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Do cheap finned aluminum valve covers leak?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by lt1tyrell, Jun 15, 2013.

  1. lt1tyrell
    Joined: Sep 7, 2009
    Posts: 87

    lt1tyrell
    Member
    from Canada

    Was thinking about picking up a set of cheaper no name finned aluminum valve covers, I need centerbolts, do these have issues with cracking and leaking? Is there an affordable name brand set anybody can recommend? Thanks. Id actually like to find a matching oval air cleaner to.
     
  2. BrandonB
    Joined: Feb 24, 2006
    Posts: 3,248

    BrandonB
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from nor cal

    What motor are you talking about? The reason I'm asking is I don't think they make cheap finned valve covers for Olds or Y-block Fords which are center bolts. If you're talking about the later sbc I don't recall seeing the finned aluminum for those. I've seen chrome, though.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013
  3. BIG-JIM
    Joined: Jun 13, 2009
    Posts: 1,378

    BIG-JIM
    Member
    from CT

    I may have an air cleaner NIB.
     

  4. lt1tyrell
    Joined: Sep 7, 2009
    Posts: 87

    lt1tyrell
    Member
    from Canada

    Hey sorry forgot to mention it is a later model 350 chevy with centerbolts, I have seen them new on ebay with hardware, baffles etc. but if they are total junk I do not want to waste my time or cash!
     
  5. BIG-JIM
    Joined: Jun 13, 2009
    Posts: 1,378

    BIG-JIM
    Member
    from CT

    Had a buddy that had a leak in his valve covers (Cheap Finned). Then he put on vintage units (with the drippers on the inside) about $250 a set made out of magnesium. They still leaked. Couldn't figure it out for the life of him. Worked on it off and on for two weeks in his spare time. Come to find out the studs were bottomed out in the head and the oil was traveling up the screws. Shorter screws fixed it. They were not center bolt covers though.
     
  6. BIG-JIM
    Joined: Jun 13, 2009
    Posts: 1,378

    BIG-JIM
    Member
    from CT

    I orders 2 sets off evilbay and they seem to fit fine. One was a set that came with the air cleaner. I decided to go with dual quads so that's why I have the air cleaner.
     
  7. 32ford5
    Joined: Sep 15, 2009
    Posts: 1,100

    32ford5
    Member
    from Australia

    I bought some (twice - once for a 401 Buick and once for a local GM V8) and the biggest issue was incorrectly drilled holes which made it a bear to line up the bolts. After battling bolts for a few hours we ended up having to drill and file the holes to make them fit but the finish was also crap. Both pairs ended up as wall hangers. Obviously, quality is usually worth the investment. "Cheap" anything is always going to be a compromise.
     
  8. Just like tattoos,,, cheap parts arent good and good parts arent cheap ;)
     
  9. mikhett
    Joined: Jan 22, 2005
    Posts: 1,413

    mikhett
    Member
    from jackson nj

    My offenhauser finned VCS leaked before I went with REALGaskets BC gaskets.there made with aircraft silicone
    they DONTLEAK!.
     
  10. theHIGHLANDER
    Joined: Jun 3, 2005
    Posts: 8,308

    theHIGHLANDER
    Member

    I think if they were left loose they might leak. I think if the gaskets aren't properly positioned, they might. I think if there's no seal provision for the center bolts they might. I think...aww fuck it. To early for thinking.
     
  11. USA Tires Sign Joe
    Joined: Aug 13, 2006
    Posts: 1,072

    USA Tires Sign Joe
    Member
    from Western NJ

    Buy quality parts and you will not have an issue when installed properly.
     
  12. No more than any others, typically if installed correctly as per instructions. Unless to have a high dollar show or race car paying $250 or even $100 seems ridiculous to me.
     
  13. 40fordtudor
    Joined: Jan 3, 2010
    Posts: 2,503

    40fordtudor
    Member

    I can't contribute cuz I'm still struggling with how to wash a barn find.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2013
  14. Now that's funny, man! :D
     
  15. One of the if not the stupidest threads ever! :D HRP
     
  16. bgaro
    Joined: Sep 3, 2010
    Posts: 1,189

    bgaro
    Member

    oh no, that thread is spreading like a rash to other threads. did you check classifieds or local swaps?
     
  17. GassersGarage
    Joined: Jul 1, 2007
    Posts: 4,727

    GassersGarage
    Member

    I used Mooneyes finned "no name" valve covers. No leaks at all. I did opt for their breathers too. They weren't cheap though. Over $485 a set with breathers mounted but that was 12 years ago.
     
  18. Chevydeuce
    Joined: Apr 20, 2006
    Posts: 136

    Chevydeuce
    Member

    I bought a set of "NOS" "moon" covers for a 371 Olds.
    Don't know if there are any other finned no name covers around so I asume they are Moon.
    The casting looks terrible. Lots of little"holes" from poor casting quality.
    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1389811024.507588.jpg
    Are they all like this?
    Is Offenhauser the same quality?

    I didn't try them on yet, so don't know how they fit and if they do their job


    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     
  19. icsamerica
    Joined: May 23, 2012
    Posts: 62

    icsamerica
    Member

    Those ebay type center bolt valve covers are just fine. The do not leak. They do narrow at the top so high lift cams and roller rockers may hit.
     
  20. Model T1
    Joined: May 11, 2012
    Posts: 3,309

    Model T1
    Member

    Usually if installed without gaskets or left loose.
    Expensive ones are like that too!
     
  21. Mike VV
    Joined: Sep 28, 2010
    Posts: 2,485

    Mike VV
    Member
    from SoCal

    I've owned Offenhauser and Moon rocker covers, while not exactly cheap, they didn't leak or break.
    I even had a set of Cal Custom covers...no leakage.

    Mike
     
  22. Rem
    Joined: Mar 6, 2006
    Posts: 1,256

    Rem
    Member

    I don't know about Offy ones, but casting pinholes are a fact of life with sand cast aluminium parts. If by "NOS" you mean they're vintage then it just adds to the feeling of history - a couple of guys in a small foundry turning out speed equipment for a burgeoning industry :)
     
  23. Captain Chaos
    Joined: Oct 16, 2009
    Posts: 596

    Captain Chaos
    Member
    from Missery

    proper instalation and sealer technic make a lot of the difference w the problems
    get the thick cork gaskets, some of the aftermarket centerbolt sbc do not hold the rubber gasket properly and will give you a fit.
    Brush tac to hold it to cover should be enough , no need to glue crap out of it or use silicone
     
  24. Captain Chaos
    Joined: Oct 16, 2009
    Posts: 596

    Captain Chaos
    Member
    from Missery

    proper instalation and sealer technic make a lot of the difference w the problems
    get the thick cork gaskets, some of the aftermarket centerbolt sbc do not hold the rubber gasket properly and will give you a fit.
    Brush tac to hold it to cover should be enough , no need to glue crap out of it or use silicone
     
  25. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 35,178

    Tman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I sell a nice finned style in center bolt and 4 bolt SBC. PM me.

    I happen to have a set of my own and the quality is top notch.

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     

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