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Posts posted by kcmash

  1. Well, I think I found the true source of the failure.  Into the confessional of stupidity I go my friends.

    Today I noticed something a little off when looking at the engine and heads.  It appeared that the water jackets had quite a bit of rust in the heads.  When I looked closer I found that the drivers head gasket had been inverted, blocking the front side water flow.  This makes sense as the head likely got early hot, causing he exhaust valve to seize in the guide, this drawing the failure.

    Why it did not happen sooner is beyond me!  The Machine shop feels that was the driver to my demise.  I feel really stupid because I have built enough engines to know to watch for details like that.  I must have been in a rush that day and made the error.  We will see if the head can be salvaged, or if I need to replace the one head.


  2. Wow!  That is unbelievable.  Yes, I believe these were stock valves.  When I bought the parts with these heads they were stated to be NOS Boss Heads.  But the fact that you lost #6 exhaust also is totally uncanny!

    I have never seen a failure like this on any original Clevelands, and me and my brothers have had them since the 80s.  The fact that you had the same failure in the same cylinder is just crazy!


  3. I agree that the rocker paint is kinda a must do  with the hockey stick stripes.  The Bold wide 73 Mach stripe can have non painted rockers and still look fine to me.

    I have the hockey sticks and rocker paint.  I like the way everyone compliments how the car looks fast while sitting still.  Ford graphics designers did a old job of accenting the body to make it look long and sleek.

    For colors of stripes, I like a contrast, but you have an interesting thought there.  Argent stripes on a white body would give almost a ghost effect I feel.  

    Good luck. I am a stock guy, no good at custom mods to cars.


  4. Remember this is structural welding on the frame of your car.  If you don’t have welding experience, you could have poor implications in the future.

    If you have a good hot welder and experience, you can do it.  Much better on a lift or with the engine out.


    Yep, I had mine replaced, but left it to a professional.

  5. Chuck,  

    Sorry I misread your intake comment.  That is good news as I have not seen a good aftermarket intake that matches the intake ports on the 4v heads.

    I am seeing a lot more decisions surface than I anticipated.  I was hoping the rotating assembly be be a no brainer.  Now I am seeing all kinds of options for stroking, boring, and piston choices I was not planning to filter through.  Hopefully I can get that one answered soon and than focus on a cam selection.  

    My fear with going roller at this point is all the cost and options.  Looks like there are cheap ones out there, and quality ones.  I was hoping to, and maybe I can, go to one of the recommended cam sources and say I want a complete roller cam set for this engine.  CAM, lifters, link bars, push rods, springs, and timing gears.  Then I focus on upgrading the valves and getting back on the road.

    Not sure if the machine shop is lazy.  I think they said that no one typically has .010 on the shelf.  .030 is what is in stock out there.  Either way, I need to get the wear and taper readings before I make that choice.

    I wish I could get some answers on the weekends.  My meeting schedule barely gives me time to call during the a week.




  6. Chuck,

    I have not torn the old engine down yet, it’s still in the car for now.  I did run a bore scope into #6 to see the cylinder wall had failed.  Unsure if that is the cause or the result.

    I talked with some local guys here who own Classic Fords and they gave me the name of this shop I went to.  I guess the do a lot of corvette restoration and engine work locally.  Anyway,  they said they were going to clean it and give it a check over for main journal wear, taper, cracks, warping, etc. and call me before doing any work.  They were the ones that told me I needed to go to .030 over because that is what’s available today.  They said the .010 are not available any more.  My web research agrees.  I am listening to this team and wondering if I should possibly move to another shop.  I picked this one because I have testimony from the Ford guys that used them and they are happy with the results.  It’s hard to discount that recommendation.

    For oil pump I want to stick with standard volume based on my problem earlier this year.  For intake, you stated the stock 4v intake is terrible, I assume that statement is based on poor intake velocity based on the runners.  I do have an Edelbrock Performer II intake laying around, but don’t know if that  is any better.  I want to look as stock as possible(I don’t mind the aluminum intake look) and definitely want to be able to keep the original Ram air system on the car.  So what are you suggesting for a better intake.?

    As for engine assembly, I have the skill there.  I just don’t have the hot rod brain to know all the little upgrades that will let the beast breathe and effortlessly stretch its legs.  Before the engine failed I was thinking I needed to go up in carb size as the power felt a little inconsistent at highway speed.  I currently have a Holley 670 ultra.  I hear I should be doing a 750.

    For a cam in the failed engine I was using the SVO M6250-A341 , .510/.536  duration 292/302.  I am afraid to harvest that from a failed engine, but it seemed like a fun running cam considering I never really got to drive the car much.



  7. 6 hours ago, Hemikiller said:

    Having just done a 351C stock stroke build and had the flat tappet cam fail - here's my suggestions.....

    Buy a roller cam, or look for old stock lifters from a reputable company - TRW, Perfect Circle, Speed Pro etc. The new lifters I received from a *very* reputable cam grinder were garbage. Talk to a custom cam grinder that understands Clevelands, such as Lykins Motorsports or Bullet. Tell them your goals and setup, they'll hook you up right. I ran the classic Motorsport 214/224 - .510"/.536" hydraulic cam in a car with a 4 speed and 3.00 gear without issues. 4V Clevelands like a dual pattern cam with more exhaust duration. If I were going to use an off the shelf grind, it would be one of the Lunati Voodoo units. 

    Use a flat top piston with the proper compression height - Keith Black hypers, Wiseco or RaceTec. This will save money on zero decking the engine. TRW forged have a lower compression height, are heavy and require extra machine work. With the closed chamber heads and proper quench height setup, premium fuel is not a problem. 

    The stock multigroove valves, springs, keepers and retainers are junk, throw them in the trash. Replace with quality Ferrea or Manley single groove valves, with the balance of parts to match the cam. Don't bother with the studs and guidplates machine work. The Crane stud conversion or Scorpion adjustable will be just fine. 

    Replace the rod *nuts* with ARP hardware. The stock rod bolts are plenty strong. 


    A couple links to some good build info




    Pics below are from one of the FB 351C groups, impressive numbers for a fairly stock build. 




    Thanks Hemikiller!  Just the type of help I am looking for.


  8. 10 hours ago, boilermaster said:


    Looks like you got some homework to do before you start doing your homework.

    1 figure out what octane fuel you intend to use.

    2 how are the mating surfaces of the cylinder heads and cylinder block.

    if too much material has to be removed to make surfaces true, that MAY influence your piston choice.

    3 piston selection. you need to choose carefully, with closed chamber heads and the wrong compression height, or amount of dish will influence your static compression ratio.

    4 dynamic compression ratio , after amount of machine work figured and a piston choice is made then you can make a camshaft choice based on the type of fuel you want to choose,  there are calculators out there, once your static compression ratio is determined  that you can input your desired camshaft specifications into and come up with with with a dynamic compression ratio that will make your engine detonation free and long lasting.

    Get it wrong and your engine could be a real slug or worse yet a detonation prone failure.

    To my experience 8.0 to about 8.2 dynamic compression ratio is about maximum for 91 octane zero ethanol fuel.


    Thanks for the dialogue.  My biggest problem here Is restoration burnout.  I finally got this SOB on the road, then I lose the engine.

    so I don,t know how to state what I am looking for.  Performance somewhere between an M code and a Boss351 will likely be fine for me.  Reliability is important.  I use the BP premium fuel in this car.  The block has never been serviced, this is the first tear down since the car rolled off the line.   

    so I am thinking this should be a pretty easy build.  I don’t have a Horsepower target,  I don’t have a 1/4 mile target, I just want a little hotter performance than stock.  What are those simple upgrades to the 4 v Cleveland that Ford should have done to make it a little more fun?  Or is fresh M code performance the way to go?


  9. So I have started doing some research.

    First, the selections for roller cams for the 351c seem limited and expensive.  Is it worth the $800 to $1000 to roller, or do I stick with flat tapped?

    Based on the responses above, you guys don’t like my 3:25 gear I guess.  Here in Kansas City it seems every event is a 45 minute drive from me, so I don’t mind that gear.  I can still lite em up if I feel like it, but the highway driving is fun.

    Also, I cannot get the cam sizing tool to run on my iPad.  Even with office installed.


  10. So I need to build a new engine.  I have the original, 110k mile old 351 C 2 bolt main block, and period correct 4V quench heads and cast intake.

    Dropped the engine at the machine shop today and was surprised  to hear that the minimum bore option was .030 over.  With this being the first tear down of the original engine I was hoping a clean up pass of .005 and some oversized rings would be an option. (My engine that just failed was a .030 over, making me gun shy.)

    So since I have to buy crap, what should I buy for a fun, street worthy,, powerful engine.

    So I plan to use the standard crank, the quench chamber heads, and whatever I can do for pistons.  I think I would like to go with a Boss 351 grind to the cam, but going with a roller cam and lifter setup, and a double roller timing set.

    So, what should I do for pistons and a cam?  Any particular piston head or just  flat tops.  Is .030  over ok for a bore on a Cleveland.  Is there an awesome fun cam grind for a 3:25 rear gear and a 4 speed?  Who should I buy cam through.  The machine shop said they are seeing a long lead time on roller cams.  Should I harvest any internals from the trashed engine, or buy new sets?  Should I have the Machine Shop assemble or buy a stand and torque it all myself?





  11. I did this recently.  Yes, you can remove it from the drivers side.  The 3 bolts are a contortionist job, but the flange on the motor has a flat side designed to clear for easy removal.  You have a connector on the orange power wire then a ring terminal with the ground screwed to dash ground.

    I removed my console and shifter handle so I could snake in from the passengers side and slide in under the steering wheel.  Yep, 54 and 200 lbs and I did it.


  12. Well, I think I picked a direction.

    Judging by the way the spark plug at #6 was chewed up on the end, and the way it locked up at highway speed I figure I have likely damaged the cylinder, the piston and the Boss head I have on there.(Yep, GA heads, quench chamber with machined pedestals) 

    So last night my cousin asked, why not rebuild the original engine for the car and just stick that in since it was running when you parked it.  That engine is the original date code correct block that came with the car, with regular quench chamber 4v heads.  It was very tired and burning a ton of oil, but it was not locked up.  

    So this makes sense to me.  Pull that one out from under the workbench, rebuild it myself so I know what I have, then do the swap when that engine is ready.  I think I will go with a roller cam that matches a Boss 351 grind for fun.


  13. I pulled the 5, 6, 7, and 8 plugs last night to find #6 to have the end beat off of it.  I pulled the valve cover today and saw nothing out of the ordinary at the rockers, springs, or keepers.

    So I think either a valve broke or something went down the intake.  Either way, this is a bad part of having a 4 speed.  I thought I was having a wheel problem or a belt problem,  when I downshifted to 3rd for the exit ramp I was unaware that the engine had stopped.  So when I let the clutch out it really chewed something up inside.  I hope the head can be salvaged.

    Starting to disconnect everything for a motor pull.


  14. And the winner is Geoff!  Today I lost the engine.!  I believe Geoff predicted premature failure on page 1 of this post.

    So I am really frustrated with this engine and everything that has plagued me.  I am sure you are tired of my stories too.  I have never seen a more unreliable 351C in my life.  It does not make sense to me.

    Compression check last week was good.  Intake resealing went well, last night it felt great on the drive.  Today I was heading out to meet some friends at a show,  on the interstate at 80MPH, about 5 minutes in to my 45 minute journey.  Oil Pressure -Great!  Temp, slightly higher than the Mid Normal range she usually runs.

    I started hearing a clatter that sounded light metallic, like something in the brakes or the wheel.  It continued as I took my exit, then I lost power steering when I was downshifting.  When I let the clutch out in third she kinda roared back to life but had a loud clang as the engine locked up.  I put the clutch down and coasted to the shoulder.    I exited the vehicle to an oily smell as smoke exited the exhaust pipes.  I popped the hood and found nothing out of line.  Dizzy was tight, belts were in place, no fluid below the car, no smoke or fire Nader the hood.  I checked the oil and found the oil was still reading normal on the dipstick.  

    Tried to crank it, and it’s locked up.

    It makes no sense to me that I can have an engine that has such consistent start and run performance, consistent temp and oil readings, then suddenly fail.  

    Diagnosis will begin soon.

  15. So I am using a stock cast iron 4v intake, not aluminum.

    The Ford service manual only mentions application of silicon at the corners of the heads and rubber end seals.  I am always curious if this aluminum seal pan for the 4 v engines needs sealant at all.

    The new pan I got is a Fel Pro and it has cardboard gaskets for below the pan at the ports and says to coat the top side of the pan at the ports with a thin coat of sealant prior to installing the intake.



  16. OK Team,  Still working issues with Vibration and the exhaust smoke.

    I did re-torque  the intake bolts to see if that made a difference in any vibration/ idle issues.  It seemed o help some, but did not stop the smoke from the exhaust when warm.

    So today I pulled the drivers side plugs since the smoke is coming from he drivers side.  #6 was oily, the others looked great.  I checked compression in 6 and 7 so far and they are both consistent at 180 PSI.

    I have NOT done a cylinder Leak down test, and am unsure how to do that, but the good news is it appears I have isolated the issue to #6.

    So here are my questions:

    1) Vibration and leaks can come from a fouled plug, and from a vacuum leak.  If the Turkey pan did not seal properly, could I be sucking oil from below the pan?

    2) If my Boss Valve covers do no have drip fingers, could that be causing an issue with burning oil?

    3) Should I pull the valve cover to inspect seals or go with a new intake seal.  I used the brush on copper gasket seal when putting he last turkey pan down.  With the torque being low the other day, I could have lost the seal when it got hot.

    Thoughts please!



  17. Hello Trevino,

    Great questions.  I have been there.

    Sail panel.  I had the same problem, and yes I did have to work it to get that screw in,  not sure if I trimmed the sail, or drilled through it.  Thank goodness for black interiors.  The headliner shadows all the little imperfections.

    On the sill plate area, I used my original cardboard as a template and reproduced the shape with foam core board from Hobby lobby..  it is a light weight material that won’t suck up moisture like the cardboard.  It worked out nice!

    On your front bumper,  it looks great!  As you know, I am having paint crack problems with mine.  I suggest fastening it to the crash bar before painting to see if that stains it.  If you can I suggest painting it while bolted to the crash bar.  Mask the crash bar well as we know paint only covers and adheres to areas we don’t want it on.



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