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A small guide to doing basic cylinder head work ie porting/polish/gasflowed

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by Andrew@A.L.D, May 27, 2010.

  1. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    I've been asked by some on here about head work as lot of people have said that they like what they see. I did this guide on other forums as they also wanted to see what i could do.

    The head you see is from a Ford Focus ST170, most of my work is in Fords but i wanted to lean more so i got myself a S3 project and want to branch out to other makes of car

    anyway here we go


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------WARNING-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    THIS IS A GUIDE ONLY, I WILL NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR PERSONAL INJERY OR DAMAGE TO ANY CYLINDER HEADS DONE BY FOLLOWING THIS GUIDE, IF YOU ARE UNSURE THEN PLEASE SEND THE HEAD TO A SPECIALIST FOR THE WORK TO BE DONE. I AM MORE THAN HAPPY TO TAKE ON THIS WORK SO PLEASE EMAIL ME AT. MY PROCES ARE VERY GOOD AND SOME TUNERS ARE ALSO USING ME TO DO THERE HEAD WORK freakpower300@rock.com.

    I HAVE BEEN DOING CYLINDER HEAD WORK FOR THE BEST PART OF 10 YEAR WORKING WITH PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN DOING THIS FOR MANY MORE YEARS THAN ME.

    I HAVE WORKED WITH SOME MECHANICS FROM GINETTA RACE CARS AND OTHER HEAD SPECIALISTS WORKING WITH THE RIGHT TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT FOR TESTING AND DEVELOPING CYLINDER HEADS ( I.E SUPERFLOW FLOW BENCHES ).

    IF YOU ARE ARE AT A STAGE BEYOND THIS THEN I WILL BE MORE THAN HAPPY TO SELL YOU A PTS/HYBRID FLOWBENCH CAPABLE OF FLOWING OVER 600CFM'S AT 28IN PRESSURE. PRICES START AT £7000 inc Excel software











    Right lets get started

    Health and safety is very important so get yourself some eye protection and a dust mask at least. You don't want aluminium swarf in your eyes or in your lungs from the dust produced by the emery cloth from the finishing.

    The tools

    Over the many years of doing head work you pick up you own ways of doing things and you make your own tools also but the the main tool you need is a air die grinder or a electrical one thats capable of 25,000 rpms, the one you will see I'm using is a electrical one. Don't even bother with a drill with a flex shaft as at the most it will run about few thousands rpm's and is only able to run at less than a hour before it starts to over heat if your lucky.

    Here is what i use

    http://www.axminster.co.uk/product.asp?pf_id=792327&name=die+grinder&user_search=1&sfile=1&jump=48

    http://www.axminster.co.uk/product-Axminster-Heavy-Duty-Flexible-Drive-Unit-20091.htm

    Here is a few things you will need

    [​IMG]

    As you can see some of the stuff is self explanatory and some not but all of it will be covered as i go though this thread

    Carbide burrs

    I found that the good ones can last a life time if looked after, i Paid £25+ for each of these but i'm doing this a lot so the cheaper ones will be fine for you

    http://www.cromwell.co.uk/quicksearch?search=carbide+burrs&x=0&y=0

    [​IMG]

    Cartridge roll test kit

    Used for some of the head to reach places

    http://www.cromwell.co.uk/YRK2059800K

    [​IMG]

    Scotchbrite/emery cloth roll, Flap sander, Scotchbrite roll, split rod to use with emery cloth and two of my tools i made for making sure the ports and round, smooth and uniformed and one that i use the most as to replace the emery cloth is easy and cheaper than the flap wheels.

    flap wheel and scotchbrites found at www.rdgtools.co.uk

    [​IMG]

    Emery cloth 60 grit, 120 grit, 180 grit and 400 grit

    http://uk.rs-online.com/web/search/searchBrowseAction.html?method=retrieveTfg&binCount=38&Ne=4294957561&N=4294962344+4294776144

    [​IMG]

    spring calipers set is used to make sure every port is the same size and that each port is the same diameter run though

    Found at any machine mart

    [​IMG]

    Spring compressor, this is a great little one that fits zetec, I4 and even Vag 20v head with small tappets, its light and come with different size fitting

    Also found at machine mart

    [​IMG]

    Oil seal removal tool, loads better that a pair of pliers, trust me if you ever come to dismantling a 20v Vag head or motor bike head these are a must

    I got these cheap on ebay at £20 they have been modified to get a small bore tappet holes.

    [​IMG]

    When dismantling the head you want to keep every valve component in the right order they came out of as that part is worn matched to the guide, if fitting new valves some time new guides and seats need recutting, if the old parts go back in the wrong order they will wear out faster. This is just a bit of MDF with holes drilled in it marked with what cylinder and valve number

    [​IMG]

    Digital caliper, i will show you what this is used for later in the thread

    Also found in machine mart

    [​IMG]

    Magnetic pick up tool for when you remove the collets

    Found in most Halfords and motor spares shop

    [​IMG]

    Head stand for disassemble and reassembling the head as this will make things much easier. found very cheap on Ebay

    [​IMG]

    You've now stripped you head and you've keep everything in order what you need to do next is clean the head and inspect it for any damage, seeing most of you will be reading this to do work on there I4 then you will be looking for cracks. You don't want to be doing hours of work on a head to find out its cracked and rendered useless.

    When cleaning a head your best getting one of these but if not a old tube with lots of hot soppy water, a jet wash is another or your mother/other half dish washer.

    You could also use brick acid or oven cleaner on stubborn dirt

    [​IMG]
    #1
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  3. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Right your about to start

    Its not the easiest to see what your doing so some sort of light is needed the brighter the better, You can also in the picture a vacuum cleaner to keep the dust down

    At this point if its a head i've never worked on i will make a mould of the port with silicone rubber to see were the restrictions are but this is something you wont be doing as its one of the advanced side of head portering.

    [​IMG]

    Right what are the bits that can be removed to increase flow, the guide is one but if the guide is short in the first place then you don't want to shorten it as this will increase wear anyway this one is small and fine to flatten and make flush with the port wall.

    The next this is the siemese split on this 16v head

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Go round the head check the head and see where you could break though into the water jacket, you don't want that to happen, just use a scribe and your finger to get a idea

    [​IMG]

    When starting take a look at were the seat its and don't grind it or the head will be scrap

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    If you cant see it because of carbon build up then do a bit of valve grinding with some engineering blue

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    You can now see a light grey line were the seat is

    [​IMG]

    Use a correct size burr for the size of the port, too big of a burr in the port can snag in a sharp corner of a port and break damaging the head or yourself. This is were the best of the performance will come just behind the valve.

    Keep the tool moving, don't stop in one place as you will get a uneven surface

    Take it out to the valve seat were the valve sits

    DON'T MAKE THE SEAT TO SLIM ON THE I4 AS THEY NEED BIGISH SEATS BECAUSE OF THE HEADS ARE PRONE TO CRACKS BECAUSE OF HEAT

    [​IMG]

    Tapper the port here making it flat will loose you bhp

    [​IMG]

    Use lube to cool the burr as it works best when cool and it will look after the burr

    [​IMG]

    Check your work all the time, stop and blow away all chipping with a blow gun

    [​IMG]

    This is were the caliper comes in

    [​IMG]

    take note of the size of the port and repeat on the rest of the ports

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    #2
  4. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Before you started the head will look like this

    Before

    [​IMG]

    And what its looks like after

    After

    [​IMG]

    I've opened the port a bit more on this head to match the gasket line

    Repeat on the rest of the ports checking port sizes and valve seats as you go

    Thats the main cutting done

    Right emery cloth time

    You can see other restrictions that can be removed with emery cloth or a flap wheel, starting with a 60 grit

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    As again keep the tool moving and use WD40 to keep its lubricated

    [​IMG]

    Take a look at your work and this is what is should look like

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Now i swap tools to the one i made to do the ports, it make it easier to open the ports all the way though and not at the ends. Now with a 120 grit cloth.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    You can also use a split rod with emery cloth in it

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    When doing the exhaust ports i spend more time on them and take out more metal than i would on the inlet ports, There tends to be less work done at the factory on the exhaust ports for economies of scale leaving more scope for gains, its is especially important with turbo engines as this will give better spool up for the turbo.
    #3
  5. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Here is what the the port should look like

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Going over the port with a scotchbrite to finish off the port

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I normally finish off the inlet port with 120 grit and the exhaust with 180 grit and depending on the engine i might go over the exhaust port with 400 grit to stop carbon build up

    Going back to my own tool again i use it to clean up the manifold face

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The same goes for the exhaust side so just repeat the steps above one that side

    Next step with be modifying the combustion chamber and removing valve shrouding

    Right now we go onto the combustion chamber

    Most people that do head work over look the chamber and leave it as standard but not me or some others out there.

    Why are we doing this? Valve shrouding.. Whats thats you ask.

    Anything thats near the valve head is shrouding

    As seen below near the spark plug, also we are smoothing the chamber to stop carbon build up

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Right this is what you need to smooth the chamber

    Find some old valves and ground the face down

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Place them in the head and as you can see the valves sit lower in the head


    [​IMG]


    Using your tools seen on page one start to sand down the chamber

    As you can see whats been done now

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    As before start with a 60 grit and work your way down 80, 120 and then 400

    Standard

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Modified

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Once thats done you need to CC the chambers to make sure there all the same and if not you need to even them up

    ( no pictures of this as i forgot )

    Cleaning the valves

    Us a wire wheel to get the worst off

    [​IMG]

    Then stick the valve in a piller drill and lube it up and use some 80 grit emery cloth

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    When there all done its time to lap the valves in with a grinding stick or if you do loads of head like i do then i use a drill but dont run it to fast and make sure the valve steam is lubed up when in the guide.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Now thats all done its time for a skim

    Just to finish off when it comes to the rebuild use some good quality engine assembly lube/paste that can be found on ebay, use loads on the valve before you install them and lots of you cam/cams, tappets/lifter and cam caps

    The last thing you need to do is give the head a skim as i bet when you work on your head you will most likely scratch of scuff the face.

    The finished this ready to be sent out to the customer


    If people like this then i might go on to flow bench work and how to use one and make your own flow bench and design your own software

    [​IMG]
    #4
  6. Sandip
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    Sandip Well-Known Member

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Wow! I like it, what are the main benefits of doing this? Looks ace!
    #5
  7. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    better flowing head= more power/torque, better spool of turbo, free revving etc its all good with no down sides

    The only problem with this on the S3/TT with the K04 is the exhaust manifold is the restriction but i have done this on my head anyway as it didn't cost me a thing
    #6
  8. finesse
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    finesse Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [May 27, 2010]
    EPIC

    Andrew, are you in the south east?
    #7
  9. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    West yorkshire, Leeds
    #8
  10. <tuffty/>
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    <tuffty/> Badger 5 Edition Staff Member Moderator

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Nice work mate... was debating on doing a bit of a clean up on mine... not a full port but just tweak it a tad... maybe... :)

    Did some work on my old 2ltr pinto head for my Mk2 Escort back in the day... good old cast iron heads lol...

    <tuffty/>
    Last edited: May 27, 2010
    #9
  11. OllieH
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    OllieH Member

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Same here, looks good. How much more is this likely to flow then. Coupled with a Hybrid and JBS manifold I reckon it could give some good figures.

    How much does this sort of work cost?
    #10
  12. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Anyone who wants a price then ask Andrew via PM please
    #11
  13. Barks
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    Barks Member

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    [May 27, 2010]
    Very nice introduction, great to see some good technical information. Keep up the good work.
    #12
  14. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    I've worked on cast iron head before and hate it as they take longer to do and i don't have the time for them.

    Aluminum head only now for me

    Flow figures depends on cams and there lift, my 20v head is a small port head that flows a bit better than a standard large port head but when money is free to go BT then the head will be swapped
    #13
  15. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    #14
  16. s3dave
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    s3dave TFSI Hybrid

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    [May 27, 2010]
    excellent and interesting, i may have some flap wheels for you..... im in leeds too :yes:
    #15
  17. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 27, 2010]
    I might have to pop round when i'm not busy Dave
    #16
  18. s3dave
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    s3dave TFSI Hybrid

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    [May 27, 2010]
    yeah anytime mate, my companys in horsforth, do you use the 6mm shafts on the scotchbrite mops? if so i have loads that i bought for peanuts :icon_thumright:
    #17
  19. paulypaul
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    paulypaul S3 all the way Baby

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    [May 28, 2010]
    Great thread Andrew,
    Just what i needed been thinking about doing mine for a while now,There is only so much reading and youtubing a man can do,its a read like this that really helps:icon_thumright:
    #18
  20. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 28, 2010]
    Thank you for the comments guys
    #19
  21. DaveA3
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    DaveA3 Audi A-Trizzle!

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    [May 28, 2010]
    nice writeup mate! if only i had the bravery to do this :(
    #20
  22. fingermouse
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    fingermouse thats me

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    [May 28, 2010]
    a proper write up from a fellow Yorkshireman :) Im just over the hill near Emley moor mast :)
    #21
  23. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 28, 2010]
    Thank you again

    I might have to pop over to see my local fellow Audi owners

    You wouldn't happen to have vag.com would you fingermouse?
    #22
  24. fingermouse
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    fingermouse thats me

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    [May 28, 2010]
    Keep thinking about getting it then something else crops up like stuff for the kids :(
    #23
  25. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 28, 2010]
    I just need to get a laptop first lol
    #24
  26. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 28, 2010]
    I will be doing another vag 20v head soon and i will try and do a guide on that
    #25
  27. paulypaul
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    paulypaul S3 all the way Baby

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    [May 28, 2010]
    Well thanks to your thread :applaus:i decided to go at my S3 head with that little bit more knowledge,i ordered a few bits from your thread.so i stripped it all down and got cracking i have made all the gasket marks,and started with the burr.
    3 Question for ya,
    Would you have any old valves for AMK head? i dont mind paying as i dont want to damage the valve seats
    the valve guides do i blend them in to the port or go around them?
    the split rod you use is there another term for this tool as i cant seem to find one?
    Your help will be appreciated :)
    #26
  28. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 28, 2010]
    I have loads of valves as i had some from my old APY head and some from the head thats on my car now so 40 in all

    Just PM me your address and i'll get a set of 5 in the post to you

    Blend in the guides are there is loads of meat there to do so

    The split pin and other tools you see above were made my me in a lathe and CNC machines

    You will find it hard to do the inlets as you don't have much room move
    #27
  29. paulypaul
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    paulypaul S3 all the way Baby

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    [May 29, 2010]
    Good man thanks,the combustion chamber is the only part that worries me i dont want to damage the seats so the valve trick is a good one.
    Having the right tool to do the job is half the battle i suppose.
    When you look down the exhaust ports from the valve side there is a hump either side its ok to smooth them?
    when you look in the inlet port manifold side the is a hump on the top is it ok to smooth it down to a certain amount?
    #28
  30. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [May 31, 2010]
    The right tools do help a lot and over the years have made my own ( one i will never sell )

    It is ok to smooth them

    Don't smooth the roof of the inlet

    What you want the port to look like is the inside of a mandrel bent tube, thats the perfect shape
    #29
  31. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [Jun 2, 2010]
    Doing deals on heads now and will be doing a 20v head soon so i will post some pictures of what i do to them
    #30
  32. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [Jun 11, 2010]
    A 20v Turbo head

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    #31
  33. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [Jul 25, 2010]
    Just working on a 20v Big valve, large port head right now so i will post some pics
    #32
  34. Robbo1144
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    Robbo1144 Faster in reverse

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    [Sep 4, 2010]
    Good post mate, really interesting :) might go at my head this winter, ive got a buckshee mini one lying around my garage so i'll probally have a practice first on that!
    #33
  35. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [Sep 4, 2010]
    Thank you
    #34
  36. scoobyra
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    scoobyra It's not f@cking ORANGE!!!!!

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    [Sep 7, 2010]
    Haven't been on the old forum for a while and came across this thread. WOW! What an interesting article. 20 years ago I'd do all sorts of things to the 2l pinto engine in my MK2 Escort but I'd never dream of doing it to my S3 as the old confidence has gone out of the window.

    Great explanation with excellent pictures and descriptions. Top Man.

    Whne I've saved up a few grand I'll be in touch Andrew.
    #35
  37. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [Sep 7, 2010]
    Thank you again
    #36
  38. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [Oct 4, 2010]
    Some pictures of a Golf V5 head

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #37
  39. harryc
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    harryc Member

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    [Jan 7, 2011]
    Looks good! Did you get any flow bench figures for the head? Out of interest how far off is the gasket template to the port castings? Did a similar project on a civic vtec head but obviously you have to be a bit more sympathetic with material removal on an n/a setup.
    #38
  40. Andrew@A.L.D
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    Andrew@A.L.D Cylinder Head Master

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    [Jan 8, 2011]
    for which head?
    #39
  41. harryc
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    harryc Member

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    [Jan 8, 2011]
    The 20vt
    #40

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