Valve cover upgrade on 83cj7 258 -
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Unread 09-18-2012, 08:15 PM   #1
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Valve cover upgrade on 83cj7 258

Can't get this crappy plastic valve cover to seal and I'm definitely tired of smelling like burnt oil every time I drive. I'm thinking about changing out the plastic valve cover to aluminum but I'm definitely not very mechanically inclined. Ha. I can usually figure most things out but I'm kinda nervous about drilling holes in my motor. Any advice that y'all could lend would be greatly appreciated!!

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Unread 09-19-2012, 08:33 AM   #2
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You probably won't have to drill any holes. On my 85's the holes were all there, I just had to tap two of them on the driver's side of the engine. I went and got shorter bolts rather than drilling the holes deeper, because I was worried about drilling into the water jacket. Been on there since 2002 and not leaking a drop.

I'd take the plastic one off and look before you get too excited though. 258 heads were different over the years, and some had the holes there and some didn't.

Should be the stock mounting bolts on the passenger side of the engine and the front and rear of the engine, and then two holes on the drivers side. IIRC I ended up buying all new bolts because the ones supplied with my "4.2" valve cover weren't the right size, but all I had to do was tap the two holes on the driver's side and it bolted right up.
85 CJ7 258, borla header, Team Rush, MC2100 ,optima batt, Warn 8274, agr super box 2 & pump, T5 w/ B&M shifter, centerforce 2, superior 1 piece axles, warn hubs 2.5 in lift, 31" BFG MT

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Unread 09-19-2012, 02:27 PM   #3
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1983 CJ7 
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You'll also have to deal with the bolts coming up thru the cover off the rocker arms.They sell a kit to adapt them.I think some people saw them off but not sure.Maybe someone will chime in on this.I've got one i'm going to put on.I have the instructions if you want me to PM them to you.
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Unread 09-19-2012, 08:55 PM   #4
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Thanks for the advice! Hopefully it will go easier than expected.
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Unread 06-05-2014, 05:20 PM   #5
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1985 CJ7 
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Do you have to buy the rocker arm upgrade or can you just cut them off?
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Unread 06-05-2014, 10:23 PM   #6
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1983 CJ7 
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The Crown aluminum cover comes with the alternate rocker bridges, but I've "heard" that since the aftermarket valve cover is taller, it clears the OEM studs.

'83 CJ-7_258 I-6_T-4_D300_AMC20/D30_Bone Stock
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Unread 06-06-2014, 04:37 AM   #7
Mike Romain
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1986 CJ7 
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My last install of the plastic cover was leak free for years. I use a plain cork gasket, the ones with the metal core never work (metal gets the slightest bend in it in shipping and never lays flat again) and those expensive rubber ones are garbage.

I washed my cover in a tub of soapy water and cleaned the head mating surface really well. They both got a spray of brake cleaner to be sure there was no grease.

Next I put a skim of sensor safe black permatex RTV on the head, put the cork gasket down and put a skim of RTV on the gasket, then I put the valve cover on and torqued the bolts down immediately like the permatex directions say to do. I then walked away for the 24 hour cure time permatex calls for and was leak free until I stepped on it by mistake 7 or 8 years later trying to fix a light in my one piece front flip clip.
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Unread 06-06-2014, 06:56 AM   #8
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1984 CJ7 
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I purchased my aluminum cover from parts train. It came with a extra thick cork gasket. I just had to tape two hole that are already in the head. Cost for cover was 94.00
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