valve keepers

John Dirks Jr

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Jun 28, 2013
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This is not a Mustang but another vehicle. Sorry for posting it here but I'm sure my Mustang brothers can help me out of this brain fart.

Which one of these valve keepers would be the heat treated one?
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08GT500

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Hi,
It’s hard to discern this from a picture alone, but the simple low-Tech approaches will answer your question, no harm done to your Keeper(s). Don’t clamp them up when testing, that may destroy them.
Just my opinion...I would suggest you Not reuse the first (Top) pictured Keeper, it appears deformed. I’d loosely guess it may not be heat treated, or perhaps affected from excess hot/cold cycles, too close to Coil Bind, a Rocker/Valve Stem Geometry conflict or possibly run with Spring or Spring(s) loads exceeding the intended Spring load capacity.
Just a suggestion to consider..Good Keepers are not expensive, the risk of losing one and dropping a Valve, damaging the Piston, gouging a Cylinder wall & scrapping a Block...that’s expensive.
These are only my opinions, relaying what I see. Being honest for your benefit, not harsh-k?
File test the TOP (wide end) of the Keepers as if installed, #’s 1, 2 and #3 are zero damage methods, #4 is a method that may damage them if not very careful.
1) Use a light cutting steel File you first tested on a piece of scrap carbon steel, file direction from tip towards the Handle. Clean chips out with a wire brush.
Lay the File on a wooden surface and hold the Keeper in your hand, swipe each Keeper lightly and about 1/2 the length of the light File.
A) You’ll find the File will slide very smoothly over a Hardened Keeper, no material will be removed.
B) If Not hardened, the file will try to “bite” into the Keeper, you’ll feel the resistance- if you feel this, stop.
2) If your flat File is also a side cutting type, you can make a partial swipe across the center on the top (Wide area) of the Keeper using the corner of the File, same as above.
3) Using a Spring loaded Punch, or a Transfer Punch, seat both Keeper in a Retainer & a few light taps, comparing against a piece of scrap Carbon, and each Keeper. You’ll know quick which is hardened.
2 Quick questions..these being run with a Solid Flat or Roller Cam?
Are they 7 Degree or 10 Degree Keepers & Valves?
Any questions, feel free!:nice:
Best!
-John

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John Dirks Jr

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7 degree I believe. Look at these two pictures. See the difference? One has a gap in the retainer ends and the other not. I dont like the one with no gap.

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7991LXnSHO

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I agree with the testing procedures, and most importantly, if in doubt, replace valve train parts.
So what are you working on?
 

John Dirks Jr

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Jun 28, 2013
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Im working on a 2.2 Mazda engine. SOHC

It turns out that Mazda designed the keepers for the exhaust valves to fit tight in the retainer with no gap. The purpose was to allow some clearance between the keepers and valve stem. This was their way of allowing the exhaust valve to rotate. It seems wonky when you're fiddling with the parts and matching them up for fit. Some people dont like it and switch to the intake retainers even on the exhaust side. Or even mixing them on the same stem. They say the higher rpm performance applications will drop exhaust valves because of this factory design. They say when the switch up, the engine will take higher rpms and stay together.
 
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08GT500

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Hi,
Hm.F. Blast from the past when I used to re-chip Imports way back when. Still have a few OBD-1 ECU’s. Know where you’re coming from, very flawed & sketchy design on Mazda’s part to come apart. :oops:
Staggering/Mismatching Keepers is a Russian Roulette rev limiter.
Using one Int, 1 Exh Keeper causes the shear load to be carried on one Keeper, both carry thrust (which is now offset) causing Spring deflection/oscillation, rapid seal, guide wear or “Where’d my exhaust valve go?”
Intake on exhaust method was preferred.
I’ve even seen folks grind those Keepers to allow clearance between them, don’t recommend it. These motors twist very high RPM’s on the basic OHC Concept, give it a path to failure & it’ll surely find it.
Springs are yucky, B18 duals, Manley Valves, SI Retainers, Keepers, Springs.
Good sources are, umm.. Vivid Racing, HPT, Rallysport, Tunersport, Xenocron, Realstreet.
Filled with good, lighter than OE forged Pistons (Wiseco), Rods (Carrillo), weighted & balanced & boosted (Greddy) to 30lbs off a 7.6-8.5:1 SCR, they’ll plant 400+HP and spin 9,000RPM’s all day. Not a bad power to weight ratio. Uncertain of your goals, if you want any info, feel free to PM me.
Platforms related to the Ford Probe, Mazda made 2V L4 (& 3V) Motors for Ford (which is why I’m typing on, or I could get :uzi: ).lol!
You’ll find certain things will swap between the 2, they adhered to certain sizes.
Good luck with it!
Best!
John
P.S...Could kick up your Heels & Shoehorn in a Coyote?
 
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7991LXnSHO

Now I want a 10 year badge
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I thought I posted this. I must have used the white out font or another thread.
If you google Monster Miata, and start looking at the swaps, such as a 302 and T-5 that are supposed to be easy fits, a modern and less version of the Shelby Cobra Is a real possibility. LS motors also work if you want to go to the dark side.
 
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08GT500

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Oh Man, that would be a killer swap! Super sleeper, stock appearing, quiet until you open up the cutouts....Surprise!!....:hide:
Lol!
 

John Dirks Jr

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John, thanks for the confirmation on Mazda unusual valve keepers. I have intake keepers on order for the exhaust valves. Do you think I’ll be ok eliminating the exhaust valve rotation by changing to intake keepers?

I don’t need any special performance parts otherwise. It’s a stock rebuild for a daily driver / workhorse.

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John Dirks Jr

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That motor rebuilt to at least stock specks and driven normally should last as long as the truck needs it to.

I bought the truck with a spun rod bearing for $500. Engine had oil leaks and I think the previous owner ran it low on oil one too many times. I drove it gently home 3 miles with the knocking engine.

It now has .5mm overbore, .5mm rod and .25mm under turn crank. She’ll be tight! It’s a 5spd manual trans
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08GT500

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Hi!,
Wow- smoked! I agree with 7991LXnSHO.
Build it bone stock as-is to Factory spec’s, I’d leave the Keepers as factory intended for your purposes, no real need to change a design that’s proven to work for what you’re doing with it.
And No. I’ve not heard negative feedback from anyone from running the Intakes Keepers on the Exhaust.
It’s sorta like the rotators on the GT40 Heads, folks toss em’ and run the same Valves with upgraded Springs/Retainers/Keepers. Theory was abandoned.
What I Can say with assurance is they are very reliable, I actually had one just like it (Blue, same stripes) with 120k on it, and it got me to work and College in New England weather for over 3 years, I beat it stupid, .:chair:But i did maintain it. Replaced the Muffler, rotted out.
Sold it, rusty, but still running with just over 200K on it. (good 1st gear burnout, chirps 2nd, lmao!)
I expect it’ll be even better than the same reliable beastie as I had for your runabout.:nice:
Good luck with it!
Best!
John
P.S. That one’s clean! Mine was rusting already when I bought it...whatever happened to Rusty Jones, anyway?! lol!
 
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John Dirks Jr

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Jun 28, 2013
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The little truck is coming together nicely. We got that cap for free. We’re gonna repaint it. Motor rebuild finished. Running great. New clutch, tires. Got some brake parts and suspension bushings on the way.
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MustangIIMatt

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The little truck is coming together nicely. We got that cap for free. We’re gonna repaint it. Motor rebuild finished. Running great. New clutch, tires. Got some brake parts and suspension bushings on the way.
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I love old Mazdas. They were so quirky, unique, and cool.