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Technical Engine/Transmission in ‘53 Ford Victoria

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Jack Daniels, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. Jack Daniels
    Joined: Oct 4, 2018
    Posts: 3

    Jack Daniels

    Hey guys!
    I have a ‘53 Victoria Crestline with a flathead V8 with a 3spd and an electronic overdrive. My engine started knocking and I can see lovely metal shaving in the oil. I want to replace my engine but I don’t want a flathead. I was told some early years of the 302 have the same bolt pattern and will bolt up to my original transmission. Is this true? Any guidance about it is greatly appreciated. Before anyone gets too excited, I’m not looking to make big power numbers. I just want an engine that is newer, easier to get parts for and easily converted to EFI without changing my entire driveline. I like my 3spd with E overdrive and I want to keep it.


    Jack Daniels
    The H.A.M.B. app
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  2. Hello Jack...welcome to the is very beneicial if you would be considerate to post your city and state on your profile page
    warhorseracing likes this.
  3. This was just discussed on another thread....

    There is no 'early' 302 that will bolt to your trans. But there are three Ford small blocks that will; the '62-63 221, the '63-mid 65 260, and the '63-64 289. These are all 'five bolt blocks' and are getting rare (and expensive) in good or rebuildable condition.

    Ford used two transmission bolt patterns for their manual trans cars starting in '49; the '49-64, and the '65-up. On the SBF, Ford changed the block/bellhousing in '65 at the same time they changed the trans pattern, so there's no direct interchange between early and late pattern bells in most cases. But there were some dual-trans-pattern bells built for the '65-up SBF that will solve the problem if you can find one but these are exceedingly rare. I believe these were only used on service replacement engines to allow a new '65-up engine to be installed in a '63-64 car or truck under warranty. A late single-pattern cast iron bell can usually be redrilled to the early pattern also. The aluminum bells don't have enough meat in them to do this. There is another alternative; Lakewood still builds a '65-up SBF scattersheild with both the early and late trans pattern that will accept your early trans as a bolt-together deal.

    But you're not out of the woods yet. In addition to changing the trans pattern, Ford also changed the size of the front trans bearing retainer. The retainer is what indexes the trans to the bell/crank centerline, so this is critical to correct fit. Failure to address this can lead to pilot/input bearing failures and clutch issues. The early retainer is 4 11/16" in diameter, the late unit is 4 7/8". Depending on what trans you have, you may or may not be able to find a correct-size retainer. The Lakewood bell used to come with an 'adaptor' ring for the early trans to make up the difference, I don't know if it still does. Worst case, you could have one machined.

    A couple of other details. The early trans has a shorter pilot shaft on the input, so you won't get full engagement into the pilot bushing. This will egg-shape the bushing, the fix is a steel bearing like a NTN 6003 LLBC3/5K or equivalent (I believe Summit/Jegs sells these). And starting around '83 or so, Ford deleted the clutch equalizer boss off the SBF block, but the aftermarket offers a bolt-on bracket to replace the missing boss. This may be an issue for clutch linkage.

    And Ford did offer the OD trans as late as '69, so it may be possible to find a '65-up version that bolts to the late bell but these were rarely seen after about '63.
    oliver westlund and Hnstray like this.
  4. Chiss
    Joined: May 12, 2017
    Posts: 222

    from S.C.

    The Torque of the 302, would probally mean that tranny you have would be Short Lived.
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  5. F.O.G
    Joined: Oct 31, 2006
    Posts: 259

    from Pacific,Mo

    R-11 o/drive would have no problem holding up to a 289, R=10 would be marginal.
  6. The R-10 will be fine, Ford used that behind factory V8s. But don't beat on it.....
    Hnstray and Boneyard51 like this.
  7. Chiss
    Joined: May 12, 2017
    Posts: 222

    from S.C.

    EFI 302 is a Hell of a lot for a tranny Rated 250 Ft torque. A good tune on this set up would be easily 320-340 lb ft Torque.
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018
  8. Moriarity
    Joined: Apr 11, 2001
    Posts: 15,804

    Staff Member

    keep in mind that the Hamb is a traditional hot rod and custom forum and with that said, EFI is strictly off topic here
    warhorseracing likes this.
  9. 54vicky
    Joined: Dec 13, 2011
    Posts: 1,230


    if you post your question in the 52-59 Ford forum you will receive more help with your question.Jeff and a bunch will be of a large help as it is more a resto rod site.look under banner at top left of here or google.
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2018
    Jack Daniels likes this.
  10. khead47
    Joined: Mar 29, 2010
    Posts: 1,570


    Electric or electronic ?
  11. R Pope
    Joined: Jan 23, 2006
    Posts: 3,310

    R Pope

    Find a Ford pickup with an iron toploader 4-speed and a 302. Personally I would find a good flattie!
    warhorseracing likes this.
  12. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 10,968

    from Quincy, IL

    :eek: “Good flattie” is a contradiction in terms.....those two words should not be linked in a sentence.....but, his old flattie should be worth a few bucks to a flattie purist and offset a little of the OP’s expenses in his conversion.

    To the OP....Crazy Steve gave you a very comprehensive and correct reply to your question.

    The only additional suggestion I have to offer is that you might give some consideration to using a Borg Warner T5 manual (5 spd manual w/ OD 5th gear) but that requires using it’s floor shift lever or switching to an AOD (automatic trans with overdrive).

    sunbeam likes this.
  13. dan c
    Joined: Jan 30, 2012
    Posts: 1,950

    dan c

    this is something i've been working on. advance adapters has the adapter, called a "bellhousing index reducer bushing." problem is, they fit a 5-1/8" bearing retainer hole (lakewood or chevy). #716041 reduces to 4.686" or 4.848" and #716078 reduces to 4.686" only. light interference fit and less than $30!

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