The Amazing 351C 4V

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don29163

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Back in 1972 when I was working at the Ford Dealer, one of the mechanics bought a new Gran Torino Sport with a 351 C, I will never forget my 1st ride in that car...I thought it had a 429 in it....I made him show me the engine ..that thing was very fast !

 

PaulS

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Fantastic article. I've broken a few valvetrain components but NEVER a bottom end problem on my Cleveland. Tried a set of Holmstrom exhaust port plates years ago and couldn't keep the car straight! These motors smoke any other similar displaced stock motors of their era.

 
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Thanks for bring this up. It is something I tried to explain to some other Mustang enthusiasts about why I did what I did to the top end on my motor by converting it to run a solid lifter cam with .570 lift and not doing any head or oiling mods. I chose a cam that complemented the engines design. With a 5 speed you can actually get a more radical engine to behave for the street and still perform like it is meant to, hence my 3.89 gears-there is a reason all the track paks had 3.91 gears

 

goodnigh

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Always a problem trying to explain to people what you have in the engine bay.

Pop the hood on my Mustang next a Chevy with a 350 and the Cleveland looks

a LOT bigger. They ask "you got a 427 in that?"; close :D

mike

 

droptop73

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When I sold my trans yesterday I had to convince the buyer a Cleveland is not a big block.

 

hyena429

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When I sold my trans yesterday I had to convince the buyer a Cleveland is not a big block.
I always say....how can it be a big block... When it weighs less than a 350 chevy block..lol

 

Don65Stang

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When I sold my trans yesterday I had to convince the buyer a Cleveland is not a big block.
I always say....how can it be a big block... When it weighs less than a 350 chevy block..lol
That's an awesome quote H...I'll have to remember that one!

 

Knoxferatu

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The 351 Cleveland is one of the reasons that I (traditionally a big Camaro nut) have become interested in returning to the muscle car sickness, via a 1971-1973 Mustang. I think of the Cleveland as a rampant beast, and, though I know it came before, and was available in other vehicles, I think of the '71-'73 Mustang as its definitive platform (and vice versa). I've been doing a lot of reading on the Cleveland engine, to get an idea of its potential in a vicious street machine. It's encouraging to see that many others, more knowledgeable than I, have come to the same conclusions. Thanks for posting this thread! I love this forum...

 

hyena429

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{Bump} Great article for new members who mite of missed it.

 
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Us ford fans in Aus love the Clevo, It was the only real option we had, down here, windsor wheren't very common and Ford Australia never made a big block car.

4V 351's were hard to find, A good set of closed chamber heads did and still do cost about $1k, so a normal Mod was/is to use a 4v exhaust valve in 2v heads, and the 6' rods out of the 302c, with pistons with a altered pin height. Great engines for the street/strip,

Another good read on Clevo's is Des Hammill's book, The Essential Source Book, Ford Cleveland

 

mweeps

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First car 351 H Code 73 Mach 1 totalled in college
Link didn't work for me?

 

droptop73

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Not to be a jerk but who is George Pence and under what authority did he write his posts?

I too like the Cleveland engine and am not knocking it, but to say it's original design is without fault (which he implies) is a stretch IMHO. All design is compromise and can be altered to cover inefficiencies and compromises made for mass production. I am no mechanical engineer or professional engine builder but have been around some very strong clevelands which have been significantly modified to make the power they do.

 

hyena429

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Not to be a jerk but who is George Pence and under what authority did he write his posts?

I too like the Cleveland engine and am not knocking it, but to say it's original design is without fault (which he implies) is a stretch IMHO. All design is compromise and can be altered to cover inefficiencies and compromises made for mass production. I am no mechanical engineer or professional engine builder but have been around some very strong clevelands which have been significantly modified to make the power they do.
I think he is press of pantera internash..and a few other big cleveland build sites...has alot of information from the orignal builders of the 351 cleveland

http://pantera.infopop.cc/eve

http://www.network54.com/Index/102147

http://www.facebook.com/groups/263768747684/ this i think is his face book...I guess he welcomes any questions....not sure if its the same guy..But should be one of them...lol..if remmeber reading right he was in contact with bill gays him self...But i coud be wrong.

 
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Finmach

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I agree that the 351c is an excellent proved engine almost for any car racing but there are few things I would like to bring up.

7.0 liter engines were dominating Nascar until Nascar wanted the hp/topspeeds down. Have you ever heard of restrictorplates? Those plates were invented 1970-1971 for the big powerplants like the Hemi’s and 429 Boss’es to bring the speeds down. Nascar had a complicated rules for racecars using bigblocks and that was the time when Bud Moore for example found out that by using smaller 351c they could get rid of the restrictions that were made for 429 cars like the restrictor plate & sanctioned extra weight. By the rulechanges Nascar practically ruled the 7.0 liter engines out of the competition, this is the main reason why 351c was better choice for Ford racers than the 429 Boss.

There’s nothing magic that generates more hp in 351c than the bigger engines, but the 351c is an excellent hipo engine – like the 429/460. If you’re a diehard 351c fan you might want to get familiar with the 429 CJ engine. They share many things, they’re like small and bigbrother. Thin casting, huge heads, short stroke, similar oiling etc.

429 Boss surely was a high dollar racing engine. 429 CJ was significantly cheaper to produce and would have been close in hp probably, but the Boss 429 was the big gun against Mayflower Hemi’s.

I am not bashing the 351c, it is still one of the Fords cool hiperformance engines and it’s name also sounds like action instead of ol’ rotten castle in Britain… meaning Windsor :) It is the extra 78 cubes that makes the difference. 351c has 3.500” stroke, 429 has pretty close similar stroke with 3.590” stroke, only bore in 429 is obviously bigger 4.360” instead of 4.000”. I also agree with the writers that the Ford’s decision practically to close the racing operations made wonderfull things to be shut down in 1970 – that is a shame.

I had myself a healthy 351c 4V in my Mach 1 when I bought it. It was tweaked to 430 hp and it made some nice power for the street. It wasn’t an bad engine at all, it made nice power, it revved like a grazy, sounded like ready to kick every chebby a$$, it smoked the tires through all gears when stomped. Overall it was an nice engine but no match for current built 460 SVO engine – not due to overhelming excellence of the 460 but due to +100 cid difference. Jon Kaase was told by Engine Masters not to attend anymore with CHI headed engines to the competition, Jon proved that the sbf with cleveland based CHI heads were nearly impossible to beat in Enginemasters.

Just something to think off and as said I am not trying to take the 351c thunder off from you, no sir.

 

jims72

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I put my cc heded Cl. in my car in 1977. Me and my kid terrorized the area for a while before the bearings wore out, probably cause we were stupid. I always smiled to myself, still do, every time I would hear or read that the 4bbl Cl. was a terrible street motor.

 

73vertproject

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I agree that the 351c is an excellent proved engine almost for any car racing but there are few things I would like to bring up.

7.0 liter engines were dominating Nascar until Nascar wanted the hp/topspeeds down. Have you ever heard of restrictorplates? Those plates were invented 1970-1971 for the big powerplants like the Hemi’s and 429 Boss’es to bring the speeds down. Nascar had a complicated rules for racecars using bigblocks and that was the time when Bud Moore for example found out that by using smaller 351c they could get rid of the restrictions that were made for 429 cars like the restrictor plate & sanctioned extra weight. By the rulechanges Nascar practically ruled the 7.0 liter engines out of the competition, this is the main reason why 351c was better choice for Ford racers than the 429 Boss.

There’s nothing magic that generates more hp in 351c than the bigger engines, but the 351c is an excellent hipo engine – like the 429/460. If you’re a diehard 351c fan you might want to get familiar with the 429 CJ engine. They share many things, they’re like small and bigbrother. Thin casting, huge heads, short stroke, similar oiling etc.

429 Boss surely was a high dollar racing engine. 429 CJ was significantly cheaper to produce and would have been close in hp probably, but the Boss 429 was the big gun against Mayflower Hemi’s.

I am not bashing the 351c, it is still one of the Fords cool hiperformance engines and it’s name also sounds like action instead of ol’ rotten castle in Britain… meaning Windsor :) It is the extra 78 cubes that makes the difference. 351c has 3.500” stroke, 429 has pretty close similar stroke with 3.590” stroke, only bore in 429 is obviously bigger 4.360” instead of 4.000”. I also agree with the writers that the Ford’s decision practically to close the racing operations made wonderfull things to be shut down in 1970 – that is a shame.

I had myself a healthy 351c 4V in my Mach 1 when I bought it. It was tweaked to 430 hp and it made some nice power for the street. It wasn’t an bad engine at all, it made nice power, it revved like a grazy, sounded like ready to kick every chebby a$$, it smoked the tires through all gears when stomped. Overall it was an nice engine but no match for current built 460 SVO engine – not due to overhelming excellence of the 460 but due to +100 cid difference. Jon Kaase was told by Engine Masters not to attend anymore with CHI headed engines to the competition, Jon proved that the sbf with cleveland based CHI heads were nearly impossible to beat in Enginemasters.

Just something to think off and as said I am not trying to take the 351c thunder off from you, no sir.
Nice writeup and summary, Finmach. Thanks for the post!

 
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Long Live the 351C-4V engines-I am running the 4 bolt main 351C with 1971 2v cylinder heads. It is a nice package along with the Eldebrock performer plus cam and 4v aluminum intake series.

mustang7173

 
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