'66 289 C code rockers - Ford Mustang Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-02-2019 Thread Starter
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'66 289 C code rockers

Hi gang! New member, and kinda new to small block Fords. I have a "C" code 289 that I'm refreshing at the moment. My question today is; Currently, there is a stock hydraulic cam in the engine. Can I use the stock rocker arms for a solid lifter cam as well? Thanks all!


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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-03-2019
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Yes


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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-03-2019
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Val, it is worth noting that the whole point of a solid lifter cam is high-RPM stuff. The lifters are lighter, and can tolerate higher spring pressures without worry about either pump-up or collapsed lifters.

Above about 6k, roller rockers really start to help horsepower, compared to the old sleds. Below 5k, the stock lifters are fine, but the frictional losses and extra heat really start to add up when you push them to high RPMs.

Improving valvetrain stability and reducing friction gets pretty critical above 6500 RPMs, and I think I'd use that as the big "NOPE" line for the old cast sled rockers, unless you're just talking about ripping an occasional weekend blast. Sustained high speed with them at those kind of RPMs would not be great if you have the choice of using rollers.


You had also learn how to fluently pray to all the gods of speed, machinery, and maybe oil that you find the right ZDDP lubricants to keep your flat-tappet cam alive if you're flogging it like that.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-03-2019
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Its not the rockers you need to worry about with higher spring pressures, its the studs. The stock stamped steel rockers are very strong and can withstand rpms in the 6000 range. What rockers you use is determined by the lift of the cam and the bottom slot determines how much movement you get before things bind. All parts need to work together.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-03-2019 Thread Starter
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Thanks guys....this is just the wifey's cruiser....99% sure it'll never see a race track, or even a light-to-light go on a regular basis. Probably just going with an RV, or maybe one-up, style cam (or maybe the Hipo cam), for a bit of attitude at idle.


Thanks again for the input!

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019
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Val, because of the increased maintenance involved with a solid lifter cam, not to mention the clattery racket up front, I'd recommend sticking with a hydraulic cam. You have to periodically check and adjust the valve lash with any solid lifter setup, which is kind of a pain.

Additionally, while a big lumpy cam may sound fun, the valve overlap which creates that sound will also mean significantly reduced mileage, and mediocre throttle response on the street. To help get back some of your low and mid RPM response, you'd need to change your rear gears, hurting your highway use. All of these changes would ensure that your car's probably going to be in single digits for gas mileage, and make it a lot less fun to drive in traffic.

If you want it to sound meaner, instead of messing with your cam, why not consider installing a good Magnaflow dual exhaust? An RV cam might be a great choice too. Going with a mild cam will ensure much better driveability, and your car would do great for the use you're describing.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019 Thread Starter
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Grimbrand....We already have duals with turbo mufflers...has a nice rumble...just a bit too smooth at idle...definitely not going "big, lumpy" for sure...like I say, Melling Rv grind, or 1-up from that. Lunati makes a hydraulic version of the factory HiPo cam that looks pretty tasty....https://www.lunatipower.com/factory-...2-280-280.html

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019
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The thing about a cam with a rumpity idle (lumpy) is that its overlap is letting some of the fresh intake charge blow right out the exhaust at idle before the exhaust snaps shut. While this does make for a cool sound, it's lousy for anything useful till you get somewhere north of 3500 RPMs. Any cam that has enough overlap to sound mean is also going to create streetability problems directly in proportion to how mean it sounds. Not exactly in keeping with what you said you want to use the car for!

Another thing that's very important to know: with cam grinds of this nature, if you don't have a manual transmission, you will surely need a high stall converter, or it is going to die whenever you put it in gear.

But I do get it. Not at all trying to rain on your parade, just making sure you know the consequence!

Happy motoring, and hope you find the sound you want. =)
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-04-2019
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While I agree with some of the above, there are lopey cams that will great with a stock stall converter, produce power from idle to 5500, provided good drivability, and vacuum. The object with any cam is it needs to be matched with the rest of the engine components and drive train. I also agree a solid cam is not required for your application.

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Val,
The first thing to look at is "which" rocker you have. "Some" '66 A and C code engines had "rail" rocker arms which make adjusting lash for a solid cam VERY difficult. BTW '66 rockers are ALL cast iron not stamped steel like they became in the mid 70's when Ford switched to "bolt down " style. As others suggested keep the cam short on duration at .050. Like in the 210-214 range. The 220s bring on the need for a stall converter. Modern hydraulic cams work fine. "If" you go to a hyd roller , keep the duration at .050 at or just under 200. Hyd rollers ALWAYS act bigger when running than a flat tappet cam because the roller lifter isn't limited on velocity like a flat lifter is.
Randy

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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-05-2019 Thread Starter
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Sorry guys...I though I posted a pic of my current rockers. Here they are...
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'66 Mustang GT (clone)
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"Normal " non rail , good for any style cam , solid or hydraulic.

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-05-2019 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gt350HR View Post
"Normal " non rail , good for any style cam , solid or hydraulic.

Thanks!

'66 Mustang GT (clone)
289-C code/C4
BC Canada
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