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351c or bbf for 72 ranchero gt

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andyjman83 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 22-September-2014 at 2:40PM
Hey guys,
I got my new to me 72 ranchero 351c 2v with a c4 running today. It runs pretty well but has a tiny god awful 390cfm holley on it, and it has some of the original emissions stuff left that I haven't pulled off yet.

Anyway, my question is...
What engine would be best for my application? I'm looking to make around 450-500 maybe a lil higher, and I'm wondering if a 351c or bbf would be my best bet. I know that in order to build good power on a cleveland, that you have to spin it pretty high, and have good heads, so my 2v's would probably be out. I have also heard that building a cleveland can be quite expensive vs other motors. The po has the numbers matching engine in his shed already sleved and ready to be rebuilt because it cracked a bore back in the day.

I do know that id need diff coils in the front for a bbf along with a lot
Of other things, so I'm trying to see what would be the best bang for my buck.

what engine combo's are you guys running, and what kinda power and drivability are you experiencing?

Sorry for talking ur ear off.

Andy
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-September-2014 at 3:57PM
Spend your time early on getting used to the vehicle, hunting for the so many obsolete parts. You will have far less trouble with the drive train than the normal body/interior/rubber etc.

Work out a budget for things, as you discover what it costs for all of the non drive train stuff. When you have a budget for the engine after figuring in the trans work, suspension, brakes etc, etc, then that should steer you to a mild engine build or an expensive one.

You can easily spend $5k and more on any engine, 302 all the way to the 521. But there are so many other things that the truck will require also, don't plan the engine and skip the rest.

I'm no expert at building BBF's, but I've read a ton and been a part of a few builds. The normal stock 460 engines you will find to start with won't make 500hp with just a cheap build. It does cost a decent amount to put together a 521 and the head work, intake and carb etc.

I suggest picking one based on an end goal, a look or appearance, and the general budget. Follow the example of others and see how they look and work.
Don

73 Ranchero with a 72 Sport front end, parked since 1990
91 Lincoln Mark VII SE, OBDII 347/4R70W
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Billy C Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-September-2014 at 4:05PM
I'm big block all day err day but that's a entire lifestyle change from a 351.. before you know it you're hording parts from parts cars you got to do the swap even if the parts have nothing to do with the swap...LOL even so, the devil on my shoulder says get a big block and start ruining tires Evil Smile. (although not that simple)

Here's what the logical part of me says. I think the 351c can be very potent. A good cam, carb, and tune can go a long way but if you're true goal is 500lb/ft and 500bhp then an entire new setup is needed from bottom to top. Even with a big block 500bhp reliably and consistently isn't a joke. If you have a donor engine then build it up from there. That way you can keep on enjoying the car. I'm not sure what the stock components can handle but a couple thousand dollars invested in new stronger/lighter parts could probably yield a very powerful and reliable build. Go aluminum anywhere you can, heads, intake, water-pump...  New exhaust will need to be a consideration. Things like cooling system and drive-line to handle the tq/hp is going to add up too. C4s can be built tough and supposedly have lower parasitic losses than the stronger/bigger/heavier C6s. Keeping the 351c setup sounds like the best bet to me. No parts to hunt down. All plug and play. If the new build blows up, just put the old one back in.

Sorry for talking your ear back and welcome....
-Billy Conturo
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-September-2014 at 4:21PM


For that kind of power, the intake manifold will have to big big enough to flow enough air to produce that power. So hunt around and see what intakes are used on the 460's you find, and the Cleveland combinations out there. Doing it with a mild dual plane intake is not likely to work, whether it's a small block or the big blocks.

Price some of the intakes and a decent 750-850cfm carburetor. Those things take some coin, more than a simple stock parts rebuild.
Don

73 Ranchero with a 72 Sport front end, parked since 1990
91 Lincoln Mark VII SE, OBDII 347/4R70W
98 Mercury Mountaineer
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-September-2014 at 4:46PM
From what the po told me, the motor that's in it was something that was put together with spare parts to get it back on the road. He told me that the motor that he has at his house was the one that was making good power before it went low on oil and locked up. I'm probably going to start my project by redoing the brakes. The thing has a terrible time stopping and I think the master cylinder and vac booster are toast, so I've been eyeballing the rear disc conversion and the hydroboost conversion, so that way, if I end up with a really large cam in whatever motor goes in there, lack of manifold vacuum won't be an issue. I do want to keep the power steering as well as eventually get the ac working again. It is nice to have a spare motor even if it needs to be rebuilt. I was really hoping that this motor had the 4v heads, but either way, I could probably throw a nice set of trick flow or afr's on there if the 2v's end up being a bottle neck.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 67gt5003119 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-September-2014 at 5:07PM
I asked this same question last year and got great responses. Here is what my homework turned up. For about $1500-1800 you can buy a 408 cleveland stroker kit that would put out the power you are lookin for. The 500+ cube BB would give you close to 600 hp. With the cleveland you could use all the existing hardware, suspension, trans, pulleys etc. Rather than change everything over to BB, substantial extra cost. The machine work is the same. You would have to buy 4v heads, intake, headers but still cheaper than converting to BB.
Right now I am building a new 408C and a 545 BB. One of them will reside in my 72. The rotating kits are very close on price and machine work is same cost.( either for stock or stroker rotating assy). I already have cleveland stuff in the 72 so I can pretty much drop it in and upgrade trans, rear as i go. Easier on the credit card. The BB is a spend it all now to get the car on the road kind of thing. Harder on the pocket and a little more stress. So I am going with the 408 for the time being ( or until I find some extra funds to do the BB conversion) Expecting at least 500 hp based on my build. (10.5 compression closed chambered heads healthy full roller cam high rise intake 850 DP) The BB will wait on a stand.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-September-2014 at 5:34PM
Thanks for all the responses guys, I was looking for a set of the 4v heads and they are like gold now. I did read super good reviewson the trick flow power port heads, and even with the 190 heads, on a 383 with 9.5:1 they made something around 524 hp and 480 tq.
I'm thinking ill stick with the cleveland and either stroke it to a 408 or something like 383
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote aquartlow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-September-2014 at 12:51AM
Originally posted by andyjman83 andyjman83 wrote:

From what the po told me, the motor that's in it was something that was put together with spare parts to get it back on the road. He told me that the motor that he has at his house was the one that was making good power before it went low on oil and locked up. I'm probably going to start my project by redoing the brakes. The thing has a terrible time stopping and I think the master cylinder and vac booster are toast, so I've been eyeballing the rear disc conversion and the hydroboost conversion, so that way, if I end up with a really large cam in whatever motor goes in there, lack of manifold vacuum won't be an issue. I do want to keep the power steering as well as eventually get the ac working again. It is nice to have a spare motor even if it needs to be rebuilt. I was really hoping that this motor had the 4v heads, but either way, I could probably throw a nice set of trick flow or afr's on there if the 2v's end up being a bottle neck.
 
Good idea on hydroboost, mine stops WAY better with it(along with other brake upgrades). Another plus as you mentioned is no vacuum required for brake assist. I am running a BBF and with the cam selected I have 10-11in hg @ idle in gear, a vacuum assist booster requires(with all the info I have read/researched) over 15in. hg for it to work as designed. It WILL work with lower vacuum values, just not as effectively. You will need to keep your PS pump for the "hydro" part of hydroboost. Good luck with your build.


Edited by aquartlow - 23-September-2014 at 12:54AM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-September-2014 at 5:55AM
The stock 2V heads are better than all stock small block heads, except the 4V heads. People do very well with 2V heads, but they do better as closed chamber versions, and of course high compression instead of the 8.5ish range of stock motors.

If you go to aftermarket heads, TFS is the best for Windsor heads, but not for the Cleveland. They are middle of the road, better than Edelbrock but below several others, CHI being my preference. Most of them are near $2500 complete, and several are much much more. The lesser heads are in the bargain price range of $2k complete. It's worth the difference to go to the next level in aftermarket heads.

That's why the stock Cleveland heads are still great to work with. They have very good potential, and without going nuts in upgrades you can do well for much less than any aftermarket head.
Don

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockatansky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-September-2014 at 6:12AM
yes good plan on the H-B if big power is your planned direction
 
2V's hit a wall at about 400hp, even with larger 4V valves installed and unfortunately every good head porter says the 2V casting just can't be improved because the metal just isn't there to remove
 
but they are good to ~ 400hp, which ain't too shabby
 
you can find fair deals on ready to run or 'need freshing' 4V heads, but keep in mind while shopping that the 4V's have right at 250cc intake ports. in general, less port volume will make less power unless again you spin it up to get the numbers. horsepower is a calculation based on TQ x rpm, personally I don't necessarily believe the magazine or manufacturer power claims... they've been 3rd party/end user proven BS from the beginning of hot rodding
 
the 3V class of heads I feel missed the mark slightly, again many end users are stymied on how to make the engines they built produce the power promised... the trick is that the attractive numbers were made with highly modified samples of the head in question. the basic concept of the 3V head is that the port is raised up higher compared to stock 4V, improving the short turn radius and increasing port velocity with a smaller port volume. low end & midrange is enhanced but top end goes away
 
back in the day the best of the best raised the roof of the port as high as possible and filled the floor like the 3V's do but they didn't stop there. they also widened the port to restore the volume back to the 250cc mark or more. proof in the pudding the 5.8's sent the 7 liters home
 
Originally posted by 72 RS 351 72 RS 351 wrote:

It's worth the difference to go to the next level in aftermarket heads
 
in the 'get what you pay for' dept look at Scott Cook's heads & intake, not exactly cost/no object but not bargain basement either
 
also google or yahoo 'scott cook heads' & look at some of the hits
 
value is that they will perform as advertised out of the box. Scott does a 'dropped chamber' head that essentially raises the port in the stock 4V location but requires a good sized dish piston to control compression. the ports are totally clean sheet engineered by Darin Morgan of Reher-Morrison fame & the chambers are modern design
 
as far as Clevelands costing more to build, ...Eehh
 
anybody can slap a bargain component engine together, obviously a higher level build is gonna cost more
 
stay away from stock Ford valves, & seriously consider bushing the lifter bores


Edited by Rockatansky - 23-September-2014 at 6:15AM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-September-2014 at 6:47AM
I found a pretty good deal on a set of 4v heads that have new valves, have been gone thru etc. If I bought the right manifold and a larger carb and cam, what kind of potential do the 4v heads have on a stock bore 351?

I'm thinking ill slam the 4v heads on the motor that's in the car right now and cruise that around until I build the motor that's on the stand, and that'll probably turn into a 393 eventually.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockatansky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-September-2014 at 7:14AM
your goal of ~ 500-ish HP is not out of the question
 
George Pence has a website and is an avid Cleveland enthusiast, he has nothing to sell so his suggestions can be taken as honest real world experience with no axe to grind in any direction. his personal feeling is that right around 500hp is 'just right' for the Pantera chassis so his recipes are right in your ballpark too
 
check out the Sticky's  here, he's also on FB somewhere or other, he's happy to help anyone that asks
 
he has also posted much good material on http://351c.net/board/ 
 
and you can search/read the old forum at  http://www.network54.com/Forum/119419/


Edited by Rockatansky - 24-September-2014 at 3:06PM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-September-2014 at 8:02AM
Originally posted by Rockatansky Rockatansky wrote:

your goal of ~ 500-ish HP is not out of the question
 
George Pence has a website and is an avid Cleveland enthusiast, he has nothing to sell so his suggestions can be taken as honest real world experience with no axe to grind in any direction. his personal feeling is that right around 500hp is 'just right' for the Pantera chassis so his recipes are right in your ballpark too
 
check out the Sticky's  here, he's also on FB somewhere or other, he's happy to help anyone that asks
 
he has also posted much good material on http://351c.net/board/ 
 
and you can search/read the old forum at  http://351c.net/board/


Thanks for those references, I'm sure they will be helpful. I've been slowly browsing for suggestions to Cleveland experts. I'm comfortable with my basic engine plan, but some details are needed from real experts to make the combination come alive. Picking the right compression, finding the right person to build a custom cam, and any tips for the special parts are invaluable.

I've heard of George Pence in other forums, and Scott Cook is well known for his work with Cleveland heads, and blocks.


BTW, I agree about the 3V heads being a little less than ideal. They seem to be aimed at people who are stuck in the religion of high velocity(small ports) land. I understand some engines need to be leaning to the smallish side, but for an expensive head that has to be going on a true performance engine, they should really be on the larger side, not the smaller side.

I'm aiming at the 185cc head at the moment, only because that one I am sure has the dual bolt pattern on the head ends. Those can be swapped to use either Cleveland front brackets, or Windsor brackets. I'm going to use stock Explorer 302 accessories, brackets and all, and for all four of my vehicles. If I can discover that the 208cc heads can also be had with the Windsor end bolt pattern, I'd prefer those most likely.

I want to hear it from the Cleveland experts though, which way to go on those details. The manufacturer is going to do what they have to to sell parts. You want to get advice from people who want to help you, not for any other reason.
Don

73 Ranchero with a 72 Sport front end, parked since 1990
91 Lincoln Mark VII SE, OBDII 347/4R70W
98 Mercury Mountaineer
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-September-2014 at 8:13AM
Originally posted by andyjman83 andyjman83 wrote:

I found a pretty good deal on a set of 4v heads that have new valves, have been gone thru etc. If I bought the right manifold and a larger carb and cam, what kind of potential do the 4v heads have on a stock bore 351?

I'm thinking ill slam the 4v heads on the motor that's in the car right now and cruise that around until I build the motor that's on the stand, and that'll probably turn into a 393 eventually.


The stock Cleveland mild combinations which are the vast majority of what you will find out there, they fit the descriptions you have heard before. The bottom end will be a little soft, and the engine will come alive above about 3500rpm. The power will be in the 350hp range, + or - based on how good your guess is at a good cam and intake.

The Cleveland heads are far beyond the typical any brand small block in terms of airflow, potential power, rpm range, and success with guessing at cams. The point I mean is that rarely does anyone build a sweet Cleveland with the typical mild intakes and cam guesses. To really wake one up, it takes an expert Cleveland cam designer to get the most out of an intake and the rpm range. Rarely does anyone use a custom cam for a Cleveland, and that's a big mistake given the huge ports. The right custom cam and a decent single plane intake will make way more power at all rpm's than a cam guess, the bottom end will be very strong too.

So if living with the engine you have now while building the other one, invest very little in the current engine, and live with it for the time it takes to build the other one. You can sell the extra parts later on, so that's good idea for now.
Don

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ilyes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-September-2014 at 12:31AM
Thanks for the links, the are really interesting.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-September-2014 at 5:34PM
Hey gues, quick question. Are all 351 blocks and parts interchangable? For instance, would I be able to use the main caps from one engine on another? I'm trying to get the parts together to start my stroker build, but the other block that I have has a crackedbore, and would need to be sleeved, but I found a block local to me, but its the block only, and I wanted to make sure the parts were interchangable.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-September-2014 at 5:38PM
The block I found is a
 D2AE-CA 3E1

That decodes as a cobra jet block, but the year is right to go in the ranchero.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Grantorinosport351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-September-2014 at 5:39PM
i wanna build a 408 stroker clevor, following the power block tv build!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote californiajohnny Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-September-2014 at 5:58PM
not sure about any difference in years of parts, etc. but if you do use other main caps you'll need to have it line bored, a good idea to have done anyway since it will be "true" after it's done
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ilyes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 12:32AM
I would make sure the other block is in good condition. Bring some gauges and check the bore, deck and look for cracks. It would be a bummer to get another cracked block.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote unlovedford Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 2:46AM
Clevors were very popular a few years back, but now there are excellent aftermarket Windsor head choices and the expense of converting everything is more than superior flowing aluminum Windsor heads would cost. Not to mention the greater availability of a Windsor intake V/S the one or two Clevor-specific intakes on the market. A Clevor does look cool, though!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 67gt5003119 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 4:19AM
Yes, all cleveland peices will interchange. Is this block a 4 bolt? Do you have 4 bolt caps? I have seen D2AE CA blocks in 2 bolt. Line bore is a must! And also as mentioned check bore and deck. Best to have it done at a shop. Windsor will not interchange except putting cleveland heads on it. I built a 427 clevor, super power!! Wont do it again. Needed lots of fab work for the pulley system.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 6:54AM
The four bolt main caps are worth saving if that's what is on the other engine. The blocks are the same, so you(machine shop) can drill the two bolt blocks to accept four bolt caps, plus the line bore.

BTW, I have a four bolt 400 block... and screw in freeze plugs in it too. That was an old project, as a younger man I thought Boss 408 sounded cool for a 70 Mustang.


Edited by 72 RS 351 - 25-September-2014 at 6:55AM
Don

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockatansky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 8:54AM
it's not always simple to swap main caps, many times they're 'off' far enough that to correct the register (the alignment of the round bore and the notches in the block that the caps fit into)  that the rear main seal and the oil pan rail get moved far enough to cause problems there
 
it'd be more cost effective to do the 1 sleeve repair than to swap caps from one block to another
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 12:13PM
Originally posted by Rockatansky Rockatansky wrote:

it's not always simple to swap main caps, many times they're 'off' far enough that to correct the register (the alignment of the round bore and the notches in the block that the caps fit into)  that the rear main seal and the oil pan rail get moved far enough to cause problems there
 
it'd be more cost effective to do the 1 sleeve repair than to swap caps from one block to another


I agree, but I'd only do it for keeping the four bolt caps, for the name alone. If a machine shop could check them and say it's not worth it because they are too far off, then I'd skip that idea too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockatansky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 2:25PM
it's easy enough to set the caps onto the 'other' block & see how far off the line bore is
 
first look at how much of the cap would have to be removed to get one side to match the block, it takes a lot of material from the parting line to move the bore over a little bit
 
then look at how much the rear main seal will be compressed after removing that much material from the cap, the rear seal groove in the cap will likely need to be touched up
 
if it's do/die & the caps are way out, material can be added by welding up the 'short' side of the caps to move them over in the register. again, the rear seal will be offset the same amount & will need touching up
 
not impossible but it co$t$
 
I picked up a 'junk' 4 bolt block for the value of the caps & ended up putting a sleeve in it to save the block
1 sleeve isn't that big a deal & may end up being the strongest cylinder in the block
72 GT Ute
   
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72 RS 351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 2:58PM
How much does it cost to sleeve a cylinder these days? I recall a range of around $60-$80 about 30 years ago?

Off topis I know, but I love the Cleveland heads and the history of Bob Glidden and NASCAR. But I wish that Ford had worked out the bugs with the blocks to match the Windsor blocks. I know it's not the purist thing to do, but the Windsor block is the better platform, and the Windsor heads suck. Thus the Clevor, and they need more intake choices. It all just makes it cost more to do what we want.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 4:12PM
Lol what a pain in the butt hahah. It'll be about 100 bux to get it sleeved. Which isn't bad, but still one more thing I gotta worry about. I considered a clevor but like you mentioned, there's only a few intake manifolds thatdd work. For all this trouble, it makes me wonder why I didn't just go with a 460, no weak block issues, no hard to find parts, but then id have to find a trans too, along with new brackets, special headers, and motor mounts lol hmmm. A 521 would do quite well in there. Lol a friend of mine offered me a killer deal on one too, but I shood probably just stick with the cleveland.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 4:14PM
500 horse with a big block would be like fallin off a log, it just doesn't look like itdd want to fit in there lol.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote andyjman83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-September-2014 at 4:48PM
Y'all think I should just say screw it and drop a 460 in it at this point if I can get that motor and trans for a good deal.
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