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Discussion Starter #1
As you folks might know, my project car is a 1969 Mercury Cougar with a 351W and an FMX Automatic.

So I just gave my local shop guy all the specs for how I want my engine rebuilt. Right now, I'm looking at about $1500 for the rebuild, plus associated parts.

My engine as it stands now:
http://www.iz-us.com/images/cars/cougar/rebuild_dyno/engine_current.jpg
1969 Ford 351W, stock shortblock
9.5:1 compression
Stock D0OE 69 Windsor Heads
600CFM Edelbrock Carb
Edelbrock Performer Intake
Edelbrock Performer Cam (204/214 duration, .448/.472 lift)
Hooker Long Tube headers
Full 2.5" exhaust w/ x-pipe.

I am soon to get the engine rebuilt, and a few other things to accomodate. Details of all of the smaller parts are to come later. The main stuff is:
Crane Cams PowerMax (226/236 duration, .502/.520 lift)
The website's description:
Fair idle, moderate performance usage, good mid and upper RPM HP, bracket racing, auto trans w/2500+ converter, 3200-3600 cruise RPM, 9.5 to 11.0 comp. ratio adv. Basic RPM 3000-6000
Edelbrock Torker II Intake
TCI Breakaway 2400-2800 Stall convertor
New springs, retainers, etc. to handle the increased lift.

Desktop dyno gives me this for my engine right after the rebuild:
http://www.iz-us.com/images/cars/cougar/rebuild_dyno/rebuild_stockheads.jpg

My stock heads are definately strangling me, at this point. But, I'm keeping the heads stock, not worth porting them because I'm planning on getting new heads later.

Now, a few months down the line (tax refund + bonus):
TFS Twisted Wedge Heads
Bump compression up to 10.5:1 on the fancy new aluminum heads
725CFM Holley Carb
http://www.iz-us.com/images/cars/cougar/rebuild_dyno/rebuild_heads_cam.jpg

I'm also going to match that with 3.77 gears, and a shift kit.

I'm so close to rebuilding the engine I can taste it (it currently blows oil under load, think the rings are bad) and 325hp is going to be hot. And then 450hp with the new heads? This car is about to be awesome.

I'm. So. Happy.

Also tonight, moved the Cougar out of the driveway, into it's new (now clean enough to hold a car) home:

The Cougar moved to it's new home tonight:



Goodbye driveway-o-rain and rust!



Soon to be detailed when the engine is out.

I'm sure I can throw more pics of the work in progress up as well.
 

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bad ass...... feels good to have the car inside now eh??? keep the Chevy out in the dew lol
 

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Discussion Starter #3
sixt9coug said:
bad ass...... feels good to have the car inside now eh??? keep the Chevy out in the dew lol
Hah, indeed. :-D

I should be out to pick up those fenders from you in a couple of weeks, btw. I'd do it next tue-wed, but I'm heading out of town for my days off. So probably around the end of this month.
 

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MunchE, Feels good to be headed towards the rebuild huh?

Just a thought and belive me I know how it feels to scrimp and save for a project like this, did you give the 393 stroker crank much thought? I mean its basically a $500 upgrade maybe less if your planning a crank regrind on the one you have now. Even if you give up the new cam and intake you can add these later as money permits, and in the mean time you got a really good stump puller on your hands.

I mean the springs and retainers your planning for the crane came might not work with the TFS heads later so that could maybe be a waste, and the TFS's can come with the springs you need. You could add the cam and heads the next step and the manifold and new carb on the next.

The nice thing about the 393 crank is it uses stock 351 rods and 302 pistons adding really nothing else in costs to the bottom end rebuild.

Also I dont know that much about the TFS heads but I thought they were picky about the pistons used with them since the valves are relocated from stock position and had some valve to piston issues. But on second thought that might have been the first ones to come out and they might have fixed those issues but you still may want to check.

Also for a little less cash I think the new Roush 200 heads look like something I would be interested in as I for one like the durability of cast iron heads and if there anything like the original Dart Sr's I had at one time they only need a few hours of cleaning up the castings and they should flow very good. (something you could do yourself)

Not saying your plans bad by anymeans, in fact I think its a sound plan. But I'm just suggesting another way that if you dont mind waiting awhile longer for the finished project you maybe even happier with the end results. I mean over 500 hp would be easy to come by that way. mm
 

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Discussion Starter #5
When I was playing with a stroker on the engine sim, I was basically making the same power at a slightly lower RPM. Which is a good thing, but I'm not sure it's worth the extra cost.

I dunno though, I'll look into that some more.

Time to play with Desktop Dyno and Engine Analyzer some more. :-D
 

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Wow that current setup is very similar to mine. With exception that I've already got a TCI convertor in my C-4 tranny. I've heard the TFS are good but you may need to watch for piston to valve clearance with that new cam. The ROUSH 200 heads are pretty good from what I've heard and read but check out the archives at fordmuscle they have some flow data on them. Well when I finally get the money around to do my engine with new heads I'm thinking of going with the AFR 185 series.


Should run great when your finished though from the looks of all the compnents selected good luck.
 

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MunchE said:
When I was playing with a stroker on the engine sim, I was basically making the same power at a slightly lower RPM. Which is a good thing, but I'm not sure it's worth the extra cost.

I dunno though, I'll look into that some more.

Time to play with Desktop Dyno and Engine Analyzer some more. :-D
You know, no offense but you hit it on the head when you said playing with the sim! I think thats about all there good for in most instances. Talk to some real people who have done these types of things to be certain before you make up your mind.

In my opinon 42 extra cubes are worth the extra money, and even if the heads have it choked down some right now you plan to fix that later. mm
 

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One issue with the Twisted Wedge heads is the pistons would need to be machined for valve clearance because of the relocated valves in the TW heads. Be sure your machinist is aware of this so he can plan on doing it and not have to tear the whole short block apart after it is put together. Even with stock heads the pistons will likely need clearance cut for the valves. The problem will be the fact that you are planning on adding the heads later, there will be no way to check or calculate the needed machine work.

Also the original TW heads needed a special header flange, don't know if that is true of their current ones but it's worth checking.

That cam will need a 2500 stall converter and might be iffy for power brakes, you may need an electric vacuum pump.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
We're getting that TCI still to match the cam put in while the engine is out.

Also, I believe the pistons I'm getting put in are flat tops that start 20 in the hole, which means my compression is staying about the same, but I'm thinking that will help with the TFS Head clearance issue?

Worst case scenario I'll just go to Edelbrock RPM heads. o_O

As for the stroker, I've fiddled with numbers and I never see a really substantial gain. One problem is, 351 strokers are kind of rare, so it's hard to come by someone else's combos to see the numbers they're putting down.

On the engine sim subject, I hear that while the numbers may be off by a bit, they're good for telling the difference between two parts. Throwing a 3.85 stroke onto the engine in either DD or EA gave me a pretty small gain, somewhere in the neighborhood of 15hp. I think it might need more cam or something to work right, but I really just don't have the $$ for the added expense of a stroker.
 

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The stock pistons are .040" in the hole so .020 in the hole is closer to the top. Also, the problem is exasperated because the TW valves are relocated. The valve hits the piston in an area where there is no valve relief!

The Edelbrock heads might be easier to use and you probably would not have any difference in performance in a street car.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
I'm seeing more and more that the Edelbrock heads might be the way to go on that.

I was playing with Engine Analyzer, and got pretty good #'s with stock heads:



So at least that can tide me over until I get the Edelbrocks or TFS heads.

Edit: Playing with EA some more, the TFS heads are worth about 15hp over the Edelbrock heads.

I don't think that's worth the extra trouble over just bolting on the Edelbrocks. So I'll keep that in mind in 6 months when I buy new heads. :-D
 

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but hey... with the bigger cubes you can run a bigger cam without the drivability issues right??? thats what ive been told but i dont know if its 100% true.... that would help make a bigger difference.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
sixt9coug said:
but hey... with the bigger cubes you can run a bigger cam without the drivability issues right??? thats what ive been told but i dont know if its 100% true.... that would help make a bigger difference.
That's what I've figured. A stroker would be better if I got a more radical cam in there. I still can't justify the $500 extra to myself or my dad (partner in crime)
 

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MunchE, Like I said I UNDERSTAND the money issues!! It was just a suggestion. But I still say your program is underestimating the stokers gains. Just look at the difference between a stock 302 and a stock 351 W. Theres more than any 15 hp difference between them. Your stock heads would definitly be strangling the stroker though, but after the head change its a different story.

The Eldebrocks would be a good choice in my opinion also except for the fact that Eldebrock says the 2.02 valves need flycut pistons also, but not the 1.94's. But if your staying 351 cubes the 1.94s are not that bad a choice. Flycutting the pistons isnt that big a deal if you were doing the heads at the same time your doing the bottom end, but like Royce says you dont really want to have to pull pistons 6 months later when you change the heads. Thats the reason I suggested the stroker crank to begin with while the motors out. I would go for that at that time even if it means no extra goodies at all till later. Like I said if you went with the roush heads the savings there are almost enough to offset most of the stroker crank especially when your deducting the cost of having to grind your old crank. The roush heads would be great except the fact there not as "pretty" to look at being cast iron although they would be more durable that way.

I know theres tough decisions to be made when working on a budget and thats why your doing the right thing in thinking it all out before you begin and trying to get the most bang for the buck. mm
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I think the most benefit out of a stroker I'd see if I gave it more cam. I didn't see much gain on the cam I was using, but I think if I upped the cam a bit it'd give me a decent gain, where the stock 351W wasn't gaining much from a bigger cam.

I'm actually considering the Rousch heads as well, although I'm seeing those being $800 a pair compared to ~$1050 for the Edelbrocks. I'll put more into that when I come to it. Sucky thing is, I don't have flow numbers for the Rousch to play with...although let me double check at Ford Muscle for them.

The 2.02 valves actually just lost me a bit of low end anyways, so the 1.95 edelbrocks will do me fine. But actually, when I entered real flow numbers into Engine Analyzer for the stock heads I got pretty desirable results, so I'm not gonna be in a HUGE hurry to upgrade the heads after that. We'll see.

Btw, stupid question time, what's the standard % of loss between the fly and the rear wheels?
 

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Well I belive I've read somewhere that the loss is around 10 to 15 % or so through an automatic but I reserve the right to be wrong. Hey if you would like flow data for those roush heads and cann't find it just let me know I'm pretty sure I've got it stored somewhere along with some others as well.
 

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't heads with larger passages and valves = more airflow at higher rpm's? Therefore between, let's say 2000 to 4500 rpm there would not really be any difference in power over the stock heads.

If you're going to use the car mostly on the streets and rarely at the track, save your money and use it for something else. However if you're going to be at the track a lot,,well!!

Just my .02
 

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Discussion Starter #18
cougar1, you're right, the aftermarket heads are improving my flow after 5000rpm the most.

This is why right now I'm not doing heads. Now heads will give me a decent gain through the whole range, but mostly at higher RPMs.

But I'm basically planning for the future, when I do put new heads on, because hey, more horsepower never hurt anyone.

Right now, heads are something that will get done after rear gears, after paint, after interior, after wheels and tires.... :-D
 
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