cjmarzoli

Early Buick ('31) Straight Eight water jacket

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I have a 1931 Buick Model 8-60.  There is a long plate on the driver’s side of the engine under the intake manifold which is the “water jacket cover” per my diagram.  I recently noticed I had two rust pin holes in this plate.  My impression was the cavity behind this cover would be filled with coolant.  My question is: should this cavity be filled with coolant and if so, should I see coolant coming out of these small rust holes?  I have seen no coolant leaking out here at all and wondering if something is amiss with my circulation system.  Car runs at 140-150 degrees and does not seem to overheat, and hot coolant is flowing into my add on accessory heater so seems like it is circulating.  Thanks.

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The water jacket cover is a chronic problem with rust through.  The common cure was to put a flat plate of sheet metal in between the original cover and the block.  I suspect your car may have this added piece if no coolant is leaking out of the pin holes.  I have not heard of any problems with this added plate.  My one note of caution is that many of the screw holes for the plate are through holes into the water jacket, making it imperative that a sealant be used on the screw threads to prevent leakage at the the screws.

 

Bob Engle

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I did just that.  Made one out of aluminum but could use stainless for a forever fix. 

Water jacket cover.JPG

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I think Bob's Automobilia  and a couple of other places have reproduction stampings that are powder coated.  The next points of leakage will be bolts and gasket.  The bolts should have copper sealing washers under them and modern thread sealant is vey desirable, Loctite makes a good thread sealing product (not thread lock, they actually have a sealer). 

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My 31-50 had a sheet of roofing lead to seal the cover, and body filler to hide the rust holes.

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