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Thread: Prep of head exhaust-port (newbie)

  1. #1

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    Question Prep of head exhaust-port (newbie)

    Newbie here, living in the center of the desert. I'm prepping the head exhaust-port surfaces [ is that what you call them? ] for the install of an exhaust manifold (don't have it yet). Using 80-grit sandpaper: is 80 grit OK; good or bad? Would have to order a finer grade by mail. I might be able to borrow a Dremel tool. (There are no professional mechanics or machine shops within 60 miles, and only one little store with little to choose from.) Have a Fel-Pro exhaust manifold gasket: better or worse if I use a "sealant," RV-something or other? [ 1990 Ram 50, 2.4L w/ fuel injection and SOHC ] Thanks to any respondents!

  2. #2

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  3. #3

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    Thank you for the reply, sir. I'm half way into this YouTube video and I gather so far I can use: a Dremel (electric, don't have air) and 80 grit. I don't have the head off; it's sitting there on top of the block in the engine compartment. All I did was remove the cracked exhaust manifold. Now I need to clean -- as well as I can with the few assets I have -- the head surface that the manifold will butt up against (with the gasket in between, of course). Am i missing something? I live in the boonies (as we used to say in VN), in a town of 125, with not even a Taco Bell, with assets to match. What do I do to "put the odds in my favor" when I do this job?

  4. #4

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    Jesus, so much to go wrong here lol. If your going to do a carbon clean on the exhaust side I would recommend closing off each cylinder and going at it with a toothbrush and solvent and blow it out with some canned air. I would do this before I ever took a dremel to a head that was still on a motor.

  5. #5


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    I use "Red" RTV (High Temp) sealant from the auto store.. to seal up the exhaust manifold on my setup.

  6. #6

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    Cut the bristles to about half length on the toothbrush to give it more oomph.
    I can help get your truck to pass California smog! PM me.
    California BAR Smog Inspector License #EO635469
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    See what I have for sale:
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  7. #7

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    Mis read his post thought he wanted to do a port and polish with taking the head off .

  8. #8

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    Excellent responses, gentlemen. Tells me just what I need to know. (And would NEVER have thought of the toothbrush "cutting the bristles" trick - LOL). Thank you thank you thank you! / Christopher

  9. #9



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    I have been using permatex copper in place of the exhaust gasket - Geronimo's header has been on for 27+ years with that and still does not leak. If you are cleaning up the face of the head for the new gasket, get a roloc kit for your drill - they have a gasket kit to prep the surfaces of any auto for new gaskets.
    Pennyman1
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    Living the D-50 lifestyle since 1980

  10. #10

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    Thank you, pennyman1, for the suggestion. Looking at a set now. /c

  11. #11



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    Pennyman dropped a coin under the seat when he first bought his truck. He relocated the coin years later and it was worth hundreds. He is our forum longest truck owner by far. I know I won't catch up with him, he got me by 8 years.

    All kidding aside, he is a great go to guy for 1st gens and DroppedMitsu knows that head swap and turbo...check his thread

  12. #12

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    Thanks for the up-thumb/info for Pennyman1.

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