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Touch a magnet to it, see if it's rust (iron oxide) or another type of corrosion.
 

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Not sure about Saab - but most vehicles use hardened alloy steel - it's hard enough that it doesn't require the cushioning effect that leaded fuel used to provide but can be machined (cut, lapped).
 

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Matthew said:
Are you talking about the guides or the seats?
ooops - that's what happens when you don't re-read before posting (at least to me) - I was talking seats - sorry. (hangs head in shame, walking away ....)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
I did the magnet test - the valve guide are ferrous. Some steel alloy I presume.





Those are the two worst. Looks worse on the photo than it is. Most of the rust scrapes off with a fingernail, leaving smooth metal underneath.

This is because I stored the head in a damp garage all year ;oops: :nono;

Given that I have already invested time and money in this head and that a B235R head will be fitted in the future, I think I will persue using this head. I have a B202 and a B212 in the garage but they'd need tanking and blasting. That's just repeat work.

I'll chemically remove that rust, lap in the valves and use Jim's kerosene method (although I'll use white spirit) to check valve seal. If the valves are sealing correctly then with new stem seals the head should hold up for a while until the B234R conversion.

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