Archive for December 2009

Curved Dash Oldsmobile

December 23, 2009

It is hard to believe but the Oldsmobile is no longer with us. My first car was a rusty $100 1960 Oldsmobile Dynamic 88. Didn’t last too much longer after I bought it, but I went on to have good experiences with a second hand 1979 Olds Cutlass and a 1984 88.

I mention Olds because we recently had the honor of making a batch of copper head and valve cover gaskets for the very first car mass-produced in any quantity, the Curved Dash Olds, produced from 1901 to 1907.

There were only about 20,000 of these made, but something like 1,000 are still around, and the CDO Club sent a drawing of the valve cover gasket and a scan with dimensions for the head gasket in order to order enough of these gaskets to keep these machines running.

Here are the finished gaskets:

CDO Valve Cover Gaskets

CDO Head Gasket

If you need gaskets for your Curved Dash Olds, please contact Gary Hoonsbeen at the CDO Club.

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December 21, 2009

Obviously our main specialty is custom gaskets, but along with molded and extruded rubber items we can also help with springs. There are no tooling or set-up charges for most springs, and usually no minimum order size. That means if you need one spring you can order one spring. Prices decrease dramatically with quantity, so if you only need one spring the cost per piece will be more than if you ordered, say, 20, but if you only need one spring you might have to do that.

We can help with just about any spring, from tiny hair springs to automotive springs, and things that don’t even look like regular springs. Heavier springs might be better sourced closer to home since shipping costs will probably eat any savings, but for most smaller springs our prices are usually very competitive.

I will post an image of some stainless steel springs we recently made for a customer, for some kind of pump. The customer provided the following specs and a drawing of one of the 10 spring he wanted.

Outside Dia  1.125″
Wire Dia.  .0625″
Coils    6
Closed Ends
Material   Stainless steel or Phosphor bronze

Here are the finished springs:

…and here is what he had to say after receiving them:

“Thanks! They look great!”

Here are some valve springs for a small engine that we made several weeks ago. The original is on the left, the copy on the right. Note: They are the same height, they only appear to be of different heights because of a lens effect. This customer ordered 100 springs.

If you need springs or small metal fasteners of any kind please visit to learn more. You can click the Contact Us tab at the top of the Home page to write us with questions.

Leyland Truck Copper Sandwich Head Gasket

December 21, 2009

Leyland was a British manufacturer of trucks (lorries) and buses that is sadly no more.

A regular customer in the UK specializes in supplying gaskets for industrial marques that have long gone by the wayside, with spares difficult if not impossible to find. After sending an image of an old Leyland gasket along with dimensions and thickness for a quotation he was happy with the quoted price and sent a copy of a used gasket to use as a pattern.

This type of gasket is known as a copper sandwich gasket, also referred to as a copandas gasket in the UK, and consists of an inner material sandwiched by sheets of copper.  Originally these contained asbestos inner material, but asbestos is now banned in Europe, Australia, NZ, and most other countries, with the exception of the USA and a few others. Instead of asbestos we have been using a non-asbestos material very similar in appearance to the original white asbestos. This material is supplied by Interface Solutions (USA) and known as HT5050. Alternatively, and expecially for thicker gaskets, we use a metal mesh reinforced composite head gasket material from Interface Solutions. In this case the customer opted for the latter option.

This gasket was sealed around the outside, which means the copper is crimped over to seal the inner material. I am not sure if that really makes any difference, but some of the older gaskets came that way  and in order to make these as authentic as possible the customer wanted that. All the holes except for the bolt holes were bushed as well, so this was a fairly labor-intensive gasket to make. The results are below, with the old pattern gasket on top and one of the 3 replacement gaskets we made below:

If you recognize that Leyland gasket and need one let me know and I will put you in touch with my customer.

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Air Compressor Gaskets

December 20, 2009

I always like it when customers send me images of the machines our gaskets will be used with. This customer sent me a nice ad for a 1920s air compressor. Turns out the company is still in business all these years later.

The customer needed a set of gaskets, and specified a material  .003 in. thick. Our sizes here are metric, so I recommended a 0.8mm material from Interface Solutions known as NI2085 as we had previously had good results with customers requiring similar compressor gaskets. The customer sent drawing files which we were able to work from.

Here are the finished gaskets. Because this was a one-off order these were hand cut, but you would be hard put to tell that. Here is what the customer had to say, followed by an image of the gasket set:

“The gaskets arrived yesterday morning. They were well packed and arrived without damage. I was concerned they would not be very accurate because they were hand cut, but when I compared them with the templates they were perfect, and by perfect I mean not even a fraction of a mm off.”

I should note here that we usually  hand cut in cases of one-off gaskets like these, but for orders over 30 items or so we use steel rule dies.

If you need a set of gaskets for a Quincy Silent Air-Master we have the patterns here, so let us know.

UPDATE: The customer sent me an image of the restored compressor:

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Stainless Steel Exhaust Gaskets

December 19, 2009

I have a regular customer who is in the business of restoring obscure Japanese small trucks from the 1960s. Really small. To give you an idea of just how small they are, I have helpfully inserted an image of Gary Coleman next to a Cony truck (1 Coleman unit = 4 feet 8 inches):

The customer sent me a galvanized steel exhaust gasket, pictured in a scanned image below. Construction type is a steel sandwich, with an asbestos core.

According to my customer the problem with this gasket is that they rust out rather quickly, so I recommended going with stainless steel, and he agreed. Here is one of the 100 replacement gaskets we made:

If you are a Cony owner in need of gaskets or parts please visit the customer’s web site:

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Molded Rubber Items

December 19, 2009

While gaskets are our primary focus, Gaskets-to-Go can also assist customers with their molded and extruded rubber needs. Because of the tooling required for molded rubber parts we do have a mininum order size for molded rubber items, which can be between 300 and 500 pieces. All charges are included in any per piece price, there are no extra charges.

Most of the items we have had molded for automotive use have been made of NBR, also known as BUNA N or Nitrile rubber. This is because of its oil resistant properties and overall durability. We can also mold parts out of natural rubber (NR), EPDM, Neoprene, and more. The type of rubber required depends on the appication, and of course customers can specify whatever they want. We can also help with extruded parts, such as weatherstripping and windshield stripping for cars. I will deal with that in a separate post.

We can usually quote against an image of a part with relevant dimensions, although if a part is somewhat complicated, a drawing or the actual part may be required for a quotation. For production we will need a drawing or an actual part for use as a pattern.

The entire process usually takes from 5-6 weeks from start to finish. Tooling takes about 4-5 weeks to complete. Once complete, a test batch is run and checked to see that it conforms with requirements. If not, corrections are made. If the test items are OK, full production is usually complete within 7-10 days.

I will relate the history of one molded rubber part here, and others from time to time. This story concerns a rubber wheel that we had manufactured on our own behalf for use in a kit to repair the Magna-lite turn signal assemblies that Land Rover Series II and IIA vehicles came equipped with. Those are the old Land Rovers many of us remember from travelogues and adventure shows from the 50s into the 70s. Full disclosure: I own a Series III Land Rover.

The signal assembly contains a rubber wheel that is turned by the steering shaft, and these wear and deteriorate with time. The original manufacturer is no longer around, and spares became impossible to find (unobtainium), so we decided to make a kit to address that situation. I was able to miraculously obtain an NOS (new old stock) assembly so that we had a good pattern. The wheel was made of NBR. Here is an image of the wheel and the parts that make up the kit.

By the way, if you are a Land Rover Series II or IIA owner in need of a repair kit they are currently available from Gaskets-to-Go on e-Bay under item #150392514095. You can also order directly from Gaskets-to-Go.

Here here an assortment of other molded rubber parts we have made for customers:

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In stock gaskets

December 18, 2009

Although Gaskets-t0-Go is primarily a custom gaskets manufacturer, we do carry a few gaskets in stock, primarily for small engines, such as Lister diesel engines, Honda GX small engines, and Changfa diesel engines. We sell those on separate web sites:

You can also find links to those sites on the blogroll on the right (you may have to scroll up to see it).

You can order directly from those sites and pay by credit card or PayPal.

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Alfa Romeo Montreal MLS Gaskets

December 18, 2009

Multi-layer steel gaskets, known as MLS gaskets, are made of 3 or more layers of spring steel, with the outer layers embossed in critical areas for improved sealing. The outer layers are also coated with viton, silicone, or other proprietary solutions for better sealing as well. This type of head gasket is used for high-performance applications that normal head gaskets can’t withstand. Although it may seem hard to believe, in a high performance engine the head actually lifts off the block hundreds if not thousands of time per minute. The outward tension provided by the steel layers help maintain a seal when this happens. MLS gaskets need to be installed on very smooth surfaces, 50RA or better, and go on dry. They should not be used with receiver rings.

MLS gaskets are currently available off-the-shelve from many suppliers, but they are not available for every car engine. As far as I am aware, Gaskets-to-Go is the only manfacturer able to custom manufacture MLS gaskets in quantities as low as one-off. Most suppliers require large (50+) orders or expensive upfront tooling charges. They are not cheap, but they are often the only solution. Please feel free to contact me via if you are interested in this type of gasket.

I will post an image of an Alfa Romeo Montreal, which I think you will agree is a fine looking automobile. This customer had completed some engine mods and wanted and MLS gasket.

Alfa Romeo Montreal

We used his old gaskets to create the pair below.

If you own a Montreal and need some MLS gaskets please contact me via

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Honda GX500 Head Gaskets

December 18, 2009

Not sure if this is the right picture, but the customer asked for a quotation based on a gasket image he sent me and said it was for a GX500. All we usually need to supply a quotation is an image along with L x W dimensions, thickness, and quantity required.

He liked the quotation so he sent me a couple of the old gaskets that were in nice shape. We duplicated those using a non-asbestos material from Interface Solutions. The original is on the left, and our copies are on the right.

If have one of these bikes and need a head gasket please contact me via and I will put you in touch with this customer.

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Matchless Silver Hawk

December 18, 2009

We get some interesting requests here at Gaskets-to-Go, and recently we had one for a very rare motorcycle, an early 1930s Matchless Silver Hawk with a V4 engine!

The customer sent a scanned gasket to obtain a quotation, and then sent a paper pattern when he placed an order. We could have worked from the scan, but a template or old gasket is nice to have.

Here is one of the finished gaskets. These are copper sandwich construction, with an inner layer of non-asbestos steel-reinforced composite material from Interface Solutions.

If anyone is in need of a gasket or two for a Silver Hawk please contact me through and I will put you in touch with the customer who is selling these.

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