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1003 vs 1043 vs ?
#1
I have a TPI 350 in my 89 Firebird. I have aluminum ProComp heads and I have turbos on it.

 I melted piston 7 due to a combination of failed injectors and clogged cooling passages near that cylinder so I have the engine apart. All the other pistons are fine. The bores have no taper or scoring. The short block has 100K on it. 

I previously used the 1003. I am looking at the 1043 too. But the 1043 says it will not fit OEM type combustion chambers. I'm not clear what that means.

Ideally I would ra60 the heads and block and use an MLS gasket. But this is a hobby car with no budget that I mostly street and occasionally road course. If it blows up again I will noodle around with it as time and $ permits. 

So given this info should I stick with the 1003? My concern there is that the rings on the gasket seem bigger than the bore which measures right at 4.00. 

The 1043 has a smaller ring but that point about OEM comb. chambers...

Or is there something else economical?

Thanks!
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#2
Hi Tim,

MLS would be the best choice for this setup without a doubt. If the engine is completely apart, now might be the time to have the block cleaned up to be compatible with MLS gaskets. With that said, we do understand being on a budget.

1043 will hang over a conventional combustion chamber design and cause turbulence and a possible hot spot causing pre-ignition or detonation. The 1003 head gasket has a bore opening size of 4.166” while 1043 has a bore opening size of 4.080”. Because the 1043 bore size is much smaller, it is designed to work on Aftermarket heads that have a smaller combustion chamber than O.E. You may have to get a 1043 gasket and lay it on your heads to see if it will work since you didn’t mention the CC size of your heads. So it depends on the size of the combustion chamber to determine whether to use the 1003 or 1043.

So with that in mind, our 1003 head gaskets will work. If this hasn't been done already, be sure to follow the I-form explaining the additional coolant hole he should add to aid in middle cylinder cooling:
https://fme-cat.com/livedocs/CI1920.pdf

If you do decide to get the surface finish down to where you could use an MLS head gasket, then we would suggest using the 1142 gaskets.

On a side note, we will be moving this thread to our performance head gaskets section on 1/17 but will leave it here for now so you can find it easily.
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#3
Thanks for the input. Yes the MLS setup is down the road.

Stock heads are 64cc and the ProComp aluminums are also 64cc so I will stick with the 1003 until the engine fails on me again and then take what you've taught me and go MLS.

Re: the CI1920 pdf, fwiw that doc is not an exact representation of the 1003, namely the top 7/16" cooling hole referenced in the pdf corresponds on a 1003 to two 9/32" holes there.
On the bottom the 1003 is the same as the pdf.

In my block there are 11/16" holes in the bottom and nearly 1" holes on top so the gasket really restricts flow in these areas. I understand that to be necessary to slow the coolant down so it absorbs heat.

Anyways all goog info, thanks again.
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#4
(01-11-2019, 03:52 AM) Wrote: Thanks for the input. Yes the MLS setup is down the road.

Stock heads are 64cc and the ProComp aluminums are also 64cc so I will stick with the 1003 until the engine fails on me again and then take what you've taught me and go MLS.

Re: the CI1920 pdf, fwiw that doc is not an exact representation of the 1003, namely the top 7/16" cooling hole referenced in the pdf corresponds on a 1003 to two 9/32" holes there.
On the bottom the 1003 is the same as the pdf.

In my block there are 11/16" holes in the bottom and nearly 1" holes on top so the gasket really restricts flow in these areas. I understand that to be necessary to slow the coolant down so it absorbs heat.

Anyways all goog info, thanks again.

You're welcome, good luck with your repair!

That form covers a few different applications so there may be some slight variations, but it sounds like you're in good shape anyhow. You are correct, the holes in the gasket help meter the flow of the coolant.
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