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Technical Mystery Flathead

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Davids2toys, Jan 13, 2019 at 8:13 PM.

  1. Davids2toys
    Joined: Dec 24, 2018
    Posts: 16

    Davids2toys

    I am the new owner of a survivor unrestored 1936 Ford 4 door touring sedan deluxe. The engine was replaced with a 49-53 Mercury Flathead v8 due to a cracked block on the orig motor. I can't seem to ID it down to the exact year. I know it has the 53 heads and it has the big clean-out at the bottom of the oil pan. It does not have any numbers on the Pass side intake manifold location. I am making the assumption it is a truck motor because of the clean-out in the oil-pan. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks...Dave
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  2. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 12,774

    alchemy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Some late flatheads had the serial number stamped on the machined intake surface of the block. Look there for some numbers, about 1/4" tall.
     
  3. Davids2toys
    Joined: Dec 24, 2018
    Posts: 16

    Davids2toys

    I did, those are the numbers that I was saying were not there. I took the paint completely off, nothing
     
  4. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 12,774

    alchemy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Then as far as I've ever heard about late model flatheads, there is no way to narrow down the year of the block.
     
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  5. Davids2toys
    Joined: Dec 24, 2018
    Posts: 16

    Davids2toys

    I guess my most important reason is for replacing part or ordering parts.
     
  6. RMR&C
    Joined: Dec 26, 2009
    Posts: 2,846

    RMR&C
    Member
    from NW Montana

    Internally they are pretty much all the same. External differences should be pretty easy to ID. Like your truck style pan vs a car pan, etc. It could be a mix of different parts, no biggy, just enjoy it!
     
  7. Davids2toys
    Joined: Dec 24, 2018
    Posts: 16

    Davids2toys

    Yes, understood but it sure would be nice to be confident when ordering parts, rebuild and replacing things!
     
  8. leon bee
    Joined: Mar 15, 2017
    Posts: 203

    leon bee
    Member
    from Arkansas!

    But, but.........it's true! All the same inside. Order misc internal parts for a 53 Merc or a 49 Ford, just about all the same other than the obvious; crank, pistons, etc. I have about 5 of that style of block in my collection now, I can't make heads or tails of any kind of numbers on em. The differences are outside: manifolds, oil pan, bellhousing, starter plate, clutch, etc.
     
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  9. clem
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 1,976

    clem
    Member

    Could be that someone added a truck sump to facilitate cleaning.

    I believe that there are some differences in the French Flathead blocks. Is it one of those ?
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2019 at 4:20 AM
  10. coilover
    Joined: Apr 19, 2007
    Posts: 460

    coilover
    Member
    from Texas

    If is a car engine the 49 will have the wide belts while the 50-53 will have the narrow. If a truck all will be wide.
     
  11. AVater
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 1,738

    AVater
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    1. Connecticut HAMB'ers

    Dave

    I have the same issue regarding the engine in my avatar. The numbers on the milled intake surface leads nowhere in terms of date of manufacture. I have been told that back in the day, a number of mercury replacement engines (crate engines) were installed in trucks a preferable to a Ford counterpart. Maybe yours any mine were crate engines back then? Don’t have any idea how common this was but I do know that when I was a kid, the F-1 on the farm had a Mercury transplant from a donor car and not a “crate”.
     
  12. 42merc
    Joined: Dec 19, 2010
    Posts: 526

    42merc
    Member

    The numbers mean squat.
    The bolt on parts would be changed to accommodate the chassis the engine was installed into.
    On the exterior the Ford & Merc short blocks looked the same. The Merc with a 1/4" longer stroke.
    Pull the intake, '51 '53 will have valve rotaters -- '49-'50 will not. That's about as close as it gets.
     
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  13. v8flat44
    Joined: Nov 13, 2017
    Posts: 71

    v8flat44

    Go to the ford barn, lots of flathead guys & info there. If you have a Merc it should have 8cm or 1cm on the end of the cam shaft. 8cm is better than an Isky Max 1 in my opinion. Keep the cam.
     
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  14. Davids2toys
    Joined: Dec 24, 2018
    Posts: 16

    Davids2toys

    WOW, you guys are great. Such knowledge. The outside stuff is more of a concern at the moment vs. the inside stuff. That is the exact reason I was inquiring. If and when I pull the intake, I will look at the "valve rotators". Mine is the wide belt for sure. I don't even know what a "French block" is! I will have to Google it. OK, I will also go to the Ford barn and inquire. The more I learn, the better!!! One more thing, the orig owner told me was that before the guy installed this motor and painted it the dark green, it was all orange and he thinks this may also indicate it was a truck motor.
     
  15. 42merc
    Joined: Dec 19, 2010
    Posts: 526

    42merc
    Member

    Orange color indicates '52- '53 year.
    Trucks mostly red.
    Check the Bill Hirsch site for engine colors.
     
  16. Davids2toys
    Joined: Dec 24, 2018
    Posts: 16

    Davids2toys

    Good info! I'm a little confused. First you said "Orange color indicates '52- '53 year." What does "trucks mostly red" mean.
    I found a Bill Hirsh restoration supply site. I don't see anything about a color chart though?I did go to paint availabilty and I do see the orange for 52 and 53. I see no red or anything for trucks specifically
     
  17. clem
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 1,976

    clem
    Member

    Bear in mind that with all of the above information, that in the last 65 - 70 years your motor could have had many changes, a repaint if rebuilt, different water pumps added if one wore out, etc.
     

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