Engine Mini-Series Ford’s Small Block V8s Part II – 260 CID

Welcome back.  I’m continuing on with the Engine Mini-Series – Ford’s Small Block V8s.  This post covers the 260 CID.

I did mention I’d touch on the 255 but that is really out of chronological order and was merely a muted 302 used on for 3 years.  It was dropped for poor performance.

So following the 221 engine (to see the post click here) was the 260 CID.  This came about after the poor performance of the 221 and even with the release of a tweaked version.   Enter Ford’s 260 CID.  It retained the same intake and exhaust ports as the 221, the valves were larger (intake was now 1.76 and exhaust was 1.45).  With it’s bore increased to 3.80 with no change to the stroke the engine put out 164 hp (about 20 more than the 221).  It had a plane jane hydraulic cam and a compression ratio of 8.7:1 and capped off with a two barrel cast iron intake and carb.

The 260 was the engine Carrol Shelby used in his original Cobra and it was selected by the British car maker for the Sunbeam Tiger.

Shelby's 1962 Cobra

Shelby’s 1962 Cobra

1962 Sunbeam Tiger with Ford 260

1962 Sunbeam Tiger with Ford 260

The 260 was in service from 1962 to 1964 and it powered the likes of the Fairlane, Meteor (at least as an option), Comet(at least as an option), Falcon and in 1964 even the Mustang 64 1/2 (F code cars).

Engine was an  overhead valve, Cast iron block with a bore and stroke 3.80 x 2.87 and Compression ratio 8.8:1 with 164 hp. It held 5 main bearings, hydraulic lifters and Autolite 2 bbl carb (Model C40F-9510-B) (Mustang configuration).  The 260 was  also called the Challenger 260 and could to be found topped with  a Holley 2bbl Carb vs. the Autolite.

1964 Ford 260 V8

1964 Ford 260 V8

Next up the Engine Mini-Series Part II the 289!!

Thanks for reading.











Engine Mini Series – Chevy’s 283 Prt1

So far my writings are about engines have been ones I owned and the 283 was the engine in my very first car.  It was a 1966 Chevy Impala.  It was a gift to me for my 1976 high school graduation.  The car was restored by my father, who was …

Engine Mini Series – Chevy’s 283 Prt 2

Oh yes, believe it or not, the 283 put the Corvette at the cutting edge of performance in 1957, fitted with the RamJet FI (fuel injection) system (“fuelie” was the gearhead term for that).  In 1958 the 283 was the base engine for the Corvette, but the 283 that use …

Engine Mini Series – Chevy’s 283 Part 3

This is the part of the engine series where I list the uses for the power plant.  The 283, as I mentioned, carried Chevy engines to the next level, by being the first engine that car manufacturers were able to coax out the same horsepower as the displacement. From 1957 (its …

Knock..Knock…Who’s There? It’s the bottom end of your 351 Cleveland!!! Rebuilding.

The option that, perhaps, makes the most sense is to rebuild the existing engine.   These days there are so many rebuilding scenarios, it can make your head spin and really lighten you wallet.  With each one of the scenarios brings with it even more decisions and a host of mathematical calculations.

The major concern is just how bad it might be in the block.  You can see much with just the heads removed, but what I could see of the cylinders and piston heads, seemed serviceable.  Scored cylinder walls – bad; just trashed bearings – not so bad.  This is the first unknown you need to know.  From this point you’ll know the cost of just making it run again and how much $$$ you need or have left in the budget for any upgrades.

For me I don’t think I’m in this for just a ‘repair’-  e.g. bad bearings – replace them and snap it back together.

Option 1: Rebuild it just like it is.  Simply get a $600.00 kit and replace everything and put it back together – same heads, same intake nothing changes other than the knock goes away.

Typical 351C Rebuild Kit

Typical 351C Rebuild Kit

Option 2:  Rebuild it better.  For my 351C  2v, the simplest way is to add the kit and give it more room to breath.  Add a 4 barrel carb and matching intake.

Option 3:  Rebuild it bigger.  Have the engine bore to 0.030 or 0.040 and find the matching kit (you can buy the rebuild kits to match the new bore) and add a 4 barrel carb and matching intake.

Option 2 and 3 give you more decisions you’ll have to make.  How much horse power and torque will this changes make?  Can you existing stall converter and transmission handle that increase? (My concern as I have  C6 automatic)  Will you need to change the gearing in the rear end to optimize the new power?  Will this new power impact handling or frame/body?  (The concern here keeping that body from twisting/rolling – my Mustang still has the sub-frame – being a unit body – installation of sub-frame connectors is on my list.)     You are looking at a few Benjamin’s to make this all happen like it should – all based on the basic rebuild direction.

So these are some of the considerations I’m weight now for #ProjectSportsRoof.

Give me your thoughts?

Thanks for reading.


1973 Mustang SportsRoof

1973 Mustang SportsRoof













1973 Mustang – Project SportsRoof – Compression Test Part I

I’ve done all the clean up and all the adjustments necessary to get a good reading on the health of the ’72 351C engine in my 1973 Mustang. The next step is to check the compression. First up was to warm the car a bit and then pull the plugs. Here’s what the …

1973 Mustang – Project SportsRoof – Compression Test Part II

This is the wrap up on the compression testing for the 1973 Mustang w/ a 1972 351 Cleveland power plant. You’ll might have notices that I referred to the remote tester, which is my code for remote starter…yeah…that’s it!!! All of these tests were dry test and I should have done a …

1973 Mustang – Project SportsRoof – Compression, Rods and Heads Part II

So after inspecting the head further, I noticed  a few more reasons to have them reconditioned.  Take a look:

Gonna Need some touching up.

Gonna Need some touching up.











As you can see there a lot of rust and old stuff plugging up some of the water passages.

The heads were sent out to a local machine shop run by an old hot rodder.

Here’s a quick video of the valves that were removed. You can see the build up as the oil (from the tappet hole) and the gas was continually ignited by the spark plug.

The good news the heads are back and installed.  The bad news in my haste to get the car back together,  I forget to get some shots of the completed heads.   By the time I realized it was too late to go back.



The Cleveland is running strong, but needs a lot of work on the vacuum system and – I’m thinking of replacing the carb.  Send me your on what to replace it with.

Motorcraft?  Holly?

Thanks for reading.



1973 Mustang – Project SportsRoof – Compression, Rods …

Thanks for check in on #ProjectSportsRoof. If you remember a of couple months back, shortly after bringing the ’73 Mustang home, I conducted a compression test on all.
1973 Mustang Project Sportsroof – Engine Walk-Through.

Next up will be the install Pertronix system and cap and rotor, then plug and wires. Thanks for reading and drop me a note. Tim. #ProjectSportsRoof. projectsportsroof. 1973 Mustang Project SportsRoof – Interior Walk-Through.


Engine Line Up for the 1946 Chryslers

I really enjoy doing the engine line up series.  I love engines.  If I had the $$$ and the space I’d collect them.  Wouldn’t it be cool to have a straight eight, or twelve cylinder sitting on a stand, all clean and shiny?

For 1946 Chrysler had the Royal, the Windsor, The Saratoga and the New Yorker series, 2 more series than they had engines.

One of the coolest models was the Windsor two-door three passenger coupe.

1946 Two door, 3 passenger

1946 Two door, 3 passenger

Let’s get to the engines.

If you can’t guess there were one 6 cylinder and one 8 cylinder.  They were split by series.  One was the Royal/Windsor engine and the other was Saratoga/New Yorker engine.  If you know anything about Chryslers you might know that the New  Yorker named cars were large cars and traditionally had larger engines.  In this case the Saratoga/New Yorker carried the V8.

It was an L-Head, cast iron block V8.  It displaced 323.5 cubic inches with a bore and stroke of 3.25″ x 4.875″. With a compression ratio of 6.7:1 the engine put out about 135 horsepower.  It had five main bearing and solid lifters and was topped with a B-B E7A1 carb.

1946 Chrysler 323.7 Straight Eight.

1946 Chrysler 323.7 Straight Eight.


The other engine was a 6 cylinder or the Royal/Windsor engine, smaller cars (like the 2 door 3 passenger).

It two was an L-Head and cast iron block engine.  It displaced 250.6 cid and the bore and stroke were 3.438″ x 4.50″.  The compression ratio was 6.6:1  and it had solid lifters and 4 main bearings which combined generates 114 horsepower.  It was topped either B-B EV1-EV2 j or E7L4 (for the Fluid Drive and Vacumatic) or B-BEX1, 2 or 3 (for the standard transmission).

The 1946 Chrysler 250 straight 6

The 1946 Chrysler 250 straight 6

Thanks for reading.







2000 HP Vette – 3 runs down the track.

This is an awesome looking car.  Love how this intake is mounted lower front.

3rd trip down the track doesn’t go well.

Thanks for reading.


Engine Line-up 1952 Desoto

Up until 1952 the only engine available was the L6 cylinder and it again was the main power plant for the ’52 production year.

This engine for 1952 was an iron block with a bore and stroke of 3.438X4.50 with a compression ratio of 7.0:1.  With 5 main bearing and topped with a Stromberg 380359 or 380349 or a Carter E9AI it produced 116 hp.   This was pretty much the same for all the L6’s but bore and stroked changed through the life of the company as well the number of main bearings (most numbering four) and the  displacement fluctuated between 236.7 and 250.6 CID. The engine disappeared from Desoto line-up in 1954.

L6 Engine

But the really big deal for the 1952 Desoto was the addition of what would become one of the most famous engines every produced.  It was the spherical segment combustion chambered engine, the  Desoto Hemi V-8.

It was an overhead value hemispherical combustion chambered iron block.  It displayed 276.1 cid and it’s bore and stroke was 3.626×3.344 inches and a compression ratio of 7.0:1.  It had hydraulic lifters and five main bearings.  Topped with a Carter 2bb (models 884S, 884SA and 884SC it produced 160 hp.  The Firedome V8s were the same but used the Carter models 908S,909S and the 910S.

A restored 52_DeSoto Firedome (museum photo)

1952 4 door Desoto

Thanks for reading.


Carburetors – Size Matters

You’ve build the engine block from the ground up.  You bored it, honed it and polished and ported it.  The goal – MORE POWER!!!  But you are going to defeat the purpose of all that work and $$$$ buy tossing the wrong size carb with the wrong size fuel line.

So I ran across the this chart that can help.

If the CID is                      Carb Size                                Fuel Line diameter

250 – 300                           480-600 cfm                                   5/16 ”

300 – 350                           600-350 cfm                                    5/16″ or 3/8 ”

350 – 400                            650-750 cfm                                    3/8″

400 – 500                            750-950 cfm                                    3/8″ or 1/2″


There is one other consideration and that is the capacity of the fuel pump, however that can be compensated for by using a fuel pressure regulator.

950 CFM Carb

Thanks for reading



Mustang Muscle in the Mid 70′s Prt 2 1975

So we talked about the 1974 the year of big changes and small engines for the Mustang, now designated as Mustang II.  The entire idea was to return to the original roots of the Mustang, small every day car.  A far cry from the 300 plus horsepower  for the 1969-1973 Mach 1’s.  Of course it was a good idea, even though most of us don’t think so then or even now, but take a look at the numbers.The 1974 Mustang II sold over 380,000 units, and not a single V8 in the lot and that was 3 time as many Mustang as were sold in 1973.  Additionally, it was Motor Trends car of the year.  Now just between you and me,  the Motor Trend thing doesn’t do much for me (nor does the J.D. Powers award or any of the others) but it does work for some and judging by the numbers that sold at least 380,000 others.

In 1975 things changes a bit for the Mustang.  The infamous 302 returned, making a V8 an option.  But how as the possible?  What occurred that would bring back the a V8?  As mentioned above there were Mustang sold with V8 engines…”In the US“!!!!   But our friends south of the border (for those of you geographically challenged, that would be Mexico) were in fact selling Mustangs with V8.  Not many knew this was going on but once Hot Rod magazine got wind of it and put it in the front of its June ’74 issue, Ford decided that it need to “pony up” (come on now..that’s clever!!!!) and add the V8 for the 1975 edition of the Mustang II.


Your 1975 Mustang Line Up

The V8 was only available with an automatic transmission and was an option for the Ghia and the Mach I (even though the standard Mach 1 engine was the V6) as well as the other models and topped with a 2 barrel carb, it produced a whopping 122 hp or 140 hp depending on you proved the numbers.

So things were looking in 1975 although the number didn’t get even close to the 1974 model.

1975 Mustang Production Data:

69F Hatchback: 30,038

69R Hatchback – Mach 1: 21,062

60F Coupe: 85,155

60H Coupe – Ghia: 51,320

Total Production: 188,575

The total range of engine looked like this:

1975 Mustang Engines 

2.3 L – 140 cid, I-4, 2bbl, 88 hp

2.8 L – 171 cid, V6, 2bbl, 105 hp

5.0 L – 302 cid, V8, 2bbl, 140 hp





There were two transmission available a 4 speed manual and 3 speed automatic – but the 4 speed was not available for the 302.  That might seem odd but it may have to do with a fitment issue.

More coming up.

Thanks for reading.


Part and Parcel: State of the Swap


Each July the tiny town of Iola, Wis., is invaded by a sea of humanity and old iron. Many in attendance come strictly for the swap meet, which covers about 4,500 spaces.

Old car hobby doing well — at least ‘parts’ of it

By John Gunnell

“Don’t tell me there’s no recovery going on,” said Kurt Kelsey, an Iowa City-based vendor of new-old-stock Pontiac parts. According to Kelsey, his business this year is much better than it has been in a long time. “The phone has been ringing off the hook every day,” he said.

Kelsey’s observation about an up-tick in the market isn’t alone. Positive reports have come from other vendors, parts manufacturers and catalog retailers since late last fall. Despite an unsettled national economy and high unemployment, the old-car parts business seems to be in the midst of a boom.

During a Dynamat seminar at the Hot Rod & Restoration Show in March, company owner Scott Whitaker said one-day shipping of Dynamat automotive insulation products has been impossible to promise lately, because a large increase in orders has outpaced new hiring. “The bump in sales wasn’t expected and caught us off guard,” he said.

In early April, Bob Marx at Marx Parts in Arpin, Wis., came to visit us and he, too, was upbeat about his rising sales. Marx has been growing his inventory of vintage gaskets and rear main seals and is now rebuilding fuel pumps, but he said that new products do not explain all of the growth he is seeing. Like several other industry veterans, Marx pointed to the TV exposure of the Mecum and Barrett-Jackson auctions as a factor that’s helping the hobby grow. “New people are getting involved with old cars,” he said.

“After a winter of inactivity, old cars tend to leak or fail when they are put back on the road,” said Fred Kanter of Kanter Auto Products, who wonders if the business boom might be seasonal. “March, April, May every year, it’s the same thing — spring,” Kanter said. He pointed out that from spring through summer every year, his most popular items are fuel pumps and water pumps. “There’s a lot of factors that affect our business.”

You never know what you’ll see at big swap meets. You might come across a 1958 Edsel Pacer looking for a new home.

Al Suehring of Amherst Junction, Wis., specializes in ring gears and is another vendor who feels that the market is strong. We caught up with him at the Vintage Chevrolet Club of America dinner in Chilton, Wis., and he said that his business from the United States and abroad has been showing noticeable increases lately.

Ray Yager of Classic Industries said the level of growth of reproduction parts sales is “hard to keep up with.” His firm supplies MoPar, 1955-’57 Chevy, Camaro, Firebird, Nova, Impala and Chevy truck parts, and parts sales for these vehicles are moving in a positive direction. Yager thought the company’s 18-month-old MoPar parts catalog may account for some, but not all, of the huge increase in business he’s seeing. At least one vendor who solely deals in Chevrolets is likewise seeing increases in business.

“I’m having a really good year,” said Ron Kellogg of Chevy Tri-Power. “Rather amazing since I’m selling restored multi-carb setups in an era of $5-a-gallon gas prices. I’ve probably sold 25 Tri-Power units — normally a year’s worth — since November 2011.”

Kellogg’s increase proves that car collectors still want high-performance options on their classics.

In addition to new products, increased TV exposure of the hobby and added catalogs, parts suppliers said both the use of the Internet and increased advertising seem to be attracting more customers. Some big companies such as Mid America Motorworks and Eastwood have begun sending daily e-mails to thousands of potential customers. This takes time and money and employees with Internet skills, but their efforts are paying off with increased sales.

Many mom-and-pop operations that can’t afford daily e-marketing efforts are creating websites, Facebook pages, blogs and Twitter accounts to reach the marketplace. Hobby events aimed at professionals — such as the Racing & Performance Expo, the British Motor Trade Association and the SEMA Show — all offer seminars on Internet marketing techniques to these businesses.

As their marketing efforts become more sophisticated, parts sellers are also discovering that they can use print media to drive customers to their websites. Companies that never ran a print ad before are discovering that a clean-looking space ad with the right design and not much text can generate strong client interaction. The right picture of a car can catch the potential customer’s attention and a simple e-mail address or website link is all that’s needed to bring business knocking. A good ad will pay for itself much faster these days.

While an increase in parts sales would suggest that restoration shops and collector car sales are both on the increase, growth in those parts of the hobby isn’t as clear-cut as it is when a part is “checked out” in an online catalog. Collector car dealers such as Colin Comer of Colin’s Classic Auto in Milwaukee and market players such as Joe Bortz are fairly universal in the belief that collector car prices are off 15-20 percent in today’s market. Some restoration shop owners say that they are busier than they’ve ever been, but others say the opposite.

From all of the indications we have seen and all the comments we’ve heard, it appears the old-car parts niche is improving for 2012 and this trend will presumably filter down to other parts of the hobby. The hobby is changing in many ways, and the wise businessmen in it are getting more sophisticated as the market grows.

Sources mentioned

Kurt Kelsey
NOS Pontiac parts

automotive insulation products

Marx Parts
vintage gaskets

Kanter Auto Products
mechanical components

Al Suehring
ring gears

Classic Industries
restoration parts

Ron Kellogg
most tri-power units

Joe Bortz
vintage vehicle sales

Mid America Motorworks
Corvette and VW restoration parts

restoration equipment

Colin’s Classic Auto
vintage vehicle sales

Gorgeous ˜Wood Vehicles 1948 – Part III

Continuing with this series we’ll look at what Pontiac offered up in 1948 as a woody.

In a previous blog entry (Project Pontiac 1949 Silver Streak Delivery Van http://wp.me/pKHNM-Bx) I gave you a look at a Silver Streak owned by a co-worker.

1949 Silver Streak

Well one year earlier Pontiac offered the Silver Streak as a woody.

Side view...love the big fenders.

That is a lot of wood on that woody.

These were low production cars with most being build on the 6 cylinder chassis.

1948 Pontiac 6 cylinder power plant


These were the most commonly used power plants mated with an Automatic Hydra-Matic transmission.  It spec’d out as follows:

Cubic Inch         Horse power                   1bbl carb

239.2 93 (68.45) @ 3400 Carter WA-1 (1)

A very limited  were built with 8 cylinders engines.  Interesting enough these 8 cylinders were called “Silver Steak”.  It boosted the specs:

Cubic Inch                             Horse power                         2 bbl carb

248.9 cu in (4,079 cc) 108.00 (79.5) @ 3700 Carter WCD 630 (2)

Total Pontiac production for that year was only  333,957 cars.


Thanks for reading.