Solid copper material Head Gasket – a solid copper sheet, usually requires special 'o-ringing' that places a piece of wire around the circumference of the cylinder to bite into the copper. This O-Ringing can make the cooper gaskets durable; recently companies have started producing copper gaskets with integral sealing wires permitting their retrofit into engines without the removal of the engine block for machine work.
Metal or MLS or Multiple Layers Steel Head Gasket – Modern head engines are produced with metal or MLS gaskets. These typically consist of three layers of steel, four or 5 layers are also available. The contact faces are usually coated with a rubber-like coating such as Viton or FKM that adheres to the cylinder block and cylinder head while the thicker center layer is left bare.
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