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The elusive 224/3.7 MerCruiser banger

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by tjm73, Apr 9, 2008.

  1. No problem, Dick. I know a number of people who've convinced themselves that electric water pumps are the answer on the street...and then tried it. Hope it works better for you if you go that route.
     
  2. BigChief
    Joined: Jan 14, 2003
    Posts: 2,077

    BigChief
    Member


    WHAT!? You better tell the thousands of racers across the country and the vast aftermarket industry the 2.5/3.0 (153/181) supports for the midget and sprint car folks that these motor don't work very well.

    Aluminum heads, alcohol injection, big cams and even full-on aftermarket blocks are available/based on the old 153 Chevy II motor and these make excellent hot rod motors. Ease of installation/adaptability, weight and size allow these motors to be put in almost any of the lighter rods. Don't get me wrong, the 3.7 is the king of easy to make torque and definitely has a 'dare to be different' flair but discounting the 2.5/3.0 as a motor that is not adaptable to high performance applications is totally inaccurrate information considering the 40 years of racing history the motor enjoys.

    Here's a link to some 2.5/3.0 info...

    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=144835&showall=1


    -Bigchief.
     
  3. dawford
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 498

    dawford
    Member

    BigChief,

    I know that the 2.5 and 3.0 chevys are used in many race cars and that they can be made to make big Hp at high rpm.

    My reference was to the use in regularly driven street Model A's not race cars.

    I think the reason that Randy DuPre destroked his 3.7 mercruiser was so that he could run in the 183ci class and he competed very well with the chevys.

    I didn't intend to take away from the 2.5/3.0 chevys. I think I was trying to say that big cubic inches produce big torque and that the 3.7 is an easy way to make reliable torque and hp without spending a lot of money.

    As you said "Don't get me wrong, the 3.7 is the king of easy to make torque and definitely has a 'dare to be different' flair"

    I did not intend to discount the 2.5/3.0 as a motor that is not adaptable to high performance applications.

    I am sorry that I left you with that impression.

    :) :) :) Dick :) :) :)
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2010
  4. Warpspeed
    Joined: Nov 4, 2008
    Posts: 532

    Warpspeed
    Member

    Does anyone know what one of these MerCruiser 3.7 engines weigh when fully assembled ?
     
  5. dawford
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 498

    dawford
    Member

    Warpspeed,

    While I have not assembled one yet I have weighed the individual components and I think they will come in at about 300 lbs. The bare block and hefty steel main caps weigh less than 100lbs.

    A counter balanced Model B crank weighs 59lbs. The Mercruiser 3.7 crank weighs 11lbs more at 70lbs.

    A mustang T5 weighs about 65lbs. The steel Lakewood bellhousing weighs about 31lbs. I have a Chevy Astro aluminum bellhousing, (it has the Ford trans pattern) that probably weighs about 12lbs, but I haven't figured out how to set the Astro bellhousing up yet.

    I am using Ford Ranger pickup rear ends with 5 on 5 1/2 adapters on the 2 fendered cars and a 9" f-150 rearend on the open wheeled RPU. The front brakes are 48-52 f-1 11' drums and spindles.

    I figure that the engine, trans and rear end swap into a stock Model A Ford will be close to a push as far as weight is concerned.

    I will try to post the final weights when I know what they are. That isn't probibly going to be for a while as I also have Home and an extensive garden to attend to.

    :) :) :) Dick :) :) :)
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 7, 2010
  6. Warpspeed
    Joined: Nov 4, 2008
    Posts: 532

    Warpspeed
    Member

    Thanks for that Dick.
    One other question, the overall length of the engine ?

    I have been looking at a lot of different options for a Model A, and want something fairly light and compact. So far, an LSX engine looks pretty good for weight, size and power.
    But if a Merc 3.7 is that light, it certainly has a great deal of potential.
     
  7. dawford
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 498

    dawford
    Member

    Warpspeed,

    The overall length will be about 26 to 27".

    My model A's are not low to the ground so I am mounting the engine low in the frame. This will minimize the amount of firewall I will have to modify.

    The T5 with the S-10 tailshaft will bring the shifter back a few inches but will clear the front seat and look ok.

    The major attraction other than performance and weight is the fact that the engine dosn't have a lot of modern looking peripherals hanging all over it.

    With a Powermaster Alternator that looks like a generator the engine looks like a simple 4 cylinder engine. Painted Ford green it will look like it was meant to be in a Model A.

    I think that if driven reasonably with the overdrive T5 it will get better gas mileage than the current Model A engines that I have.

    But then who is going to drive it reasonably with all of that torquing hp.

    I think Henry would like it. I know I will.

    :) :) :) Dick :) :) :)
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2010
  8. Warpspeed
    Joined: Nov 4, 2008
    Posts: 532

    Warpspeed
    Member

    Once again, thanks for the info Dick.
    I will start looking around for one of these engines. It seems to have quite a few things going for it, as well as being pretty unique.
    It should also fit fairly well into an A, as well as bolt up fairly readily to a good selection of transmissions.
     
  9. tjm73
    Joined: Feb 17, 2006
    Posts: 3,381

    tjm73
    Member

    I must say I have very happy to see so much activity on this topic. I still hope to build a T with one of these 3.7's backed by a full manual shift 700R4. Until then, I'll enjoy the pictures and progress.
     
  10. randydupree
    Joined: May 19, 2005
    Posts: 649

    randydupree
    Member
    from archer fl

    heres another tip for you guys,use the mercruiser head gasket from mercruiser,it has some sealant on it that you must have or you will have head gasket leaks,they are just as cheap as any other gasket.
    Your local parts house will have gaskets,but they always leaked water over by the lifter wall.
    Go to Mercruiser and get the gaskets.
     
  11. I made stepped dowel pins for the mercruiser 470 block and chevy v8 bellhousing combination from grade 5 5/8" capscrews the shank of the bolts fitted the bellhousing well as they were and I turned the rest of the bolt down to fit the redrilled holes in my block [ the block holes were in bad shape and had to be redrilled]
     
  12. I decided to bend some pipe today for an exhaust manifold. Although I got an extensive upper body workout, the pipe has only bent modestly so far.
     
  13. dawford
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 498

    dawford
    Member

    dennis g,

    I bought a set of Hedman 3/8" header flanges. I think will use the suggestion of mart3406 who used exhause flex pipe to build up the prototype bends he then brushed on epoxy cement , let it set then took the pieces to a muffler shop and had them bend them in tubing.

    I will then tack weld them together and take them to a good welder and have him finish welding them up. I am not so good on thinstock welding and the headers will show.

    They will be simple down to inside the frame then bend to the rear 2 into 1 then 2 onto 1 again and those 2 into 1. The only unusual pipe will be the pipe toward the bellhousing that will have to miss the small Hitorque starter enough to avoid getting the starter too hot.

    The HiTorque starter is a lot easier to go around than the larger Delco.

    :) :) :) Dick :) :) :)
     
  14. ADVICE PLEASE
    I'm going to assemble my engine this week. I have to make a oilpump alignment tool. I assume it is a tube that goes where the distributor plugs in and has a hex[ or rod] on its lower end to put the pump where it belongs.
    If anyone has made one. Or knows whaat the official tool looks like, please let me know.
    Dennis
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  15. Dick, I made a multitube system. In spite of it being of rather narrow tubes {1 5/8"} it was a clumsy bulky thing. After I got that I replaced with a single tube and was happier.
    Your 3/8" flanges are the right thickness.
    You can effectively stop heat with a sheet of stainless on standoffs to get some airspace on both sides.
     
  16. Dick,
    I've built a lot of headers over the years, and I'd recommend against having the tubes bent using standard muffler shop hydraulic press bending equipment (unless all the bends are VERY slight). Before you go to a lot of effort making the flex templates, have a test bend made and then compare that with a true mandrel bend that custom headers are built from... I'll bet you find the welds are the least of your worries.
     
  17. There is a big difference in mandrel bends compared to the others. As far as rolling a bend in a tube goes, it is not as good as a mandrel bend. I bent a tube about 15 degrees and it lost a quarter inch in height but maintained its width.
    I had hoped for less distortion but it was satisfactory however, for a bend of say 5 degrees.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  18. dirt t
    Joined: Mar 20, 2007
    Posts: 4,665

    dirt t
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Kingman,AZ
    1. HAMB Old Farts' Club

    Great thread!
     
  19. Advice about getting parts shipped to you:

    The united states postal service has flat rate boxes which come very fast. If you can get it into one of their boxes this is both the fastest and cheapest way of getting your parts.
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2010
  20. MOTOR MOUNTS:
    I bought Chevrolet V8 mounts & discovered that they are about an inch narrower than the Mercruiser studs.
    It looks as if Phil extended metal out toward the frame where the mounts are. This is the way to do it. Nearly all of the mounts that I saw in the junkyard this afternoon were in at 45 degrees to the engine. I bought some late model chevrolet mounts while I was out there. They are big but the rubber is softer than the aftermarket mounts. I'm a fan of making motor mounts soft as those sometimes absorb the vibes better.
    Aftermarket chev mounts seem a bit crudely made but as long as they are in compression they should work. The metal in aftermarket mounts made in India looks marginal [about 0.10] to hold up an engine.
    Dennis
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  21. dawford
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 498

    dawford
    Member

    exwestracer,

    I think I might at least temporarily use a 460 Ford truck passenger side cast iron header turned over and modified to dump exhaust out the front of the engine. I might then either run it down the driverside above the steering and motor mount or pass it over to the passenger side then to the rear.

    Putting headers on it later will probably help the exhaust flow enough to justify the trouble.



    dennis g,

    There is about 5" on each side between the frane rails and the mounting surface on the engine.

    I am going to try using 1/4" plate cut to the triangular shape of the side bolt pattern on the block. I will then drill the plate with 3 holes to line up with the block holes and weld 2" square heavy wall tubing to the plate and extending at the proper angle to meet a heavy L angle that will sit extending upside down toward the frame rail. This mount arm will sit on top of the motor mount. The motor mount will sit on top of another angle L plate that will bolt right side up (that is extending out from the bottom of the frame)to the frame rail extending toward the engine.

    These L shaped mounts can be gusseted with a tab welded at each side leaving enough room for access to the bolts.

    My frame is box girdered and is very rigid. I think that by moving the motor mounts out as far as possible I might better subdue the jiggle that a 4 cylinder engine creates at idle speed. If need be I might also install a rubber mounted stabilizer bar similar to an early Honda to further subdue the engine vibration and torque.

    The 3rd mount will be at the rear of the T5 transmission using a Mustang T5 trans mount on a the original or a fabricated cross member. I also have a T5 harmonic balancer arm with a weight on the end to help if there is any vibration transfered to the drive shaft.

    :) :) :) Dick :) :) :)
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2010
  22. Phil1934
    Joined: Jun 24, 2001
    Posts: 2,704

    Phil1934
    Member

    Sounds like same. I welded a 1`/8" x 1" strap across bottom and drilled for wider spacing, then put washer under mount at top bolt to even it out.

    I bought a 460 bus manifold that has a center dump and takes a 3" pipe. You might check around for one. It took a wide v band but you can grind down top without affecting sealing to take a standard v clamp.
     
  23. dawford
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 498

    dawford
    Member

    Thanks Phil,

    I will see if I can fine a bus manifold.

    Phil, does the bus manifold have the full depth port? I have 1 manifold that the exhaust port opening is not big enough at only 1.45" high. The other manifold has a 2.05" high port opening. My aluminum head needs one about in the middle of these. The larger one will do fine as I don't expect to go to the trouble of matching the ports to the gasket anyway.

    :) :) :) Dick :) :) :)
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2010
  24. Dick,
    I have used the method of locating mounts well apart several times when I wanted support for an engine but also wanted to use soft mounts. It works well. The soft rubber isolates the engine from the frame and spreading them apart gives leverage against engine movement.

    I've been using a 200 cubic inch Allis Chalmers 4 cylinder engine. It is mounted on tire rubber mounts and does not have vibration problems. [One mount is at the front of it and two more are at the bellhousing.]
     
  25. Sounds nice and strong.

    When you say right side up then does the angle iron look like a letter "L" as it appears on a page?
     
  26. Phil1934
    Joined: Jun 24, 2001
    Posts: 2,704

    Phil1934
    Member

    No rubber with 6 mounts. The rubber mounts bolt on. Manifold at ports is between 2-3/4 and 3" high on the outside. It goes from top of port casting in head to 45* cut at bottom and covers gasket. See this page for manifolds, http://www.stevensparts.com/FORD EXHAUST MANIFOLD.htm near the bottom Looks like mine is a Part #370/429 without A.I.R. In mid 1989 Ford reduced the exhaust port size and again in the early 90's. If you look at the pic of the 429(7.0) manifold you can see how much shorter it is through the ports. You must have picked up a '90's manifold (F casting #). I see with a Google search a turbo v band clamp is available for the E5HE manifold so you might not have to thin the flange. Just add a 3" lipped exhaust pipe stub with a 3-3/4" OD lip.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  27. dawford
    Joined: Apr 25, 2010
    Posts: 498

    dawford
    Member

    Phil,

    I think that that's about the last loose thread for me on this project.

    Thanks for the great input on the source and model number.

    :) :) :) Dick :) :) :)
     
  28. Warpspeed
    Joined: Nov 4, 2008
    Posts: 532

    Warpspeed
    Member

    Phil, In your opinion, would it be possible to turn that manifold upside down and mount a turbo on top?
    Would that make reaching the plugs impossible?
     
  29. Phil1934
    Joined: Jun 24, 2001
    Posts: 2,704

    Phil1934
    Member

    Just checked. No way as plugs are about 15* off vertical so would be into upside down manifold.
     
  30. Warpspeed
    Joined: Nov 4, 2008
    Posts: 532

    Warpspeed
    Member

    Thanks Phil.
     

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