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Head gasket recommendations...

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Yoda
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... any?

What sort of head gasket is "best" for a street 1275cc A-series (from the late 1960s). I know there are various ones... ranging a Moss one for about $10, to a copper/steel (Payen?) MiniMania one for about $40, to performance ones for $120. I'm not looking for something fancy but something stout for regular use.

Suggestions?
Thanks.
 
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I've seen many good comments on the payen black composite. I used one and it failed after 3000 miles, but I think the cause of the failure relates to my engine specs and over torquing the head. I installed another and will see how long it lasts.
 
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Yoda
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Thanks Trevor. I used to think the copper ones were the best but it seems that the newer composites have a good rating (???) and are even more expensive. I see some blacks ones around $30.

Just read this by Hap on another board:
<span style="font-style: italic">On the 1275s the head gasket of choice is the black composite <span style="font-weight: bold">Payen BK450P</span>, this is far superior to the copper head gasket, and it can go on dry.

While the BK450P is not silicone impregnated around the outer jacket like the the Payen B series head gasket is, is not needed, this is not normally an issue on A series heads, more than likely this happen becuase the copper gasket wasn't coated, or you didn't do the retorque, it very common for the outer end nuts to need torque after a few heat cycles, no need to wait for 500 miles to retorque, I suggest a retorque after about 30-60 minutes of run time. The BK450P is such a good head gasket alot of racers use it ontheir 1275s, it good up to about 13.0 to after that, we use the Cometic MLS head gasket. </span>
 
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Not that I'm recommending it but I'm surprised that my $10 VB cheapy is holding up. Mine was just a scape and squish with no machine work done or retorque. I hammer it every now and then but my compression ratio is so low my compression is measured in inches of mercury. :jester:
 
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Yoda
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I suppose that a low compression will always help make it last. May be true in life itself.
 

dklawson

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It has already been recommended to death but... I also recommend the Payen black.

I bought my last one directly from Mini Spares because it was less expensive than U.S. sources and I was ordering other parts at the same time. It is currently 11 GBP ($17) from Mini Spares and $35 from Mini Mania. The good news is you can get the Payen BK450 from Seven Enterprises for $23.
 
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Yoda
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Thanks...
It's a bit confusing because it would seem that there are a few Payen blacks out there. Now I'm seeing a slightly more expensive <span style="text-decoration: underline">SET</span> called the CF473P (evidently with this one, and the BK450P, the "P" is important - though they are all composite). The DK450P has the BK450P in it (and that's a very good one). I think the CF473P has the AF470P in it as the head gasket. I'm only told not to use the AF470P on a high compression engine. All of these are good for cast iron heads (and not alloys).
A bit confusing. You'd think there would be an official Payen database. :yesnod:
 
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What is the difference in the BK450 and the BK450P?
 
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Trevor Jessie said:
What is the difference in the BK450 and the BK450P?

I don't know... except that (don't quote me), one is "high performance" (the P one). I could certainly be wrong. I think the "P" means "uprated" which means that it can be used on a 1275 up to a 1380cc engine.

Anyone else?
 

nomad

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I'm with Trevor, like to know the difference. Just used the Payen black and avoid the copper sandwich. The copper sandwich cost me an engine!

Kurt.
 

AN5Sprite

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The one (black head gasket) that Hap originally installed in the Tunebug is labeled; AF470 and G4194...if that helps(?)
 
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Yoda
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Thanks Steve. I've read about the AF470 (might be a "P") and Hap only wrote not to use it on a high compression engine. It's supposed to be a good, composite (black) Payen. Not sure what a G4194 is (but perhaps a UK code). BK450P is the one he, Hap, recommended the highest on the MG Experience board. I guess I was trying to sort out which would be the best "kit" (i.e., including any and all head-related gaskets that includ either a AF470 or BK450). I'm hoping to find out about the CF473P kit today (from a local-ish supplier).

EDIT: This just in. The people at British Parts NW say that adding the "P" just means Payen (I suppose as if there are copy-cats out there). The odd thing is that there are definitely Payen brand ones where the seller doesn't bother with the "P". I ordered the set they called CF473P set which includes the AF470P as the primary head gasket. $40 plus shipping (because although I live relatively close to them, they don't allow retail-counter sales).

I'm also reading that the BK450P is better for alloy heads (than, say, the AF470P which is definitely mentioned for cast iron like mine).
 
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BillW103 said:
I found British Parts NW to be the quickest to ship. I am going to be in Oregon next week and was thinking of stoping by there. Now I gues I will have to pass on that. They have been good to deal with.

They are quick. I've often asked "could I just pop over there and pick something up?" But, alas, the answer is always "no." You might be able to visit just to visit (there in Dayton, OR). Yes, they're good to deal with (though I think their shipping costs are a bit high - but not too high).
 
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