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Technical Anyone know much about building sbf engines/windsor

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Cougarmanoeuverer, Mar 11, 2019.

  1. Hey guys ive been trying on different platforms and forums to find the answer to a few questions. Im not sure if this the particular site or forum to find these answers but ive seen some of the knowledge coming from the members of this site from time to time and it seems to have a bit more substance than a lot of these arm chair engine builders on a lot of other sites.
    I am planning on building up my 351 windsor and all of the advice i get seems to be from people that assume im trying to make 800 hp and even then im skeptical of there experience.
    The engine is a 69 block virgin bore. Stock heads. Stock flat tappet cam. Hydraulic lifters. Msd distributor, edelbrock 600 carb, weiend stealth intake. 3.0.1 9 INCH
    Id really like to get the thing to put on bit more of a show and have a grumpier note to it but when i researched camshafts it became apparent that the stock heads wont do the trick due to the necessity of higher ratio rocker arms which would be incompatible with the pressed studs. Apparently. Again im going by what Ive been told.
    This car will be only used on the street.
    What i want to find out is what particular heads, camshaft, torqueconvertor if necessary, and all other supplementary products would be suggested to bring this engine alive. Any suggestions and help would be greatly appreciated
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  2. How much power do you want to make? Anything under 400 HP is fairly easily attainable with your '69 heads (they were THE desired Windsor head before all the aftermarket choices showed up) without that much work. I assume you're running an automatic behind it, that along with your 3.0 rear gears will affect your choices also. Car weight enters into it too.

    Every car combination is different, what can be fabulous in one can be a dog in another...
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  3. As a low buck deal: gt40 steel heads, Summit's version of the stock Mustang gt cam, might need to deck the block to get 9-1 comp. ratio. There's so many choices for cylinder heads that you can decide how much money you want to spend but that's where your largest gain will be without losing driveability.
  4. onetrickpony
    Joined: Sep 21, 2010
    Posts: 382

    from Texas

    I started with a 1969 351W-4V. I ported the stock heads, put in screw-in studs, a solid lift cam (.520 lift, 300 duration), headers, and a Holley intake and 750dp. It went low 12s, high 11s with a 4:10 gear and a 4 speed in my 65 Mustang at about 2800 pounds.

    I forgot to add that the engine was .030 over with factory style flattops. Heads were also milled. Compression was about 11:1.
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2019
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  5. Oldioron
    Joined: Dec 12, 2018
    Posts: 921


    The machine work to install screw in rocker studs is not the end of the world. I agree the 69 351 heads can support 350 to 400 horsepower. A litte bowl work and compression in the 9.5 range, probably need work for springs and lift clearance. Cam choice depends on compression, converter and gears and is something you need to work through as you build the motor so you don't need to go back and redo.

    As an edit; thinking about the cost of going through your stock heads adding machine work for skrew in studs all the springs locks retainers and decent valves your in the range for decent heads. I have seen far to many failures in Edelbrock heads to recommend them, I personally like and use RHS. You will be able to run a 10 to 1 cr. with aluminum heads.
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2019
  6. raven
    Joined: Aug 19, 2002
    Posts: 4,263


    The small block Fords all suffer from strangulation due to the factory head design. That being said, you have a plethora of after market options available to you. Twisted Wedge being a good choice of manufacturer. The stock lower end was good to 6500 and about 400 horses, but I tend to overbuild when I can just for a measure of safety. Good heads are a must. Like it’s been said, if you can grab a set of GT40 heads, you have a good start. 2.02 intakes and clean the runners up, good springs and screw in studs. Anything you can do to get the reciprocal equipment lighter will help you. Aluminum roller rockers, chrome moly pushrods, balanced lower end running 9.5 to 10.5 compression depending on the availability of good fuel in your area. You don’t need to go crazy with the lift of the cam either. Bragging rights to a high lift cam doesn’t always translate into useable lift, especially on the street. I’ve run super low 12’s on a cam that was less than.450 lift. A good grind is what you need (everything in balance). Start with good heads, a decent lower end blueprinting as you go, decide on a good induction system and then talk to a cam grinder for their recommendations. In order to make horsepower an engine has to breathe. In order for that engine to actually move your car respectfully, the engine has to produce torque. A 351 will be a good base from which to build a torque monster due to the longer stroke compared to a 289/302 base.

    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
    Spooky and Deuces like this.
    Joined: Oct 22, 2017
    Posts: 91


    i have had 2 351s in my truck ...the first one was a balls out 12 to 1 alumni heads in so cal pump gas will not run a motor much higher then 9 to 1 and i but a rod through the i have a stock 95 ..351 with a carb and it runs on pump gas and all the power i need in a street car....
    Deuces likes this.
  8. bdynpnt
    Joined: Feb 9, 2009
    Posts: 354


    My first race engine (oval track) was a 69 351 W I ran it mostly stock lower end .i spent time cleaning up the exhaust ports, and screw in studs .i ran the ford motorsports hydraulic cam for flat tappets and roller tip 1.6 ratio rockers. i ran a torque 2 intake with a 3310 holley per the rules. it had a good sounding idle and great power from idle to 6000 rpm. Pulled really hard and ultra reliable .i was racing guys running 355/360 chevy that were turning 6500 while my ford was turning 5500 and was extremely competitive

    Sent from my SM-G965U using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    Deuces likes this.
  9. So with any good info you also need a good machine shop. If you had finished filling out your information when you signed up I bet you would get good info as to who to go talk to and who to stay away from. I have 2 outstanding shops here I've been using for 40 plus years. I'm also asked by consumers who to go to get the other shops work done right. Not so much lately being I just retired.
    In today's world I'd be hard pressed to build any flat tappet motor for anything. Screw in studs are no big deal and just go with most jobs. I also have a local Cam Grinder in the event something special is needed. I am bilingual but mostly bleed Blue Blood.
    Welcome to the H.A.M.B.
    Spooky and Deuces like this.
  10. How will the car be used on the street? Stop light to stop light bruiser, or 80 mph down a freeway across the Great Plains mile eater???

    I have a '78 351W in my '51 F-1. Light little truck, backed it with an M5R2 5 spd out of a mid 90's F-150. With the 3.08:1 rear, that thing cruises all day at 80 mph with breaking a sweat. The motor has the factory iron heads (boo--70's smog crap--booooo), an Edelbrock Preformer RPM Cam and Intake, 600 Holley, factory Duraspark II ignition, and a good set of shorty headers, feeding 2 1/2" pipes all the way back. New pistons and a bit of block work brought the compression in right around 9:1. The chassis dyno at a local diesel truck shop calculated 385 Hp at the crank (based off generic manual transmission drivetrain losses). I think that number is a bit off due to the high inertia from the very large rollers used at this dyno (typically reserved for Semi Trucks and 3000 Hp tractor pullers).

    I have put 50,000 miles on that motor with zero valve rocker issues. The Performer RPM Cam has a fairly loppy idle, but the motor really pulls hard and comes up on the cam around 2200 and takes off. I tend to think that the small port 70's smog heads tend to keep the velocity high, leading to a very flat torque curve and a bunch of bottom end grunt, but it does get wheezy on the top end above 5000 rpm.
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2019
  11. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 3,353

    from Berry, AL

    I’d find a later model roller block and a set of GT40 heads. Less chance of lifter / cam problems. GT 40’s make plenty HP for a street engine. Stay away from the P’s though, plug angle makes it harder to find headers to fit older chassis.
  12. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 2,721


    C2AF4844-0731-4B4D-90B4-E4ED40492918.jpeg 96C6DA2D-2042-45B4-94E7-04C604F66661.jpeg We are running a roller in a non roller older block. All we had to do was tap some holes and add that piece of tin to hold the lifters. We did this because of the problem associated with the later blocks ... and we had this one.
  13. That's the first I've heard about issues with the late roller blocks. I was given to understand that other than minor differences, a 351W block is a 351W block...
    Boneyard51 likes this.
  14. 6sally6
    Joined: Feb 16, 2014
    Posts: 768


    Most all Windsor motors benefit GREATLY from better heads.(and 9.5:1 compression)
    AFR is the "top notch"/mac daddy head for SBF's....they are also the most expensive. I have "heard" from several guys just swapping to AFR heads show a good 50 HP increase! Just a head swap.
    Don't neglect improving your ignition curve. Lotta guys seem to over look this important part. Quicker advance curve (especially with a hotter cam) can make a Ford really come alive.
    Speaking of camshafts........Don't go nuts with a hi lift cam! Under 500 lift will spare your valve springs an early death and no need for super stiff springs with a modest lift. Duration (valve timing) is where most of the power is made. Upper230-240@050 on the intake and a tad more on the exhaust to compensate for mufflers and pipes. LSA is were the snotty idle comes in. 108-110* is very doable for a street engine. (about like the old 365HP 327 cam as far as radical-ness) I like Delta Cams for a custom grind. Good price-good service-good advice...ask for Ken.
  15. RmK57
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,038


    One thing to keep in mind with the early 351 block is the 9.48 deck height. From mid-70 they went to 9.50 until the end of production. All the piston manufacturers are based on the 9.50 D/H.
  16. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 2,721


    Steve , you hear all kinds of things out there, can’t remember who told me about the problems with the roller blocks, but it was here on the HAMB. So.. we scored an early block first... so didn’t have to worry about the later block. According to the engine builder the only difference is two threaded holes in tha lifter valley. Drill and tap two 1/4 in standard threads and wala.. roller block. The cat building this engine has built world record holding engines, so we’re putting our faith in his abilities to build this Cleavor.

  17. I thought the roller block also had 'longer' lifter bores so you didn't need reduced base circle cams. I do know the roller lifter block appeared before the actual roller motor (it just wasn't machined for roller lifters), is that what you have?

    I do have three 351W blocks; a '69, a late '70s, and a '90. Haven't decided yet which one to use for my build. Have been kinda waiting to see if a roller block falls into my lap...
    Algoma56 likes this.
  18. fiftyv8
    Joined: Mar 11, 2007
    Posts: 4,758

    from CO & WA

    Some times when at the start like you are, you need to articulate not only what you want out of this build project HP wise, but also what you are willing to put into it $'s wise.
    Find the sweet spot with the help of forum members and you on your way.

    Good luck and don't forget to report back to help others in the future...

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