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FE into 61 Unibody

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by WayneZzWorld61, Feb 5, 2013.

  1. WayneZzWorld61
    Joined: Jan 30, 2013
    Posts: 9

    WayneZzWorld61
    Member

    Has anyone on here ever seen a 390 dropped into a 61 F100? Searched a few things and I see its been done, just haven't seen how. I'm working with an original 223 truck, and I know these came with Y-blocks in the day, so what would need to be done to drop an FE in it? Also I plan on going with a 4 speed, probably a Muncie.
     
  2. Ford blue blood
    Joined: Jan 4, 2009
    Posts: 669

    Ford blue blood
    Member

    The trucks use a front cover mount and an eared bell housing. The cross member for the bell housing mount will cause problems. It needs to go. Get a cross member kit from Speedway for the front motor mounts and a later model transmission mount kit for the transmission you want to use.
     
  3. ems customer service
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 2,565

    ems customer service
    Member

    unibodies had a reputation for body flexing with the 6cyl, high torque fe??
     
  4. WayneZzWorld61
    Joined: Jan 30, 2013
    Posts: 9

    WayneZzWorld61
    Member

    When I do the FE I'm going to look for about a horse per cube, so torque around 400. I'm new to the unibody, so I haven't heard a lot of ins and outs yet. I'm sure there's going to have to be some strengthening to go from a stock 223 to a mild 390.
     

  5. mammyjammer
    Joined: May 23, 2009
    Posts: 505

    mammyjammer
    Member
    from Area 51

    I had a 62 4X4 that had a 428 in it when I bought it. It had a cast iron timing chain cover and a home made front engine mount set up. Truck 4 speed hung off of the bellhousing mounts. I beat that old truck pretty good and never had any problem with the mount set up.
    The downside of course would be having to use the stock transmission.
    I know a guy can shift a truck 4- speed pretty fast with a lot of practice!!!
     
  6. WayneZzWorld61
    Joined: Jan 30, 2013
    Posts: 9

    WayneZzWorld61
    Member

    That's what I like to hear. Sounds like it was a bad truck. The 223 will be okay to cruise around with but I found the 390 dirt cheap and nothing I drive can stay slow for too long. I don't think I'd want the trans just hanging though. Can't be too hard to fab up a crossmember.
     
  7. 29AVEE8
    Joined: Jun 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,384

    29AVEE8
    Member

    I replaced a 223 three speed with an FE and cast iron cruisomatic in my '62 shortbed uni in about 1973. I used a Trans Dapt front one piece crossmember mount, it bolts in. Used a mid '60s galaxie rear trans mount.
     
  8. junkyardjeff
    Joined: Jul 23, 2005
    Posts: 7,542

    junkyardjeff
    Member

    Some of the bigger trucks with the FT motor (looks like a FE) have a front mount that will bolt to a FE and if you go with a manual trans the FT bellhousing will bolt up too. I have those parts in the shed waiting on a future truck project.
     
  9. WayneZzWorld61
    Joined: Jan 30, 2013
    Posts: 9

    WayneZzWorld61
    Member

    Never thought about Trans Dapt. Went to their site and they sell a whole kit for $200. I'm starting to squirrel away parts as money allows to get ready for spring, this will be high on my list now. Anything else to know about the ins and outs of these trucks? I heard you can overload the bed and jam the doors on these things.
     
  10. FTF
    Joined: Nov 13, 2002
    Posts: 99

    FTF
    Member

    I used the Speedway mount. I think it's made by Trans Dapt. You will need a 4 wheel drive 390 / 360 pan (rear sump) to clear the mount. I used the FT front mount for years with a 390 and like the chevy crap it allowed the motor and trans to bounce around. I went with the Sanderson headers.
    This is the third 390 in 25 years I've had this Unibody and I've loaded the ass with lots of weight and the doors work fine.
     

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  11. I built two with High Horsepower 460's - one for a customer (actually a 513") and one for me. Neither has ever had any issues related to body flex. The frame is plenty stout on these trucks.

    Seeing as how 61-66 F-100's are basically the same, the 65's were available from the factory with an FE (352") so it's a pretty easy swap
     
  12. WayneZzWorld61
    Joined: Jan 30, 2013
    Posts: 9

    WayneZzWorld61
    Member

    That's a nice looking set-up. The most hauling I plan on doing would be a Harley in the back and probably some racecar parts. Glad it can handle it because I plan on bracket racing it when I get it really set-up.
     
  13. MP&C
    Joined: Jan 11, 2008
    Posts: 2,310

    MP&C
    Member

    Don't look at the non-HAMB friendly wheels, but here is a 427 8V in a 61. It has an LTD subframe and gets 12 MPG with the cruise set... :D


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  14. WayneZzWorld61
    Joined: Jan 30, 2013
    Posts: 9

    WayneZzWorld61
    Member

    Haha. Mpg is the least of my concerns, at least for now I was looking to keep the straight axle. That's a nice looking way to do it though. How much cutting and welding is it putting on a new subframe, I'm sure the rides much better and LTD's can't be too hard to find. I've never really been too deep into custom fab but this is the project I want to cut my teeth on.
     
  15. This is a stock Uni frame that we adapted a Corvette suspension to - and a Big Block
    [​IMG]
     
  16. My '61 came from the factory with a 6 cyl, but a '65 390 from a T-bird was dropped in. I think my adapter/cross member came from Carolina Classics (not sure they still sell it). Stock, but dropped, axle and original NP 435 tranny.
     
  17. my 1965 F350 came with a 352FE and the front center motor mount that looks the same as a Y block that bolts in front of the timing chain cover....have an NOS mount some where....
     

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