Reusing gaskets

Has anyone figured out a good way to reuse gaskets? the cost and all the scraping involved have me looking for a better way. Can you precoat them with oil, silicone, or silicone one side so they stick to one side. and does it adversly affect sealing qualitys? Thanks Crew

I pre-coat them with grease. They never stick and can be pealed off without any effort. They never leak. I would never reuse a center case gasket, only because because if it did leak, it would be a pain to replace. But I reuse clutch gaskets, since they have easy access just in case it does leak. But they one thing I love about pre-coating them is the hour or so it takes to scrape a dried up old gasket. Instead, it only take one second to remove it. Plus you never have to worry about gouging the case and causing possible leak by doing that. Also I use a ton of grease. It works great, I just did it yesterday.

i never reused them ONLESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ive installed them and have not run the motor yet (exable like forgetting to install somthing in the motor or changing and engine cover cuz i found a better one)

one a motor is run for more the 5 mins ive noticed the gaskets start to stick and the hell with gasket sealer buy an etire gasket kit and fix it the right way so you dont have to fix it again.

Never reuse a head gasket and always buy the Honda OEM head gasket.

Never re-use a gasket except in case of EXTREME emergency! Your engine and your wallet will thank you.

thanks for the help crew, Socal i think i will be greasing my clutch cover gasket when i put it on, if nothing else for easier removal. I need to clean out the filter after a top end rebuild, if not several times. previous owner had a top end meltdown and there is alot of aluminum still floating around after 5-6 flushings and several with diesel. How effective is the rotary filter under the clutch cover gasket and has anyone found a way to place a finer mesh filter in the drain system?

I knew this would cause a fuss. But a gasket does one thing and one thing only. It allows you to put two parts together without having any oil leak out. That's it, plain and simple. So if you have something like a clutch cover gasket and you reuse use the gasket and it doesn't leak, then you're good to go. It's not like re-using a gasket on a freaking Boeing 737 or F18. It's a XR100. Our custom copper head gaskets last a life time. You just heat it up with a torch then put it cold water and it's good to go again. We've been using some of them for over 10 years. The only one I wouldn't do is the center case gasket for obvious reasons and the base gaskets as well. I re-use the manifold gasket without any air leaks, and the TTR ignition cover gasket without any oil leaks. And even if it did leak, which I have yet to have happen, it would only seep out and then you just put another one on. With as many motors as I have, I spend hundreds of dollars on gaskets a year anyway. Now I know some people might get bent out of shape by this, but I don't worry about how other people do their motors and people shouldn't worry about mine. Besides my motors are still fast.

I knew this would cause a fuss. But a gasket does one thing and one thing only. It allows you to put two parts together without having any oil leak out. That's it, plain and simple. So if you have something like a clutch cover gasket and you reuse use the gasket and it doesn't leak, then you're good to go. It's not like re-using a gasket on a freaking Boeing 737 or F18. It's a XR100. Our custom copper head gaskets last a life time. You just heat it up with a torch then put it cold water and it's good to go again. We've been using some of them for over 10 years. The only one I wouldn't do is the center case gasket for obvious reasons and the base gaskets as well. I re-use the manifold gasket without any air leaks, and the TTR ignition cover gasket without any oil leaks. And even if it did leak, which I have yet to have happen, it would only seep out and then you just put another one on. With as many motors as I have, I spend hundreds of dollars on gaskets a year anyway. Now I know some people might get bent out of shape by this, but I don't worry about how other people do their motors and people shouldn't worry about mine. Besides my motors are still fast.

I'd like to hear more about this. What is this 'custom' gasket and what is the reasoning behind heating and cooling to get it back to usable condition? Thanks!

I'd like to hear more about this. What is this 'custom' gasket and what is the reasoning behind heating and cooling to get it back to usable condition? Thanks!

I get my 'custom' head gaskets from Cometic Gaskets. They will make copper head gaskets just about any way you want, to a print, over the phone, send them an example, etc. I had them make me a copper head gasket for a 1956 Harley Davidson two stroke that is highly modified. The piston at TDC is actually higher then the top of the cylinder, so the gasket had to be thicker then normal, and the shape was changed. All I did was discribe what I wanted over the phone, sent an e-mail with a drawing, a crude hand drawing but it worked, and the thickness. The first attempt didn't work, the gasket was too thick, which was my fault. They quickly made me another that worked great. They issue custom gaskets a print number and keep it on file. When you go to reorder, all you do is give them the print number and in a few days your new gasket is in the mail.

Heating up and quick cooling of a copper gasket is called anealing (sp?) It softens the old gasket so it will be re-usable. I hang the gasket on a piece of wire (a cloths hanger works fine) and slowly and evenly heat it with a propane torch. Do this in a dimmly lit room so you can see the gasket starting to turn orange/red. You don't want to get it too hot, or it will melt. When the gasket is an even dull orange glow, drop it in a pan of luke warm water. Anealing works on brass too. I have done it to magnum rifle cartridge necks before reloading. Belted Magnum rifle brass can only be reloaded 2 or 3 times then it starts to split. By anealing it every other reload, I've gotten as many as 8 to 10 reloads.

Oh and by the way, I reuse side cover gaskets on bike engines. That is if it sticks to the cover, and doesn't tear. I recently put clutch plates on my 2003 CRF150F. Yep, six years with the original clutch plates! The side cover gasket stayed on the cover, real nice, so all I did was put some Honda Bond on the old gasket and put it back together.

be very careful if using silicone to reseal old gaskets in emergency repairs, several four stroke single models have oil passages that run through the clutch cover back into the cases, usually to feed oil to the top end, causes a major top end lubrication failure if the oil passage gets plugged with silicone(if it's squeezing out- it's squeezing in)

I use grease on side cover gaskets too socal. never leaks and makes life much easier.

I use grease like socal said,but on another note if you use neversieze on exhaust gaskets(header gaskets)they stay soft and you can reuse them also.Thanks for the tip on watching oil passages when silicone is used to patch tears.

I use a thin coat of white grease on base gaskets learned that trick from my 2 stroke days, I had to use special thickness Cometic base gaskets that were very pricey. A yes the 2 stroke days cylinders on cylinders off. lol.

Interesting to hear why/how to re-use copper gaskets.

Also neat to hear others re-use whatever they can,

I will be adding the grease coating to the list.

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