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Replacement oil filters and sump gaskets for the RV8

Peter Garton (Woodcote Green 1238) in Germany posted a query on the V8BB concerning replacement part numbers. The responses will be a useful resource for fellow members. (Apr 08)

When I first imported my RV8 from Tokyo in 2000, the sump was weeping and so I had the sump removed and my local people then applied a sort of sealant "gunk" instead of the conventional gasket. Now it's started to leak again! This time I have ordered a proper gasket from the Land Rover people who strongly recommended the change. The sealant looks whiteish in colour, which is visible from the outside edge of the sump. In addition there have been considerable notes regarding the oil filter. Here again Land Rover recommended their part number 3340. Comment and experiences would be greatly appreciated. Since I am in Germany, the normal UK accessory oil filters cannot be sourced here. Also I would frankly prefer original equipment.

Andy Miller responded saying the "OE" oil filter is now an XPart item (12H3274EVA) catalogued for a very limited range of applications, and whilst I have not checked but I bet it does not include RV8. The contemporary "OE" part number was Unipart GFE 121, which cross refers to one of the fastest moving part numbers in the European aftermarket! Applications for this include, quite literally, millions of Ford, VAG, and GM petrol engine cars. And it will come as little surprise to learn that almost all the different brands come from just one or two factories around the World. You will be able to find Mann, or Fram, or another leading brand locally which will do the job as well as any. The same applies to the two fuel filters, which often get over looked, but as the tanks age and even light corrosion gets into the fuel injection system, it is essential that both filters are changed every 12 or 18 months, and immediately on any car reimported from Japan.

Rob Collier added the Unipart GFE121 oil filter is now listed as GFE 422. This is the same filter that is used on the MGB and was a part number change only 3 or 4 years ago. GFE 422 filters are available in the UK at a very reasonable price if you would like some let me know. My RV8 also had an oil leak from the sump which I had cured by Clive Wheatley. Apparently a gasket was not used at the factory, just the silicone gunk you describe, hence the leak.

Fred Jenns responded saying you raise an interesting question. At the time RV8 was made, Unipart had the contract to handle Rover Group parts, and the Unipart components were the "Original Equipment" in that it was their part number on the vehicle manufacturer's parts list. After Caterpillar bought the parts business from MG Rover, and Unipart had no further direct involvement, did the "OE" credibility follow the change in contract and thus XPart become the OE? Or perhaps there can now be no "OE" as there is no vehicle manufacturer. And of course, neither Caterpillar nor Unipart actually make filters, but merely buy them in from one of a handful of factories. Whether these factories actually supplied MG Rover whilst engines were built at Solihull or Crofton Hackett is lost in the mists of time. Frankly, I would hesitate to suggest which might be the case, but it is going to be a heated debate one day on the concours field!

Peter Garton then returned with some findings he felt everyone should note. The recommended Land Rover sump gasket does not fit nor does their oil filter which is too large even though the people here swore that the 3.9 V8 engine in the Land Rover is identical to the RV8 spec. I queried this because I imagined that the sump and the oil filter on the Land Rover would be of a much heavier duty. The sump gasket they gave me was brilliant, really hefty with 17 odd bolt holes plus locating studs all out of rubber. As we all know the RV8 sump has only 16 holes for the bolts!! The oil filter on the RV8 is quite short from Mann but the Land Rover equivalent is longer and thus there is no room to fit it since I have EPAS with my filter fitted very close to the radiator and generator!! I am trying to get hold of Clive Wheatley to mail me a gasket but they do not


Information sheet from the Mann Filter catalogue confirming this replacement has a non-return valve. (Image: Peter Garton) Download large copy

appear to work on Saturdays. However I can get the Mann Filter here in Germany without trouble.

Rob Collier responded to the OE issue saying he felt that if a Unipart oil filter was OE at when the RV8 was in production, then that would be the correct filter from a concours point of view irrespective of whether Unipart had changed manufacture for their oil filters. I bought three GFE422 oil filters at £2.09 plus VAT on Friday as I have both a RV8 and a 1964 MGB. Not only are they the right filter, they are very reasonably priced as well whatever the concours judges may say!

Geoff King contributed some clear information saying the sump gasket you need is part number AJM539, this should be available from any Rover or Range/Land Rover dealer. Rimmer Bros, Brown & Gammons and specialist suppliers of Rover parts will also stock it. Cross references to part numbers GEG539, 602087, 090602087. Davidson and McMillan have it mail order for just £1.17 - see their website address at: http://www.davidsonandmcmillan.co.uk/land-rover-part-number.php?partno=602087

The V8 engine fitted to the Rover P5B, P6, MGBGTV8, RV8 and all Range Rovers with the BOP engine (pre BMW V8) all have the same configuration of cylinder block bolts. Range Rover, Rover SD1, MGBGTV8 and RV8 sumps all have a different shape and capacity but any sump will fit on any engine - it has 16 bolts for all applications up to about 1993/4. Later engines, with a crank driven oil pump (not the MGBGTV8 or RV8), have a different front cover and a different sump and some sumps were designed to be sealed with liquid gasket.

Peter Garton clearly appreciated with the "really explicit input" from Geoff and others and was ready to go ahead, with confidence, and purchase my sump gasket! He later posted a note saying he had contacted Steve at Clive Wheatley mgv8parts who has sent him a sump gasket straightaway. Apparently they have this item actually manufactured for them individually and one can apply it as it is or even add the additional bead of silicone sealant - not household silicone, by the way, which doesn't resist the heat generated by the V8!

Andy Miller added a final response to Rob Collier's posting saying whatever brand of filter you use on your B, make sure that it has a non-return valve to stop it draining back into the housing (and thence sump!) when the engine is off. I know that the Unipart filter does have this valve, which stops that heart stopping few seconds of zero oil pressure from a cold start. It should not be an issue in applications where the filter hangs down, but if anyone inverts the oil filter head on an RV8 to gain more space for PAS, or in a V8 conversion, make sure only the non return valve type filters are used.

Peter Garton then sent a copy of a sheet in his Mann Filter catalogue on the replacement filter confirming it does have a non-return valve.

Footnote: The RV8 spares operation was taken over from Caterpillar by Brown & Gammons in 2004. See our full report on the RV8 Spares Deal.
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