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Discussion Starter #1
Just started project to replace the valve stem seals on my inline 200 six. Finally located a good tool from Lisle to compress springs. However although I have gotten to the point where the tension is removed from the keepers, they are frozen and will not release. Could the problem be that they have probably been sitting in same spot for 50 plus years? I'm open to ideas/suggestions.
 

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Block off any holes they might fall into and then smack the top of the spring with a hammer. They tend to need some kind of impact to jostle them loose.

Just thinking though, you did put something in the cylinder to keep the valve from just falling in right? Like some rope or something? Because when you take those keepers off there's nothing holding the valve up and it can just fall right in. If that happens and it falls out of the head you're gonna have to take the head off to put it back into place.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm using the rope method. Raised the piston to tdc then backed it off a tad. Stuffed rope in through the spark to fill the remaining cylinder cavity. Then inched piston back up closer to tdc.
So whacking the top of the spring won't hurt the valve stem or anything else I should be concerned about? As always thanks for the input.
 

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Used a rubber mallet last time. Just make sure you put like a magnet or cup your hand over them since they like to pop off sometimes. I had a heck of a time looking for one last time and its hard to find it on the garage floor.
 

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I'm using the rope method. Raised the piston to tdc then backed it off a tad. Stuffed rope in through the spark to fill the remaining cylinder cavity. Then inched piston back up closer to tdc.
So whacking the top of the spring won't hurt the valve stem or anything else I should be concerned about? As always thanks for the input.

Gentle whacking is OK. To be safe, bring the piston to the bottom of its stroke so that you dont smack the top of the piston with a valve. Spray the keepers with a solvent such as WD-40 too.
Let us know how the rope trick works out. I have always used the adapter from my compression gauge with the Schrader valve removed and my air compressor.
 

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I never smack them. Just don't need to. Keepers never quite meet all the way round so there is always a small gap on one side or the other. Those tiny flat blade screwdrivers Snap On gives away for free are the business for this. Insert the blade into the gap and twist, they come right off slowly and gently as you like. This works on a lot more engines than just old Fords and keeps sometimes difficult to replace things from flying half way across the shop.

The rope deal works fine for when you don't have air available. Actually a more reliable method, just takes a bit more time to do.
 

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For years I have put a deep well socket over the top of the valve retainer along with a short extension. I then smack the extension with a dead blow hammer and it drives the socket against the retainer and causes the keepers to pop off. If they want to fly away, they don't get much further than the inside wall of the socket. Sometimes it takes a couple of smacks to get them to come loose.
 

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For years I have put a deep well socket over the top of the valve retainer along with a short extension. I then smack the extension with a dead blow hammer and it drives the socket against the retainer and causes the keepers to pop off. If they want to fly away, they don't get much further than the inside wall of the socket. Sometimes it takes a couple of smacks to get them to come loose.
Used this method plenty. Generally I'll smear some grease on the inside to give them something to stick to, rather than falling to the floor if I don't tilt it just right. I'll use the socket and a mallet to hit the spring retainers on all the valves on one side before using the compressor. Run right down the head from one valve to the next. When you put the compressor on, they'll generally release as they should.
 

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I worked in a machine shop as a teenager. My main job was engine disassembly to include the heads. Just like everyone else is saying we used a deep socket with a extension welded to it. However you don't need to weld anything. Just the socket or socket and extension work. Set that on the spring, give it a whack with a hammer and the spring will compress and keepers will come off, and now the spring is disassembled. That way you aren't hitting the valve directly.
 

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Yeah...like everyone else....I have lost track of how many times I have used a hammer and a socket to remove valvespings(keepers and retainers and springs) with a single blow....this applies to OHC engines as well....but as they have all said, be careful because those retainers will fly everywhere if you arent...and even if you are.
 

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Like everyone else I have done the socket trick for more years than I can remember. That being said I also have a small spring compressor probably like yours and after the spring is compressed just a light tap on the twist handle of the compressor pops the keepers and they lay nicely where they belong. Grab with a magnet and your done. Better that way as you have the compressor on the spring anyway. Just did some that way last night changing valve stem seals on a 67 Corvette.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
To all thanks for all the good advice. Will get back to it and let everyone know I it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Back Again on Unco-operative Valve Stem Springs and Keepers

Well have continued to fight with compressing valve springs and slippery keepers. Have 4 cylinders done. Skipped 5 for now, because will need to unbolt the carb to get to those springs. Focused on cylinder 6. Now have less leverage, and need to reach farther, plus have the impediments of the shock tower original brace, and the hood above. Don't have enough leverage to impact the keepers by just hitting them with the hammer and socket set up as previously suggested, although that did work in more open work area. BTW think I have the smoking issue diagnosed, because seals I am removing are all cracked. Just stuck, and once again open to suggestions.
 

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Get a bigger hammer and use a shallow well socket. Generally the sharp impact will loosen them. If they don't pop out you may need to use one of these:

 

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An actual valve spring compressor like I always use? No way!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thx for the additional info. I am actually using that spring compressor. However good news. Had a brain storm that led me to use a hose clamp to tighten around the prongs once I mounted the spring compressor on the spring. Worked like a charm. Compressor no longer slipping off the spring. One more cylinder #4, which is located under the carb, to go. Think simplest option is to loosen the carb, and slide it a bit to the side. This will provide all the room I need to access the springs in that cylinder. Again thx for all the advise.
 
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