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FLATHEAD vs. crate swap

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by H2H HOTRODS, Oct 17, 2007.

  1. H2H HOTRODS
    Joined: Oct 17, 2007
    Posts: 3

    H2H HOTRODS
    Member

    My 1950 ford f-4 pick-up is stock as a rock w/ original 100 HP. FLATHEAD V-8 - 3 speed man. trans. and high ratio rear end . My problem is ,I really want to keep this truck as traditional as possible but I also want to use it to pull a (2) car wedge car hauler w/2- 32' highboy roadsters . I'm looking for suggestions as to how much performance i can build into the original power plant vs. transplanting a modern crate engine/ trans.
     
  2. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    I love flatheads, but for this use you need something BIG. Chugging down the road with a tiny engine, monstrously heavy rig, and a 5 to 1 axle to keep it all moving is not going to be pleasant. Find someone to give the flathead a good home in something that ways 2,000 pounds, not 10,000!
     
  3. pasadenahotrod
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 11,776

    pasadenahotrod
    Member
    from Texas

    If you can live with possible braking problems, what's wrong with what you have now? The alternative is to install a Lincoln 337 flattie in the truck and gain a little HP and torque.
    OR, just hook up and roll, leave yourself plenty of travel time, and enjoy the drive. How do you reckon house trailers and such were transported back then? Well, my uncle hauled a 25-30 foot trailer behind a 36 Cadillac sedan in the early 50s from Pennsylvania to Colorado and back again.
    Hope those Deuce hiboys have flatties too!
     
  4. lowsquire
    Joined: Feb 21, 2002
    Posts: 2,564

    lowsquire
    Member
    from Austin, TX

    some guy called Arkus Duntov used to make an overhead valve conversion for your motor, supposedly good for 160hp. they repop them now. :)
     

  5. Bruce Lancaster
    Joined: Oct 9, 2001
    Posts: 21,682

    Bruce Lancaster
    Member Emeritus

    But it will still be 239--276 inches pulling more than 10,000 pounds...
     
  6. Rudebaker
    Joined: Sep 14, 2007
    Posts: 1,598

    Rudebaker
    Member
    from Illinois

    Beef up the Flattie or swap in a larger and later but "period correct" OHV V-8 and back them up with a modern trans with a few more gears. I like the idea of the 337 Flathead with a 5 speed behind it.
     
  7. nexxussian
    Joined: Mar 14, 2007
    Posts: 3,240

    nexxussian
    Member

    I would love to see a Flatty in it, but for the money (and potential of finding parts if it breaks in BFE) the crate makes more sense. The BIG (337) flatty might do it. You would probably need something beefier than a T-5 behind that BIG flatty though. More like a NV 4500 or a Clark 450. Does anyone know if the 'new' Speedway pumps fit the BIG engine?

    I know I will probably be called a pariah, but if you are going to have that much moving down the road on that size vehicle, you need discs, at least in front. It's not about how fast you can stop, it's can you stop as fast as the tard in the new car that just cut you off.

    Yes, I know the commercial trucks use drums, they also have more swept area per hub than he has in all the drums he has (even if there are trailer brakes).
     
  8. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,757

    tommy
    Member Emeritus

    [​IMG]

    Th McCulloch supercharger was designed to up the capacity of the large trucks in the late 30s. that were powered by flatheads. I'm sure many of the old Fords that left the plant were delivered by flathead powered trucks.

    We love the nostalgic look of the old flatheads but most of us won't put up with the limitations that they have in your application. This was as good as it got back in 1937. 50 miles per hour was top speed for a fully loaded transporter on mostly 2 lane roads. If that is the way you want to travel, have at it.

    If it were me, I'd think long and hard about a 394-ish Olds motor with a modern overdrive trans. Lots of low end grunt and still a very nostalgic hot rod engine. With the right gears you should be able to get a powerful hauler with descent fuel economy for real world driving.
     
  9. MN Falcon
    Joined: May 21, 2007
    Posts: 566

    MN Falcon
    Member

    That supercharger is sooo cool. I know what I want for my flathead. I'll bet they are really spendy though :-(
     
  10. gearheadbill
    Joined: Oct 11, 2002
    Posts: 1,313

    gearheadbill
    Member

    460 - AOD. You won't regret it. It's a work truck. Just keep the hood closed so the "period correct" nazi's don't get you.
     
  11. banjorear
    Joined: Jul 30, 2004
    Posts: 3,886

    banjorear
    Member

    Nice!
     
  12. Dick Dake
    Joined: Sep 14, 2006
    Posts: 788

    Dick Dake
    Member

    A 337 will only get you a max of 225-250 and that is with big cubic money and being able to find 1950's made heads. You could go with a 460 like above or the 500 Caddy, Big Torque.
     
  13. Mike
    Joined: Mar 5, 2001
    Posts: 3,535

    Mike
    Member

    I'll soon be setting up my '52 F1 as a proper tow vehicle. I'm replacing the blown up 223 6cyl and 3 speed that served me faithfully for 18 years with a 472 Caddy, turbo 400 tranny and Ford 9" rear end with 2.75 to 1 gears. I'm keeping the stock suspension and steering, but I plan to upgrade the brakes with a dual master cylinder and discs on the front.
     
  14. nexxussian
    Joined: Mar 14, 2007
    Posts: 3,240

    nexxussian
    Member


    Is that HP or Torque? if it's HP, how much torque? Ballpark?
     
  15. Dick Dake
    Joined: Sep 14, 2006
    Posts: 788

    Dick Dake
    Member

    Maybe 300. look at www.austinrodshop.com and call Ken. He knows a crapton about these. I am doing one for a 51 Lincoln and have talked to him before. Knows his stuff.
     
  16. CWebster
    Joined: Apr 13, 2007
    Posts: 78

    CWebster
    Member
    from Byron, MI

    How bout a gear vendors over/underdrive in the drivetrain? Still might not be enough but you can split gears and keep the rpm in the powerband.
     
  17. docauto
    Joined: Dec 1, 2006
    Posts: 789

    docauto
    Member
    from So Cal

    the motor is less important than the brakes! if you're going to run with modern traffic, upgrade to big discs.
     
  18. J Man
    Joined: Dec 11, 2003
    Posts: 4,132

    J Man
    Member
    from Angola, IN

    If you want this thing to tow put in the crate motor. If you want it to be a show vehicle keep the flattie. Or better yet, drive the '32 and let someone else drive the other '32 and you will not need to tow either one of them. Another option would be to buy a new truck and tow all 3 of them.
     
  19. Drop in an Olds 394. That'll pull em.
     
  20. nexxussian
    Joined: Mar 14, 2007
    Posts: 3,240

    nexxussian
    Member


    Thanks.
     
  21. Rustyjoe
    Joined: Oct 6, 2007
    Posts: 5

    Rustyjoe
    Member

    So true. Sounds like you know.
     

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