View Full Version : 351W in Thunderbird
08-09-2011, 10:12 PM
As for these type motors. If you don't care about originality and want power plus handling. I can see a cammed 351 stroker (392) with aluminum heads/intake/water pump. Reduced front end (and total) weight with more HP. 4-speed automatic or 5-speed stick on floor. Update the suspension. Should make for surprising performance and handling.
08-10-2011, 05:28 AM
I agree with FINSRIN... Most T-birders aren't familiar with Small Block Ford engines. They know quite a bit about Y-blocks, FEs, and MELs (with a spattering of 351Cleveland and M-engines).
Allow me to show you a very well respected SBF builder's article from 1997. CLICK HERE (http://www.alternativeauto.com/waterbox/wb_archives/351W_strokers.html) I have had work done by Alternative and I recommend them highly. Two brothers, both Ford dealership mechanics, started this family-owned business. They are top shelf.
Historically, Mustangs thrived on SBF engines forever (it seems). These engines were so good, they spanned three decades, which makes millions of parts very plentiful and reasonably priced.
Ford started producing the 351W again. The new ones aren't for the faint-hearted. They are all aluminum, 4-bolt main, forged steel rods, true roller cam, stroked to 427 cubic inches, and available from Ford Racing (http://www.fordracingpartsdirect.com/Ford_351W_Crate_Engine_s/23.htm) as crate engines. These engines are 80-lbs lighter than their old cast iron brothers and they go in 2011 Mustangs.
If you weren't a believer before, check the numbers out:
570 hp @ 6500 rpm (SAE), 530 lb-ft @ 5000 rpm (SAE)
Did I mention Supercharger? (http://www.fordracingpartsdirect.com/Ford_Racing_Superchargers_s/181.htm) Yep, a dual screw right from Ford Racing may be purchased for an increased total of:
750 hp @ 6100 rpm and 719 lb-ft @ 4200 rpm @ 17 psi boost.
You may not buy a new crate 351W for your T-bird, but there are still many cast iron versions out there that use roller cams and weight-saving aluminum components (heads, intakes, water pumps, alt/a-c brackets).
The SBF's have outlasted all the forerunners and are still manufactured today because Ford finally got it right with NO bad habits or leaks. The 351W is perfect for an overhaul and Squarebird retrofit. Even the aluminum water pumps come in RH or LH versions, and oil pans come in front or rear sump. - Dave Dare
08-10-2011, 11:51 AM
Thanks for update. Ford drop the 392W crate (short/long) block?
Plenty of room in 58-66 Tbird for fitting 427W. They make tuff C4 these days, that might be another transmission option.
07-21-2012, 10:39 AM
Does anyone here have any experience with this swap or know of anyone that has done it? I've been kicking the idea around for my '66 when the 390 tires out and would love to know more about how easy or difficult it might be.
07-21-2012, 02:28 PM
I guess the easy answer is, if you are willing to spend many thousands on a brand new engine, then fabrication costs seem very insignificant. It also helps if you have access to specialty shops, like the guys who weld driveshafts (so you can connect any length coming from any trans yoke to any pinion yoke. Motor mounts may be found on the net but I haven't looked.
In my opinion, it's far easier (and sometimes cheaper) to use more modern drivetrains that simply bolt together (like an AOD with a Windsor/SBF engine). You can carburate them or adapt EFI because most modern engines come from the factory with EFI. That means a whole lot are in bone yards right now. - Dave
08-13-2012, 06:51 PM
JUST PURCHACED MY 2nd 60 BIRD. IT HAS A DEAD MOTOR AND I HAVE A NEW 351 W CRATE ENGINE WITH 2 HR'S ON DYNO. ALSO HAVE AFTER MARKET EFI FOR IT. I'VE BEEN TOLD THE BEST SET-UP WOULD BE A LATER ELECTRONIC OVERDRIVE TRANS AND USE AN AFTER MARKET CONTROLER.ANYONE HAVE ANY FEEDBACK. THANKS
ALSO ANY INFO ON MOTOR MOUNTS.
08-14-2012, 02:06 AM
If a 430 or an FE fits under the hood, so does a 351W. From the factory, 430 mounts were welded over the FE mounts. Some of the guys cut them off because they went to an FE engine.
You can use the original FE mounts. Just fabricate two metal spacers to raise the SBF over the #2 crossmember.
Check out this '57 Fairlane with a SBF. I believe the crossmember is the same as your Squarebird's.
CLICK HERE (http://squarebirds.org/EngineConversions/DizzyDick57Fairlane/) - Dave
08-14-2012, 05:38 AM
Funny how you can see things from a different perspective from a different location especailly when kinda isolated from the rest of the world.
Here in NZ we never had (and probably still don't!) have 'kits' to fit certain motors to certain cars - we just had to fabricate, we didn't/don't know any better. (althought the interweb has changed things!).
That's why we had '55 Chevs fitted with 390 Fords, 350 Chev powered RX4 Mazdas etc.
So just do it!
10-04-2013, 11:50 PM
Well handling in any old school Thunderbird isnt going to be impressive i dont care what motor you put in it! However the 351W based motor dollar for dollar will out perform the FE easily!
The FE motor isnt a big power house, being a Y Block and some other issues such as Bore and Stroke limitations stop it from being a true Big Ci motor. Even with the aftermarket head design the FE outside of the Cammer dont flow very well.
So I say go for it, slap that 392 in there and romp and stomp any v6 Mustang that gets in your way, because even with a 428 FE in the ole Tuna Barge you will have trouble moving it out very fast out of a dig!
10-05-2013, 07:29 AM
Tom, we see a lot of swapping around in the South. Guys use whatever is hanging around, or whatever is cheapest. My own cousin put a Chevy 350/Turbo-Hydramatic 350 in a Fox body Mustang, then he sold it.
I guess the bottom line is, nobody can tell you what to do with your stuff. If you want an FE, it's your money and your car so go for it.
I have a 292 Y-block in our '59 Galaxie. Folks around Detroit LOVE to see an original correct engine. When I start it up, the sweet sound from that "Y" is like no other. It's perfect for cruising.
A 390 can look identical to a 352 in a Tbird, but what a dramatic difference in torque .285" increase in stroke makes with .050" more bore TIMES 8! It's not the increase in displacement, it's the longer lever of the crankshaft.
Want 40% more ponies? That's what Paxton and Vortec superchargers deliver. (Nitrous, too.) Whatever tickles your fancy, there's plenty here to make into whatever you like. - Dave
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