Installing Cylinder Heads on a Small Block Ford 302 - Engine Builder Magazine
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Installing Cylinder Heads on a Small Block Ford 302

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This is one of the biggest steps in your 302 build. The cylinder head installation is a thorough process and there are steps you must take to ensure proper cylinder head alignment and torque specifications. Begin with a clean work space. Make sure all parts are clean and you remain organized. Make sure you have a good set of cylinder head alignment dowels prior to installation. Install all four dowels and be certain that they are straight and properly seated into the engine block.

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Get a good quality set of Felpro head gaskets and make sure they are free from defects and are straight. Lay the cylinder head gaskets onto the head dowels and apply a small amount of engine assembly lube to the dowels. Next, set the cylinder head carefully onto the dowels and provide even pressure on the heads to seat them onto the dowels.
Get your new head bolts and install the washers on the bolts so that the chamfered side is facing the bolt head. Apply the torque sealer onto the threads and hand tighten them into the heads. Then you’ll need your torque wrench.

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