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Old 03-10-2011, 11:44 PM   #1
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351c 2v Rebuild? Or go a different route for 400+HP

Hello, I am new to the forums and the automotive scene so this ultra noob needs some help! Hopefully I can get some advice to point me in the right direction.

I just bought my dad's '73 Mustang with a 351c 2v engine in it. Ive been doing some reading up on getting some power out of it and looking into learning how to rebuild engines and work on the car. Ill have some buddies to teach me what I need and help me along the way so Im not really limited on what I can do, except for maybe money. There have been some posts Ive read on this subject but they are all a few years old so I have an idea on what I can do but I just wanted to make sure I have the most up to date information. I dont know how much things can change in a few years.

Anyway I would like to get my new baby to 400+ horsepower. The engine I have has a lot of mileage on it, 130k so I wasnt sure if a rebuild would be the route to take or get a different engine. I would like to keep it budget friendly and have seen that it can get pretty expensive to get the 351c beefed up.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for the help
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Old 03-12-2011, 01:46 AM   #2
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You'd be surprised what you could do keeping a budget.

Block bored. 060 over to get a good clean up of the high miles. Rods checked and shot peened. Can choose a piston that would yield a higher compression ratio. Heads cleaned up with at least a 3 angle valve job. Make a cam selection according to how you want to drive it. 1.7 roller rockers (check clearance) and Edelbrock manifold and about a 650-750 carb. Set of headers and exhaust rear gear. 4.10 for automatic 3.73 for manual.

Of course you are replacing all crank, rod, and cam bearings.

You do those things you have a strong running vehicle.
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Old 03-12-2011, 03:58 PM   #3
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You'd be surprised what you could do keeping a budget.

Block bored. 060 over to get a good clean up of the high miles. Rods checked and shot peened. Can choose a piston that would yield a higher compression ratio. Heads cleaned up with at least a 3 angle valve job. Make a cam selection according to how you want to drive it. 1.7 roller rockers (check clearance) and Edelbrock manifold and about a 650-750 carb. Set of headers and exhaust rear gear. 4.10 for automatic 3.73 for manual.
WHAT? Really? Ok, some of the advice seems good to me. The Eddie air gap is a great intake, but on a budget you could go with a Weiand accelerator (you can even find them used if you really want to save money). There's a few other things I would take issue with, though.

To the original poster, I would say DO NOT bore a block unless it needs it. Cleveland blocks also have notoriously thin cylinder walls and some castings have core shift. With 130k miles you probably will need to bore, but not 0.060" over! You want to bore as little as possible to keep the block usable for future cleanups if necessary. Find a good local machine shop and trust their advice. Most people say it's good to get a sonic check done before boring to make sure the block is ok. Bore 0.020" over if it will clean up there. Probably 0.030" over will do it no matter how worn the bores are.

Roller rockers are fine but not necessary for a budget build. The Cleveland stock rocker ratio is 1.73:1. Stick with that. I would just use the stock rockers (they are not the same as 302 or 351W rockers, by the way).

Cam selection also determines compression ratio, rear end gear and torque converter lock-up rpm. You can go custom or talk to a good cam company like Comp for advice.

Edit: rod work is also not necessary unless you are going to try to maximize the engine power and rpm. Then you probably want to put at least better nuts on the rods, or the next step toward higher performance is to install good ARP bolts and resize the rods (not needed for normal budget build).

http://www.network54.com/Forum/263038/
Go here to look at some sample Cleveland builds and see how much power they made. This will give you an idea of what you need to do to meet your power goals.
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Old 03-13-2011, 11:05 AM   #4
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@ Hack, wasn't sure on the .060 bore, not a machinest! lol I just knew it had to be cleaned up. lol

Yes OP.......before any rebuild you have to make sure the block is okay. Rods you wanna make sure they are straight.

I could have sworn though that compression ratio is determined by head chambers and type of piston used, not the dynamics of the cam. The cam is a factor in the duration of valves being open or closed.

This BB motor I have now is my first BB motor for racing. I did not go out and spend a boat load of money to make it run 10's.

I will say though that hardware is key........replacing all nuts and bolts with ARP was one of the best choices I made.
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Old 03-13-2011, 06:22 PM   #5
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I could have sworn though that compression ratio is determined by head chambers and type of piston used, not the dynamics of the cam. The cam is a factor in the duration of valves being open or closed.
Yes the CR is determined by the chamber size and type as well as the piston. However, you need to decide what compression ratio you want. In order to make that decision you should take into account the cam shaft. For instance, depending on when the intake valve closes, some of the compression will bleed off as the piston comes up (dynamic compression). Here's a link that explains it.
Angry Engineer: Dynamic Compression Ratio

Edit: oh one other thing I should add. CHP stroker kits for Cleveland have come WAY down in price. Before spending a bunch of money on a 351 rotating assembly, price everything and compare it to a stroker kit. You might get more bang for your buck that way.

People also recommend getting rid of the stock 2 piece valves if you're going for higher performance. You might check into rebuilding your 2V heads versus some of the new aluminum heads on the market versus finding some 4V heads. Price out all the work the existing heads need before putting too much money into them.
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Old 03-15-2011, 10:58 PM   #6
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Thanks everyone. I definitely decided to go with the rebuild soon after posting this. From the info from his post and talking to people I have quite a few options and some pricing to do to figure out which route to take so should be some fun research. Hopefully I can get things rolling soon. If anyone has anymore input im all ears, I can never get enough. Thanks again!
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Old 03-17-2011, 03:41 PM   #7
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Cleveland engines are awesome!

Block should be bored only as much as absolutely required-if you want more power, then a stroker kit is an easy way to get more cubic inches.

If using factory rods, please upgrade to ARP rod nut or even better bolts and nuts

To my knowledge there are 2 major weaknesses in a Cleveland engine and they are the two piece valves and the weak factory nuts on the rods that can pull loose from higher RPM usage.

4V heads may be better for upper rpm operating ranges You will see a lot of folks dissing the Open chamber versions, but with flat tops or even pop up pistons they perform very well. The aftermarket 3V style heads are very similar to the yates high port heads (essentially what Nascar fords are running) and will shave a good bit of weight off the front of your car. They look expensive, but a proper build with new valves of your iron heads isn't going to be free.
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:55 AM   #8
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The open chamber set up is the only draw back to those 2bbl Cleveland heads. Detonation prone and inefficient. My friend with a 72 Stang found a pair of Australian 2BBL heads with the quench chambers. You wouldn't believe how hard that thing ran.
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Old 04-05-2011, 09:47 PM   #9
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The best thing you could do is to upgrade to a 4v cc head, you would just be waisting money on 2v head stuff.
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Old 07-18-2011, 12:22 AM   #10
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The open chamber set up is the only draw back to those 2bbl Cleveland heads. Detonation prone and inefficient. My friend with a 72 Stang found a pair of Australian 2BBL heads with the quench chambers. You wouldn't believe how hard that thing ran.
If you know what you're doing the open chamber 2V heads work well. My .030" over 351c makes 500 hp @ 7000 on pump gas with ported 2V iron domestic open chamber heads.

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Old 07-18-2011, 01:04 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by thecurse12 View Post
Hello, I am new to the forums and the automotive scene so this ultra noob needs some help! Hopefully I can get some advice to point me in the right direction.

I just bought my dad's '73 Mustang with a 351c 2v engine in it. Ive been doing some reading up on getting some power out of it and looking into learning how to rebuild engines and work on the car. Ill have some buddies to teach me what I need and help me along the way so Im not really limited on what I can do, except for maybe money. There have been some posts Ive read on this subject but they are all a few years old so I have an idea on what I can do but I just wanted to make sure I have the most up to date information. I dont know how much things can change in a few years.

Anyway I would like to get my new baby to 400+ horsepower. The engine I have has a lot of mileage on it, 130k so I wasnt sure if a rebuild would be the route to take or get a different engine. I would like to keep it budget friendly and have seen that it can get pretty expensive to get the 351c beefed up.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for the help
I am in the process of doing this right now... I have my father's 1973 Mach 1 351C 2v that when restoring it I decided to slightly restomod it as I wanted to be able to drive it anywhere so it has Global-West susp., Baer Claw brakes, 17" wheels w/ 245/45/17 tires, and awhile ago I redid the motor basically stock except for mild cam, headers, Holley Advenger Carb. and such but before I even tried to put the motor back in I thought nah I want more horsepower but to get 400hp out of a 351C 2v you either have Ernie Elliott build it or you have to use a stroker kit with 4v heads and since I wanted about 450hp I decided to use a Scat based 393ci stroker kit w/ Edelbrock Aluminum 4v heads w/ the 351C 4v Air-Gap intake as from many conversations with engine shops this is the only way you are getting that HP unless you know a wizard engine builder. This Mach 1 has been in my family since new so it was very important to me to use the Cleveland engine otherwise its much cheaper to order a 351W crate motor. Doing a 351C 2v or 4v on a budget is going to be hard not impossible... good luck
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