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I have about 180k on this motor. I've been calling around machine shops but I'm reluctant to just drop my head off somewhere when they can't even give me a price ya know? I thought wouldn't a new top end possibly weaken this bottom end? Im real lost on this one. Everything seems straight since I've had this truck no overheating ever! Actually stayed closer to the cold side. But, from what I can tell the valve guide seals are gone. Head gasket looked new but there was evidence of coolant on the valves.Oh dang. How many miles are on the engine?
Since you have the head off I'd have it checked out by a machine shop and gone through. You could just cheap out and replace that valve...but you're already this far in... however I don't know how reconditioning that head will compare with a brand new one. My buddy just put a new pair of heads on his 4.0 because the machine shop wanted very close to that same cost to go through his old ones.