Headers on GMC K1500

Well, I finally got my headers put on my 94 GMC K1500 350. What a bitch!! Had a particularly hard time on the driver side set.....pulling the power steering pump, modifying the PS pump bracket so I could reuse the stud in
the front hole, and getting the bolt in the back hole. Man, tore up hands!!
Anyway, now that they're in, here's some (alot) of questions:
*How does one make sure that the bolts stay tight and you don't get any leaks (if possible)? One of the backyard mechanics I work with says I can guarantee on getting a leak and have to put in new gaskets at least yearly. *How can you tell if you have a leak to begin with? Should one double up on the gaskets or possibly use a high-temp silicone? *Can a person use some sort of loctite on the bolts to help keep them in without seizing them to the point where they won't come back out? *Will allen head bolts work in place of the header bolts to make it easier to get in/out? *On the driver side, at the front of the manifold, there's an extra tapped hole. Can the PS pump bracket be modified to use this hole to give one access to the front manifold stud/bolt easier?
Any other useful advice would be greatly appreciated. I'm a newbie to headers.
Thanks. Andy
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Inline..............

He's right, more or less. It might not be every year, but she'll leak eventually. There is no real way to keep the bolts in there nice and tight, other than checking them every few months.

Do not double up on gaskets and do not use silicone. Doubling up will make the seal worse, and high-temp silicone will still burn off the first time you light her up. If you have a leak, you'll hear it and see carbon tracking on the flange where it's leaking.

I wouldn't.

As long as they are the same grade of bolt, why the hell not!

Anything can be fabricated, it's just a matter of how good you are at metal fabrication. Short answer: no easy way.

Just enjoy the noise and power, check the bolt tightness every few months, and use high quality gaskets.
Doc

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My father had a set of headers that the bolts loosened up on all the time. The manual said to check so often, and he did, and they always needed it. Then he wired them (drill a hole through the head and time them all together w/ wire) and he never really had that problem after. He never really got a leak he said either. I have heard that some makers of headers have fewer problems with leaking (hooker IIRC) and other have more (Tornado? IIRC). Other than that - I always just let leaking exhaust anything tick.... My S10 had a bolt that was installed cross-threaded from the factory and I broke the head off. It leaked from then on, and only when I really got on it (4K+) could I hear it - and exhaust manifolds are quieter than headers!
GMC Gremlin
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I can get Bolts designed for use with headers that won't back off. Anyway when you Install the Headers, Run the Motor until hot, then shut off and let it cool back down and then ReTighten the bolts once again. This should help keep the bolts from loosing up and causing a leak! If installed right and will a good set of headers, you shouldn't have to be changing them every year!

If you have a header leak, you'll see some blocking og the Gasket, and as it gets worse, you'll hear it! Don't double the gaskets or use Silicon, you'll just be asking for a leak that way!

Loctite won't do anything for you here. The stuff loosens up under heat. In fact if you loctite something and then you need to take it apart at some later date and you can't brake is loose, or worring about rounding out the bolt, heating it up will cure that problem.
But like I said, you can get special bolts, that you screw in tight and then there's a clip that locks on the top of the bolt and it keep the bolt from loosing back up.

Yes you can use allen held bolts. In fact some headers come with that type of bolt with them.

Not sure without seeing it. But anything is possible. Just more work.
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On Wed, 8 Sep 2004 15:56:10 -0600, <none> wrote:

On my last GMC, an 86 350 I had no problem. Here is what I did. I took a mini-grinder and split the flatbar flange. The flange and the head have fdiffernet rates of expansion and virtually guarantee that the bolts will work loose over time. The split flange cured the problem and my bolts stayed tight for 4 years and until I sold the truck. The headers were el-cheapo Blackjack.
Double gaskets will allow the flange to bend so that the area around the bolts will be the only part that is sqeezed tight and the gaskets will leak in record time. -- Best Regards Gordie
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Thanks thus far for the feedback.
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--WebTV-Mail-15277-3458 Content-Type: Text/Plain; Charset=US-ASCII Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7Bit
I always use fel-pro gaskets. Never had a problem with them. They have been in there about 4 years. I re-tighten the bolts after a few hundred miles.I check them often but never have to tighten them.
--WebTV-Mail-15277-3458 Content-Description: signature Content-Disposition: Inline Content-Type: Text/HTML; Charset=US-ASCII Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7Bit
<html> <font color=#0000FF> <html/> 1/4 Mile Junkies
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Bill cut it out with the frikken HTML, 1/4 Mile Junkies looks just as cool when it isn't blue! And watch this!
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I made a line!!!

GMC Gremlin
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Sorry! It`s just the web tv shit. I`ll take it off when I post.
Sorry Again!
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Thanks bill, love the opinions and post don't like HTML in the NG.
GMC Gremlin

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http://www.stage8.com
...is all you need - so much for the professionals, eh?
<none> wrote in message

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