My question deals with the necessity/advisibility of a final chemical (Redi-strip?) or thermal (bake and shake?) stripping of the flathead block after the hot tanking, Magnafluxing, and machining. I'm in the Des Moines, IA area and am not aware of any stripping process available other than bead blasting. I am dubious of the effectiveness of media blasting to remove rust and scale from the internal areas of the water jacket and if all the media itself can be gotten back out of the recesses of the jacket and threads. Any advice would be appreciated.
Many folks have found that a sharpened steel rod is useful for chipping away at the stuff while the block is bare and on a stand. Hi-pressure washing may help break it loose. I wouldn't try media blasting on the internal passages, I doubt you can really get to most of the areas anyway, and it is just too hard to get all of the media back out of there. Acid washes don't seem as effective as the chipping. The stuff is like cement!
While you have it bare, it's a good time to consider a "Canadian" full-flow oil filter conversion, since the drilling for it creates chips in the oil passages.
You might want to try spraying white vinegar in the water passeges, spray a couple times, let it work over night and spray it again. It might help loosen the calcuim build up a bit. Also, you can clean the outside with diesel fuel. Spray it on and let it soak a bit too.