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Crate Engines

Discussion in 'Ford Performance' started by connoisseur, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    Hi all,
    Has anyone heard about the reputation of cmengines.com? It stands for carolina machine engines in S. Carolina. Their prices are rather low. Or how about custom machine in Weymouth MA? Or any suggestions for places that build reliable/durable bored out 351's or non-bored out 460's?
    Thanks
  2. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    There are a number of engine builders in your area, it just depends on if it's a stock motor or a 393, 408, 427 using a 351w block. Also how much HP do you want to make. I'm using a stock early Ford 351w block with 4blt mains on the center three and am making 650HP..................but I'm on the West Coast, not East.
    How much HP you want to make is directly proportional to the amount money you have in your pocket.
    Almost anyone can rebuilt a bored 351, and 460..............that is mostly stock, but when you get over 600hp it takes a little more work..........with a single 4 barrel carb.
  3. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    I'm looking to make about about 490-495 engine dyno/flywheel torque and 425-450 hp. My C4 has a 2,200 stall and is rated up to 500tq. Have an 8.8 with 3.55 gears. I only go to the track about once a year. Which specific engine builders have excellent reps for 460 or 351?
  4. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    Ok, 500hp for a stock block 351w is doable................next question is how much money do you want to spend?
    Do you have any engine building experience before?
    The reason I'm asking this is that there is a big difference between having a reputable machine shop do all the work and you put the motor together yourself, vs. having the machine shop do all of the work including putting the motor together.
    The motor in my drag car was almost 15 years old (and still able to pull down low 10's and the occasional 9.8/9.9 @ 136 in the 1/4..............but it was tired. I bought a new pre 75 351w block, had it bored .030, line bored (I put in some 4blt mains) and the usual blue printing and priority oil mod's. I used the old Probe pistons, Eagle H beam rods and Billet crank, (had the crank ground and nitride/polished) and had my TF-Twisted Wedge R heads completely gone through (new retainers/keepers along with springs), new solid roller cam/lifters/push rods, new electric water pump harmonic balancer, bearings, rings................etc. Then had it put on an engine dyno for 1 day of tuning and break-in....................and I spent $7k...............and I had all of the parts.
    So, first let me say that if you want a crate motor......................the cheap people are just that, and you only get what you pay for.......................go with a Ford crate motor first or
    http://www.summitracing.com/nv/parts/hpe-hp81/overview/

    http://www.summitracing.com/nv/parts/hpe-hp19m/overview/
    The above are just a few ideas and there are ways to build the motor yourself and save a few bucks..............but not much.

    What are you going to put this in????
  5. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    Actually, I said I was looking for 425-450hp, not 500. The torque that the CarCraft budget build was 491. It is going in a 1978 Ford Fairmont 2dr "Boxtop". Currently has a 460 from a 1977 Mercury Grand Marquis, 8.2-1 compr., internally stock motor with ceramic coated headers, Edelbrock 75o carb & performer intake.
    Jonzo77 likes this.
  6. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    I know you said you wanted 425/450hp at the crank, but if you shot for 500hp at the crank you should be able to be close to 450hp at the wheels..........Rather than think about overall HP, try to look at HP/CI.........so if you are looking for 425/450HP you are actually looking at 1.2HP to 1.3HP per cubic inch. One of the very first OE motors to do this was the 289HiPro in late 1964 when Shelby bolted an intake and larger 4barrel to the 289/271 and produced 305HP and made 1HP per cubic inch.
    With a 351w this is easy to do, but will require some aftermarket heads.....that's where you will find the extra 40/50HP over the stock heads even if you port them and install larger valves.........plus you will have to either mill the stock OE heads or change pistons in the 351w to get the required compression ratio.
    Ok, so if the 460 is in the car now why not just rebuild it and should easily be able to the 425/450hp and a lot more torque than the 351w will ever give you?
    Again, a good set of aftermarket heads will bring the 460 alive......IMHO
  7. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    I've been debating between rebuilding my 460 or getting a 351 based engine. I know the cheapest way to go would be staying with my 460, with or w/o getting alum heads. I would have to get a decent price for my 460 to help offset the price of a 351. Any idea what a fair price would be for my 460? With a stock C6 that I used to have in my car, after the dyno tune, it said I had 332 rwheel tq @ 3,200rpm & 229hp @ 4,200rpm. Even with just that, I have traction issues, especially at the drag; I will be getting street legal slicks next year. If I bump the tq up by 100, to around 430 at the wheels, I wonder if those slicks will be enough?

    Attached Files:

  8. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    Ok, I'd ditch the idea of the 351w and stay with the 460.
    I think without even getting some aftermarket aluminum heads just rebuilding the 460 stock heads.............(I don't know what kind of condition it is in) and maybe buying some new pistons if it needs them (it looks like you've already got an aluminum intake and I would think a 750 Holley or ??? would work. If you use a small hydraulic(less than .500lift) cam and maybe change springs............not sure what kind of headers you have......but just a guess I would say you should be able to get close to 500lbft of torque and about 400hp out of a basically stock (except cam/intake/carb), and this is with stock heads. If you went with aftermarket I'm really sure you could bump the HP another 30/40HP+ and probably gain about the same in torque. My full on race 408 only puts down 544lbft of torque at 5700rpm..............and the 460 should easily do that with aftermarket heads and a good 1000rpm lower...............(all of the figures above are crankshaft HP/TQ, with parasitic loses you can expect 15/20% less than an engine dyno), not with that said if you came away with 332lbft of torque at the rear wheels you are probably close to 375/385lbft of torque at the crank and with 229hp at the rear wheels you most likely have 260/275hp at the crank.......................sound close?????
    One thing in making HP.....................Torque is the key and the 460 sure has it.
  9. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    Forgot about the trans and slicks issue. It sounds like your C4 is made for a small block, as a maximum of 500lbft of torque is quite a lot shy of what you will need, I'd shot for at least 600lbft and maybe 700lbft for a little cushion......the trans will live longer if you aren't pushing it to the limit. Personally, I'd stay with the C4, it's smaller and steals less parasitic drag than a C6 will, and it will(when modified) more than handle the 460. As for traction.............when you start getting 500lbft of torque you had better have some type of traction devices other than slicks, and you are going to have to have the biggest (widest) tires you can stuff inside the fender wells.
    I don't know what work you have done with the rear suspension, but a lot of the Fox body stuff will work on the Fairmount..................and you are going to need it with 500lbft of torque.
  10. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    I have an Edelbrock 750 & performer intake. The June '09 CarCraft 460 build used an Erson TQ40-H cam: 220/228 @ .050, .545 lift, adv. duration: 284/296. They called it a, "middle-of-the-road cam". Makes the most power between 2-5k rpms; "very strong mid-range torque". Erson says it is their largest recommended cam for having under 9.5-1 compression. Their build has only 8.82 , runs on 87 octane and makes 433.1 hp @ 5,200 & 491 tq @ 3,400 rpm's with a Demon 750 carb, Hooker Super Comp headers with 2" primaries, Edelbrock performer RPM intake, accel distr. and early "Dove C" 75cc heads.
    My headers have 1 & 7/8" primaries and are semi-custom from a Ford guy in PA; they are made for a 460 going in a Fox body car. I have 255/60 15 MasterCraft tires, could fit 275/60 15 Mickey Thomson ET street legal drag radials. Have J&M street/race weight jacker lower control arms and their non-adj upppers with FordRacing, 1990-93 Police Car spec stiff rubber bushings on the axle side and Koni "Street" shocks and struts. Have a 6pt roll bar and Mosler 31 spline, 5 lug axles. What does the Maverick weigh? Does it do low 9's @ 128mph?
  11. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    Sounds like you've got what you need with the 460. Was the motor out of a truck, the truck motor had better rod bolts than the car motor.
    If I were you I'd just rebuild the 460 and bump up the compression closer to 9.5.
    I have not had any experience with Fox body suspension, but one thing to do when you go to the strip is loosen the front sway bar so it will let the front of the car raise.
    Have you ever taken it to the strip?, and if so what kind of times did you run.
    My 408 puts out 650hp at the crank and I use a Powerglide with loose 5000rpm converter............the trans was built by Mike's Transmissions in Lancaster, CA, and he has built a couple of Powerglides that are behind 2000hp ProMod cars dipping into the 5's in the 1/4.
    My Maverick is a little heavy because it was a B/SM NHRA car back in the 70's and all of the tub and other mods are in steel, not aluminum......with me it weighs 3175lbs along with 5 gallons of 114VP race gas. The old motor (before it was refreshed just last year) did a 9.801 at 136mph in the quarter and my best 60' time is 1.408. With the looser converter and merge collectors I am hoping to get 60' times of 1.2 or 1.3seconds.
    I have a narrowed 9" with 4:56's with spool and Dutchman 35spline axles, and run disc's on all four wheels.
    It's interesting that my headers are also 1-7/8 stepped headers with 31" primaries and 13" 12 degree Merge collector. Chris from SPD exhaust did the mods to the headers and they were originally built by the late Bill Dawson in L.A., CA
  12. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    That's pretty fast! My 460 is out of a 1977 Mercury Grand Marquis; the same engine in a '77 Lincoln Mark was rated at a painfully laughable 208hp & 374 tq with single exh & full emissions. When I had the C6, (out of a 1988 E350), headers, 3.27 gears and 26" (235/60 15) tires, it did a best of 13.8 @ 97.9mph. With the C4, 27" (255/60 15) tires and a 3.08 gear, it did a best of 13.87 @ 96. something. With the 6pt roll bar, better susp. and a 3.55 gear, I thought it would do 13.5 or 13.6, but because I couldn't get traction, and the timing was off, I was doing 16's & 17's! My car weighed 3323lb.s before the 6pt chro-moly roll bar.

    I don't know if it exists, but I would like to see classes of cars that are in various "stock" or slightly modified stages; so there would be things like - fastest small-block/big-block that runs on 87/89/93 octanes; fastest with 1,500/1,800/2,200/2,500 stall speed tq converters/3.08/3.27/3.55/3.73 gears.
  13. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    Well, it's not real fast but when you are over 65 years old it becomes fast enough.
    It sounds like you were doing great with street tires, and although I doubt you were getting much traction if the headers were open or closed makes a big difference, especially to the torque curve. Your 235 street tires are only a little over 9.25" wide which is a pretty small patch, and even he 255's are only 10".........the 275's would be almost 11" which would give a much better bite.
    Your car needs to go on a diet and lose about 200/300lbs, then the mod'd 460 with some decent slicks should put you in the mid to low 12's.......and maybe the high 11's.
    Back in the day I had 76 TransAM with 455/4spd and just had a set of headers with a 74 SD exhaust and 3.23 gears and street tires..............turned 13.785 @ 96mph in 3rd gear........I loved that car.
    I think the 3.55's will wake the car up and a set of slicks will help it hook. One other thing is the converter. Mine is loose at 5000rpm, and my peak torque is at 5700rpm which is right on the money.......you want the stall to be 700/800 below your max torque so when you hit the transbrake the front end comes up.......or for a foot brake car the same. It's kind of neat feeling when you look through the windshield and see sky.......not the track.
    There are stock and street stock classes in NHRA and you have bracket racing. You also have modified production classes..................remember that any sanctioned class is going to be very competitive. I used to run SS/IA with a 67 Camaro some 35 years ago and spent my first fortune building and racing the car. The Maverick used to run NHRA B/SM in 79/80/81 and had a Boss302 and 4spd and the car was running in the mid to low 10's.............I still have the sticker in the window showing it being a contestant at the Winter Nationals in Pomona in 1979.
    The ole saying is true and has never been more true today, "How fast you want to go directly relates to how much $$$$$ you have.
    I have some friends that race a ProMod Valiant.........and they run in the mid to high 5 seconds in the 1/4....................but they also have a $150k motor....
  14. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    Going back a couple of emails, the owner/mechanic of the performance shop I've been going to estimated that I'm making 404 tq at the crank and about 380 "net" tq, as the oem's have been rating the new cars since 1972. New, my 460 was rated 374 net tq.
    I looked up "highperformancepontiac.com and they said a 1976 T/A with a 455 & 4spd manual was rated at 200hp @ 3,500rpm & 330tq @ 2k rpm, cam had only .407 lift and they tested it doing mid 15's @ 90mph.
    I had a 1974 Dodge Dart Sport Coupe, (equivalent of a Duster), back in 1986; it had a stock 360/auto/3.23 and did 15.2 @ 90mph. Motor Trend tested it new and did 15.8 @ 88mph. It was rated at 245hp, which was alot at a time when most big-blocks were around 250hp. The 440 was 275hp.
    So, you're over 65 huh? Nice to see you're still into racing. I recently seen some guy on TV that started racing a brand new 'vette back in 1953 when he was 21! He voluntarily retired from racing at 81!
  15. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    When I bought the 76 TA new......actually had to order it from the factory w/o AC.
    I had a race tuning shop in Portland, OR (called Major Murray) do the tune using the factory 4brl....I added Hooker headers with no cats and 74 Pontiac TransAm Super Duty exhaust from the headers to the rear muffler, Canton 8qt oil pan with windage tray, took the car to Baxter Automotive (my grandfather was their machinest and they were one of the few shops with a chassis dyno back in the day),
    the Pontiac did 280HP to the rear wheels and just a little over 400lbft of torque.
    The factory seriously under rated these motors plus the motor was rated with single exhaust and a single CAT.................mine had none......in the day it was fairly fast and I surprised quite a few Corvettes.
    I also had a 74 Dart Sport 360(bought new on the Dodge car lot with 12 miles in 1974), dark brown with black strips and the twin scoops (that were very easy to make functional with factory parts), again, had hooker headers, Moroso oil pan
    and shift kit in the 726 and had it tuned by Major Murray....he did a lot of work on ThermoQuad that came on it from the factory. It also had 3.23 posi and I did add a longer bumper on top the third member. I borrowed some slicks from a friend and ran the dart to a 13.40 something with open headers and slicks. Unfortunately
    the rearend developed a howl, the trans was having problems and this is the car that I traded plus money for the 76 TransAM...................only had it less than two years but they are a little rare these days.................pretty sure I paid less than $4k in 74. I also had a 70 Camaro Z28 that cost me $4400 back in 70. The 76 TransAM (that didn't have air conditioning or console and I left the Bird off the car) was ordered from the factory and cost just a few dollars over $6k.......Oh yes, I did make the TA's scoop functional with parts from the 74 Super Duty TransAM, and it didn't have those funky twin exhaust tips, it had the 74 Super Duty tips. When I took it to the strip (it was actually my wife's car but she was out of the country at the time) there were a number of 78/79 TransAMs and I bested them by over 3 full car lengths. They would come up to me in the pits and ask me what the hell I in the car and what I had done..................I loved telling them it was stock except for the headers.......................those were the days
    Yes, I have been drag racing for over 40 years and racing SCCA in Spec Miata for over 6 years....................love going fast in a straight line and around corners. Kind of fun going into corner #1 at Thunderhill Raceway in Willows, CA.....at 110mph.
    I don't think I will stop racing until my doctor will no longer sign my licenses that I have to get every year............................it is a blast................IMHO
  16. connoisseur

    connoisseur Member

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    I love going fast around corners also. Wish I could afford to live in a semi-rural area with 5-10 vehicles to play with; sooo many brain-dead, distracted, slow and just downright incompetent drivers on the road in the greater Boston area. Asians, blacks and women in general are the worst!
  17. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    Back in the late 90's I had a 97 Mustang Cobra that I did a lot of suspension work on and a little work on the motor (just external), JBA long tube headers, Bassani cat back, adjustable lower and upper control arms, panhard bar, lowering springs and larger wheels and tires. I did run the Silver States Classic three years, starting out in the 90mph class and finishing with the 130mph class..............it was a real canyon carver. I have been thinking about doing a Fox body project with a newer Ford mod motor and going through the suspension so it would carve corners with the best.....
    maybe next year.
    Yes, I wish I had the room to a lot of cars.........................the more the better.
  18. Jonzo77

    Jonzo77 Well-Known Member

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    Just remember, because of the versatility of the fox platform you can use parts from 79-04 mustangs. working on a 418w 12.6:1 compression myself. I also plan on a blown 408w for street use. If you have the $$ I'd suggest looking at Jon kasse's boss nine kits for the 460...
  19. olerodder

    olerodder Member

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    I'd love to hear about your 418w.
  20. jdmeaux

    jdmeaux Active Member

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    Scrap the C4 and go to a C6 for the 460 (unless you have the C4 modified to handle the extra torque of the engine). A modified C6 will solve a lot of the parasitic problems but will definitely handle the extra HP/TQ. Aftermarket heads will definitely help in the HP/TQ area. Plan on spending $6000 to $10,000 on a good rebuild for the 460 from a reputable rebuilder, and you can easily see 475 HP/ 500 TQ at the REAR WHEELS. Contact local or area speed shops and see who is the best in the area. Or go for the big name places to do your rebuild. If you plan to do the labor work yourself, get a reputable shop to the machine work.
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2013

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