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Hot Rods 410 MEL

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by willsullivan, Dec 1, 2019.

  1. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Howdy Yall
    Any tips or tricks on getting some more power out of a 410 MEL engine? where would i find speed parts for it? anyone have parts laying around? All help is appreciated.
     
  2. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 11,011

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    They had enough torque for 2 engines.
     
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  3. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Enough to make a model a tudor sedan pretty rowdy and fun?
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  4. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 5,583

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Depends on how deep you want to go into it. With stock parts you can take it to 462. They made 3X2s for them, have your cam regrounded. Change to electronic ignition and recurve your distributor. The MELs had good exhaust manifolds, that’s good because I think you would have to make headers. That should make a difference.

    I know of another Texan that has some 3X2s set ups, but I don’t know if he wants to sell them.




    Bones
     

  5. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Thanks, I'm probably going to try and stroke it some. Any idea who makes cams for them? And yeah I found a guy who makes adapters for a 385 series intake, so i can even do a blower setup with that. Any idea if these engines could handle boost? From what I understand, the rods are a beefed up version of an FE rod

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  6. glrbird
    Joined: Dec 20, 2010
    Posts: 574

    glrbird
    Member

    Royce Beachler is guy you need to talk to. Knows more about MEL than most and knows what parts interchange and where the are. Nice guy. Www.y-blocksforever.com is where you can find him. Won engine masters with one.
     
  7. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 11,011

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    With added stroke you might have more torque than 3 engines:D. Try Elgin for a cam in central coast area of California. I've used a reground in my GMC for over 45 years done by Howard without a problem. Advancing it 4 to 6 degrees and you can probably move a house. MEL's are a forgotten engine with a lot of power. Good Luck
     
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  8. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 6,118

    lippy
    Member
    from Ks

    I believe the crankshaft is the same as a 428. Lippy
     
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  9. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 5,583

    Boneyard51
    Member

    I’m not saying the 428 crank won’t go into a MEL, but I don’t think they are the same. There are some boys in Texas that were playing around with that very deal, but it required some machining, before its would fit. IIRC. You might be confusing the 410 MEL with the 410 FE. The FE 410 and 428 share the exact same crankshaft. The MEL is a relatively large bore short stroke engine.
    The heads are flat on these engines and are “ tilted” a little, in respect to the block, making the combustion chamber in the block. Not every machine shop wants to bore this block. It gives it a wedge shape. And the valves and ports are huge. I built a 430+.030 and put it in a 55 Ford back in 1965, when I was 15. They are a lot of fun to play with. Choose a block that has an FE bell housing pattern, as some MEL blocks had their own unique bell housing pattern. Also some of them had different engine mounts, some had mount similar to the FE. Just a few things I remember,....it has been 54 years since I built one.
    There have been several MELs in the engine masters challenge over the years, some won. I had two MELs, a 430 and a 462 that I recently sold... the 462 got to compete in the Masters, but didn’t win.





    Bones
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2019
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  10. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 6,118

    lippy
    Member
    from Ks

    Yes, been a lot of years ago since I even saw a 410 anything. LOL. I forgot there is a just straight Merc FE and a MEL merc. It would be interesting to see the number on that 410 MEL crank though. FE 428 is 1U right?
     
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  11. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 5,583

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Correct, the 410 MEL crank is “ shorter” that the FE 410/428 crank at 3.98 stroke. I’m not sure what the 410 MEL was but no MEL ever had that long of stroke, I think any way. That’s why those guys where tinkering with putting one into a MEL.
    Also the 410 MEL was only an Edsel engine, was never in a Merc, Ford or Lincoln. The 410 FE, a 390 with a 428 crank, was only offered in the Mercurys fir two years, 1966 and 1967. The 410 MELs are so scarce , most folks never heard of them or the 383 MEL.






    Bones
     
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  12. Spooky
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 1,896

    Spooky
    Member

    Well, wait a sec here,
    Are we talking about the 410 that was in Mercs in65 and 66 or the E 410 that was in Edsels in 1958?
     
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  13. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 6,118

    lippy
    Member
    from Ks

    We were talking about the Mercury FE 410 crankshaft being the same as the 428 FE crankshaft. CJ different yet! The 410 Merc Edsel Lincoln was it's own animal I guess. We had a MEL 361 in our 58 Edsel wagon. E400. Lippy
     
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  14. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 6,118

    lippy
    Member
    from Ks

    That 410 MEL stock would be plenty for a model A.:)
     
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  15. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Thanks guys, I appreciate the help! It is a pretty weird engine, I got it from a friend of mine who got it in a trade, i originally thought it was an FE, but the E-475 valvecovers gave it away as a 410 MEL. The weird factor kinda sold me, i wanted something cooler than a small block chevy. Those are great engines, but they just didnt do it for me.

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  16. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Also I found that i have the FE trans bolt pattern, any transmission recommendations? I was thinking maybe a top loader, but overdrive would be nice, especially in texas.

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  17. Hey do you need a trans adapter? I have a nos MEL to '39 trans that I do not need...

    -Shiny
     

    Attached Files:

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  18. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 11,011

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    E475 on the valve covers was the torque number...
     
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  19. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Right, its 410 ci, but they put the torque number 475 for marketing. 1958 was right in the middle of the horsepower wars if I remember correctly. I think the engine had something like 350-375 hp

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  20. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Do you think a '39 trans would hold up? I hope to get around 400-450 hp

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  21. FrozenMerc
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 2,817

    FrozenMerc
    Member

    Pistons are going to be headache. The aftermarket ones are flat top and lower the compression to generally less than 8:1. Good way to wipe a 100 hp off the top. Custom pistons are your only option. Generally custom piston prices have started coming down, but this definitely isn't a SBC rebuild. The wedge on top of the piston is critical to maintaining compression, proper swirl, and combustion chamber performance. Remember the piston defines the combustion chamber with these motors, just like the Chebbie W motors.

    [​IMG]

    As mentioned, a 462 crank is a drop in, but still a fairly rare motor. The other option is to offset grind the crank down to BBC rod journal sizes and use aftermarket BBC rods. By boring the motor 0.100" to the 430 MEL bore (4.30") and offset grind for BBC rods (gain 0.40" stroke), you can get about 476 ci. Bore spacing is the same as the 385 series (429, 460) motors, and Royce did use a 460 crank in his Engine Masters motor. The thing to look into would be main bearing size difference and how much welding / machine work would be required there.

    Weiand did make blower intakes and 4x2 and 6x2 log intakes back in the day. The blower intakes pop up on E-bay and other online marketplaces every now and again for $1500 to $2K depending on condition. Beware, though, they are a race only intake. You will have to relocate the distributor, fuel pump, and thermostat to use the Weiand blower intake. I have designed a street friendly blower intake for the MEL that will work with the stock distributor and thermostat housing, but I have not been able to get it tooled up yet. It would cost about $4K to 5K to pour a prototype at this point. The advantage of putting a blower on these motors is "cheap" off the shelf 427 BBC pistons (for 430 MEL bore) can be used to drop the compression to around 7.8:1. Along with the offset grind and BBC rods, that is a fairly stout and cost effective rotating assembly. It is not too hard to imagine a 600 to 700 hp 6-71 blown MEL running on 8 lbs of boost with torque nearing 4 digits, eating pump gas.

    The factory 4 bbl intake and even the factory 3x2 intakes will support a 450 to 500 hp motor with some work. The heads flow decently. Most numbers I have seen put the head flow equivalent to a 428 CJ FE, and again should support close to 500 hp. Read up on what Kaase did with the heads on Royce's Engine Masters motor to get a good idea on where they can be improved.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  22. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 5,583

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Nope! A top loader four speed or a T-85 with an overdrive, for an over drive with the four pinion od. And then only use the overdrive in high gear fir cruising and be gentle. Of course there are the new transmissions with overdrive, but I’m not familiar with those and are somewhat expensive.


    You might have trouble finding a standard flywheel..... I always ran automatics. Don’t know if an FE or 385 or 335 would interchange.













    Bones
     
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  23. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Thanks a bunch sir! That was really helpful!
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  24. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Also, anyone know where i can find a distributor for one of these engines? i have snooped around and cant seem to find a new one. any ideas? i have heard i can take the 15 tooth gear off the MEL distributor and put it on an FE one and make that work, does that sound familiar to anyone?
     
  25. Boost....lotsa boost. And a 39 ford trans won't even hold up to a stock 100 hp flathead.
     
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  26. FrozenMerc
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 2,817

    FrozenMerc
    Member

    FE and MEL distributors do not interchange, they are significantly different. Mostly the difference is in the clamping pad height, with the MEL being about a 1/2" shorter. The drive gear tooth count is different as well. 15 to 16 teeth.

    However, I do believe the shafts are the same, so one could take the shaft and guts from a FE distributor and stuff them into the MEL housing. Would be a fairly simple DuraSpark II conversion. Supposedly, this also works with Lima 385 (429, 460) Series distributors as well.

    From the MEL forums: Left is FE, Right is MEL
    [​IMG]
     
  27. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    So what I'm hearing is buy both and make one?

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  28. FrozenMerc
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 2,817

    FrozenMerc
    Member

    Yep, Try it and let us know exactly what works.
     
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  29. willsullivan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2016
    Posts: 83

    willsullivan
    Member

    Will do, I've got to track down one first

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  30. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 5,583

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Oddly enough, the 410 had the smallest bore of all the MELs , don’t know how far they can be bored. 462s are out there. To score a crank, might grab the block, too.






    Bones
     

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