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Thread: No-drill valve cover replacement?

  1. #1
    Registered Yasmar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004

    Default No-drill valve cover replacement?

    Is there a metal valve cover to replace the plastic one one my CJ7? (258) that is a direct bolt on?

    I want one that bolts on without drilling and tapping. All the one's I've looked at so far say "some drilling and tapping required"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Long Island, NY


    Westside Performance (click) has an aluminum valve cover that fastens without drilling and tapping the head. Scroll down to the bottom of the page to see it.
    1986 CJ-7 - Weekend toy

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN


    I recenlty replaced my platic valve cover with an aluminum one. I was not to fond of the idea of drilling into my freshly rebuilt engine, especially since I don't consider myself a mechanic by any means. It was scary, but it wasn't a big deal. Go slow, take your time, and be careful not to get any metal bits where they shouldn't be and it will turn out all right.
    '84 CJ-7; 2.5" Superlift; 31" Pirelli Scorpions; fresh 258; New and exciting damage to the drivers side front fender and rear quarter with just a smidge of broken fiberglass on the hard top. woot woot!

  4. #4
    Senior Moderator CJSIXER's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Salem, OH


    -=- originally posted by Mike86CJ7 -=-
    Westside Performance (click) has an aluminum valve cover that fastens without drilling and tapping the head. Scroll down to the bottom of the page to see it.
    I would be interested to see how effective that design is. I would think that since the one side only has studs on one side while having bolts on the other that you would end up with uneven pressure on the gasket and the side with studs would be prone to leaking.

    1970 CJ-6: 305 TPI V8, NV4500, Dana 18 w/Teralow 3:15 gears, Dana 44 rear w/Detroit, 4:88s and custom Moser Alloy shafts, Dana 30 front w/4:88s and Bid Daddy OR HD Tierod kit flipped on top of the knuckles, full cage tied in with Saginaw power steering conversion and power brake conversion. 35 inch Super Swamper SSRs on 17x9 Procomp Steel Wheels. Kilby On Board Air---
    2000 XJ Cherokee Sport - Traded the old girl in on a 2011 Dodge Ram 1500 so I could tow the CJ to and from the trail. Only one Jeep in the family these days.

  5. #5


    I put a "4.2" metal valve cover on one of my jeeps without doing any drilling. I just got a tap and threaded the holes that were already there, and then got bolts that were a little shorter than the ones supplied with the cover. The thing just calls for drilling because you have to deepen the holes if you use the supplied bolts. No leaks in a little over a year. Threading the holes is just like threading a bolt down into a hole; it's really easy and takes about 5 min. Hardest part is finding a bottom threading tap.........

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Danville, CA


    Agreed. Just use different bolts and use the tap. No drilling required (on mine).
    1984 CJ7. . . a work in progress. . .

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2000
    The Palouse


    On my 258 I have an updated OEM plastic valve cover. No leaks in 9 years since the install. And, I installed with no drilling.

    Date 5/30/86
    Revised: 6/10/86
    Revised: 1/05/88
    Page 1 of 5

    Engine Cylinder Head Cover Kit - 8983 503 343
    1981-1/2 - 1986 Six 258 Engine

    1981-1/2 models can be identified by having cylinder head cover retaining screws located at the front and rear of the cylinder head.


    Part Number

    8983 503 343
    Cover Kit, Engine Cylinder Head
    Kit Components

    8933 004 109
    Cover, Cylinder Head

    400 7506
    Bolt, Shoulder

    400 7435
    Bolt, Shoulder

    400 7300
    Bolt, Stud - 7/16

    400 7311
    Bolt, Stud - 1/2

    323 6513

    8983 502 989
    Nut, Retainer

    8983 503 344
    Helicoil - 1/4-20

    The new cylinder head cover comes equipped with a pre-cured RTV seal and is secured to the cylinder head with special shoulder bolts, and unique retaining nuts.

    Follow the described procedure for proper cylinder head cover replacement.

    . .


    1. Disconnect the battery negative cable.

    2. Remove the air cleaner assembly and the PCV molded hose.

    3. Disconnect the distributor vacuum advance hose at the distributor.

    4. Disconnect the fuel line at the fuel pump. Rotate the line as necessary to provide clearance for removal of the cylinder head cover.

    5. Remove the PCV valve from the grommet fin the cover. Disconnect the PCV shut-off valve vacuum hose.

    6. Remove the vacuum switch and bracket assembly from the cover.

    7. Remove the diverter valve and bracket assembly from the cover (if equipped).

    8. Remove all necessary vacuum andair hoses to provide clearance for removal of the cover.

    9. Remove the Cylinder head cover retaining nuts and bolts. Detach the cover from the cylinder head by breaking the RTV sealant with a putty knife or razor blade. Do not pry cover upward until seal has been completely broken.

    10. Lift and rotate the cylinder head cover toward the passenger side and remove the cover. Proceed to step 12. If the cover cannot be removed because of dash panel interference, proceed to step ll. (Spirit, Concord models)

    ll. Spiritt and Concord models

    a. Remove the fan shroud attaching bolts. Allow the shroud to rest on the fan. b. Raise the vehicle and support at the sRde sRlls.

    c. Support the front crossmember wRth a Jack.

    d. Loosen the front crossmember bolts and nuts approximately five turns.

    WARNING'' To avoid personal injury, DO NOT remove the bolts and nuts.

    e. Lower the crossmember.

    f. Rotate the cover to the left and remove Rt

    12. Remove all RTV sealant from the sealing surface of the cylinder head and throughly clean the sealing surface of the cylinder head.


    l. Remove the two rocker arm bridges equipped with studs from the cylinder head.

    2. Install the replacement rocker bridges PN 323 6513 supplied Rn the kit. Torque the capscrews to 26 H.m (19ft. lbs.).

    Steps 3 through 6 refer to 81-83 models.

    3. Place shop towels into the cylinder head on the right side to prevent any metal chips from entering the engine when drilling/tapping.

    4. Drill the 3 holes on the right side of the cylinder head using a 17/64 drill bit.

    5. Tap the 3 holes on the right side of the cylinder head using a 1/4 X 20 helicoid tap.

    6. Install the 1/4-20 helicoils into the holes tapped in the previous step.

    NOTE: The top coil of the insert should be approximately one thread below the surface of the cylinder head.

    Break off the Installation tang on the hel1coll after installation.

    7. Remove the shop towels and any metal chips.

    B. Transfer the PCV grommets and the oil filler cap from the old cover to the replacement cover.

    9. Install the replacement cover, using illustration WA" as guide for placement of studs, bolts, etc.

    NOTE: on 1981/82 models with a curved air injection manifold, do not install the retaining nut on stud bolt in location #4 (as shown on Illustration iA"). The new retaining nuts (8983502989) MUST be used on ALL MODELS.

    10. Tighten the shoulder bolts and retaining nuts to 5.5 to 8.0 N.m too to 70 in. lbs.) torque.

    11. Connect the fuel line and distributor vacuum advance hose.

    12. Install the vacuum switch and bracket assembly on the cover.

    13. Install the diverter valve and bracket assembly on the cover (If equipped).

    14. Reposition and/or connect all air and vacuum hoses that were moved for cover removal clearance.

    15. Connect the PCV valve and the PCV shut-off valve hoses.

    16. If the crossmember was lowered to remove the cover: (Spirit, Concord models) a. Raise the crossmember.

    b. Tighten the crossmember bolts and nuts to 8RN.m (65ft. lbs.) torque.

    c. Remove the jack from under the crossmember.

    d. Remove the sill supports and lower the Vehicle.

    e. Install the fan shroud.

    17. Install the air cleaner assembly and hoses.

    1B. Connect the battery negative cable.

    19. Check the engine oRl level and add if necessary.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. #8
    Registered livin2learn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Austin, Texas, USA


    I too just had to tap one hole. I used a couple small washers to make up the depth difference and to avoid drilling.
    Very easy and no leaks in a couple years now.

    '83 CJ-7 Renegade, I6-258, 3:31's, T-4, 1" M.O.R.E. BL, 2.5" RE, Weber Carb, 33" ProComp MT


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