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Hot Rods 1963 Comet 302?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by RednekYoga, Jun 3, 2020.

  1. RednekYoga
    Joined: Feb 2, 2019
    Posts: 68


    Hi HAMB
    My 260 is tired, 100psi per cylinder. So I pulled her out. I've heard I can "drop a 302" right in there, but am guessing it's never that simple. I know there are different 302 dimensions, and some have different oil pan shapes, etc. I also want to switch out the Merc-o-Matic 2-speed of course. Will a C4 go in?
    Does anyone know what 302 is best for me to buy? I can probably go pull one right out of an Explorer or F150 (never any mustang 302s at the Pick-n-Pull)
    loudbang likes this.
  2. You can use the 260 oil pan on the 302 , of course you will have to use the 260 style oil pump and plug the dipstick hole in the side of the block if it indeed has one there then you will need the 260 sty;e timing chain cover.

    I used a old original 260 oil pan on the 302 in our wagon. HRP
    loudbang likes this.
  3. finn
    Joined: Jan 25, 2006
    Posts: 980


    There’s a balance difference between early and late 302s and I suspect the late 302 damper isn’t compatible with the 260 front cover and pointer. You also need the right block plate, starter, and converter to match whatever c4 you end up with.
    Late explorers and F150s never used the C4, which has been out of production for over thirty years or so. Perhaps an earlier engine would simply things as far as interchange goes.
    loudbang likes this.
  4. CyaNide
    Joined: Mar 2, 2006
    Posts: 252

    from Texas

    C4 will work with all 302 Engines. Just make sure the balancing for it is correct. Could get an AOD also. Explorer engines are nice out of the box. Just put a better cam in it.

    loudbang likes this.

  5. I'm assuming that you won't be trying to use the EFI, which if out of a truck or Explorer may not fit under the hood anyway.

    It will 'drop right in' but as HRP and others have noted you'll have to swap some stuff around. You can recycle almost all the 260 external accessories with a few things that need to be noted. If the motor is a '84 or newer it will have a 50oz 'balance factor' rather than 28oz so you'll have to address the front damper and flexplate if using a C4.

    You can reuse the oil pan, oil pickup, timing cover, water pump, and pulleys. Even the generator if you're still running it. Replace the oil pump with one for a 289. If it's a 50oz motor, get an aftermarket damper with both the three and four bolt pattern so you can reuse your crank pulley. If the 'new' motor has a bolt-on timing pointer you should be able to transfer it. The generator bracket will need the mounting holes drilled out as Ford increased the accessory bolt size in the heads in '65 from 3/8 to 7/16. I don't think the 260 valve covers will work as they don't clear the late valvetrain IIRC. I wouldn't use them even if they do, I'll explain below.

    The distributor will swap also, but if the new motor has a roller cam you'll need a new gear on the distributor compatible with the cam. DON'T use the old one, the cam will eat it right up. Might be a good time to buy a new one...

    Motor mounts and exhaust will bolt up, no issues.

    Your carb and intake will fit also, although if it's OEM might be a bit small.

    Transmission. If it's a '84-up motor, you'll need an aftermarket flexplate with the correct balance to fit a C4. Both this and the special damper are readily available parts for these swaps. The fly in the ointment is the '63-65 V8 Falcons/Comets used a weird transmission mount, unlike any other used by Ford. They also had different tailshaft housings on the trans for this mount. But there are conversion crossmembers available...
    Here's another one...
    Interestingly, I also saw a conversion crossmember that supposedly allows a AOD to fit...
    They do note that it must be a car trans, the truck versions won't fit. How well this clears the exhaust I can't say..

    Last, the timing cover/valve covers. Ford only used this design for two years, '62-63, as they found it promoted sludge build-up inside the motor because of poor air circulation. If it were my car, I'd remove the oil fill neck from the timing cover, plug the hole and use '64-up style valve covers.
    loudbang likes this.

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