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  #1  
Old 06-27-2016, 05:30 PM
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Default 430MEL Engine In Squarebirds

Thanks to this source information, "Thunderbird 50 Years", by Alan Tast, and David Newhardt, here is information regarding the number of 430 MEL engines installed in 1960 Tbirds. The book was published in 2003 and contains information on Tbirds up through that year. This information was provided to me by a friend. Unfortunely, I cannot find my own personal copy.

The chart does not show any 1958 TB with a 430 ci. However, during that year of production, 379 models had a manual transmission w/overdrive. There is a report that I have in my possession that there was a 1958 Squarebird that was tested and evaluated at that time, by one of the car magazines, with a 430 MEL engine in it. But, there are no records of a production model having left the factory with that engine installed that I am aware of.

The 430 size engine for 1959. Here are the 1959 production numbers for the Squarebird.

J coded hardtop w/430 3154 units
J coded convert w/430 1168 units

There were 675 manual trans w/OverDrive, all other models had Automatic Transmissions. It is noted that one convertible with a 430 ci engine came with a manual transmission.

The 430 size engine for 1960. Here are the production numbers for the Squarebird.

J coded hardtop w/430 3900 units
J coded sunroof w/430 377 units
J coded convert w/430 1254 units

Trannys - 1960 90,986 Automatic units, 928 3 Speed w/overdrive units.
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Last edited by YellowRose : 06-27-2016 at 11:32 PM.
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  #2  
Old 06-29-2016, 06:04 PM
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Ken Burke sent me this information and pic of a 430 MEL engine in a '58 Squarebird. Here is what he said.

Attached is an image of the 58 430cid mule that you wrote about, note the water tank. I do not remember the source on the image, maybe the book you spoke of?

Here is that pic.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1958BIRD430~Prototype.jpg (75.2 KB, 115 views)
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Old 09-28-2016, 11:56 AM
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The 430 cu. in., "J" engine code, was only as a single four barrel carburetor offering originally from Ford; but statements have been made implying that Bill Stroppe may have offered the 1958 "Super Marauder" three two barrel induction option (left-overs?), as a "kit", modified to fit the Square Birds.

And now for the test question................

Has anyone actually witnessed such?

And, if such ever actually existed, what specifically were the required modifications for fitment as executed?

Anybody?

Thank you, Scott.

P.S. May be this should be moved to the 430 MEL Engine forum listing?
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Old 10-01-2016, 02:05 PM
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Side note, I've only seen Carter AFB carbs on the 383-410-430 engines too.
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Old 10-03-2016, 02:40 PM
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I agree that it appears that the typical assembly (O.E.M. 1958 - 1960 T-bird w/430 MEL) consisted of the Carter product, but interestingly Ford & Holley have a listing for the Holley (model 1860) carburetor also (Ford #5752426 stamped on the air horn, tag code #CKM9BA, Holley #R-1850AAS which may appear stamped on the carburetor air horn as LIST-1850). These units due exist, and are present frequently on Ebay, relatively to down-rite cheap asking prices (no takers, no application T-bird anyway?).

Maybe, some earlier (1958) production T-Birds? Scott.
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Old 10-03-2016, 04:51 PM
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Ford used many Holley carburetors during the early to late 50's on both 6 and 8 cylinder engines. The original Holley's used on 55-57 Thunderbirds can bring decent money. However, no Holleys were put on Squarebirds from the factory. The particular model you listed doesn't show up in the Ford parts book. It may have been used on a Mercury.

John
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Old 10-04-2016, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jopizz View Post
Ford used many Holley carburetors during the early to late 50's on both 6 and 8 cylinder engines. The original Holley's used on 55-57 Thunderbirds can bring decent money. However, no Holleys were put on Squarebirds from the factory. The particular model you listed doesn't show up in the Ford parts book. It may have been used on a Mercury.

John
So what was on the 352?
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Old 10-04-2016, 11:46 AM
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All Squarebird 352's came with an Autolite 4100 carburetor.

John
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Old 10-05-2016, 12:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jopizz View Post
The particular model you listed doesn't show up in the Ford parts book. It may have been used on a Mercury.John
I have a theory (Oh boy!); that this Holley unit may have been intended for the production application (see photo of 1958 430 engine prototype T-bird w/Holley) orders placed, inventory acquired, but, the Carter product is what went into production. Maybe? And if so, why? Driveability, costs, politics? We will probably never know, and so, the door is open for speculation, no matter how groundless.
As the 430 MEL engine was intended to be dedicated the to Mercury, Edsel and Lincoln production not Ford, and if this unit never made production installations (Ford T-bird), then it may have at that point, "fell thru the cracks", as far as much of the documenting literature is concerned?
But, if so, then how did these units get to the market place? As Parts & Service inventory? To service, and as a replacement part for what, if never an O.E.M. installation application? I see these units mostly found on obviously non O.E.M. installations, such as where a four barrel or even dual fours have been retrofitted, probably mid-late 1960s. Maybe, Ford never accepted the inventory from Holley, even after they produced a quantity for an impending Ford order that never materialized? Holley then released these units to the aftermarket sales?
So yes, that only leaves the 1958 Mercury & Lincoln production. But I don't find this unit's number there either; and do correct me, if one knows of such actual installation application.
How's that for a bunch of unfounded verbiage? Scott.
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