I managed to save up enough funds now to start the post mortem exam, and if the head is not cracked, block pistons damaged, etc., I should be able to get it back on the road.
I browsed through the posts for the last year or so to look for tips on doing this. I got the tools and garage space to do it right and have done engine work before but mostly on Detroit iron. I’ve got the Clymer service manual from Auto Zone for the details.
What I’ve gathered so far:
Put the engine at #1 TDC. Remove cylinder head with intake and exhaust attached. Take the head bolts out from outside to inside or you could warp the head. Keep the head bolts labeled so that you can put them back in their original holes. Tap and chase the head bolt threads in the block deck. Clean head bolts with a wire brush.
Assuming the head is serviceable and just need resurfaced:
Use a good brand head gasket & don't cheap out. Replace the timing belt, timing belt tensioner, and water pump. Replace hard to get to cooling hoses.
Any other tips you can think of?
And replacing the radiator that caused this whole mess…
“Koyo is the best aftermarket”, “My car has had a Spectra radiator for 3+ years without issues.” Brands recommended?
Thanks for the help!