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  #1  
Old 02-07-2002, 02:10 AM
MikeTangas's Avatar
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Exhaust manifold gasket question - 560SEL

Is it possible to install the exhaust manifold gaskets in backwards and still seal?

The reason I ask, this afternoon I was looking about the engine bay, making mental notes of whatI'll have to remove to do the timing chain, tensioner and rails. While doing so I noticed that the exhaust manifold gaskets appeared to be in backwards. At each joint I could see a portion of the gasket at the leading edge while at the trailing edge there was a gap of the same dimension. Looking in the manual, the gasket appears to be slightly offset, but looks like it might make somewhat of a seal. If these are in backwards, I guess I'll be adding a set of gaskets to the project.

Thanks.
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Mike Tangas
'73 280SEL 4.5 (9/72)- RIP
Only 8,173 units built from 5/71 thru 11/72

'02 CLK320 Cabriolet - wifey's mid-life crisis

2012 VW Jetta Sportwagon TDI...at least its a diesel

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  #2  
Old 02-07-2002, 01:33 PM
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Location: Sunny Florida
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Are the gaskets leaking, or are you just concerned about the edge of the gasket sticking out? If you are not getting any noise or exhaust coming out of there, I wouldn't mess with it.

You car is probably not much different than my 1989, although you are in Ca. You need to pull the fan shroud, fan, Alt., P/S pump, distributor, (yeah it gets in the way), and the lower radiator hose. Good time to replace hoses and belts, as most of the work gets done doing the timing chain. There was a little plastic guy in the back of the P/S pump, that takes the tension from the allen head bolt you use to tighten the belt that was broken on my car. Cheap part, I ended up running to the dealership for it. Didn't want to put it back broken. You might also want to buy an extra dowel pin for the guide rails. Easy to butch them up pulling them out, if you use a homemade tool. Check my posts on doing the timing chain. I think I captured a lot of the details there.

Best of luck. E mail or post if I can help you out.

Stick a clean rag in the opening under the cam gears. It has an unusually strong suction for small parts!
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1989 325IC (122K)
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2005 Yamaha Road Star (20 K miles)
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  #3  
Old 03-03-2002, 09:52 PM
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The answer is yes, well more specifically they can be installed upside down. And I guess they do seal for a while, but let loose earlier than they should.

I pulled the driver's side manifold today. Found that the gasket for #5 was in upside down, which allowed the metal ring of the gasket to burn through. It sat right at the very edge of the manifold. #'s 6,7, and 8 all looked ok.

While I had the manifold in my lap I played with positioning of the gaskets and found that the first went one direction and the others went 180* opposite. Just had to keep things in order as the gaskets and manifold went back in.

All better now, no ticking, no exhaust leak and no CO in the cabin.
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Mike Tangas
'73 280SEL 4.5 (9/72)- RIP
Only 8,173 units built from 5/71 thru 11/72

'02 CLK320 Cabriolet - wifey's mid-life crisis

2012 VW Jetta Sportwagon TDI...at least its a diesel

Non illegitemae carborundum.
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