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Discussion Starter #1
I ran into a couple issues while doing my head gasket this weekend. 1, the guide rail was brittle and broke. So I was wondering if there anyone knew of a site that detailed removing the front of the engine and what I should replace as far as gaskets on the lower cover.
2, one of the head bolts stripped leaving a mess of metal bits so now I have to have the head cleaned for sure. The problem with that, the machine shop wants the head stripped down and only the valves and springs can stay on. So any help on that would be greatly appreciated. Other than those issues everything has gone great!
Thanks in advance!
 

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Not too difficult. Remove the rockers, then remove the cam and you are golden.
Take the opportunity and inspect the rocker arms and cam for any scoring or wear.

Ensure the shop cleans, pressure tests, replacing the valve guides and seals and then checks for flatness.

This is very important to prevent oil consumption in the long term. The M103 should burn NO oil if the guides and seals are good.

I am yet to do the front cover on either of my cars, but from the manual, it doesn't look too bad. Obviously if you haven't removed the radiator and associated front items, now you will.
Again, take the opportunity to check for play on the fan clutch bearing bracket. Any slack and you should replace it. You don't want a fan clutch sheering off and playing pinball with your radiator. Its happened.

For manual items and other associated links (register to view):
http://www.w124-zone.com/articles.php?article_id=36

05 Engine, Camshaft and Valve Train - M103

01 General Engine Work - M103
 

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Sorry to hear about the problems.

Considering you hadn't planned on having the head taken to a machine shop, either the head is in great shape or you were planning on doing the HG "on a budget". If you really can't swing much money for this job, then you probably won't like my next suggestion but I would hate to see you remove the damper and front cover and everything else, to install new rails without installing a new chain too. This would be the ideal time to do it. Also, be prepared for a leaky timing case cover if you haven't familiarized yourself with some of the recent success stories on this site. Good luck on getting all back together with a minimum of additional problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I knew there wa a 50/50 chance I'd have to have the head milled and cleaned to begin with. I was just hoping to avoid that. So far the car has come apart real easy, and I expect it to go back together somewhat easy too. Even the exhaust manifold bolts all came out, stud and all, with not one shearing. I checked the timing chain as soon as I got it off and it seemed to be in great shape, no slack or evidence of anything more than average wear.

Just curious though, what kind of leaks are you talking about? Is this a lower cover problem or top cover? I've been looking and couldn't find a gasket for the lower cover, I'm guessing that means MB just used silicone?

Thanks again for all your help, and its not so much I'm on a budget, but every penny I spend is another dirty look and angry word from my wife. She hates my hobby.
 

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Better than a $350 payment per month + quadruple the insurance premium you probably pay right now.

These heads don't warp much unless you let them overheat bad. Just a light skimming will get everything back in spec.
 

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Just curious though, what kind of leaks are you talking about? Is this a lower cover problem or top cover? I've been looking and couldn't find a gasket for the lower cover, I'm guessing that means MB just used silicone?
The gasket between the top of the lower cover and the bottom of the upper cover is a prime spot to develop a leak.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Its a hell of a lot better than a car payment + higher insurance.

And from what I've seen that gasket is rubber (actually I know it is, it came with my head gasket set) and you need to fill the gaps behind the rubber gasket with silicone. I had also heard I had to order a special silicone used on MBs.

I was wondering what gasket I'd have to use on the lower cover, or if it was just silicone. I haven't gotten the lower cover off yet, so I wasn't sure.
 
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