Ford Automobiles banner
121 - 132 of 132 Posts

868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #121 ·
More Engine Assembly

Just a little more progress.


I finally have this intake cleaned enough to use. What a nightmare, especially for my back. It spent time in the general degreaser tank and under all that black carbon was just a sea of gray lead. What a toxic mess. After that it was rinsed in some carb spray, then in the electrolysis it went overnight, then into the walnut blaster more rinses with air and carb spray and here we are.

Then dealing with those rivets holding the heat shield on. I wasn't sure what intake gaskets would work the best as one set is the std MS90145 that allows the exhaust gas crossover or the 1247S-3 which blocks it. I thought it best to reinstall the heat shield either way.

Those rivets just put up a fight, I dunno if they installed the rivets red hot or the heat treat on them was all the place as some parts of the rivets were hard or harder than tool steel as you'd be drilling and then it instantly stops and dulls the drill bit. :(

I had to use a carbide drill bit and drilled one through but on the other one the bit snapped. Now I had a stuck carbide bit in there. There's only one thing to do and that is melt it out without hurting the heat treat on the cast iron. With that I had to do my best to use the plasma cutter with surgical precision. It worked, an EDM machine would have been better but I didn't have one. Once the broken carbide drill bit was out I used a carbide file bit in the die grinder to finish grinding out the hardened parts of the rivets till it was just cast iron. Then I could finish drilling and tap for 3/8" bolt.


Installed with Locktite.


Prepped another '68 crank pulley.


I also highlighted the timing scale on the damper. The trick is to paint (epoxy paint) the damper and let it cure for a couple days then use a white paint pen and dab it on. Then take a clean piece of paper towel folded flat (not bunched up) and wet in IPA to lightly wipe the excess off.

This will make setting the timing very easy with the light.


I used the stainless bolts in the Roguebolt kit.


Top half of the intake painted.


After some thought and checking the fit of both gasket possibilities I settled on these gaskets as the port match is much better and it does block off the cross port as I don't need any more heat under the carb in the summer here. For winter I don't mind if the engine takes longer to warm up before the fuel is vaporized enough.

I also used Ultra Black RTV for the end seals and a light smear around the water jackets. I used the gray fuel resistant sealant for a wipe around each port since I don't trust the print o seal on old pitted cast iron.


I used the ceiling winch as the bloody cast iron intake weighs an insane amount.


I used the stainless bolts in the kit and smeared a light coating of Ultra Black RTV around the washers to keep engine oil from creeping up onto the intake.

Continued in next post.

868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #122 ·
More Engine Assembly Continued


I just put both carb spacer and carb gaskets on under my poor mans induction cap for now. At least I know where they are when I need them.


I used Locktite on the studs in the intake.


Thermostat and distributor hold down painted and ready for installation.



Heater hose nipple and throttle cable bracket.


That's it for now, the oil pan is bubbling away in the tank and hopefully today I can finish that up and install that then transfer the engine to a different stand for more assembly (starter locating plate and flexplate).

More to come.


868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #123 ·
More Aftermarket Headaches

Hello again, here's some more trials and tribulations of getting this engine together.


I was able to clean the oil pan pretty well and of course a new gasket. I also replaced the drain plug for one with a magnet built into it.



A brand new Wells brand coolant pump.


Now here's one of those what were people thinking moments. Why on earth did the previous owner paint the inside of the rocker cover? That paint can flake off and plug up the oil pump inlet screen. It has to go.





This is the oil and additive I put in to break in the new parts.


And I primed it on this stand and that's when things became interesting.

The most disturbing was the oil pressure gauge reading 85 PSI. The other disturbing bit was even with restricting the oil flow to the rockers it was pouring out.

Back to the high pressure, with even as roughly the same speed as an old 78 record on the distributor it was holding 85 PSI. Anything faster with the drill and pressure held constant so I was convinced the bypass valve is set to that ridiculously high pressure.

I did some research and it turns out others are having the same problem as well with Melling HV pumps. When I look up the standard pump and HV pump on Mellings website they state the pumps have the same bypass pressure. My instincts told me that probably was not true. So I bought the standard volume pump and another new oil pan gasket.


Nothing I enjoy more is redoing work I just completed. (sarky as sarky gets)

Geeze the new standard oil pump had no oil or coating on the parts. The pump was entirely bone dry. This is just sad.

Continued in next post.

868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #124 ·
More Aftermarket Headaches Continued


Round 2.


This time 60 PSI max was noted. Around 300 RPM the pressure held at 60 PSI and anything up to the drills max speed of around 800 RPM it still stayed at 60 PSI so that's the set point of the bypass valve.

My words to Melling; NO, your standard pump and HV are not calibrated for the same pressure. It wouldn't surprise me if someone on the line is putting the wrong bypass springs in the HV pumps.

Well, there goes 70 dollars and 4 hours of labour down the tubes. But at least it's working proper now.


Another new Duraspark distributor. This is a 1976 year only distributor so the timing map has been neutered for emissions. So it needs a recurve as well as the pickup coil replaced as this is some problematic cheap thing.


The windows aren't even stamped with a number on the aftermarket distributor so you have to measure them and compare them to the table to figure out maximum mechanical advance.



I didn't use the lightest springs, I used the next step up since this Z390 does have pretty high dynamic compression I want to be able to use cheap fuel without worry of detonation. I'll map out the exact advance after the engine runs through its break in cycle.


Wells pick up coil installed.


The cheap aftermarket distributor does come with an adjustable vacuum advance diaphragm, much to my surprise, so no point in buying an expensive recurve kit. Just need the spring assortment.



This was the starter that was mated to the Z390 engine in the parts car. Amazingly this thing worked for the years it was sitting outside and never acted up once. When I was unearthing it I found a sticker that looks like it was a Ford reconditioned starter. Huh, I wonder how old that is.

Continued in next post.

868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #125 ·
More Aftermarket Headaches Continued

I took it apart, cleaned the old lubricant out of it, put the armature on the lathe then dressed and polished the commutator, cleaned the brushes and gave the starter a mild face lift.


Done, should last many many more years.


The engine is as ready as it will ever be. This has another '68 front dress on it. I have so many extra parts I wanted to chose the best parts to make one really good front dress, then one ancillary front dress for parts and then anything else can go as it's just too much stuff. So that's why there's another seemingly complete front dress on this one.


The bonnet is off and starting to disassemble the XL's engine to remove it.


Good grief I just realized there are three FE's in a row, I didn't plan that shot, in adjusting the pictures (lighting) it hit me.

So the air con in the car worked when I bought it, about the only thing that did. Now it doesn't. I would wager it all leaked out.


Get a load of that shoddy R134a conversion and high side hose replacement. It's sad how so many have no pride in doing a good job anymore.


Gee these fittings are oil soaked and get a load of that placement nightmare.


After I remove this ailing turd of a Y390 I will remove the expansion valve and all that sticky insulation goo, then flush out the evaporator.

So this compressor is pretty new and has a sticker on it that says shipped with PAG 100 oil. Now the old receiver drier is still in the car. That tells me there is still mineral oil from the old R12 in here. You can not mix PAG oil with mineral oil as it creates an acid with a little residual moisture and heat that eats aluminum from the inside out. In other words this recent looking compressor is junk now.

I will install a new Mustang expansion valve, move the sight glass to the condenser outlet and make all hoses for this. Plus I will flush out the condenser and I have brand new reproduction receiver driers for 3rd gen in which the desiccant is rated for R134a or R12. I also have a brand new York that will be dismantled, cleaned, detailed and then filled with Ester oil. Then I'll assemble and charge the whole system with R134a and all will be well.


At this point there's nothing but gravity and one overworked ratchet strap holding the engine in.


There sits Sir Slams A Lot in the background. I cannot wait till I have more time to go through my unmolested C6 in my other XL and refresh that and install that. The C6 in this golden XL is from some transmission shop in Arizona and yikes stay clear away from them.

More to come.


Super Moderator
15,072 Posts
Surprised the oil pumps were not packed with petroleum jelly or something rather than dry.
Where did you measure the oil pressure to get those readings?
Interesting you are using Motorcraft oil and a Motorcraft/Ford distributor and a Wix oil filter.
(BTW I am allergic to STP products. Bad experience in the 70s)

Yeppers that is a remanufactured Ford Starter. I worked with large authorized Ford Remanufacturer in the North West in the 1980s. They rebuilt a lot of things.


868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #127 ·
Surprised the oil pumps were not packed with petroleum jelly or something rather than dry.
Where did you measure the oil pressure to get those readings?
Interesting you are using Motorcraft oil and a Motorcraft/Ford distributor and a Wix oil filter.
(BTW I am allergic to STP products. Bad experience in the 70s)

Yeppers that is a remanufactured Ford Starter. I worked with large authorized Ford Remanufacturer in the North West in the 1980s. They rebuilt a lot of things.

Hello Action,

The HV pump had oil in and on it to keep it from rusting, but the standard one did not.

I measured oil pressure from the sender location on the oil filter adapter. Wally World had the only diesel 10W30 oil I could find and it just happened to be Ford brand. The distributor is some over seas thing, but is based on the Duraspark distributor. I refuse to run points in any vehicle that will drive on the road and anything especially that has a hint of any kind of performance.


868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #128 ·
Practically Done, well with the engine anyway.

It's been awhile, but I started driving it today. Now here's the rest of the story.


The old Y390 removed. With my super high tech flushing system attached I washed out the evaporator with acetone. I'd pour a pint or so in, then force it through with compressed air. I rinse and repeated till the acetone was clear and then blew it out with air till nothing more came out.


Whilst the engine was out, I noticed much unhappiness with the steering gear. It was dripping oil off the Pitman shaft/arm and I wiggled the flexible coupler and half of it just broke off. WTF? Plus the coupler was so far down on the input shaft the safety catches couldn't engage.

This car was an accident waiting to happen. At this point my better half and I renamed this car "The Death Trap". :)

I hadn't planned on doing the steering system at the same time as the engine, but I really have no choice now.


Then I noticed this. The Pitman shaft nut is not on all the way. The steering gear looks original but the Pitman arm looks much much newer as in recently replaced. What was odd is the nut wasn't on all the way, but it took an act of congress (for whatever that's worth now-a-days) to get that nut off. Whomever changed the Pitman arm galled the threads on the Pitman shaft and nut.

And the Pitman arm was loose on the Pitman shaft as it is just fell off after the nut was removed. It's a taper spline and the nut has to be fully tightened otherwise the arm is loose on the shaft.

The steering wheel was so bad you could move the wheel at least 20-25˚ before you felt the torsion spring in the steering gears input shaft.


Well I have two spare steering gears and one pump to R&R.

I didn't cover the specifics because I covered these items in other threads to a very in depth level. I will just say some things worth noting. The quality of the Edelman kits has really fallen and that RPS pump kit isn't that hot either. I had problems with the main Teflon piston seal in the Edelmans and the pump bushing in the RPS kit.

The original pump shaft bushings in old kits are made by Clevite but now discontinued, these bushings are made by someone, dunno, but the OD is a bit too big and it's a nightmare getting it pressed into the pump face. By the time I was done pressing it in, the driver had partially distorted the bushing from the unnecessary force it took to install and then many many many minutes were spent with jeweler files dressing out the distorted end. What a waste of time that was.

The Teflon seal in the Edelmann kits was different in the same part number kits between the two boxes. One had a white Teflon seal and the other had a blue Teflon seal. The white Teflon seal would not stay compressed to installed in the gear case. I ended up shearing it. The blue Teflon seal almost seemed too complacent to stay compressed and the piston just fell in.

I've R&R'd 3 of these 3rd gen Ford (not Saginaw) steering gears and never had problems like this. Another thing to note is the '68 steering gears do not have the Pitman shaft bushing like the '66's do. It's the same C6 part number on the steering gear case, it just looks like Ford cheapened out and just use the cast iron case as the bushing against the hardened Pitman shaft. <shaking head> Since the ductile iron is softer it will wear and once worn enough will require machining for a bushing or even better a needle bearing similar to the Saginaw gears.


I took the best parts from both used gears to make one decent one. The one of the XL is on the left.



Isn't that just nice..... The other half pretty much fell out. That was the only thing coupling the steering wheel to the steering gear. If that would have broke whilst driving total loss of control would have ensued as the safety catch pegs were too far away from the plate to do anything.


There's the thread they galled. So instead of buying a die and fixing it, they just rammed the nut up as far as they could and wherever it stopped, it stopped.


Well it's done. Now there's maybe 2-3˚ of steering wheel movement before the torsion spring is felt. Basically it's night and day difference and the steering just won't plain fail catastrophically.


For now the evaporator is plugged to keep moisture and debris out. On a slightly different topic, since it's pictured, the brake booster, withcidentally is incorrect, had a check valve in which didn't fit the rubber grommet so they glued it to the rubber grommet. Holy cow.

I'm all for freedom to do what you want but some people need not touch vehicles. By the way the check valve was bad at any rate.

Continued in next post.

868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #129 ·
Practically Done, well with the engine anyway. (continued)


I didn't have another engine stand, since the Z390 was on that, an old tyre with no rim makes a really good temporary stand.


Thus starts the long tedious process of putting the rest back together.

I don't have a picture, but I bought a brand new ATP flexplate for this engine, and it turns out the crank pilot hole was made too large and even with the 6 crank bolts in it you could position this flexplate a good 0.030" in any quadrant. Good grief, can you say engine vibration.

More bad brand new parts. I ended up using the original Ford one as it located darn near perfectly.

So onto the air conditioning system. As I mentioned earlier, the air con worked when I bought it, but sitting for a couple of months with the dunce cap on in the corner and it no longer worked and was just about empty on refrigerant. Well the drivers side lower corner of the condenser was loaded with baked on nasty oil.

So guess what I found...


<laughing manically> someone....... tried sealing the oil drain plug on the receiever drier with generic 2 part clear epoxy. Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm that doesn't work against hot high pressure liquid. I'm almost at a loss for words, the words I can think of are not appropriate here.


Brand new receiever drier for 3rd generation full size. The desiccant is rate for R134a or R12.


It took me hours to scrub that baked on tar like oil off the condenser. I used acetone, brake clean, IPA and a propane torch to clean this thing. I did flush out both circuits internally with acetone and pressurized air till both circuits were clean.


For the best chance of success with old 45˚ flare vehicle refrigerant fittings use these copper 45˚ sealing washers in the joint. Then lightly coat the washer and threads with Nylog Blue.


The receiver drier from Old Air Products is built really nice. Tis expensive, but worth every penny and then some.


Still requires a bit of a wrestling match as the receiver is integrated between two lines in the condenser.



Brand new York 210 compressor. This one is for a Freightliner truck. (class 8, semi). These come with POE oil which is compatible with mineral oil should there be any left in the system.

I've said this before, but since I deem this important I'll say it again. Parts destined for class 8 trucks are originally designed for a life of 10 years 1 million miles. That's right 1 million miles. The York 210 debuted in 1958 and other than since adding two additional ports on the back is exactly the same as it was in 1958. Heck it still has Imperial-English bolts/threads as was never converted to SI Metric. If modern class 8 trucks specified this compressor for their builds you know this is one durable long lasting compressor, unlike the modern cheap disposable rubbish on newer cars (Sanden I'm looking at YOU).

I have to chuckle when I see posts of people buying the Sanden conversion kits to get rid of the York. I laugh because they are trading long term reliability for unreliability and paying more to do that. There's zero logic in that.

Continued in next post.

868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #130 ·
Practically Done, well with the engine anyway. (continued)


At this point enough was together to do cam break in. I had trouble with the ignition system and I'll get into that later and also the carburetor, but worked around that for the break in. All went well. I kept the engine close to 2500 RPM for 20 minutes, then changed the oil and filter. I found a really neat 1980's red LED digital tach/dwell meter on Fleece-Bay for a reasonable sum and bought it. It worked very well. It's hanging off the passenger side bonnet hinge.


I had 20 PSI oil pressure at hot idle and 50 PSI hot at 2500 RPM's. That's more than fine for this Z390.


Back to air con hoses and things. Since the 3rd gen full size use an expansion valve that has the 'X' fitting for the liquid line check valve, there's no replacement fittings for these and thus no way to replace that hose. So the work around is use the '67-'68 Mustang expansion valve that has flare fittings on both sides of the valve.


Even though the new compressor came with POE, I took apart the compressor, inspected and detailed it, so I just filled it up with Ester oil.


The Mustang expansion valve installed. Now the full size expansion valve also has the sight glass built in it and the Mustang one does not. So I need to add in a sight glass.


Here I have all the key fixtures and fittings on and getting ready to cut the hose to fit. You can see the sight glass I added at the condenser. If anything it's really easy to see in position.



I just buy barrier hose by the foot.


Test fitting the hoses before crimping.


The crimper I use.

Continued in next post.

868 Posts
Discussion Starter · #131 ·
Practically Done, well with the engine anyway. (continued)


And the upper body workout ensues.


Hoses done.


Now instead of using that nasty tar to insulate the sensing bulb on the expansion valve I use this specific tape for this purpose. It's not correct looking but it's more civilized than nasty sticky gooey tar.


I finished this Saturday night and pulled it in a vacuum. I left the gauges on over night and Sunday morning it was in the same level of vacuum. So no leaks. Gotta love those carbon-ceramic front seals of the Yorks and A6's.

So my hoses and fittings are all original, but I like to think it looks nicer than previous renditions. Here's the before picture again.


I do think the superheat in this expansion valve is set a bit higher than I'd like. I only get 40 degrees out of the vents at idle. I got 37 out of the green '66 LTD's vents. But I can live with that. I used the formula for R134a conversions of: R134a(oz) = R12 (oz) x 0.9 - 0.25. As I was charging with the system on I got to about 90% of calculated value and the sight glass cleared so it seems pretty accurate in this instance.

Now onto the ignition problem. The symptom was if I applied too much total advance (base + mechanical advance) the engine would start to shake and backfire. If I connected the vacuum advance to vacuum it would shake and backfire even more violently then stall.

I had a feeling it was due to rotor phasing problems. So simple diagnostic step is reverse the leads on the pickup coil. That did it. Readjust base timing, now full total advance + full vacuum advance and it was fine.

Well ok diagnostics confirmed but what's causing it. Well I found the problem. Can you?


This distributor is on the old tired Y390 and this distributor works just fine.


This is the brand new one on the Z390 that has rotor phasing problems. Now these are the exact same manufacturer and part number distributors, the only thing I replace right off the bat is the pick up coil. These are Wells pick up coils.

The problem is very subtle.


If you said the vacuum advance locating the pick up coil differently in both, you are top of the class. The one on the left is correct and the one on the right has too short of a lever and the hole is closer to the diaphragm. This is causing the base position of the pick up coil to move the trigger point closer to midway between two plug terminals in the cap. Once the vacuum is applied the trigger point moves even closer to the adjacent spark plug post and the ignition fires the wrong cylinder.

More badly made parts and it's the same manufacturer and part number. They must have switched suppliers on the vacuum advance. Boy if someone wasn't familiar with rotor phasing, they'd pull their hair out with that one.

Now for the carburetor, this one was my fault. When I removed the carburetor I left it on a bench with a rag over it to keep dust out. Apparently that wasn't enough.

The symptoms were it was just too lean at idle and just off idle (transfer slots). If I partially close the choke plate or even put on the air cleaner the RPM's would increase. I was thinking did something get in the bowls and plug up the ports in the carb.

Well yes and no.


Took me a minute to find it as I was fixated on the bowls and metering jets.


A darn bug crawled into the carb and into the air bleed hole. A crazy as that is. The carb was perfectly clean otherwise. Remove bug, problem fixed. I should have put the carb into a plastic bag and sealed it whilst sitting on the bench.

Since the proof is in the pudding...

Short video of the final run.

Final run

I do have two niggles I have to address. For some reason the speedometer is jumping all over. All I did was remove cable, remove trans, replace engine, replace trans and then replace cable. Seems pretty fool proof, but then again maybe I'm just the fool that can prove it isn't. So I have to look into that.

My other problem is the level of power steering assist. It isn't quite up to par. It feels more like a new car (less assist) than being able to steer the car with a feather duster. I may have to look into the pump and or gear.

But there are no leaks and the steering is far far far better than it ever was. It's actually a joy to drive now and not some nervous experience.

More to come...


Super Moderator
15,072 Posts
Nice VW in the four barrel!!

121 - 132 of 132 Posts