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SBF Guys: Tips on 302 performance?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Mike51Merc, Jan 10, 2013.

  1. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,834

    Mike51Merc
    Member

    I bought an unfinished project '63 Falcon that came with a '75 302 4V that was freshly rebuilt and never run.

    I figure '75 302 is about as low a performer as Ford ever built (I can't even find a reliable HP rating, but I think it's less than 150). Since it was fresh I decided to install it and break it in before tinkering with upgrades. It has a new Edelbrock 500CFM carb and a set of long tube headers, and a Pertronix Ignitor inside the dizzy.

    My understanding is that the '75 heads are a major weakness. I'm not looking to drop a $1000 on a new set of heads. I have a set of heads from a '65 289 and another set from a '63 260. Either of these a worthy swap or should I look at something else?

    Any Cam suggestions? Roller or flat? Hyd or solid?

    Can I live with the dish-top pistons or should I change them out too?

    Any other advice/tips are truly appreciated.
     

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  2. kracker36
    Joined: Jan 21, 2012
    Posts: 756

    kracker36
    Member

    Either of those heads should boost compression for your 302. They also will flow better on the exhaust side. Without some major work, they are very limiting when it comes to performance. Its really based on your goals with the engine.
     
  3. sunbeam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2010
    Posts: 4,918

    sunbeam
    Member

    The early heads will have adjustable valve train but not hard seats.
     
  4. Heo2
    Joined: Aug 9, 2011
    Posts: 661

    Heo2
    Member

    what do you want the engine to do for you?
    just a litle more umph then now or a realy
    strong performer? 75 heads neads atleast the hump
    for air injection removed.dont remember cc on
    cambers on them compared to 65 heads.
    The 65 heads probably got worn guides
    needs new valves screw in rocker studs
    if you go any serious valve springs etc etc
    most times new aftermarket heads
    give you most bang for the buck
    you need flat top pistons to get any
    serious hp and milage out of it
    my sugestion is sell it and buy a rollercam
    engine 94 or newer. Weiand stealt intake
    a 650-750 carb and you are way ahead
     
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  5. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,834

    Mike51Merc
    Member

    As far as performance, I'm thinking more like a road racer than a drag racer. Winding mountain roads, hills, switchbacks and hairpins. Strong midrange torque I guess is a fair description.

    If I use the '65 heads, they'll get a rebuild, porting, studs, and hardened valve seats.

    My theory is "work with what ya got" so I won't be selling it for a newer motor (who would buy it anyway?).
     
  6. rc.grimes
    Joined: Aug 14, 2007
    Posts: 698

    rc.grimes
    Member
    from Edmond, OK

    Very inexpensive swap is the Ford GT40P heads. They are available at virtually any salvage yard from V8 Explorers. You can do the roller cam retrofit which allows you to use any of the late model 302 performance cams as well (also available very cheap).
     
  7. 65COMET
    Joined: Apr 10, 2007
    Posts: 3,086

    65COMET
    Member

    The 65 heads have bigger valves than the 260 heads,still small though.If you use the 65 heads your plan sounds good.The GT40 heads will not work with your headers as the plugs use a different angle and interfere with the tubes.A Comp-Cams hydrolic roller would be a good choice,contact them and tell them your plans for the car. JMO , ROY.
     
  8. Mr T body
    Joined: Nov 2, 2005
    Posts: 2,148

    Mr T body
    Alliance Vendor
    from SoCal

    Most likely has the retarded timing set, so throw an early set on and get a few more horses.
     
  9. yellow dog
    Joined: Oct 15, 2011
    Posts: 432

    yellow dog
    Member
    from san diego

    "If I use the '65 heads, they'll get a rebuild, porting, studs, and hardened valve seats"

    By the time you do the above along w/ some good valve guides and guide plates you'll be back at $1000. I built a spare motor a few years ago faced with the same decision.
     
  10. mustang6147
    Joined: Feb 26, 2010
    Posts: 1,847

    mustang6147
    Member
    from Kent, Ohio

    Dont put the cart before the horse. I would run the engine, you might be pleasently surprised !

    Somtimes, on low performance, or smog engine, changing the heads or cam may hurt the overal performance. You can also degree the cam for a little gain as well.

    Runnit. Go from there.
     
  11. Inland empire hot rods
    Joined: Aug 5, 2010
    Posts: 826

    Inland empire hot rods
    Member
    from so cal

    yellow dog is right on, you will be close to the cost of aftermarket heads and the bummer is, they still wont perform any where near the aftermarket ones. I would run it like it is, get the bugs worked out of the rest of the car, get used to driving it before you try and make more power. Pm me if you need some good Ford hookups, been awhile but drag raced sbf's for years


     
  12. Mike51Merc
    Joined: Dec 5, 2008
    Posts: 3,834

    Mike51Merc
    Member

    I guess this means that the stock '75 cam gear holes are indexed differently than earlier cam gears and a simple purchase of an earlier set will advance the cam?

    Again, thanks for all the inputs. As usual, HAMB rules.
     
  13. Mr T body
    Joined: Nov 2, 2005
    Posts: 2,148

    Mr T body
    Alliance Vendor
    from SoCal

    4-8* (depending what you reference) retard for emissions. If it's original, may still have the nylon cam gear. More good reasons to change it!
     
  14. My suggestion is to run the motor for a while and start to accumulate parts
    Get a set of Edelbrock alum heads - Performer RPM
    Get a Edelbrock Performer RPM cam
    If you can find one get a Edelbrock F4B intake
    Get a real 3310 Holley 780 cfm
    Use a Cloyes true roller timing chain and gears.
     
  15. [​IMG]

    This is the motor in my Roadster
    1200 CFM on a factory 2x4 intake
    Edelbrock alum heads
    Edelbrock RPM cam
    Cloyes Gear drive
     
  16. 48fordnut
    Joined: Nov 4, 2005
    Posts: 3,753

    48fordnut
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    GT-40 ,not P heads will work fine and have really good results with a flat top piston. Just recently picked up a set rebuilt for 350. The mans car I put them on said he could really feel the mid range power.There are several really good dual plane intakes that will work for you.You want port velocity .
     
  17. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    falcongeorge
    Member
    from BC

    X2, good, cheap SBF street/performance head.
     
  18. Inland empire hot rods
    Joined: Aug 5, 2010
    Posts: 826

    Inland empire hot rods
    Member
    from so cal

    1200 CFM would seem like a boatload of airflow for naturally aspirated, my sbf used to run really great with a 650, not so much with 750....although when I put 671 on it we ran two 600s,
    It ran pretty good, we then tried two 750 dominators it felt like we picked up 50 more hp
     
  19. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    falcongeorge
    Member
    from BC

    Re: header fitment on the GT-40P's in early falcons/comets, this is just word of mouth, havent done it myself, but I have HEARD that MAC or Summit shorties with 90 degree boots and shortie plugs will fit. Dont take as gospel, I haven't done it, just throwing it out there FWIW.
     
  20. saltflats
    Joined: Aug 14, 2007
    Posts: 10,201

    saltflats
    Member
    from Missouri

    If you didnt want to spend the money on the heads how about a stroker kit and then after you drive that around for awile you will find some heads for it and you will never look back.
     
  21. Mark
    That is a Factory set up circa 1964. Over the counter Hi Performance from Ford. Used on early GT 40s.
    It really screams!!!!!!!!!!
     
  22. Deuces
    Joined: Nov 3, 2009
    Posts: 18,826

    Deuces
    Member
    from Michigan

    I have a set of the GT-40 iron heads which I bought new.... I freakin' lov'em!..:cool:
     
  23. Deuces
    Joined: Nov 3, 2009
    Posts: 18,826

    Deuces
    Member
    from Michigan

    The 3x2 intake setup is pretty cool also...;)
     

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  24. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    falcongeorge
    Member
    from BC

    ^^My favorite is the over the counter dual small neck afb set-up with the Cobra intake and the Stellings & Hellings air cleaners...:)
     

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  25. Edsel58a
    Joined: Jan 17, 2008
    Posts: 751

    Edsel58a
    Member

    If you are budget minded (like me), change the timing chain to a '68-'72 chain, performer intake, edelbrock 500cfm carb. Want to spend a few more bucks, '69-'71 351W heads, upgrade to 600cfm carb. Either way you will be happy. Headers a must.
     
  26. George
    Joined: Jan 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,267

    George
    Member

    A roller cam, & dizzy gear, from a 5.0 would eliminate the ZDDP problems...
     
  27. 6t5frlane
    Joined: Dec 8, 2004
    Posts: 2,384

    6t5frlane
    Member
    from New York

    I think the GT-40 heads will work fine. The GT-40P are the ones with the plug angle . Ford experts ?
     
  28. Bcometfx
    Joined: Oct 15, 2008
    Posts: 155

    Bcometfx
    Member
    from NC Indiana

    If you have the 65 heads use them. You can put 1.90/1.60 valves in them screw in stud and do a nice port job on them and they work great. Did that to my 289 and really woke it up. Cost was about $650 for all the machining. The 65 heads have a nice small chamber so it will help with compression. I would stick a cam in that's about .500 lift on both sides. It will sound real good and perform great too. I run a edlebrock performer intake and my brother runs a weiand stealth intake. I like the stealth better. Put on a 650 carb and you should be good to go. A nice performing reliable engine.


    Posted from the TJJ App for iPhone & iPad
     
  29. Inland empire hot rods
    Joined: Aug 5, 2010
    Posts: 826

    Inland empire hot rods
    Member
    from so cal


    I know Fuzzy, Im just speaking from my own experience, I know Ford did them that way, it just defies everything most people know about cfm, but is sure looks freaking cool!
     
  30. falcongeorge
    Joined: Aug 26, 2010
    Posts: 18,341

    falcongeorge
    Member
    from BC

    correct
     

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