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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
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**** BUILD UPDATES / TABLE OF CONTENTS ****

-> 08/07/12 (post #74-75) - Oil Pump & Oil Pan: Prep, Pickup Clearance, Final Install
-> 05/27/12 (post #71) - Cylinder Heads: Cleaning & Paint Prep, Painting, Blueprinting, Final Install
-> 03/10/12 (post #69-70) – Exterior Components: Front Cover Prep & Install, Balancer Install, Oil Filter Adapter
-> 03/03/12 (post #68) – Camshaft: Degreeing the Camshaft & Final Timing Set Install
-> 01/28/12 (post #67) – Rotating Assembly: Final Bottom-End Assembly
-> 12/20/11 (post #65) – Rotating Assembly: Blueprinting & Balancing
-> 10/29/11 (post #64) – Pistons: Piston Prep & Blueprinting
-> 08/27/11 (Post #58) – Rods: Rod & Rod Bearing Blueprinting
-> 07/24/11 (Post #57) – Piston Rings: Filing & Fitting Ring Sets
-> 05/25/11 (Post #36) – Crankshaft: Final Install of Crank & Main Bearings
-> 05/07/11 (Post #34) – Crankshaft: Cleaning & Prep, Blueprinting, Main Bearing Clearances
-> 04/23/11 (Post #24) – Camshaft: Additional Components, Cam Install, Measuring Endplay, Final Assembly
-> 04/13/11 (Post #21) – Engine Block: Oil Galley Plugs | Camshaft: Selection, Cam Bearings, Blueprinting & Prep
-> 04/04/11 (Post #19) – Engine Block: Cross Bolts
-> 04/02/11 (Post #13-14) – Engine Block: Casting Flash Removal, Core Plugs, Cleaning & Paint Prep, Painting
-> 03/31/11 (Post #5) – Engine Block: Oiling System, Oiling Mods
-> 03/21/11 (Post #2) – Engine Block: Selection, Identification, Machine Work

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Engine Build Thread - 427ci FE Big Block

Figured I would start a thread to document the buildup of my 427ci FE motor during the next few days/weeks/months. Hopefully I’ll be able to cover most of the steps during the build and have a little fun in the process. :evil:

The concept for this project is simply to build a reliable 427 cubic inch FE big block without having to mortgage the house or take a second job (i.e. this build won’t be based off of a new-casting $3-5k side-oiler block). By boring a readily available seasoned FE 352 or 390 block, and filling it with newer modern componentry, the finished motor should be just as powerful as the original and more street friendly, all the while looking nearly identical on the outside to how the 427’s came out of the factory in ‘65/66.


Goals
~ Displacement of 427 ci (achieved via 4.060” bore & 4.125” stroke)
~ Visually Authentic to the ’66 S/C 427 FE Motor
~ Reliable & Low Maintenance Street Motor (via Hydraulic Roller Cam & Lifters, etc.)
~ Weigh less than an original-spec 427 FE (via Aluminum Heads, Aluminum Intake, etc.)
~ 6200 PRM Redline
~ 9.5-10:1 Compression Ratio
~ Horsepower & Torque = 450+



Parts & Components
~ 1966 Ford 390 FE Block (Bored/Honed to 4.060”)
~ SCAT 4.125” Stroker Crank (Internally Balanced for custom rotating assembly)
~ SCAT Forged I-Beam Rods
~ Speed-Pro Main Bearings & Rod Bearings
~ Diamond Forged 4032 Aluminum Pistons (Custom - Dished)
~ ARP Bolts: Mains, Rods, Intake, Heads, Cam, Damper, etc.
~ Comp Cams Hydraulic Roller Camshaft & Lifters (Survival Motorsports Custom Grind)
~ Blue Thunder Bronze Cam Thrust/Retaining Plate
~ Edelbrock 60069 Aluminum Cylinder Heads (w/ upgraded Dual Valve Springs to match Cam specs)
~ Blue Thunder 427 S/C Reproduction Intake Manifold – Aluminum (#IM-427MR-4)
~ Fel-Pro Performance Gaskets: Head (#1020), Intake (#1247-S3), Exhaust (#1442), Misc Completion Kit (#2720)
~ PRW 17-4ph SS Roller-tip Rocker Arm Assemblies w/ Billet Aluminum Stands & Hardened Shafts (#3239022)
~ ARP Custom Rocker Stand Stud Kit (Precision Oil Pumps)
~ Head Oil Restrictors to Rockers (TBD)
~ Pushrods – Trend Custom Length (TBD)
~ Chrome “Pentroof” Valve Covers
~ Blueprinted Melling High Volume Oil Pump (Precision Oil Pumps)
~ 1/4" HD Chrome-moly Oil Pump Driveshaft (Precision Oil Pumps)
~ 427 Road Race Oil Pan Repro w/ Windage Tray, Pickup, Custom Temp Bung (Armando Racing Oil Pans #408)
~ Milodon Crushproof Premium Oil Pan Gaskets (#40450)
~ Ford Racing Double Roller Timing Set (#M-6268-A390)
~ Cast Aluminum Timing Cover (Reconditioned OE FoMoCo)
~ Remote Oil Filter Block Adapter (Trans Dapt #1015)
~ Cast Aluminum Remote Oil Filter Housing & Steel Mounting Bracket (reproductions of Originals)
~ Crank Oil Slinger (OE Ford N.O.S.)
~ Crankshaft Damper Spacer (Billet Steel Repro)
~ Professional Products 427-FE Reproduction Damper (7-1/2") & Single-Sheave Pulley (6-5/8")
~ Carter Mechanical Fuel Pump - 120 gallons/hour (#GM6905)
~ Ford Racing Fuel Pump Eccentric (#M-6287-C302)
~ Fuel Filter Canister & Bracket (reproductions of Ford “B7Q-9155-A” & “C0AE-9180-A”)
~ 1x4v Fuel Log (reproduction of Original)
~ Carb (Holley - TBD)
~ “Turkey Pan” Cold Air Plenum
~ Stelling & Hellings 8.5" Chrome Air Filter Assembly
~ High-Volume Mechanical Water Pump (FlowKooler #1642)
~ Ford Water Pump Pulley - Single-Sheave 7-1/4” Diameter (Reconditioned OE FoMoCo)
~ Radiator “Surge” Tank (Black, Driver-side Outlet)
~ Alternator Bracket Set (Reconditioned OE FoMoCo ‘65-'67)
~ 61-amp Autolite Alternator (Repro of “C5TF-10300-F” w/ Red Autolite Stamping)
~ 2.62” Alternator Pulley & 13-Blade Alternator Fan (prepped & painted black)
~ Distributor & Coil (TBD)
~ Plug Wires (TBD)
~ Autolite Spark Plugs (#3924)
~ Powermaster Mastertorque Mini-Starter (#9606)
~ Quicktime Bellhousing & Block Plate (#RM-6056)
~ And more to come ...


- John
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Block Selection, Prep Work, Machine Work

Block Selection

With this FE build being based on a readily available and cost effective seasoned 352 or 390 block, I needed to turn to the aftermarket in order to pick up the extra displacement and achieve my goal of having a 427ci big block FE. I had long ago decided I wasn’t going to try and reuse a 40-50 year old factory crank and set of rods with an unknown history ... too much risk in my opinion if I wanted to be able to spin this motor up over 6k and not worry about something letting loose. Plus, the cost to acquire, re-furbish, and upgrade (ARP bolts, etc) those factory pieces is nearly as much as a brand new aftermarket rotating assembly with higher quality pieces. And with the aftermarket, I could take advantage of available stroker cranks and custom piston diameters to get to my 427ci goal. A low mileage or service 390 block can be power-honed to a 4.060” bore diameter (a 352 block can also be used and easily bored/honed out to that same diameter). This is a very small over-bore, leaving ample thickness in the cylinder walls for proper strength and cooling (and can even be over-bored again in a future rebuild if desired). The 4.060” bore spec combined with a 4.125” aftermarket stroker crank creates the target displacement of 427 cubic inches.

Additionally, I wanted to source a ’65+ block to take advantage of all the minor upgrades to the FE line that occurred during the early 60’s (additional motor-mount holes, alternator mounting hole, wider #3 main thrust bearing, deeper head & main bearing bolt holes, etc).

The last requirement on the list was that the block needed to have provisions to run the hydraulic roller lifters being used in this build (meaning the block must have the two factory drilled longitudinal oil galleys necessary to feed hydraulic lifters).

With all of that decided on, and since I only needed a seasoned block for this project (not an entire donor or pullout motor), I had Barry at Survival Motorsports source the block and spec the machine work for me.



Prep & Machine Work

The block prep consisted of a bake cycle, then a media blast, followed by a hot-tank wash; it’s amazing how the block looks nearly brand new when it’s all done.

Block machine work consisted of the following:
~ Bore & Hone all cylinders to 4.060” (w/ torque plates installed to replicate distortion from cylinder heads & hardware)
~ Line Hone the main bearing bores (to create round and in-line bores for all the crank journals)
~ Mill & Parallel both deck surfaces


And here's how the machined block showed up at my door:




Now free from its container:




And finally, up and mounted on the engine stand:






Casting Codes / Block Identification

Now for the decoding ...

On this block, underneath the oil filter pad is a “6D27” casting date code; the “6” represents 1966, the “D” represents the fourth month of the year (April), and the “27” represents the day of the month in which the block was cast; meaning, this block was cast on April 27th, 1966.




The other code of interest is the “C6ME-A” casting number located on the passenger side of the block. In this instance though, the number doesn’t provide much info. Theoretically, with this code the block could be a 352, 390, 410, or 428 FE block ... or even a 330 or 391 FT truck block. Ford definitely didn't make it easy to identify these engines.




In the end, this particular block is indeed a 390 and was verified by the “drill bit test”. This simple check of the spacing between cylinder walls in the water jacket is considered the most reliable way to find the true identity of any particular FE block.




There are plenty of good write-ups already out there on how to perform this test, so I won’t go into detail here. In short, this block was confirmed as a 390 because a 15/64” drill bit shank was the largest I could fit between two cylinder walls in the water jacket. And that 15/64” spec makes it a relatively thick-walled 390 too, which is great news for overall cylinder wall strength in this motor.


Additional photos of the block here: http://s628.photobucket.com/albums/uu9/hindsight52/427 FE Big Block/Engine Block/



Next installment ... Oiling System Mods.

- John
 

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John,

If you don't mind me asking, why the 4.125 crank instead of a 4.25 crank? If I recall correctly the price was the same and you can gain a few more cubic inches.

Bruce
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
John,

If you don't mind me asking, why the 4.125 crank instead of a 4.25 crank? If I recall correctly the price was the same and you can gain a few more cubic inches.

Bruce
You are completely correct Bruce; its pretty much the same price for either length of those stroker cranks. My thoughts on it are that with the 450+ hp I'll be getting with the 4.125" crank in this particular build, any more power is honestly just tire smoke in a car that is as lightweight as our Cobra's are. Plus, that particular crank length lets me play with the bore numbers to get the 427 cubic inch displacement I was after. :D

- John
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Oiling System / Oiling Mods

Side-Oiler vs Top-Oiler

Figured I’d toss in a quick history of the two different styles of oiling systems in the FE family: side-oiler & top-oiler. The difference lies simply in the sequence that each of the engine components receives its lubrication.

The “top-oiler” design was used on the vast majority of FE blocks produced by Ford (352, 360, 390, 410, etc) - even the 428 motor that powers most of the “427” Street Cobras was a top-oiler block. With this lubrication strategy, oil is primarily fed via a longitudinal center oil galley (located just below the lifter valley) and is dispersed from the top of the block to the bottom, meaning the lifters and cam bearings are the first to receive oil, as lubrication then makes its way down to the main bearings.

The “side-oiler” design on the other hand, was born out of racing necessity where the oiling priority needed to be to the main bearings first and foremost; this design has a main oil galley running lower along the side of the block to feed the mains, then galleys going upwards to feed the cam, etc. Many of the 427 motors were of this design (there were 427 top-oilers produced though). This side-oiler design was advantageous in theory because with any oil-pressure fluctuation or drop, the mains were still the first to receive oil and hopefully wouldn’t be starved (i.e. spun bearing). In practical application for a well built and blue-printed street motor, the difference is minimal to none; and with a few small oil-system modifications made to a top-oiler block (plus the addition of a high-volume oil pump), the main bearings stay very well lubricated and are completely protected. In an all-out racing application (such as 7-8k RPM, 650+ hp drag/road-racing), the side-oiler definitely has its merits, but for my purpose in a mostly street-driven Cobra, provides no quantifiable advantage. Also, most original side-oiler blocks were for use with solid lifters only and cannot be converted; in order to run a hydraulic roller cam, I would have most likely had to spring for a new-casting block (Genesis, Pond, etc) that has the necessary oil galleys drilled out for use with the hydraulic lifters. Unfortunately, the extra $3-5k for that block isn’t budgeted in my build; and truthfully, just flat out isn’t necessary for this project.



Oiling Mods & Upgrades

As mentioned earlier, by performing a couple small modifications to the block, the oiling system is vastly improved and becomes nearly bulletproof. And again, there are a plethora of great articles and books already out there on how to perform these mods so I won’t go into a lot of detail in this post.

Here’s the list of mods done on the block for this particular build:

~ Main Saddles: On FE blocks, there is a small misalignment between the oil supply holes (in main saddles # 1, 2, 4) and the oil supply openings in the main bearings themselves. To correct this, the entry portion of the holes on these three saddles were enlarged with a die grinder and blended to match the corresponding openings in the bearings.




~ Oil Pump Mount: There is a single opening in the block here, and is where the pump feeds oil up/over to the block’s oil filter mounting pad. This hole was enlarged with a die grinder (gasket matched to the new Melling oil pump), and the bowl/transition feeding into the passageway was opened & blended to aid oil flow.




~ Oil Filter Mounting Pad: There are two openings in this area; the first is the one exiting from the block (containing oil from the passageway connected to the pump) and heading out to the remote oil filter; the second one is the opening coming back from the remote oil filter that feeds back into the block to lubricate the engine. Both of these holes were enlarged and blended with a die grinder to aid in oil flow to/from the block; machinist’s dye was used to create an outline of the gasket (for the remote oil filter adapter) on the block, serving as a template to insure the holes weren’t enlarged too far.






~ Oil Galley Plugs: Depending on the particular year/type of block, some of the galley plug openings were tapped (1/4" NPT) by the factory, while others were left as a standard “press-fit” type plug. For a little extra security against one of the plugs popping out and the engine losing oil pressure, all of the remaining press-fit openings were tapped to accept the same 1/4" NPT plugs. A quick note: the one plug behind the distributor isn’t at risk to go anywhere and is fine to leave in stock form; so, it remained as a press-fit plug in this block.




~ Oil Drainback Holes: The drainage holes at the front & rear of the lifter valley were opened/deburred with a die grinder to help aid in oil flow back down to the pan.




~ Blueprinted High-Volume Oil Pump: To help move more lubrication through the oil galleys and provide a boost in oil pressure at idle and low RPM’s, a high-volume Melling oil pump (M57HV) was chosen. And to insure that the pump was set up to spec and working as efficiently as possible, it was blueprinted by Doug at Precision Oil Pumps - he does an awesome job with these and the work is top notch. I also decided to run one of his upgraded chrome-moly 1/4" oil pump drive shafts for a little extra peace of mind against the possibility of an oil pump drive shaft failure (thus starving the engine of oil and ruining my day/week/month/year).


Additional photos of the block here: http://s628.photobucket.com/albums/uu9/hindsight52/427 FE Big Block/Engine Block/

Next installment ... Finishing up the block. :D

- John
 

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Discussion Starter #7

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VERY inspiring!!

My dad owns a wrecking yard.

I now have him searching for a good 390 block for ME!!:w00t::001_tt1:

Anyone want a nice 331??:shifty:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
VERY inspiring!!

My dad owns a wrecking yard.

I now have him searching for a good 390 block for ME!!:w00t::001_tt1:

Anyone want a nice 331??:shifty:
Big block fever is a beautiful thing!!!

:evil: :evil: :evil:
 

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I'll enjoy following this, it looks good. As my signature bears out, I've got a 455" FE (stock 428 bore and 4.25 stroke) that pretty much duplicates what Fifty-Two is doing.

For others thinking to duplicate what Fifty-Two is doing, don't overlook the FE service blocks. D3TE & D4TE (and maybe others, but I'm familiar with these) blocks have thicker webbing in the main bearing areas, and most of them have thicker cylinder walls. Most of the service blocks were originally 4.00 (352) or 4.05 (390) bore, but you can find them in 4.13 too.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Finishing Up The Block

Exterior Casting Cleanup

Just for cosmetic purposes, I decided to clean up some of the casting flash on the exterior of the block. Ford never bothered to clean up this type of cosmetic stuff back in the day, but a few minutes spent with my angle & die grinders took care of all of it. The usual areas where this casting flash is an eyesore is at the edges of the front corners on either side of the block (see photos below). There is also a fair amount of flash on the corner edges at the back of the block and around the starter pocket area too; its less visible back there, but I still decided to get rid of it since I already had the tools out to do it.

Before (passenger-side front):




After (passenger-side front):




Before (driver-side front):




After (driver-side front):





Deck Cleanup

Another area that needed attention was the block's deck surfaces. After the decking machine work was completed, the machinist went ahead and lightly chamfered the cylinder bore edges to help make sure that piston rings wouldn’t get hung up during install later down the road.

It’s also recommended to chamfer the head-bolt holes on each deck (since the head-bolts tend to slightly pull up the surrounding deck surface when tightened), as well as chamfer the 4 head dowel-pin holes (to make the dowels easier to insert). I used a few mini files and a knife sharpening stone to accomplish this; it is important to note that the direction of filing should always move from the deck surface, downward into the hole; filing in this directions helps to make sure that no burrs are created above the deck surface (any burrs could prevent the head gaskets from sealing properly).







Thread Chasing & Cleaning

Even after all the hot-tanking, baking, and media blasting the block went through at the machinist's, many of the bolt-holes still had years of gunk worked into the threads. To achieve proper clamping loads and torque values during the assembly process later down the road, it’s important that these holes and threads be completely clean. For this project, I sourced an affordable set of NC (course) thread chasing taps from Jegs that covers every bolt-hole size on the block (http://www.jegs.com/i/JEGS+Performance+Products/555/80505/10002/-1). Normal hardware store taps are not designed to “chase” and clean out old threads; they are designed to cut and create new threads. So, using normal taps to clean out these holes could remove not only the gunk, but also some of the metal from the threads themselves … not a good thing. The chasing tap set was money well spent because it made the tedious task of cleaning out the 80+ threaded holes in this block a bearable ordeal. The process I used consisted of:
~ A shot of brake cleaner down each bolt-hole
~ Followed by running the tap down and back a couple times
~ Then another shot of brake cleaner
~ Next came compressed air to get everything out of the hole
~ And finally, a shot of WD40 went into each hole to prevent any corrosion



Final Block Cleaning

After all the grinding, filing, and other block prep was finished, it was time to wash down the block to get rid of any remaining grit, grease, dirt, machining oils, etc. This brush kit from Moroso worked out perfectly - http://www.summitracing.com/parts/MOR-61820 - There are multiple sizes and lengths of galley brushes that took care of all the different oil passages, as well as brushes sized for the lifter bores and cylinder bores to really get those areas squeaky clean. I started out with a full scrub down using Simple Green, followed by a second scrub down with hot water and detergent. I focused heavily on making sure that all the oil passageways were scrubbed out with the galley brushes and that no trace of contaminants remained anywhere on or inside the block. Just as a side note … its easy to overlook the two oil galleys that run from the #2 and #4 cam bores, back up to a small opening in each of the cylinder decks (these feed lubrication up to heads for the rocker system); luckily, I remembered them at the last moment before I had wrapped up with the cleaning.

For the lifter bores and cylinder bores, I mounted their respectively sized brushes in an electric hand drill and went to town using plenty of hot soapy water as a cleaning aid and lubricant. As everyone already knows, it cannot be emphasized enough as to how clean the block needs to be - especially the cylinder bores themselves. There is a lot of debris from the machining & honing process that gets embedded into those walls and it takes a ton of scrubbing to really dig it out from all of the little cross-hatches, etc … nothing kills rings faster than cylinder bores that aren’t 100% clean.

Once all the cleaning and scrubbing was done, I thoroughly rinsed out every single inch of the block. A high-pressure nozzle was used to force water through each of the oil galley openings (4 on top, 4 in back, 3 in front, 2 on side) and through every single oiling orifice (main bores, cam bores, decks, etc). With the rinse done, the next battle was with time … surface rust can start forming immediately on a completely clean block, so a blow dry with compressed air came next (machined surfaces first, bolt holes and passageways next, then the rest of the block). WD40 was liberally applied on all the cylinder walls and other machined surfaces, inside all the oil galleys and openings, in the lifter valley/bores, and any other areas that weren't receiving paint. It was a job that I came away from soaking wet and cold, but nonetheless was very confident that everything was as clean as it could be.



Installation of Core Plugs & Coolant Drain Plugs

This block (as do most FE blocks) uses 6 press-fit core plugs to seal off the water jackets; the plug kit I’m using has a set of upgraded brass core plugs that are much more corrosion resistant than standard steel plugs. Each side of the block has 3 of these plugs, and all were driven in with a dead-blow hammer and socket (I found that my 1-1/8" impact socket was the perfect size to fit inside the plug and use as the drive tool); a thin layer of JB Weld was applied to each plug as a sealant and extra insurance against one of them coming back out.




The 1/4" NPT coolant drain plugs (1 on each side of the block) were re-installed using teflon paste thread-sealant to prevent any possible water leaks.

 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Finishing Up The Block

Paint Prep

~ Solvent Cleaning: To eliminate any residual WD40 or other oils on the exterior of the block, I used a couple cans of brake cleaner to completely clean and decontaminate the surface for the next step.

~ Etching Solution: POR15 will be used as the basecoat on this block, so the recommended next step in the surface prep is their “Prep & Clean” solution - this stuff neutralizes any remaining surface rust, creates a light etch in the metal, and leaves a zinc phosphate coating behind ... all of which evidently help the POR15 adhere to the block like mad. When using this solution, make sure to keep if off of any surface that won’t be getting painted (especially the machined surfaces like the decks), because you don’t want those places to get any type of etching at all. I used a small spray bottle and carefully applied it only to the areas of the block that were going to receive paint. It is a very slow acting etch, so if any of the solution does happen to hit a machined surface, if wiped off quickly, it won’t do anything to the metal. After the solution sat of the block for about 15 min, it was then rinsed off with fresh water and the block was blown dry with compressed air.

This is what the metal finish looks like after the etching solution step is complete:




~ Solvent Cleaning (again): As a final step, just to make double and triple sure that the surface is 100% ready to receive paint, I took a lint free cloth along with a can of acetone and wiped down every single surface that was to be painted.

~ Masking: A tedious and time-consuming process, but the effort put in here will pay dividends on the final product. Everything that wasn’t getting paint was completely covered and taped up (decks, lifter valley, bottom end internals, galley plug areas, cam plate area, etc). I used a fresh razorblade to trim the tape edges around all the deck surfaces and other critical areas. Additionally, all of the exterior bolt-holes and exposed galleys were plugged to keep paint out.





Block Painting

For this project, I decided to use POR15 (semi-gloss black) as the basecoat on the block. This stuff is not only unbelievably strong and chip-resistant, but also does an amazing job of sealing and bonding to the metal to prevent ANY rust issues in the future. It also is resistant to high temps (up to 600 F), so is perfect for engine block applications. I applied two thin coats a couple hours apart using simply a paintbrush - this stuff is self-leveling and absolutely no brush marks show up, especially on a rough texture cast iron surface like this. The one downside to POR15 though, is that it isn’t very UV stable and the color can fade over time. Because of this, it is recommended to apply a topcoat over the POR15. And, if you apply the topcoat before the POR15 basecoats cure, there is no need for a primer or tie-coat in between. For the topcoat in this application, I’m using a semi-gloss back ceramic engine enamel from Duplicolor. Per instructions, I sprayed on two light coats, followed by a final medium coat ... allowing about 10 min flash time between each of the 3 coats. And the beauty of having the POR15 underneath, is that if the ceramic enamel topcoat ever does happen to take a hit and chip, the POR15 layer underneath (in semi-gloss black to match the topcoat) isn’t going anywhere.

After the 2 basecoats of POR15:




After the 3 topcoats of Ceramic Enamel:




After everything was unmasked, here is what the final product looked like:








Additional photos of the block here: http://s628.photobucket.com/albums/uu9/hindsight52/427 FE Big Block/Engine Block/


Next installment ... Camshaft selection & prep.

- John
 

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Great thread...thanks for posting!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks guys! Much appreciated!!! :D
 

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Engine Porn

WOW!! ain't nuttin' sexier then to see a real FE being done the right way :yes:. I'll be following this thread to completion . . . brings back old memories of an engine I once did.

Doc :beerchug:
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Cross-Bolts

Over the past couple of days I've gotten a few questions from eagle-eyed forum members who noticed the cross-bolt bosses in the photos of the block. So I wanted to go ahead and post some info on what was done on this particular project.

The only FE blocks that came with the cross-bolted mains were the 427's and some of the late 406's. All of the other FE blocks (332, 352, 360, 361, 390, 410, & 428) didn't have these cross-bolts, nor did they even have the millwork and holes drilled in the skirts to use them.

Many FE blocks can be converted to use functional cross-bolted main caps, but finding a set of those Ford caps is nearly impossible or way too expensive. And while they do have their merits for high-performance race applications and big horsepower motors, they truly won't make much (if any) of a difference on a 400-500 hp street-oriented motor like I am building here ... mostly due to the fact that all FE blocks were blessed with that wonderfully strong deep-skirt design, and the regular (non cross-bolt) main caps are able to do a perfectly fine job of keeping flex and distortion at bay in applications like mine.

I did however want the look of those bad-a** 427 cross-bolted blocks. :D
So while the block was already at the machinist's for all the other standard work being done, I had them go ahead and mill the 6 spotfaces into the block's skirt area (3 on each side - inline with the #2, #3, #4 main caps) to match the exact places from a 427 block; these spotfaced circles allow the washers to lay flush against the skirt surface, just as it was on the originals. Then, the 6 corresponding holes were drilled and tapped for the mock 3/8" cross-bolts.


Here are a couple photos of the finished product:






And for hardware, I'll be using factory Ford "place bolts" and washers to complete the look. AMK seems to be the best place I've found to source OE-style Ford hardware: http://www.amkproducts.com/bulk2.asp?code=7035&title=Place+Bolts




- John
 

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Nice work and attention to detail. This brings back lots of memories. As a member of the generation when these motors were king I had a 68 Mustang Fastback with a 390 4 speed and a 67 Shelby GT500 428 4 speed. Both cars went through a number of engines in different configurations due to their propensity for spinning rod bearings. There is still no sweeter sound than a cammed FE motor as far as I'm concerned, except maybe a screaming 4 cam mod motor. I look forward to watching the rest of this build.
 
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