what headers to use?


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Well-known member
Apr 27, 2019
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My Car
1971 mustang mach 1 351c 4v auto fmx
1968 mustang gt 302 4v 4 speed

I'm currently having my 71 351c rebuilt. Went with a edelbrock predator intake for a holly 700 carb. Mid range cam with original 2v heads.

My question......... what headers do I use? I know nothing about headers so I could use your expert help please. The engine build is almost done so the builder will need some exhaust manifolds to Dyno test and calibrate the engine. 

Old manifolds are cracked in several places otherwise I would weld them up( nickle rod) and use them for the Dyno test. That would be just throwing money away when I tossed them in the garbage after the test.

Please dont be afraid to use mfg name and model #s

Thanks Guys/Gals!!

I'm running same headers as Not A T5, no issues with clearance at all. They fit pretty well, and go in easy from the bottom - so really a relatively easy install. I did discover that when I went to aluminum heads, it changed the position enough I had to slightly ding a primary tube to get by the steering box (raised ports). But with stock 4V heads, they fit with no alterations. I am assuming the exhaust port is the same location between 2v and 4v.

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Hooker Competition headers for 2V heads: 6921HKR


I prefer the Hookers, as 1) they are the only sub-$500 headers that work with a factory clutch linkage for the manual transmission, 2) they fit great and don't hang too low and 3) the collector flange is welded to the header. This keeps the collector gasket from leaking, as the exhaust isn't trying to saw through the gasket every time the engine is running. 

If you are planning on having the engine dyno'd or need to break in the cam, do NOT buy coated headers. Using them for those purposes will cause the coating to fail and void the warranty. Buy the bare headers, do your running in and then send them out to be coated.

I used my original exhaust manifolds to break my engine in on a test stand. Maybe you can weld up your originals or do like Hemikiller said. If you don’t want the coated headers then of course you don’t have to worry about it. But I gotta say the coated ones really do help to keep under hood temperatures down, plus they should last longer too.

There are a few headers that get recommended, their owners stating good ground clearance. The REAL ISSUE with ground clearance, is how your Mustang sits. In other words, if you have a bit of down rake in the front, giving your car that sinister look we all like, you may very well be a candidate for crushing your headers on the first available grocery store parking lot speed bump. Do you park in an underground parking garage? It's likely as you drive over the apex of the ramp you are going to "highside". If you are considering headers, first look into which makes fit up tighter to the underbody, secondly, your dumped front end may need to be picked up. Sometimes, an inch makes all the difference. I've smashed two different sets. I'd like to try the Ford Powertrain Applications headers, they seem to be the ultimate in clearance, but shame on me if I smash one more set.
For your use case you don't want longer tube headers so the hooker recommendation is a good one.
I would suggest also investing in a set of stage 8 locking bolts for the headers. A pit of a pain to install but it will avoid leaks in the future.

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