Even if you have the money allocated for a project, at least for me, it never feels good to lay out a ton of cash. Especially sober. And especially when you know the car will be no different to drive when you’re done.
[I would like to point out it took considerable restraint not to call this post “Getting good head.”]
Which is to say we’ve moved up the timetable for doing the 2nd half of the Oklahoma Adventure Trail, so I need to get to making sweet, sweet love to my head gaskets. Also I still want a center diff lock.
So yesterday I went ahead and bought Atlantic British head gasket kit, including the stretch bolts. For those unfamiliar Atlantic British is very proud of their parts. To talk numbers, this kit is $220 + shipping. Lucky8, another Rover parts supplier, sells their head gasket kit for $80 shipped. Why the difference? I sure would like to know!
The reason I spent an extra $140 for, more or less, the same parts is (not very) simple! They’re not the same.
Looking at the head bolts you’ll notice a critical difference between the two kits. The Lucky ones look like... well they look like bolts with rolled threads. The Atlantic ones have small notches in the shaft. What this means is the thinnest part on the Lucky ones is the threads, which is bad. Not only does that add some weird stress concentrators, it also means that is where the bolts will want to yield, which seems bad. The AB bolts will, at least in theory, yield at the thin part of the shaft, which is a minor, singular stress concentrator and not at a place that is mating with other parts. [At lot of this was regurgitated from my ME colleagues.]
One option was to just buy the bolts from Atlantic (at $80) and then buy the rest of the kit from Lucky. I think this would have made a lot of sense and been the most economical, saving about $60. But I didn’t because I choose to believe the Atlantic parts are going to be higher quality overall, and for a head gasket job that matters.
Are they actually higher quality (aside from the bolts)? No... probably not.
So aside from all this I have new wires coming from a company called Kingsborne, new coils, some new coolant hoses, and a few other minor items.
Now to begin researching Dexcool vs all others. I’ve waded into this fight before and it is decidedly un-fun.
Sidenote: Any oppos aware of a good coolant selection guide? I usually go with factory, but there is so much hate centered around Dex...