Understood on the head gasket, thanks bro.
Got an email back today from Maxpower
From the pictures it apears to be an Ice Cube with no copper compression ring, on top of the cylinder. It looks like someone has put screws in the cylinder to hold sleeve in place, we do not do this procedure. If it is holding up, all the better.
I'm using second hand info here, but I was under the impression that they did use the set screws at one point in time, then abandoned that method for a tighter interference fit later on. I believe I even got that out of one of the guys from Max Power.
I also know that since then, they have been o-ringing the top deck, which is a groove cut into the top deck, around the cylinder, where you lay a piece of wire, butting the ends. This wire sticks above the deck surface, and tightens the seal at the head gasket when you bolt it together. I am a big fan of that. I do the same on my big bore builds. I'm not sure it can be done with those set screws in there though. I believe at that time, they were just using an appropriately sized head gasket.
I would lightly deck the deck surface of the head and cylinder, to check for any low spots. 1, because sleeves can bring about abnormal issues, and 2 because just about every head that I do this to, had a low spot, and just about every time I have anything like this come in with a head gasket issue, there are low spots in the head causing it. Some were even chronic issues that had already had the head gasket changed a couple times trying to solve the issue. By decking, I always solve it.
Personally, I do what they call lapping, to the deck surfaces. I have a flat plate of glass, that I spray adhesive down, and stick sand paper to. Then I do figure 8's with it, and look for any area that is not showing contact. That would be a low spot, and I will keep going until it's gone. Keep in mind that finish matters. I generally use 320 grit to finish. I use something coarser at first if I have a ways to go to. This is a nice way to only take what's necessary. If you are unsure about your finish, you can spray the gasket with copper coat. The MLS style gaskets are fussy on finish. It's not a polished finish that they want, but it's not too far from it.