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Technical Flathead engine question

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by baspinall, Jul 20, 2018.

  1. baspinall
    Joined: Dec 8, 2009
    Posts: 450

    baspinall
    Member
    from SE PA

    Ok, first let me say this. I have very little experience with flathead engines. Other than I would love one for my 29 coupe build. I have a friend and his wife who recently inherited her fathers hot rod stuff. There are two flatheads there. There are also a couple cars which I may be listing for him at some point. He is not a car guy and asked for some help ID ing some things. I would like to find some more information for him on the two engines. Like what year, Ford? Merc? etc.
    Any information would be more than I have. I know we will probably have to pull some numbers off of them. I started a little research on that. Anyway here is what he has.
    The one with the Fenton covers has a transmission the one with the three 97's & Offenhauser covers does not.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. 51504bat
    Joined: May 22, 2010
    Posts: 3,156

    51504bat
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Both are 8ba's 49-53. Impossible to tell if Merc or Ford. The casting numbers won't tell you anything. Ford and Merc blocks were the same. Merc's had a 4 inch stroke crank. Pull a head and measure to determine for sure.
     
  3. I don't know much about flatheads, but that lone intake is SBF, probably late Mustang or truck fuel injection.
     
  4. baspinall
    Joined: Dec 8, 2009
    Posts: 450

    baspinall
    Member
    from SE PA

    51504bat - Good to know. I could pull the heads and look at the cranks. Basically he want's to sell these. I don't want him to get ripped off but don't know enough about them. He say's he has seen both of them running in cars before but you know how that goes.
    56don - That makes sense, he had other Mustang stuff around.
     

  5. flatford39
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 2,800

    flatford39
    Member

    As others said both 8BA's. I have the exact Fenton heads on mine. There is a lot of desirable parts on them. The problem is that you don't know the condition of the blocks. You got about $1500.00 to $2500.00 in bolt on accessories if you were going to part them out. But then you are stuck with the blocks. Unknown bare blocks are $100.00 each. If they have 4" cranks that's a big plus.
     
  6. 19Fordy
    Joined: May 17, 2003
    Posts: 7,364

    19Fordy
    Member

    The first photo has 1951 Mercury narrow (2 belt) belt water pumps on it.
    Probably a 51 Merc engine. The one with the OFFY heads and Fenton headers looks like an 49-53 8BA . Can you post more photos of what it looks like from the front and rear?
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2018
    Hnstray likes this.
  7. GordonC
    Joined: Mar 6, 2006
    Posts: 2,543

    GordonC
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Also, FYI, those aren't covers. They are the actual heads for the motor. Flatheads have the valves down in the block so the head is basically a slab of steel or aluminum that bolts on to the block.
     
    Hnstray likes this.
  8. 51504bat
    Joined: May 22, 2010
    Posts: 3,156

    51504bat
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Maybe yes or maybe no on it being a Merc engine.
    a lot could have been changed around over the years by prior owners. I once bought what was advertised as a Merc engine. It had OCM Merc heads, Merc narrow belt water pumps, and a Merc stamped steel 1/2 bell housing but it didn't have a teapot carb or rear sump pan. When I pulled the heads it had a 3 3/4 crank in it. Hopefully it has a 4 inch crank but bottom line is you never know until you pull a head. IMO
     
  9. Slightly off topic but if you put a flathead in your Model A the pre 1948 ones are shorter and easier to install.

    Charlie Stephens
     
  10. that lone intake is SBF, probably late Mustang or truck fuel injection.[/QUOTE]

    The intake is just the lower and not the upper off of anything from a F 150 to a Crown Vic definitely 302/5.0.
     
  11. I'd put a value of $1500 ea on those engines in as is condition. Personally I'd not get involved in pulling a head to measure stroke and just let them go as they are as the mere crank is only a $150-$250 item on its own anyway.
     

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