The Cars > 1965 GT350/R-Model

Need help rebuilding GT350 engine

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My father and I are currently rebuilding an original 289 from a 1965 GT350.  We are putting the heads back together and looking for information on a correct head gasket to use for this.  Would aftermarket head gaskets be considered poor taste?  IF not where could I source original head gaskets?  IF aftermarket is ok what are some recommendations?

Also is there a correct painting of the valve covers?  From what my father remembers the valve covers were black crinkle with the powered by ford and raised bits being unpainted aluminum.  Is this correct?

Thank you for any assistance


98SVT - was 06GT:
For 1965 (and about the first 1/3 of 66) the correct valve covers are open letter and unpainted. They are sand cast and say Buddy Bar inside them

Later valve covers did black crinkle paint and were die cast with closed letters.

If I remember the HiPo used a thinner head gasket. .030 vs .040. Someone will have the correct part #. I'd use something modern unless this will be some concours trailer queen.

Hi Avogodro,

There are NOS head gaskets out there that might fit the desire, but I would not advise using them.  Who knows how they have ben handled over the years and if they are still good.  I'd go with a modern head gasket.  I have had good luck with the FelPro Head Gaskets.  It would not be any fun to put together with a NOS period gaskets and then have to redo because they did not work.  A blown head gasket and coolant spewing all over you nice engine compartment would be awful.   Just my thoughts.


   For an engine like you have I use the Ford Racing "expanded graphite" head gasket , P/N M605i-C51. You DO NOT need the "special bolts they mention on the early 289 block. Once installed they look very close to originals and will not fail.

You mention "special" head bolts on early hipo engine. How do they differ than the "standard" bolts. Other than being "special"...


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