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Classic/Antique Car Repair/1957 Pontiac valve stem seals


Hello, I am replacing valve stem seals in 1957 Pontiac while heads are still on engine. The seals go in a groove right bellow keepers groove.. There are what they call in service manual valve stem shields on top of valve spings & they are just about all of them are broke & just dangling around springs. I was going to eliminate them & put umbrella seals over guides, but inner valve spings are to tight over guides to allow that. Would it be a problem to eliminate shields & use stock valve seals, or would I be able to put stock seals on & use a seal on valve stems that would move with valve stems, then offsetting the none use of shields?  Thank You!!!!!

The stock stem seals will work as long as the valve guides are not worn excessively. Even if the guides are worn the new stem seals will slow down oil consumption. I have been know to use umbrella seals and trim the skirts a bit to clear the inner valve springs and that work fairly well.

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Brad Sears


All automotive including antique and collectible. However if the car has been modified I can only answer in general terms and maybe get you pointed in the right direction.


Automotive tech instructor. Syndicated auto columnist 1970's though the early 1990's. Syndicated auto radio talk show, Ask Brad About cars, CBS Radio 70's through 90's TV Show "Last Chance Garage" 1980's PBS-TV syndicated. Auto instructor for the following companies: Fram Autolyte Holly Carter AMF Ford Motor University Of Conn Blue Hills Technical School Sugar River Technical Center Grew up in a family garage in Needham Mass and turned wrenches from the age of 14.

Manchester Union Leader, Nashua Telegraph, Motor Service Magazine, Yankee Magazine, Popular Mechanics (Saturday Mechanic early 80's), Los Angeles Times, New York Times, and lots more.

More than I care to remember. Basically Franklin Technical Institute in Boston, Northeastern University, Fitchburg State Teachers College, Tufts University, and a lot of factory schools along the way.

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Moto Award winner. And much more.

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