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Thread: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

Discuss the Austin Healey Sprite and the MG Midget. Two different but similar cars sometimes referred to collectively as the Spridget.

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    1275 Head to block dowel pins

    I'm pretty new here so take it easy on me (first post).

    I have acquired a 68 Sprite with a 1275cc that was disassembled when I inherited it. I'm in the process of putting it back together. I have a manual by Robert Bentley - The Complete 1275 Manual. I have a question about head to block dowel pins. Are there supposed to be any and in what holes do they go? Each of the holes that look like they could be the correct location are in the coolant porting of both the head and block. I would prefer not to guess and I would also prefer to have my head gasket seal correctly as well - lol.

    Thanks in advance for any help you can provide!

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    Yoda dklawson's Avatar
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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    No dowels.

    I am not sure what the current preferred head gasket is. When I last installed one on a 1275 it was the Payen BK450 (composite gasket with a sealant on its surfaces).
    Doug L.
    '64 Morris Mini Cooper-S 1275
    '67 Triumph GT6 Mk1

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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    That explains why I couldn't figure out where to put the dowels - lol.

    It had a copper one in the box of old parts when I got, but I got a composite one in the Payen gasket kit I bought. I chose the composite as I've had very good luck getting them to seal in all other builds. Also, I had the heads and deck resurfaced, less than .010" each, so as to allow for a proper head seal. I intended to install the gasket dry, but is there a recommended sealer?

    I should also mention that I have new studs and nuts as well - the old studs were horribly stretched.

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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    Check specs for torque and tightening order. And the little studs for valve train only 25 lbs or so IIRC.
    Jim Gruber - Tampa/Riverview FL
    Bugsy I - '68 Sprite w BE Bonnet - Gone but not forgotten
    Bugsy IV - '60 Bugeye - 1,275+.040 and a 5-Speed - CA Car - 2nd Owner from new -

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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    With the black composite gasket you don't use a sealer. With any of the copper gaskets (copper/copper or copper/something) I generally use spay copper on both sides (NAPA??) to aid in sealing the gasket.
    I have never had an issue with the water or oil passages leaking.
    Joe Schlosser
    SCCA National License, Retired
    60 Bugeye, since 1966
    SCCA FP, sold but not forgotten

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    Yoda dklawson's Avatar
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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    Per Joe's comments, the composite gaskets go on dry. If you use the copper one, a sealer like KW Copper Coat works well. If you don't find KW Copper Coat in local parts stores, it is easily found on Amazon.
    Doug L.
    '64 Morris Mini Cooper-S 1275
    '67 Triumph GT6 Mk1

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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    Thanks guys. I'll be installing it dry and piecing it together as I go. It's been a process and hoping it goes well.

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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    Welcome aboard -- I have a '69 Sprite. When my head gasket went kablooey, I used the Payen gasket. While you have the head off, you may want to have the blanking plug replaced with a threaded unit. I'll see if I can dig up the threat. It could potentially save you a lot of aggravation down the road.

    Edit: Here's the post on the topic on the MG Experience: https://www.mgexp.com/phorum/read.ph...experience.net

    I'm presuming by your handle that you are also a Buick aficionado?

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    Jedi Trainee Joe Schlosser's Avatar
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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    The only time I had trouble with the blanking plug moving was due to sever overheating due to lack if coolant and me not having the brains to pull in at the Glen. My brain fade cost me an engine.
    The plug moved due to the extreme overheating and a good machinist repaired. However I have never heard of the plug moving under normal driving conditions.
    Joe Schlosser
    SCCA National License, Retired
    60 Bugeye, since 1966
    SCCA FP, sold but not forgotten

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    Luke Skywalker
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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Schlosser View Post
    The only time I had trouble with the blanking plug moving was due to sever overheating due to lack if coolant and me not having the brains to pull in at the Glen. My brain fade cost me an engine.
    The plug moved due to the extreme overheating and a good machinist repaired. However I have never heard of the plug moving under normal driving conditions.
    I would agree -- but if you ever have an overheating situation, why compound it by losing the head gasket as well?

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    Re: 1275 Head to block dowel pins

    Old thread and just getting this together. I had both the head and block resurfaced. The head was pressure tested with no issues. I'm going with it. Hopefully by the end if the month I'll be cranking this up.

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