Ford N Series Sediment Bowls (suck): Sealing a 9N/2N/8N Fuel System

If you have a Ford N series tractor, you probably know about the sediment bowl.  And, if you’ve tried to replace the original sediment bowl with the currently available option, you may have realized that it is an utter and complete piece of crap.  It leaks from everywhere that it possibly can, perhaps a few places it can’t conceivably leak from, and it’s quite unlikely that the fuel shutoff valve actually shuts off fuel.  Which, of course, is the whole point of a fuel shutoff valve.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

(Comments from Blogger)

2019-01-01 by Unknown

What size is the screw that holds the valve wheel onto the valve on the sediment bowl?
(Assembly and Parts Book page 1-108, Fig 9A1, #11)


2019-04-08 by Brian

The original uses an 8-32 screw. The cheap chines made bowls come with a 3mm screw for the valve wheel.

2019-08-21 by Randyp1962

the comments describing this assembly as cheap rubbish is putting things mildly. It leaks in every way possible, and what a piece of junk. Im a machinist and ive never seen anything like this where every surface on it is out of alignment and off center from the rest of the diminsions. Maanufacturer please put another dollar or 2 into these where they will actually do what we buy them for.

2020-10-10 by Unknown

I got no fuel flow through my original bowl, so I purchased a new one. It worked great for a bit, but then it stopped flowing again. I don’t believe anything in the tank is preventing flow. Strangely, I do get flow if I barely tighten the sediment bowl to the point of it almost leaking and barely touching the gasket. If I tighten it at all beyond touching, no gas flow. I have taken off the gas cap, but it makes no difference. Any idea what might be causing the restricted flow? Thanks

2020-11-05 by Unknown

Bless your sweet, darling heart. My 8N has been sitting about a year. It didn’t have fuel leaks before but when reviving it, the fuel bowl was leaking tremendously, as was the valve. The old rubber washer was in fragments, and the cork gasket that came with a new bowl screen wasn’t working. I didn’t realize it has to go up in the metal rim, as you said. I think my setup is original and I should be able to still use it. I’m new to all this. It is SO helpful to have this article. I think I can get it working okay with the help of your advice. Thank you SO much!!! PS where can you get a rubber gasket instead of cork? And does it matter? Also, can a new rubber packing for the fuel shutoff valve be found somewhere if I need one?

Packing gland and washer are in reverse order on valve stem! Russ, your picture of the valve stem shows the rubber packing gland, then the washer, and then the compression nut. The rubber is supposed to be BETWEEN the washer and the nut. This is so when you tighten the nut into the Sediment Bowl, you squeeze the packing gland against the washer, and it expands it to seal. It’s like a sandwich. As you have it shown, the rubber is being pushed against the end of the valve stem inlet. With the washer placed first, you have a very symmetrical surface to squeeze against. The “sealing” takes place by the packing gland expanding under the pressure of the washer and the nut. See the diagram here: leaking sediment bowl - Ford 9N, 2N, 8N Forum - Yesterday's Tractors as well as the valve stem available at - I’ve been fiddling with the sediment bowl on my '52 8N the last couple days, and ended up using some of the parts off a new valve stem (the packing) on my original bowl. Your article was EXCELLENT, and will be a big help as I accomplish many of the tasks you have documented in this 4-part series. Thanks! Bruce in TN.

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Huh, thanks! I just assumed it was correct how it came, apparently it was backwards from the factory! I’ll swap that next time I’ve got the fuel bowl off.