Getting the valves off!

The Heads were a pretty sad sight. years of oil and heat had built up inside and out. My Job.. Get the valves out and send it to the machine shop for a rebuild.
The Carbon buildup was interesting, because it pointed out which cylinders had failed first. I'm going to have the machine shop check for head cracks, and then install hardened valve seats on the exhaust valves. This is recommended for older cars which were designed to run on Leaded fuel.
A detailed look at the head, shows that the valves look pretty good, but with this amount of carbon buildup, I can't tell much about the condition of the seats. The common stress point for cracks is between the valves. The machine shop will check for this after the heads get a bath in acid.
Getting the valve springs off was a real challenge. I tried 3 types of spring compressors before finding this one. Its from Sears for about $20. The problem with most of the compressors, is that you have to hold them in the compressed state. This one locks in place, allowing you to remove the keepers with both hands. The keepers on the valve stems are tapered and lock in. Even with the valve spring completely compressed you need both hands.
Here is a nice close up of the valve keeper. First you need to spin them around to the front, then pull them out with needle nose pliers. After I got the parts off, I put everything for each valve in a plastic bag and marked it.
That engine's gotta go

Author: Bill McKenna