stuck head

Farmall H, HV & Super H, 1939-1954

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stuck head

Postby Joey » Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:30 am

Started disassembling the replacement engine for the steel wheeled H last night and made good headway on taking off all the external parts. However, could not budge the head after all the nuts were removed from the studs holding down the head. Any suggestions on how to loosen the head?

Also need to know how to remove the pulley from the crankshaft. I don't have my shop manual yet, it's coming, but while I'm there, I want to remove the internal guts from this engine and get the block cleaned and analyzed. I know I need to start purchasing some good tools, so I'm open to suggestions from necessary items to add to the tool box when working on farm engines.
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Re: stuck head

Postby beaconlight » Tue Oct 13, 2009 11:06 am

First thing to do is soak everything well with Sea Foam , Kroil or your favorite. I would try to crank the engine over if I could to see if compression would help. I would also use a torch on the studs as well locking two thin nuts on each stud and with an air wrench try to loosen and tighten a number times to see if I could remove some of them or at least break the rust binding the threads.
Others more knowledgable than I may have better ideas.
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Re: stuck head

Postby RustyFarmall » Tue Oct 13, 2009 11:33 am

Joey, the head is stuck to the head gasket, and that gasket is stuck to the block. It's not complicated, it is just simply stuck, as it should be when the gasket is doing its' job. If you already have the manifold off, just take a long pry bar, length of pipe, etc., stick one end into a port on the head, and then lift on the bar. The head should come loose. If it doesn't, you have missed a bolt or nut somewhere.
To get that crankshaft pulley off, you need a good puller. There just isn't any other way.
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Re: stuck head

Postby cowboy » Tue Oct 13, 2009 12:38 pm

If the crankshaft pulley is a press fit like a cub. You will need a puller setup like used for a cub or you will break the pulley. I used a bering seperator behind the pulley to get my cub's off.

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Re: stuck head

Postby SONNY » Tue Oct 13, 2009 8:12 pm

The guys are right!---pulley is VERY easily broken!---How do I know?---GUESS! LOL!!! thanks; sonny
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Re: stuck head

Postby Joey » Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:47 am

Got the stuck head off last night, but it took some patience and wiggling. Considering that the engine came from the scrap yard with a busted oil pan, the block seemed to be in pretty good shape. The pistons are stuck, with number one sleeve being in the worst shape. Continued disassembly last night, removing the rear seal from the crank, removed the oil pump and started removing the caps(?) from the crankshaft. From the way the crankshaft is frozen into position, I couldn't get to the bolts holding the caps on cylinders 2 & 3 because it was turned inward towards the block wall. I wanted to take out the crank shaft completely and then knock out the pistons and sleeves, but I'm going to have to get a different wrench to access the bolts that are hard to reach.

I don't think of taking a camera with me to the shop, but I'll try to remember to bring one this evening and take some pictures of the inside of the engine and let y'all see what I'm dealing with. This is my first engine rebuild, so please put up with me as I pepper the board with questions. I know that can be taken care of with .........pictures!

First question: What tools do y'all recommend as a must have for the tool box? Although I have an old torque wrench, I'm planning on buying a new wrench, the kind that clicks. Suggestions on brand?

Thanks for the help, guys.
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Re: stuck head

Postby RustyFarmall » Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:56 am

Joey, remove all of the crank main caps. This will allow the crank to drop down and be rotated to a different position so that you can easily access those other two rod caps.
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Re: stuck head

Postby flyawa » Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:33 pm

Glad to hear you got it off without damage.

I thought I'd go ahead and post my method just in case someone else needs to get a head unstuck. I had a 1937 Lincoln V-12 that had aluminum heads. The heads were very fragile. An old timer neighbor said the best way to get heads loose was to take the spark plugs out, fill each cylinder with as much 1/4 inch cotton rope (the kind they used to use on window weights, usually available at a good hardware store) you can poke into the spark plug hole. Then carefully turn the engine over. with the crank (not the starter). The head comes loose very easily.
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Re: stuck head

Postby RustyFarmall » Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:02 am

That rope trick also works to keep a valve closed if you need to replace a broken valve spring.
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Re: stuck head

Postby VinceD » Thu Oct 15, 2009 6:26 pm

Joey, glad you got the head off. Sounds like it will be a great restoration.

I searched around and bought a Kobalt torque wrench at Lowe's. It has a lifetime guarantee and that sold me. Craftsman is only guaranteed for a very short time, something like 60 days. I am very pleased with the Kobalt.

Good luck with the project. :D :D
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Re: stuck head

Postby Joey » Fri Oct 16, 2009 7:29 am

Vince,

I've been reading some various articles about torque wrenches and came across some good posts about the Kobalt wrench. I may take a ride over to Lowe's this weekend..........

Update on the engine teardown.....crankshaft pulley came off with no problem at all using a 3 arm puller, PB Blaster and a little heat from a propane torch. However, the crankshaft is still in - took off the main caps but still can't get the crankshaft to rotate enough to reach the bolts on the bearing caps. I'm going to look for offset wrenches while I'm at Lowe's.....
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Re: stuck head

Postby John *.?-!.* cub owner » Fri Oct 16, 2009 7:45 am

I assume the engine does not turn because of one or both of the remaining pistons being rusted into place. Since the block is apparently going to a machine shop anyway, take it to them with 2 the rod caps still in place. They will have the experience and tools to get them loose much easier than you can, and with less chance of doing further damage. I like to do as much of my work myself as I can, but sometimes it is best to go to a professional.
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Re: stuck head

Postby Eugene » Fri Oct 16, 2009 8:35 am

Joey wrote:took off the main caps but still can't get the crankshaft to rotate enough to reach the bolts on the bearing caps. I'm going to look for offset wrenches.
Have you tried a 3/8" drive and a deep well socket with a couple of extensions to reach the rod cap bolts?

S&K wrenches/hand tools have a life time warranty.
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Re: stuck head

Postby RustyFarmall » Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:16 pm

Joey wrote:Vince,

I've been reading some various articles about torque wrenches and came across some good posts about the Kobalt wrench. I may take a ride over to Lowe's this weekend..........

Update on the engine teardown.....crankshaft pulley came off with no problem at all using a 3 arm puller, PB Blaster and a little heat from a propane torch. However, the crankshaft is still in - took off the main caps but still can't get the crankshaft to rotate enough to reach the bolts on the bearing caps. I'm going to look for offset wrenches while I'm at Lowe's.....


The crankshaft will not come out or even drop out of the main journals until the engine is removed from the tractor, and then you still need to remove the engine front cover as well as the flywheel. Once that is done, you should be able to lift the crank up out of the main journals, rotate it 180 degrees, and then drop it back into the journals. The rod caps will now be in a position for easy access to the stud nuts.
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Re: stuck head

Postby Joey » Fri Oct 16, 2009 2:13 pm

The engine is mounted to an engine stand and the bottom of the block is topside. Flywheel is removed, as well as the crankshaft pulley and the front cover. That's where I left it last time I worked on it. For lack of a better explanation, the crankshaft is tilted to the side, with the innermost nut on the bearing cap almost against the wall of the engine block. There's not enough room to put a wrench in, much less a socket. I'm looking for an offset wrench, which might work.

The pistons are stuck - not sure if all are stuck, but nothing will move. Tried to lift the crankshaft a little, and it moves a little, but no rotation to bring the bearing caps topside.

Don't know all of the terminology, but I have to remove the gears that were under the front cover, and then remove the camshaft. Any warnings I need to know about? :roll:
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