
1984 Grand Wagoneer V8 5.9

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dodgerammit
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Location: Middle TN

Re: Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby dodgerammit » Sun May 19, 2019 5:59 pm

memsiej wrote:
dodgerammit wrote:At that cost, I second rebuilding or a reman. If you decide rebuild, get a cam that will get rid of the sleepyness. You want a cam for torque from off idle to 3K rpm. Go for economy, smooth idle, and low end power. Also a good 4 barrel intake and carb of your choice will really wake them up without sacrificing what fuel economy it had. In fact, it may improve it.


So much of what you said doesn't make sense- +1 for just paying someone to do it I guess :(



Sleepyness is the lack of power these things have.

A good cam (if doing a rebuild) along with the proper intake (edelbrock performer, cough-cough) and a decent 4 barrel carburetor (I like Holley) will wake up the engine (give it the pep it should have).
84 Grand Waggy-Radio Flyer (Garnet Red/3M Ebony Metallic woodgrain, with tan interior) AMC 360/727/229 TFI conversion, MSD streetfire ignition, D44/AMC20 Serehill tailgate and headlight harnesses :fsj:

letank
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Location: SF bay area

Re: Dug the project out- gimme your opinion on what I should do about the headgasket issue

Postby letank » Mon May 20, 2019 5:28 pm

Welcome back,
1- figure out the grinding, the installed "newer" starter might be defective as it has happened too frequently, as said, pull the inspection plate and check what is happening to the interface when an helper is cranking, ground the distributor side of the wire from the coil to the distributor to prevent starting
2- back to the headgasket, I reread the intial August posts and IIRC nothing certain had been evaluated seriously because of the conflicting relation with the mechanics!

After the grinding starter is resolved -probably a new starter if you can find one, do not get an autozone version.

Time for a compression check, a leak down test is better but requires more expensive tools. Make sure that the throttle is fully opened, you can jab a fat screwdriver at the throttle stop screw for a one person operation, remove all the spark plugs

When you have the numbers we can give you ideas... as usual we are not sure if the HG is really gone and what the issue is!

As said the HG is not a hard job, only time consuming because so many bits have to be removed... like the dreaded header bolts that are usually seized, so applying plenty of pb blaster or the 50% mix acetone/transmission oil is required at least twice a day for as many days as can be. It took me 2 weeks before all the bolts let go, and I used a big breaker bar, after drilling some large holes in the inner fender to have a better leverage. The head should be to checked to be sure that it is not warp... But lets get the compression data first!

Removing the hood will make the HG redo a lot easier, it is not hard, it is a 2 person job... albeit with the proper equipment which secure the hood up while removing the nuts
Michel
74 wag (349 Kmiles... parked, next step is a rust free body)
85 Gwag (226 Kmiles... the running test lab)
See Engine bits and Fuel and brake lines, and Body work


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