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Thread: Flathead Ford v8
          
   
   

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  1. #1
    46_Ford_Wally's Avatar
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    Flathead Ford v8

     



    The engine in my 46' Ford Coupe has not been turned over or started for 6 or 7 years. I really doubt it had been 'winterized' let alone preserved for sitting. Are these old motors pretty stout? Could i just pull the plugs, dump oil in the engine until it comes out the intake, let it sit a week or three, drain, and give it a go? Or am i seriously asking for trouble (read $$$$$) if i do that?

    Also, the little carb on this thing, though it may be 'appropriate' for it's era does little to tickle my funny bone. Any hope of slapping on a standard motorcraft or similar carb on there from the 60's or 70's (pre emmissions)?

    And a little of topic, the clutch has no feel (the pedal is sitting on the floor), do i need to get that working before i try to turn her over and getter running? (i'd like to get it running just to give me a little kick in the pants to get going on this project).

    And also, is upgrading to 12volt just a matter of a new alternator/generator (like i've done on old tractors) or are there other pieces/parts (aside from guages.... auto-meter) that will need to be changed as well? (like the starter, starter solenoid, whatever other 'electronics' might be hiding in there)

    Thanx in advance and sorry for being so wordy!

  2. #2
    Oldf100fordman's Avatar
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    Car Year, Make, Model: 55 Ford F100 w/390,
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    I bought a 47 coupe in Lake county Illinois in 74 that had been setting a lot longer. Unfortunately it's engine was frozen solid. Does yours turn over at all (by hand with a breaker bar)? If not, pull the plugs and put some high quality penetrating oil in Put the plugs back in. Do this every night for a week and see if it will turn over by hand. My flathead didn't and was rusted solid when I pulled the heads, BUT it had not been running for a lot more years than that and was parked due to an internal water leak. (I ended up putting a 409 Chevy and 4spd in it.)

    I did use the penetrating oil on a Dodge Dart with a V8 though and it worked after a week or so.

    Clutch: Yeap, find out what is wrong before you start it.

    Electrical. Get a Ford 12 volt solenoid, Coil for point type ignition. The starter will last for a while but should eventually be rewound for 12 Volts by a rebuild shop. (Did this on a 6 cyl 49 Ford) Guages just need a voltage reducer to 6 volts in line. One wire goes to all for power. Hope any of this helps.
    Duane S
    ____________________________________
    On a quiet night you can hear a Chevy rust

  3. #3
    tcodi's Avatar
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    all the light bulbs will need to be replaced with 12 volt.
    basically everything electrical will need to be changed, or hooked
    up to a voltage reducer that will hum constantly.

  4. #4
    46_Ford_Wally's Avatar
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    Sweet thanx for the quick responses.
    The engine does turnover (or atleast it did 2 years ago) i'll take the advice and dump oil in there for a few weeks.
    Sounds like a lot of hassle for 12 volts, maybe i should just stick with the 6 volts? Any real downside to 6 volts (i'm not worried about radios, i'd rather listen to a machine hum, or clunk as it may be).

    I need to get a carb on this thing (the old/original one is all apart) any sources for that or rebuilds?

    The clutch: It's just the linkage has completely failed. I'll assume the internals are still holding together... until i hear bad noises from in there. I'll look closer and if i can get it working, or jam the clutch disengaged for start-up purposes i'll do that, otherwise i guess i'll have to yank the engine out and fix stuff. I don't want the tranny turning and spinning and possibly getting ruined while i mess with the engine (though the tranny should be okay, just in case..).

    How did your 47' drive in general? I've never driven a car this old, and i'm thinking it would either be floaty and nice up to about 65(the old speed limit?), or it'll be absolutely horrible and wandering all over the road? (obviously after things have been rebuilt.)

    I found my cam, i'll try to post pics tonight.
    Last edited by 46_Ford_Wally; 12-13-2004 at 09:33 AM.

  5. #5
    Legacy's Avatar
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    Check edelbrock for an intake carb set up. I've got a quad duece set up laying around someplace that's kind of cool. They don't make those anymore but you can get an intake that would allow you to run a 4 barrel on it.

  6. #6
    DennyW is offline Junior Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Originally posted by 46_Ford_Wally
    Sweet thanx for the quick responses.
    The engine does turnover (or atleast it did 2 years ago) i'll take the advice and dump oil in there for a few weeks.
    Sounds like a lot of hassle for 12 volts, maybe i should just stick with the 6 volts? Any real downside to 6 volts (i'm not worried about radios, i'd rather listen to a machine hum, or clunk as it may be).

    I need to get a carb on this thing (the old/original one is all apart) any sources for that or rebuilds?

    The clutch: It's just the linkage has completely failed. I'll assume the internals are still holding together... until i hear bad noises from in there. I'll look closer and if i can get it working, or jam the clutch disengaged for start-up purposes i'll do that, otherwise i guess i'll have to yank the engine out and fix stuff. I don't want the tranny turning and spinning and possibly getting ruined while i mess with the engine (though the tranny should be okay, just in case..).

    How did your 47' drive in general? I've never driven a car this old, and i'm thinking it would either be floaty and nice up to about 65(the old speed limit?), or it'll be absolutely horrible and wandering all over the road? (obviously after things have been rebuilt.)

    I found my cam, i'll try to post pics tonight.
    For the carb, you might want to keep an eye open on ebay for one. I have seen them in the past, and also kits for them.

  7. #7
    BOBCRMAN@aol.'s Avatar
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    My UPS driver told me about this old Ford pickup (1950) out in a field on his route. So I went out there and bought the thing. Engine locked up from setting five years.. After I got it home, I pulled the s-plugs and filled the cyls with kerosene. Let it set, a couple of days later I was trying to get it to turn over with a 12 volt battery. It would just turn about 1/4" at a time.. SO, I hooked her up to a tractor and took it out to a paved rd.(no traffic). And dragged it down the road in gear.. Freed it right up. I later repaired all the little stuff (wiring,leaks,etc.) Hooked up the 12 volt battery and my 14 year old daughter and I gave the old gal a proper romp around the back 40. Smoked like you can't believe at first, but finally cleared up. My daughter loved it. First time driving a stick and she did a good job.. I later sold it to a close neighbor. He pulled the flattie and put it in his 60's style rat rod. Installed a small block Chevy in the truck and used it for a beater/parts chaser..Good old truck..

  8. #8
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    Whether you keep it 6 or change to 12 volts, I would seriously consider re-wiring the whole vehicle. Those old clotch covered wires have probably seen better days. Also with a voltage drop to the guages they generally are never very accurate and as has been mentioned you'll have to upgrade the starter and generator.
    NoT FaDe AwaY and the music didn't die
    The simplest road is usually the last one sought

    Wild Willie & AA/FA's The greatest show in drag racing

  9. #9
    Don Shillady's Avatar
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    Just a response based on nostalgia for my old '47 Ford convert with a rebuilt 239. If your trans is OK and assuming you have the standard 3.78 rear gear, you should find that acceleration in low gear is pretty good, but you will be lucky to go over 80 mph in high gear. You should expect about 18 mpg. The valves were set at the factory by grinding the length of the valve stems unless you have aftermarket adjustable tappets. Back in the '50s the cheapshot improvements were to find the stock Ford dual-point distributor, shave (resurface) the iron heads about 0.050" and add Belond steel headers or Fenton iron headers with glass/steel pack mufflers. Edelbrock dual carb manifolds were not easy to set up and the later manifolds offer the opportunity to use a 4-barrel carb of about 400 cfm which is a lot easier to set up and maintain. For the sake of nostalgia I would like to have any running Ford with a flathead, but I bought three blocks which all had serious cracks and I have looked at others locally which are cracked so check for cracks, especially between a cylinder and a valve seat. With such a crack the engine may still run quite well but the tipoff is that coolant miraculously disappears, as steam out the exhaust pipe! With the stock cylinder bore of 3 3/16" the block is capable of withstanding considerable abuse, even running overheated, but if it has been bored the cylinders may not be uniform in the walls (core-shift at casting) and with thin spots in the walls it really will overheat. Well some of you know these things like the back of your hand, but if you are fooling with a flathead for the first time I hope you will have fun. One other trick was to chop the flywheel or use an aluminum flywheel, that really helped acceleration but if you don't plan to take it apart just enjoy low gear. However even there you can break a tooth off of one of the trans gears if you rev it up in low and miss a shift to second. Have Fun!

    Don Shillady
    Retired Scientist/teen rodder

  10. #10
    R Pope is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    The '48 was a pretty good car, handled better than the '49 and up Shoebox. Brakes leave a little to be desired, not self-energizing. Thick-walled flattie less prone to cracks than '49-on thin-wall.

  11. #11
    timothale's Avatar
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    Flat head

     



    most bell housing i've seen have and inspection cover, iff you pull out the floorboards you can check the pressure plate wear, A lawyer friend got a 34 pickup as payment it had a rebuilt motor and the clutch wouldn.t release. They told him to pull the rear end, trans then the clutch. an 8 hour job. he only checked the oil and washer fluid on his cars so he asked me to check it out. I started it in neutral and warmed it up. then pushed it into the street. Started it in gear full throttle did a few burn outs with the clutch pedal to the floor, finally broke the disc free from the flywheel. I think they resurfaced the flywheel and the cutting fluid was absorbed into the surface then reacted to glue the new disc to the flywheel. I slipped the clutch a few times to heat it up and burnish the disc. the last I heard he had no more problems. Ps he gave me a $100 for 15 minutes work. said a shop was telling him $7 t0 800.
    timothale

  12. #12
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    Starter

     



    WE used to leave in the 6 volt starter. or find an 6 volt to put in. You have to keep it tuned so it will start first crank over. I had a 11 1/ 2 to one 352 ford, 3= 2's Isky , headers. It would start at 20 below zero. or when the engine was wet from steam cleaning it in college auto shop. If you crank it more than 30 seconds you will fry the starter. If it doesn't start wait 4 or 5 minutes to let the starter cool down.
    timothale

  13. #13
    timothale's Avatar
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    Can you weld?

     



    They used to sell weld on adaptors to add more carbs to your stock manifolds.. I reworked the heads on my corvair dunebuggy. heads and manifold were a one piece casting I was teaching a cyl head auto shop class at the college. they had a head machine. I bored extra holes in the aluminum heads. surfaced the top flat made the adaptors with a step, a four bolt top flange then used epoxy for a sealant. drilled and tapped the head then used two holes for bolts to pull the adaptor into place and two for the spider manifold to bolt on to. with a 500 holly 2 barrel It would do wheelies in second gear.

    I also took a stock V 8 two barrel manifold and hogged it out on the milling machine to have two long slot openings then machined a 4 barrel adaptor plate to fit on top. I ended up giving it away. installed a 460 ford engine instead of finishing the old motor. I've moved and haven's seen how it worked for the guy.
    timothale

  14. #14
    pmwltd is offline Registered User Visit my Photo Gallery
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    I conveted the '46 59A in my '32 to 12 volts 45 years ago, by putting 12V fields in the '46 generator and installing a '57 Ford regulater.
    Switched to 12V bulbs, and a 12V solenoid, the ammeter is a '29 Audurn, still use the stock '46 6V starter. After 45 years all compoents are still working fine. Granted it only gets used on Sunday afternoons in the summer. But Flatheads are forever.
    Dave

  15. #15
    DennyW is offline Junior Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Thumbs up

     



    I do love flatheads.

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