Technical Head Gaskets, Valves, Cams, Shims, blah blah.. Few questions please

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Technical Head Gaskets, Valves, Cams, Shims, blah blah.. Few questions please


New member
Feb 26, 2004
United Kingdom.
Hi peeps,

Doing my blown headgasket on me Mk1 punto sporting at the weekend.

Just a question....
before it is sent to the engineers for the skimming, do I have to take out all 16 valves???? Or can they skim it with them still in and the inlet/exhaust manifolds still attached?

:-( Will the valves fall out when I take the cylinder head off????

And another thing. Could someone please explain what valve grinding is and how it works?? (I understand you use a compound to 'sand' the valve down so it's flush with it's seal, so no air is lost on compression, but what does this mean??)
Is it worth me checking/doing the valves?? or just simply oil the cam followers and put em back as explained in the Haynes.

Cheers Guys.
Any replies would be nice :)
Nah, they don't need the valves out for skimming. (y) Probably needs the manifolds off, but this is a 2-minute job.

Valve grinding = spreading an abrasive paste on the valve-to-valve-seat contact, sticking this sucker thing on the valve, and spinning it round to get it flush. Unless it's had some new valves fitted, it won't need them grinding.
if you want to rebuild head while your at it (cam shaft oil seals, valve stem seals, skim head and grind valves in) got for it, I didn't do mine and am now regretting it as I will have to have another H gasket and skim in order to do it all properly :bang:
The second pic from the bottom on this page shows valve grinding quite well.

I like the use on the sunday best crockery to store the valve parts !

If the engine has done lots of miles it's probably worthwhile doing a proper job as has already been said. If you get the double ended tin of paste you should only need to use the fine grade to clean up the seats.