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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i have a 64 ford fairlane. I am going to be rebiulding the motor in January and would like to customize it. I am a student so i have somewhat limited finances - around $2,000.... What are some things that i can do to increase HP and get better performance while still having it somewhat practical for daily driving??
 

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Hello.Welcome.:)When you say that you will be rebuilding the motor in January, does that mean that you yourself will, with your own hands and tools, be rebuilding it, or that you will be taking it to a shop?The cost of the basic rebuild is going to be something in the 1500 to 2 grand range with someone else doing it.At least, that's about what it would run around here.You could save yourself some money by pulling the motor yourself and taking it straight to the people that are actually going to do all of the machine work and assembly and then sticking it back into the car yourself.A couple of things that you could do to pep it up a little would be to stick a 4 bbl and dual exhaust on the car.Maybe a nice set of roller rockers.Those three should give you a net gain of something in 50 to 60 hp range and wouldn't be terribly expensive.Just having a fresh motor with good compression is going to help out a bunch, depending on how tired your motor really is.Good luck and again, welcome.:)
 
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Yeah, we also really need to know what machining you're gonna have to do to the motor, because that will also cost more, thus cutting down on your goodies budget. But instead of the roller rockers, I'd get a bit peppier cam and higher stall converter.

By the way, if you don't wanna do that, but you do wanna get a new stall converter, I've got one for $50. It's brand spankin new, and I can take some pics if you want. For a C4 24-spline(which yours should be if it's a C4). If you're wondering why it's so cheap, long story short, it's the wrong converter for my application so it's of no use to me, so I just wanna get some of my money back from it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
i will be pulling the motor myself, then taking it to a machine shop...then puting it back in myself... it also has fresh heads....thanx
 

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Hmm...Summit's Performer cam clone or a Comp XE256H cam, springs matched to the cam, 500cfm 4bbl, DIY ported heads, a PerformerRPM or Wieland Stealth intake, and exhaust headers? Would be a fun little car! :D

$100 intake used
$100 carb used
$120 cam & lifters
$120 springs
$60 head porting materials
$150 TriY headers

300 FWHP and spinning the tires on command? Getting 21MPG? = Priceless :D
 

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One of the biggest improvements you can make is to the heads.
Questions that need answering:
1. Do you need the hardened exhaust seats installed for the un-leaded gas?
If so then while you are getting that done up the valve sizes. 194 Int 150/160 exhaust, new guides in there too, and posi lock seals.
2. Should I have a shop port and polish or will I do it myself? (This is a must do regardless of whom does it. Major performance increase for a bit of elbow grease)
3. Should I change the cam?
Bear in mind your budget. A cam change will involve Springs, Pushrods (Need hardened ones now), and new lifters. Also to up that cost you can go roller arms, solid, guide plates, studs.

Regardless you need to up the heads, but watch your budget and preplan costs and time.
Or next thing you know your budget is in the red.
 
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Yeah, those ol small block Ford's are notorious for havin small exhaust ports. Have em opened up and let that motor breathe.
 

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Opening up the exhaust ports is a must. Ford put an emissions "hump" in the port and its sole purpose is to restrict exhaust gasses to provide a better reading for the sniffer. Get rid of it and you will have made a vast improvement. Gasket match the intake and exhaust ports to your intake and headers and you are well on your way. :cool:
 

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The advice you're getting on heads is sound advice Ford heads are notoriously bad breathers on the exhaust side. But instead of porting your 289 heads if you can afford it step up to 351W heads. Bigger valves, bigger ports and its a bolt on swap you just need special bolts that you can get most anywhere. Still work the exhaust side a bit and you will have heads that breath freely and can handle more cam and intake.
 

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Preacher17 said:
The advice you're getting on heads is sound advice Ford heads are notoriously bad breathers on the exhaust side. But instead of porting your 289 heads if you can afford it step up to 351W heads. Bigger valves, bigger ports and its a bolt on swap you just need special bolts that you can get most anywhere. Still work the exhaust side a bit and you will have heads that breath freely and can handle more cam and intake.
i got a 94 originally V6, but with a 289 under the hood. any idea how much improvement those 351W heads will make?
 
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I can't say exactly how much improvement you're gonna get(though I could plug specs into my Dyno program if I knew the size of the 351W valves) but I can say that it will be significant. It will almost be similar to bolting up a set of aftermarket heads(almost). Because like he said, bigger valves, and bigger ports. Bigger valves aren't always better though, it all depends on the combustion chamber size. But now that it has come to my attention, it seems to me that you might actually loose some low-end torque if going with the 351W heads instead of just porting your smaller 289 heads. Small blocks don't make all that much torque as it is, so I'd save what I can.

You should probably consult some others on this, but as it seems to me, you'll loose some back pressure with the bigger valves resulting in less low-end torque.
 

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your 289 heads should have 54.5cc combustion chambers with 1.67int/1.45ext valves. The 351W heads have 60.4cc chambers with 1.84/1.54 valves. This is an excelent bargain head for the 289. It has way more potential than the 289 heads and unless you're going to try porting them yourself, porting can be expensive. You should be able to do a gasket match yourself but think twice before going deeper than that unless you have a pair of junk heads to practice on first.

The chamber sizing is similar so compression should still be ok, and the bigger valves and ports will make all the difference in the world. As for how much power? That depends on a lot of things. To see good power gains you need to upgrade both intake and exhaust. A good dual plane intake and four barrel-stick with an autolight carb it doesn't get the respect it deserves and a good set of headers. Also think about upgrading the cam to a good street cam that will produce torque down in the rpm range where you drive.

If your on a budget this can all be done in steps as you have the cash but stepping up to the 351W heads will ensure that you are ready for all the other upgrades.

I'm currently building my own 289 using 351 heads. If fact I bought them about a month ago at a swap meet. I found a pair that had not been ported but did have screw in studs and guide plates. They set me back $300. There were two other sets I ran across that ran $200 and $250 that were stock and in good shape. If you do decide to get the 351 heads get heads prior to 1976 (check the casting dates) after 76 or so Ford made changes in the head that make them less desirable.

Hope this helps and good luck on the build.

Mike
 
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If you decide to go with the 351W heads, also, try to find 1969 heads if you can. Those are hard to come by anymore because everyone wants them, but they have the smallest combustion chambers that Ford offered in the 351W head.
 

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After 1977 the 351W used the same valve size as the 302 so those later years, the most common, won't help at all.
The bump in the exhaust port is for the AIR(smog pump) system, it is either drilled or un-drilled, but it's purpose is not flow restriction for a "sniffer". It does cause a flow restriction however.
Backpressure is not going to help with low end torque, a free flowing exhaust will help with both low RPM and high RPM power.

By the time you buy a set of '69 351W heads, install hard exhaust seats, new valves, valve guides, stem seals, springs, retainers, keepers, convert to screw in studs and guide plates, you could have easily bought a set of World Products cast iron Windsor or Windsor Jr. heads with all that on them AND a much better chamber design AND better port flow.
For a little more $$ you could buy some aluminum heads from a number of manufacturers.
 

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Putt said:
By the time you buy a set of '69 351W heads, install hard exhaust seats, new valves, valve guides, stem seals, springs, retainers, keepers, convert to screw in studs and guide plates, you could have easily bought a set of World Products cast iron Windsor or Windsor Jr. heads with all that on them AND a much better chamber design AND better port flow.
For a little more $$ you could buy some aluminum heads from a number of manufacturers.
I think I need to disagree a bit here. Last time I checked, aftermarket heads ran more than a grand a set. You can get into a set of 351 heads with the valve job for half that. On a good street motor the 351 heads should be more than good enough. You need to have really stout camming before aftermarket heads are worth the money. If budget is no problem sure pop for the aftermarket heads, but for the money the 351 heads are a better buy.
 

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If you can get that good of a buy on the machine work and parts, go for it. Summit has assembled Windsor heads for $409.88 each, they come with 2.02, 1.6 valves,64cc chambers HD retainers, locks, hp seals, screw in studs and guideplates for 5/16" pushrods.

I am not disagreeing on the 351W heads being adequate for a mild street motor, I just have not seen very many '69 351W heads for sale. Since the Windsor(World Products) heads come completely assembled with good parts, there is no extra cost once you get them and they will FAR outflow the stock heads, even with some porting.
 

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I think your missing the point. Both questions were by folks building 289 engines. Both seemed to be on a budget. Eight hundred bucks plus whatever shipping runs for aftermarket heads is a bit unreasonable for a 289. Aftermarket heads are a nice luxury if you've got the dough but there are cheaper ways of getting there. The 351W heads are more than adequete for a 289...and most other small blocks. With a bit of work they will perform about as well as most aftermarket heads and not break the bank. If you're into "serious" performance you're not building a 289 anyway you have stepped up to a stroker or dropped in a big block. The 289 is a great street motor and will respone nicely to some common sense bolt ons the windsor heads being one of them. Headers, a small (600 cfm) four barrel, a dual plane intake manifold and a cam that makes torque down in the rpm range where you drive are the others. Do that and and you'll have a great motor for your 'stang and still have enough cash left over to do a few other things.

Mike
 

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Putt said:
If you can get that good of a buy on the machine work and parts, go for it. Summit has assembled Windsor heads for $409.88 each, they come with 2.02, 1.6 valves,64cc chambers HD retainers, locks, hp seals, screw in studs and guideplates for 5/16" pushrods.
be careful though, im not as familiar with 289s but I know most stock 302 pistons wont work with 2.02 valves unless you cut a bigger valve relief or you install an aftermarket piston with bigger valve reliefs, im assuming 289s are probably the same way seeing that its basically the same engine
 

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The parts to finish a bare set of early 351W heads with stainless valves(2.02 or 1.94 and 1.5 or 1.6), steel retainers, springs, valve locks, valve stem seals, screw in rocker studs, and guideplates from Summit Racing(there may be better prices, they were easy to get pricing from) are $330. If you buy the 351W heads for $200, you have $530 in PARTS. If you can port, tap for the rocker arm studs, mill for the guideplates, replace the valve guides(about $1.00 to $1.50 each), install hardened exhaust seats(the seats are usually about $1.50-$2.00 each), mill the head surface and perform a good three angle valve job for less than $300.....I want to know who you have doing the work!!!! :happyhapp

I know in this area a basic valve job with a couple of new valves costs that much without any performance extras. :handball:

I am not arguing that the 351W heads won't work, I just think it is cheaper to buy completely assembled performance heads for any Windsor style engine. IF you are contemplating adding performance components to your engine.

The Windsor Jr. heads have 1.94 and 1.6 valves, but I see they are $469.50 each and have 58cc chambers. I was incorrect on that price. :dunce:
 
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