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Unread 03-28-2008   #1 (permalink)
JSTippie is offline Rookie

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Question 2.3L Offenhauser 4bbl Intake Manifold. What carburetor should I get?

I'm hoping someone has a little experience with the Offenhauser 4bbl intake manifold. I have a 1987 Ford Ranger (yes, not a Mustang) with a 2.0l engine (same as the 2.3l only difference is the bore size). I have an open chamber oval port head (the good one) from the early 80's mustang 2.3's with lots of work done to it. It is shaved to 55cc chambers, gasket matched port and polished, 1.89" Intake and 1.59" exhaust oversized stainless steel swirl polished racing valves, Dual valve spring set up with 10 degree locks and lightweight titanium retainers. It also has roller ranger followers with a Crane Cams PowerMax roller cam 282/282 duration .450/.450 lift. This set up gives me about 10.25-11:1 compression on my engine and flows real well. I am currently using the Offenhauser 4bbl intake with a Holley 390cfm carburetor but the carburetor seems too small. Any suggestions on what carburetor I really need for this setup?
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Unread 03-28-2008   #2 (permalink)
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Unfortunately there isnt' much in the way of small 4bbl carbs. The 390 was what I had in mind when I read the thread title.

390 should be plenty of air to feed a 2.0L The next step up that I can think of is a 600.

What's got you thinking the carb is small? I know you've done a lot of work to the motor, what's been done to the carb? Jet sizes? squirter sizes? what size accelerator pump shot and which pump cam? What do the plugs look like after a WOT shot? How does the motor react off idle? in the midde? and at WOT?

What ignition are you using and how do you have it timed? l
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Unread 03-29-2008   #3 (permalink)
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Default Carb

There isnt much done to the carb but even at idle with the idle mixture adjusted for max vacuum using a vacuum gauge it runs rich. I'm running a .018 squirter and I forget what pump cam it is but the accelerator pump is not the problem. The vacuum secondaries open way too soon. I am trying to work that out, for some reason the carb I got did not come with a vacuum check ball or brass restrictor so I am going to try to get one of those to see if it helps keep the secondaries from opening from just 'winging' the throttle with the heaviest (black) spring in for the secondaries. In first and second gear I can take it out to 7000 rpm+ but in third gear I can get maybe 6500 and fourth I can only tach out to around 4500. The power just seems to flatline between 4000 and 5000 in gears above 2nd. And because of the secondaries opening to soon, I get that 2000-3000 bog. The carburetor is Holley's 390cfm 4160 model with a metering block (no jets or power valve). Offenhauser states that with that intake a towing or RV cam with 5000 rpm max should use the 390. A 3/4 to full race cam with 7000 rpm max should use the 465, and a full race cam with 8000 rpm max should use a 500. Holley doesn't make a 500 and more importantly, Offenhauser doesn't say anything about a worked, better breathing head, so I am assuming it should breathe much better than the 465, even the 500. I'm trying to see if anyone had a similar set up or something better than stock with the Offy intake and what carb they used that wasn't the 390, or if it was, what did they do to it to make it run well. I am running an MSD Blaster 2 coil with super conductor wires, NGK racing plugs, and the timing set to 28 degrees advanced at idle. Stock distributor and ignition module.
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Unread 03-29-2008   #4 (permalink)
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I think you're dead on about getting the issue with the secondaries worked out.

I hated those vac. secondary carbs that had plates instead of real metering blocks. Does that carb also have a single fuel feed, side hung floats, and the tube that runs between the two bowls?

I know you said it's too fat at idle, and I'll bet it's running out of fuel on the top end. It would sure be nice if you could change jets. It's been a while since I played with carbs, but can't you swap that stupid plate for a good ol' metering block? I also wonder what a 600 vac sec. would act like on that motor with either the black spring or one step lighter in the can to hold the secondaries shut until it needs it.

Is the timing locked at 28? If not, how far is it advanced when the timing is all in?
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Unread 03-30-2008   #5 (permalink)
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Yeah the carb is side hung with the tube between the two. I have the initial timing set at 28 degrees, but the vacuum advanced takes it up 40 more when it is using the advanced (that makes 68). I need a mechanical advanced distributor because if I ease into the throttle allowing the vacuum advance to work, it hauls, but if I stomp into it, it is sluggish. I don't know about swapping the plate out for a block because I don't know if they make one for the 390, but I don't know if that will do much of anything if its still choking for air.
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Unread 03-31-2008   #6 (permalink)
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See, I want the 4bbl intake aswell. Theres probably a way to get larger 4bbl carbs on them. I wonder what the engine would sound like.
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Unread 04-04-2008   #7 (permalink)
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Default Check out my set-up

Here is a video of my set-up and what it sounds like as of now... Yes that is a modified header (work done myself) to get TRUE dual exhaust. Video doesn't do justice for the sound but you get the idea. I still am looking for suggestions on what size carburetor I really need. Let me know what you think of the video and or any carb suggestions. I'm thinking of going to a 600cfm vacuum secondary Holley.

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Unread 04-05-2008   #8 (permalink)
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I havent heard a carbed 2.3 in a while, We have the only one in the city and it hasnt ran in a while. I always thought it sounded like a diesel or a motorcyle. That gives me an iidea of what mine may sound like
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