Trans pan cork gasket; install dry or w/silicone?

outatime86

Active Member
I have a small but obvious leak coming from my trans pan. Years ago when the car was running, I remember the same leak. Unwittingly at that time I went under the car and just tried tightening the bolts, still leaked. Now years later, working on getting the car back together I see the leak and its a slow drip from the pan area. I bought a cork style gasket, but my question is should I install it dry or with silicone? Thoughts anyone? I've read some say dry others say use silicone, what are your experiences?

Gald to see the board back up and running!
 

RED LS1

SENIOR MEMBER
I would either use a very thin coating of Right stuff RTV or even spray it with a spray. But I wouldn't put it on dry. In fact, I would throw it out and get a duroprene style gasket and then you can install it dry. Whatever you do, consider going around the bolts a few times in the next few days after installation to make sure they remain tight.
 

Lockman

OH, OK .......Now I get it
earl browns word's of advice to me , once:

" Cork and just about any kind of glue to stick them to the pan.

Set it on the counter , upside down, to dry with a weight on them. Snug the bolts down a little, let them sit over night and snug them again.

After a day or two snug them one last time and the cork will be married to the rough cast surface of the block. "
 

KC87

Well-Known Member
I've used the cork gasket countless times with no sealer and have never had a leak. Snugging the bolts a little at a time and torque to 12 foot pounds. Usually will put a very thin layer of regular grease on the pan lip to hold it in place and start a few bolts in to also help hold it.
 

outatime86

Active Member
Thank you for all the input and experienced advice!

Finally getting around to changing the gasket this week, was going to pick up this MaxLife fluid found it for a solid price. Anyone else use this type of fluid or should I just stick with the ACdelco dexron vi stuff? My trans has a art carr shift kit and a deep pan.

Walmarts MaxLife ATF link
The link above shows its on sale $18/gal vs $35/gal normally
 

KC87

Well-Known Member
Thank you for all the input and experienced advice!

Finally getting around to changing the gasket this week, was going to pick up this MaxLife fluid found it for a solid price. Anyone else use this type of fluid or should I just stick with the ACdelco dexron vi stuff? My trans has a art carr shift kit and a deep pan.

Walmarts MaxLife ATF link
The link above shows its on sale $18/gal vs $35/gal normally

Been using that for some time now. It's rated Dexron VI so probably better then the original recommended
Dexron III from decades ago.
 

outatime86

Active Member
That's exactly what I was thinking! Thank you for the verification KC87

I almost bought this Valvoline dexron/merc because of its price at $13/gal but after reading on the back what is compatible with I started looking at the MaxLife which is only a few bucks more at Walmart.
 

outatime86

Active Member
Just a quick update, tried getting that MaxLife from Walmart and was unable to. Stores which said the had availability in fact did not (went to 4 locations). Next day tried calling farther out stores but not one store even answered there phone after 14 calls, 15th call someone answered then once transferred to 'automotive' but the call wasn't answered. Then tried online 'pickup' option from a store that showed availability, order went through but was later canceled due to unavailability of product. I hadn't shopped at walmart in over 15 years, and it will be another 12 years before I go back.

Went to ebay and found a 2 gallon Pack for cheaper then walmart, took less then 5 minutes to find - order - receive confirmation and tracking number. Got each gallon for $14/gall and $2 in taxes with free shipping, will be here in 5 days.
 

outatime86

Active Member
Careful with sealant as there are fluid exhaust holes on the pan rail that too much sealant can ooze out and block the hRog

Careful with sealant as there are fluid exhaust holes on the pan rail that too much sealant can ooze out and block the holes
Roger that, I think I'm going to install dry. Once I pull the pan I'll double check that its flat as possible before reinstalling dry. If I still get leaks I'll try again with a lil lil bit of ultra black on both sides of a new cork gasket. Thank you for your input!
 

626gn

Well-Known Member
If the cork gasket doesn't work out and you are forced to try again with another gasket, use a duraprene gasket instead.
 

outatime86

Active Member
If the cork gasket doesn't work out and you are forced to try again with another gasket, use a duraprene gasket instead.
This I will do, if the cork leaks I won't replace it with another cork. I'll go duraprene with a dry install.
Thank you for the advice.
 

outatime86

Active Member
Ended up installing dry, torqued to 10lb after using a razor blade to scrape off the old gasket, cleaning out the pan with purple power then brake clean.

No leaks so far
 

outatime86

Active Member
well finally got the car running, but once hot the trans pan started leaking out the front. Also had reverse but no forward gears! Man this beauty is just one surprise after another!!! Dont think I'll be able to make it to the June 5th show with the car, but I'll still show up.

Time for duraprene gasket looks like. Probably take Chucks advise and use cooper spray. I'll also check the manual shaft seal that might be bad too. I'm thinking ebay for the duraprene gasket, unless someone has a link? Thanks
 

outatime86

Active Member
We use Permatex spray copper.
Also, make sure the pan rails are flat. Over torquing to stop a leak is usually too much, and the bolt hele areas are deformed.
Would you spray both sides of the duraprene with permatex cooper spray? I'm guessing a thin coat on both sides would be good?

Thanks chuck
 
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