Strange disappearing water leak (4.6 in 97 T-Bird)

Pulled up and parked in my driveway and noticed a serious water leak. I would describe it as able to fill a water glass in about three minutes. I had done some repairs to the heater line under the manifold so I
thought right away that I hadn't done a good enough job. The repair involved removing a piece of pipe (a small bracket fell off due to a spot weld failing and leaving about a 1/8" hole in the pipe) and replacing it with a piece of heater hose. See picture of pipe below.
Again..., I saw this leak and panicked. However, when I reached around behind the head where the pipe comes out it was dry as was the area under the manifold. When I put it up on jack stands and crawled underneath it looked clearly like the water was coming out from between the trans housing and the back of the motor. OK, got to be a freeze plug, right?
I had planned to have a pal with a trans shop freshen the trans so I just figured we'd replace do the freeze plugs then. Got the trans out and the freeze plugs are fine. Inspecting the heater pipe from the good vantage point of having the trans out we could see no problems.
Put the freshened trans back in and now it doesn't leak. Given it a pretty good test drive (passing gear etc.) and still no leak.
Any wild guesses or shared experience would be appreciated as I'm afraid to drive too far and reluctant to sell less the leak show up again.
TIA, Frank
Here's the pipe before cutting and the piece I cut off and replaced with heater hose:
http://img31.imageshack.us/img31/283/sa1zm.jpg
http://img840.imageshack.us/img840/7325/pipem.jpg
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On 1/5/11 1:02 AM, F.H. wrote:

If you sell it, and the leak shows up, it won't be your problem.
If it were a freeze plug, then the water level in the radiator would be lower and the fluid green.
I suspect the water cam either from the A/C or another source of water outside the engine. Maybe you had a dog or cat stuck around the motor that took a whiz or something.
Jeff

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On 1/5/2011 3:55 PM, dr_jeff wrote:

<snip>
Not my style. Someone buying a 13 yr old car does not generally have the resources to immediately shell out for repairs. The dealer found /one/ replacement part in the USA and it was 120.00 plus shipping.

Took it for another test drive of about 20 miles, parked it and let it run. Started leaking again. Near as I can tell its the pipe shown in the picture. Don't know why it didn't occur to me or the trans guy to let it run while the trans was out till it let loose or . Oh well. Time for plan B. Thanks anyway.
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On 1/5/11 9:11 PM, F.H. wrote:

You're selling a 13 year old. The new owner should expect problems. Tell the potential new owner about the possible problem. Then (s)he takes the risk.

What fluid level is going down?
Jeff
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On 1/6/2011 3:41 AM, dr_jeff wrote:

Thanks, but again, "not my style." (only looking for repair experience).

Water. The pipe shown in this picture is the heater pipe where it wraps around the back of the engine as it exits from under the intake manifold: (see arrow)
http://img8.imageshack.us/img8/7209/arrowjf.jpg
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On 1/5/2011 6:11 PM, F.H. wrote:
<snip>

If anyone is interested the repair came out fine. I opted to a DIY operation rather than spend 120.00 for the /one/ part the dealer found someplace in the Midwest partly because I didn't have time due to registration and smog test.
The leak from below with trans out:
http://img8.imageshack.us/img8/7209/arrowjf.jpg
The part removed:
http://img375.imageshack.us/img375/9560/pinhole.jpg
The part repaired:
http://img262.imageshack.us/img262/4253/modifiedpipe.jpg
Installed:
http://img37.imageshack.us/img37/1725/newinplace.jpg
Surgery completed:
http://img130.imageshack.us/img130/1731/newwithhose.jpg
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