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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm new to small block Fords, not to engine repair in general for context in where I'm coming from. I have edited this post down for clarity.

All I need is to find a valve spring compressor that works with stock, pedestal type E7 heads that are in my 1994 Mustang GT and can work to install Trick Flow TFS-2500100 (dual rate) valve springs.
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I can't use the little wine press style because they only grab the outer spring. They'll remove the stock ones just fine but not install the new ones which have an inner spring.

I can't use the lever type that's made for 3/8" studs because stock 94 GT heads are pedestal type and I'm pretty sure all the 3/8" studs use a 7/16" bottom that won't thread into my heads.

If anyone has any useful recommendations I would appreciate it.

Thank you.
 

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I use a Gearwrench 2078 spring compressor. Its inexpensive, easy to use on a single spring and available by numerous sellers. If your new springs are stock type replacement, just use oem type seals.
Thick wall pushrods are overkill unless you have a "big" cam in the future with aluminum heads.

With the lower intake removed, why not pull the heads and do some "gasket matching" of the heads and lower cobra intake?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I think I might need to get the kind of compressor which uses leverage off the head, because my replacement valve springs are the Trick Flow ones which have an inner and outer spring.

The spring compressors which grab the spring itself would only grab the outer spring.

However when I look at lever-action valve spring compressors like Moroso 62370 and the dozen or so nearly identical competing products they're all made for 3/8" studs and I have stock E7 heads with pedestal mounts..

I'm sure there's something simple here I'm missing but if I don't know what it is I'm never going to guess it on accident just by beating my head against the wall.

Overkill or not the pushrods are ordered already.
 

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I think I might need to get the kind of compressor which uses leverage off the head, because my replacement valve springs are the Trick Flow ones which have an inner and outer spring.

The spring compressors which grab the spring itself would only grab the outer spring.

However when I look at lever-action valve spring compressors like Moroso 62370 and the dozen or so nearly identical competing products they're all made for 3/8" studs and I have stock E7 heads with pedestal mounts..

I'm sure there's something simple here I'm missing but if I don't know what it is I'm never going to guess it on accident just by beating my head against the wall.

Overkill or not the pushrods are ordered already.
Get a 5/16 to 3/8 step stud and use the lever compressor.


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Those are a single spring with damper. The damper spring is shorter in length, so the type of compressor I mention will work with those TFS springs. You only need to compress the spring enough to get the locks on. Did the kit not include seals?
 
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I picked up a cheap spring compressor from Harbor freight.
I used on my stock heads with no issue and so far tried 2 springs on my TFS heads with the damper.
Worked fine for those first 2 springs.
My heads are off the engine, but I don't see why you couldn't use it with the heads on. Just make sure to put the piston at TDC and use compressed air to hold the valve up. If the valve drops, it will only drop a little bit to the top of the piston.

Universal Overhead Valve Spring Compressor

The above compressor gets tiring and hard on the hands. Gloves helped.
Once I got my technique down, it was quick and simple.

I've also used the pry bar type with the heads on the car. This is definitely easier on the hands.

The only issue I had was getting the retainer to break free. I did the socket and hammer trick to break them free, which seemed to help. With the stock heads, I was actually able to release the retainer with a whack of the hammer, so I only had to compress the spring to reinstall. If you do this, make sure you block off the oil drain holes so the locks don't fall into the pan.
 
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That’s how I managed to do it. With the heads on the car, you’ll have to fill the combustion chamber with compressed air in order to keep the valves seated. Super easy.
 

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I used something like this in the past with an air compressor and adapter as others have mentioned to prevent the valve from dropping. Word of caution, depending on which cylinder you are working on, when you hook up the air is may bump the engine over a bit so stay clear of the fan. I kept mine out of gear with the e brake on.

OEMTools 25064 OEM Automotive Tools Valve Spring Compressors | Summit Racing

Tool looks archaic vs the new stuff other there but I found it to be a low cost/effective solution.
 

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Socket just smaller than the retainer.and a hammer, quick hit and the locks pop right out. Can be messy or use the part above.
 

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I always used the Moroso, link below never had a problem with in car changes on Windsor S/N 95 with double springs plus vibration damper. Also have a tool to break the locks free. Ill have to go out to the garage and see who made it, dont remember been quite a few years since I bought it.

 

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I always used the Moroso, link below never had a problem with in car changes on Windsor S/N 95 with double springs plus vibration damper. Also have a tool to break the locks free. Ill have to go out to the garage and see who made it, dont remember been quite a few years since I bought it.

There are a couple different version of this available on Amazon. This is the way I plan on going.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I always used the Moroso, link below never had a problem with in car changes on Windsor S/N 95 with double springs plus vibration damper. Also have a tool to break the locks free. Ill have to go out to the garage and see who made it, dont remember been quite a few years since I bought it.

Dumb question on that, is there any problem with the clearance for that handle to swing with the engine in the car?
 

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Dumb question on that, is there any problem with the clearance for that handle to swing with the engine in the car?
I changed the valve springs 2x on my 95 with the engine in. The back cylinders are a PITA but was able to get it done with the Moroso tool. Cant remember if the lower intake was on or off, when I did it. I wont have access to those pics for a few days (they are in an offline archive).

Below is a pic of the tool with air line for spark plug hole and 2 different versions of the little tool to break the locks free, silver one is magnetic to grab the locks, blue one is not.
Tool Wood Plastic bottle Bumper Gas
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, stuff's been ordered we'll see how it all works out. I'm hoping everything comes in by xmas since I have a four day weekend but really the car's not leaving the garage till the snow melts so I can take my time.
 

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How are you guys holding the valves up when doing this on an assembled engine?

I used the pro form tool on my stud-mounts, but I had a fun time wrestling with the air compressor pressure to keep the engine from turning over while doing this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I haven't done this yet obviously that's why I asked, but I did perform the same basic job on an OHC engine and the way I held the valves up was first to take the cam out of the equation by removing the rockers/lifters on ALL the cylinders, then just let the air pressure push the piston down to the bottom while doing the valve spring work.
 

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Just put the cylinder you are working on at tdc and the air pressure will not rotate the engine. You can do 2 cylinders at a time.
 

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Just put the cylinder you are working on at tdc and the air pressure will not rotate the engine. You can do 2 cylinders at a time.
This.

Use a leak down tested to air up the cylinder. If it’s on tdc the engine shouldn’t rotate. Put it in gear if it’s a manual to help also
 
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