Stainless Intake Manifold Bolt Replacement
Applicable Years: C1, C2, C3
Skill Level: 1 Wrench
Tools Required: Appropriate sockets, torque wrench, wrenches; factory service manual or correct torque specs for your engine year/model; new stainless steel bolts and washers
Time Required: 1-2 hours
Parts Source: www.boltdepot.com, local hardware, fastener supply, or home improvement center
There's a lot of moisture and humidity in the part of the country where I live, and this makes keeping up with and ahead of rust a constant challenge, especially when it comes to the engine bolts on my Corvettes. I've always been a big fan of stainless steel fasteners because they don't rust and always maintain a nice appearance. I also should mention that I don't enter my cars in judged shows, so I'm not really concerned about correctness. That being said, I decided to replace all the intake manifold bolts on my '67 big-block coupe with spiffy stainless fasteners. This is an easy project to do, but you want to make sure you only remove one bolt at a time, and insert and tighten the stainless replacement to the correct torque before removing the next one. This is done for two reasons: First, it minimizes the chance for any coolant leakage, and second, this won't create any great disturbance in the overall torque of the manifold so there won't be any warping.
I ordered the replacement bolts from www.boltdepot.com, but you can also get them from the local fastener supply, a well-stocked hardware store, or a home improvement center such as Home Depot or Lowes. Replacing all the bolts should take about an hour on most models, although it may take a little longer on some (e.g., tri-powers) if there is more plumbing to contend with. It really dresses up the engine, and it eliminates rusty-bolt syndrome for good.