I have seen brand new B&S engines come from the factory with not enough
valve clearance. I made one heck of a buy on a riding mower once because the
dealer couldn't figure out why the engine kept dying after several minutes
of running. He took it back from an unhappy customer, don't know why he
didn't replace the engine under warrantee but I didn't care.
Head gasket is definately ok. I did not replace it after removing the
head, but it looked quite good. Definately no leak path observed at
all. Either with the gasket or mating surfaces.
I have done this in the past with other engines with no problem.
REMOVE both "nospam-" in return address to reply.
Since you've had it apart this far (sorry, didn't read quite
thoroughly enough), it's time to check the clearance from
the valves to the push rods.
Usually low valve clearance starts after about 15 minutes.
I've seen it a couple times, and it is enough to drive an
expert mechanic blinko.
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