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Old 08-19-2021, 09:26 AM   #1
johndee138
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Default got a hole in my water jacket

For some time now I have been watching a weeping spot on my 41 motor. It is located about 1 1/2" above the pan rail and below the rear exhaust outlet on the drivers side. It has been getting progressively worse. Last week I took a small pick and scratched at it a bit. It immediately caved in and now I have a frank hole in the block wall about the size of my thumbnail. The motor runs good, but all my attempts to apply a patch have failed. I can't seem to get the spot dry enough to get the different types of JB Weld pucky to stick while the motor is in the car.
My question is, Is this block now junk, and should I scrap it after removing any usable bits or can it be saved after removing it and prepping the damaged area properly?
Any suggestions as to what method should be used, if possible?

I have on hand a newly built french block motor that will go in the car but I had planned on attending the Pinetree Jamboree here in Maine this weekend. I guess that isn't going to happen, this year.

Oh, I'll still go, but not in the car of my dreams.
What a disappointment, on so many levels.
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Old 08-19-2021, 09:31 AM   #2
51 MERC-CT
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

Depending on where it is, an option would be to install a suitable size pipe plug along with JB weld.
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Old 08-19-2021, 09:37 AM   #3
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

Doesn't someone (Belzona or Dev-Con) have a super strong epoxy that cures underwater. Their products are expensive and hard to find, but I have seen and heard amazing things about them.

I'd hate to see you miss that show. I think "51-MERC-CT" might have the best idea for a short term fix. Make sure all of the coolant is out of the engine and scrupulously clean the area. I have also done amazing things with regular JB Weld. I avoid the "Quick-Acting" stuff.
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Old 08-19-2021, 09:57 AM   #4
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

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Doesn't someone (Belzona or Dev-Con) have a super strong epoxy that cures underwater. Their products are expensive and hard to find, but I have seen and heard amazing things about them.

I'd hate to see you miss that show. I think "51-MERC-CT" might have the best idea for a short term fix. Make sure all of the coolant is out of the engine and scrupulously clean the area. I have also done amazing things with regular JB Weld. I avoid the "Quick-Acting" stuff.
I had a rot hole about the side of a quarter in the lower portion of the water jacket approx. 2" above the pan rail.

After speaking to Belzona, they recommended their 1212 product since it can be used in areas that may still be contaminated or can't easily be cleaned.

The hole was discovered prior to assembly, so Ronnie Roadster was able to get in and apply the epoxy inside the block as well as to the outside of the block.

I'll know shortly how it worked out, but we are both confident that it will hold and not be an issue.

Contacting Belzona is a bit of a PITA. Their website stinks and you need them to tell you who your local sales rep is. Once I found that info, the ordering went quickly. The rep even offered to come out to help me with the repair.

Last edited by Tim Ayers; 08-19-2021 at 10:03 AM.
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Old 08-19-2021, 10:06 AM   #5
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

That 1212 stuff looks amazing.
Here's a look see-----


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gy-67dKLi9o
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Old 08-19-2021, 10:43 AM   #6
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

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One thing you might try if you still want to do a temp fix. If you have heat gun (or maybe even a propane torch if you're feeling lucky) use it to heat the area after the initial cleaning. This will drive contaminants out. Now clean it again. You may have to repeat this cycle several times, but it will help the JB Weld adhere to the surface.
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Old 08-19-2021, 11:24 AM   #7
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

I tried all that Tubman. Cup brushed the whole area to bare metal, heat gunned it for about an hour, degreased it and then hit it with 90% alcohol. Dried it with compressed air blast and a clean towel. packed the hole with coarse steel wool and JB steel stick. Overnight cure, It's currently dripping into a bucket while up on the lift.
Next step will be the Belzona OR biting the bullet and pulling the old mill and installing the new one. I can fool with it after it comes out a bit easier anyway.
Still gonna miss showing out at the Jamboree, dammit.
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Old 08-19-2021, 12:03 PM   #8
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

It sounds like you have done everything right. It's been my experience that once in a while, the source of a leak is not where you logically think it is.
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Old 08-19-2021, 01:11 PM   #9
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

>>> It's currently dripping into a bucket while up on the lift.>>>


If it's only a drop or so a minute, a radiator sealant might be enough to get you by for a while.
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Old 08-19-2021, 05:21 PM   #10
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

We repaired one just as you described on my friends 40. The hole showed up after we had the block cleaned. We turned the block up on its side so the hole was pointing down. Mixed up two tubes of JB Weld and pushed it in the hole then smeared some on the outside of the block and had a piece of sheet brass big enough to cover the hole and clamped it to the block and let it cure. That was 20 years ago and itís never gave any problems.
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Old 08-19-2021, 08:15 PM   #11
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

It should be an easy fix when it is out of the car and I can put it on a stand and pivot it into a reasonable position. Give it a good flushing and see up in there. Right now it's in the car and runs well but exhaust header and assorted linkages complicate access. The hole site is vertical as well so gravity isn't in my favor. The second patch attempt is dripping pretty fast. I'll burn off the JB steel stick and try to get this Belzona magic goo to work. That's plan B. Plan C is a full on swap, which is what I had intended, just not this season.
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Old 08-19-2021, 10:37 PM   #12
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

I too had a couple of holes in th water jacket of my '39 flathead, passenger side just below the rear exhaust port. After talking to the Balzona reps, I ended up using 1511 because of the close proximity of the exhaust and need for a higher temp material. I pulled the engine so I could get good positioning for the repair and put it on a rotating engine stand with the area to be repaired facing up. After stripping the exhaust manifold, I angle-ground off the paint and junk from the area to be repaired and wiped it down with acetone as suggested. I cleaned both sides of a piece of metal (1/8") with the grinder to reinforce the patch, coated both sides with the Balzona and placed it over the rust-through holes and then spread the remaining material over the whole patched area. Balzona is pretty hard but it's strength is not as much as steel so that's why I used the plate steel reinforcement (size was approximately 5x the area of the holes it covered). After letting it fully cure, I gave it a light sanding just to knock off the peaks of material, painted it to match the block and reinstalled the engine. Came out fine, due to location is virtually invisible and is water tight. Sure it's a bit pricey but nothing compared to a new engine!

Last edited by 39wagon; 08-19-2021 at 10:44 PM.
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Old 08-20-2021, 05:23 AM   #13
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

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Originally Posted by johndee138 View Post
It should be an easy fix when it is out of the car and I can put it on a stand and pivot it into a reasonable position. Give it a good flushing and see up in there. Right now it's in the car and runs well but exhaust header and assorted linkages complicate access. The hole site is vertical as well so gravity isn't in my favor. The second patch attempt is dripping pretty fast. I'll burn off the JB steel stick and try to get this Belzona magic goo to work. That's plan B. Plan C is a full on swap, which is what I had intended, just not this season.
Not to laugh at your plight, but your "magic goo" comment got my laughing. Reminded me of a Frank Zappa lyric from the song Cosmic Debris.
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Old 08-20-2021, 10:37 AM   #14
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

Had a 630 JD 2cly that had a weeping spot on the bottom of the block .
Picked at it and instant drain hole .

Tractor ran good so I started enlarging the hole until there was enough meat to tap for a pipe plug .
Ended up at 1" and the neighbor still has it after 10 years with no issues .
They are a pressurized system .
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Old 08-20-2021, 12:32 PM   #15
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

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Originally Posted by 51 MERC-CT View Post
That 1212 stuff looks amazing.
Here's a look see-----


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gy-67dKLi9o

It sure does. No surprise that Amazon carries one variety, but not the 1212 which from the video seems like the one to use!!
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Old 08-20-2021, 01:39 PM   #16
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

Would it be possible to use cast iron welding rod to "fill in" the hole?
Then pressure check it.
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Old 08-20-2021, 02:44 PM   #17
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

I think the rust will make the hole bigger.
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Old 08-20-2021, 04:45 PM   #18
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

After you put the Belzona {great product} on the outer surface since your not able to get to the inside of the cooling system at this time for the additional sealing add Sodium Silicate to the water in the cooling system. That will complete the sealing it works extremely well once the engine temp is at 140 degrees.
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Old 09-13-2021, 03:34 PM   #19
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

I recently had a similar issue with my 31 ford. I used Belzona 1212 with some mesh. So far, so good..


Picture:

https://appriver3651016241-my.sharep...tDZTA?e=DkmDGh



Video:

https://appriver3651016241-my.sharep...WK_OQ?e=ULqBnl
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Old 09-13-2021, 06:59 PM   #20
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Default Re: got a hole in my water jacket

Quote:
Originally Posted by David J View Post
Had a 630 JD 2cly that had a weeping spot on the bottom of the block .
Picked at it and instant drain hole .

Tractor ran good so I started enlarging the hole until there was enough meat to tap for a pipe plug .
Ended up at 1" and the neighbor still has it after 10 years with no issues .
They are a pressurized system .
That's the way we (Harold "Putt" Smith and I) did my block. Still going after right at 20 years.
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