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Old 02-24-2011, 09:25 AM
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Need help with a 390 upgrade

Hey guys. I'm trying to locate a few parts for this upgrade. Starting with a stock Mercury 390 2v. Looking for an affordable set of headers, intake and carb and HEI upgrade. I've been looking through my summit catalog an am confused. This car is a 66 Mercury Monterey. Can I just call it a ford and locate parts that way? I don't see a lot of 390 parts mentioned. Can someone give me some basic info that will help me order parts that will work on this motor? Also any suggestions would be great! This is my first FOMOCO car ever!

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Old 02-24-2011, 10:08 AM
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all ford.

The factory cast iron manifolds are heavy. a good alum. 4 barrel, rv cam, and headers will make a streetable engine. For the big bucks upgrading to a 428-427 costs a lot more A friend puts out 700 HP plus with an aluminum Fe for his Cobra. (U tube cobra optima 2009 challenge,)
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Old 02-24-2011, 11:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timothale
The factory cast iron manifolds are heavy. a good alum. 4 barrel, rv cam, and headers will make a streetable engine. For the big bucks upgrading to a 428-427 costs a lot more A friend puts out 700 HP plus with an aluminum Fe for his Cobra. (U tube cobra optima 2009 challenge,)
Thank you for the response. That's kinda what I'm leaning to. But my question is what specific parts will work on this engine? Like which hooker headers should I order or which Intake? I'm just not seeing the 390 or Mercury Monterey listed when l look for these parts.
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Localboy808
Hey guys. I'm trying to locate a few parts for this upgrade. Starting with a stock Mercury 390 2v. Looking for an affordable set of headers, intake and carb and HEI upgrade. I've been looking through my summit catalog an am confused. This car is a 66 Mercury Monterey. Can I just call it a ford and locate parts that way? I don't see a lot of 390 parts mentioned. Can someone give me some basic info that will help me order parts that will work on this motor? Also any suggestions would be great! This is my first FOMOCO car ever!
Yes you can just call it a Ford. The driveline is an exact 1 for 1 starting with the 1960 model year. The only difference is that some Mercury engines have Mercury spelled out in script on the rocker covers, except for that they are a direct interchange with Ford parts.

There are a couple running production changes you need to watch for.

1) The method of retaining the camshaft thrust, before mid year 1963 a spring loaded button was used. After mid 1963 a thrust plate was used. Earlier blocks can be converted to a thrust plate. The cam and timing set needs to be matched to the thrust method used, I don;t even know if you can get any of the old button stuff any more which will force the conversion to the newer thrust plate design, easy to do.

2) Cylinder head bolt lengths changed in 1961. 1958 through 60 use 4 7/32-inch bolts everywhere. Starting in 1961, a change was made to the heads and the bolt lengths became 2-7/8 inch on the exhaust side of the while 4 -19/32 inchers are used inside the rocker box. You'll not likely encounter this unless you happen to find a set of those nifty 1958 machined chamber heads at a swap meet and want to put them on the 390 block.

The factory cast tri-Y headers are outrageously expensive, makes me wish I didn't throw so many of those away back in the 1960s and 70s, but damn they're heavy which is why they to the recycler back then. Who'd thought that 50 years later they'd bring prices like the old GM Rochester fuel injection set ups we removed and scrapped for four barrel replacements.

Bogie
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldbogie
Yes you can just call it a Ford. The driveline is an exact 1 for 1 starting with the 1960 model year. The only difference is that some Mercury engines have Mercury spelled out in script on the rocker covers, except for that they are a direct interchange with Ford parts.

There are a couple running production changes you need to watch for.

1) The method of retaining the camshaft thrust, before mid year 1963 a spring loaded button was used. After mid 1963 a thrust plate was used. Earlier blocks can be converted to a thrust plate. The cam and timing set needs to be matched to the thrust method used, I don;t even know if you can get any of the old button stuff any more which will force the conversion to the newer thrust plate design, easy to do.

2) Cylinder head bolt lengths changed in 1961. 1958 through 60 use 4 7/32-inch bolts everywhere. Starting in 1961, a change was made to the heads and the bolt lengths became 2-7/8 inch on the exhaust side of the while 4 -19/32 inchers are used inside the rocker box. You'll not likely encounter this unless you happen to find a set of those nifty 1958 machined chamber heads at a swap meet and want to put them on the 390 block.

The factory cast tri-Y headers are outrageously expensive, makes me wish I didn't throw so many of those away back in the 1960s and 70s, but damn they're heavy which is why they to the recycler back then. Who'd thought that 50 years later they'd bring prices like the old GM Rochester fuel injection set ups we removed and scrapped for four barrel replacements.

Bogie
Cool info! I will not be changing the heads anytime soon. I just want some easy bolt on improvements. Dual exaust, headers,intake, carb and HEI. I just don't know enough about this engine/car to order parts that will fit. Like the intake. I see a Weiand #WND-8010 ford 351m-400,2v,square-bore flange on summit. Will that work? Am I understanding this? How about headers? Which ones would work with this engine/car combo? Thanks for the help!
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:44 PM
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You don't have to rely on what you see in the catalog.You can go online or call direct to Edlebrock or any other manufacturer or catalog company. Just because you don't see it in Jeg's doesn't mean they don't have it.Just call the tech line and ask for the parts you want or make some swap meets and find some good used stuff.Hope this helps.
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Old 02-24-2011, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedydeedy
You don't have to rely on what you see in the catalog.You can go online or call direct to Edlebrock or any other manufacturer or catalog company. Just because you don't see it in Jeg's doesn't mean they don't have it.Just call the tech line and ask for the parts you want or make some swap meets and find some good used stuff.Hope this helps.
Thanks. That does help. I just figured if it wasn't in one of these thick catalogs it probably wasn't available.
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Old 02-24-2011, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Localboy808
Cool info! I will not be changing the heads anytime soon. I just want some easy bolt on improvements. Dual exaust, headers,intake, carb and HEI. I just don't know enough about this engine/car to order parts that will fit. Like the intake. I see a Weiand #WND-8010 ford 351m-400,2v,square-bore flange on summit. Will that work? Am I understanding this? How about headers? Which ones would work with this engine/car combo? Thanks for the help!
351 parts don't fit. I know Ford is confusing they went through so many different engine designs, they're totally schizoid with engines and bell housings it's enough to drive a sober man to drink.

What you have is called the FE engine for Ford Edsel, you have to be aware of the Ford world of 1958 when that engine came out there was Ford, Edsel, Mercury, and Lincoln. The FE in 1958 was only shared with Ford and Edsel. The Mercury, Edsel, and Lincoln had a larger, but in the family similar looking engine, called the MEL. It came in 383, 410, 430, and 462; the 410 not to be confused with the later 410 FE block. The Edsel died during the 1960 model year while the Mercury stated using the FE that same year.


The FE engine is a large and complicated family consisting of:

- 332
- 352
- 360 Trucks only
- 361 Edsel
- 390
- 391 FT
- 406
- 410
- 427
- 428

The 332 came in 1958 and ended with 1959 production.

The 352 also came in 1958

The 361 which is an .050 inch overbored 352 used only in the 1960 Edsel.

The 360 truck which is an Edsel by any other name. Ford claims a 4.047 bore for this versus the Edsel 4.05 bore, their mic readers obviously have better eyes than mine.

The 390 came out in 1961 which I suppose you could think of as a stroker 361 Edsel at 3.78 inches.

The 391 is a FT (Ford Truck) used in larger trucks has some good pieces in it like a forged crank which will fit an FE by turning down the snout diameter it has the same bore and stroke as the 390. Some of these use the separate water pump and timing case cover of the typical FE, some use an integrated pump and cover similar looking to that of the Windsor 221,260,289,302,351.

The 410 which is a 390 with a 3.98 inch 428 crank.

The 406 came out in 1962 (mid 61 actually) with a 4.13 inch bore and a 390 stroke. Like the 427 it is a uniquely sized competition engine where the previous high performance 352 and 390s were essentially factory hot rodded versions of standard production motors. The 406 starts down a line of similar to the passenger FE's but becoming more and more directed at winning NASCAR and Le-Mans races you see cross bolts and revised oiling start to seriously appear.

The 427 arrived in mid 1963 it is simply an out and out race version of the FE with cross bolts, side oiling, different rods of Hypo, Le-Mans, and NASCAR. The latter rods only fit NASCAR cranks, of the different cranks the NASCAR having wider rod bearings than the others. Many heads roughly identified as low riser, medium riser , high riser, tunnel port, overhead valve hemi a plethora of valve sizes and camshafts, intakes to match the head ports plus the sidewinder intake with the carb off center. On and on the 427 goes with more and more exotic stuff.

Finally the 428, this is a .2 inch stroker on a 406 bore going to a more conventional looking production block with no cross bolts and center oiling the factory built this into a very potent street rod engine using a lot of bolt on parts out of the high performance 390, 406, and 427 bins.

Except for the cammer, hemi parts, the cost of which would bankrupt the Koch brothers, anything that fits the 427 wedge engines and the 428 Cobra Jets including the Super CJs will fit most any other FE block, sometimes some fudging is required but all that stuff will fit. The only rules are that 406 and 427 oil pumps go with them, 427 NASCAR cranks and rods go together, Type of port heads use a like intake. The really huge valves used on some of the 427's like the high riser, tunnel port and certainly the cammer cannot be fitted into engines with less than the 4.23 inch bore of the 427. No non 427 blocks can't be bored that far. Ford thinned up the castings heading into the late 1960's Certainly the 1964 and earlier blocks will go to 4.13 usually without trouble but it's always wise to sonic check before going this far. After that .030 overbores in anything except the 427 is about the safe limit. Any FE block can be converted into a Cammer Hemi with barrels of money.

That's pretty much an overview of the FE.

Bogie

Last edited by oldbogie; 02-24-2011 at 02:06 PM.
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Old 02-24-2011, 02:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Localboy808
Thanks. That does help. I just figured if it wasn't in one of these thick catalogs it probably wasn't available.
I have built tall deck BBC engines and had to call for parts. That is how I know that they have more available than what is in the catalog.
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Old 02-24-2011, 02:13 PM
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360 used in many ford pickups 68-76

The 360 was also used in many 68-76 ford pickups
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Old 02-24-2011, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldbogie
351 parts don't fit. I know Ford is confusing they went through so many different engine designs, they're totally schizoid with engines and bell housings it's enough to drive a sober man to drink.

What you have is called the FE engine for Ford Edsel, you have to be aware of the Ford world of 1958 when that engine came out there was Ford, Edsel, Mercury, and Lincoln. The FE in 1958 was only shared with Ford and Edsel. The Mercury, Edsel, and Lincoln had a larger but in the family similar engine called the MEL. It came in 383, 410, 430, and 462; the 410 not to be confuse with the later 410 FE block. The Edsel died during the 1960 model year and the Mercury stated using the FE that same year.


The FE engine is a large and complicated family consisting of:

- 332
- 352
- 360
- 361 FT
- 390
- 391 FT actually
- 406
- 410
- 427
- 428

The 332 came in 1958 and ended with 1959 production.

The 352 also came in 1958

The 360 which is an .050 inch overbored 352 used only in the 1960 Edsel.

The 361 which is a 352 bore and a 390 crank used by light duty trucks.

The 390 came out in 1961 which I suppose you could think of as a stroker 360 Edsel.

The 391 is a FT (Ford Truck) used in larger trucks has some good pieces in it like a forged crank which will fit an FE by turning down the snout diameter it has the same bore and stroke as the 390. Some of these use the separate water pump and timing case cover of the typical FE, some use an integrated pump and cover similar looking to that of the Windsor 221,260,289,302,351.

The 410 which is a 390 with a 428 crank, came in mild to wild versions.

The 406 came out in 1962 (mid 61 actually) which like the 427 is a uniquely sized competition engine where the previous high performance 352 and 390s were essentially factory hot rod motors of standard production. The 406 starts down a line of similar to the passenger FE's but becoming more and more directed at winning NASCAR and Le-Mans races you see cross bolts and revised oiling.

The 427 arrived in mid 1963 it is simply an out and out race version of the FE with cross bolts, side oiling, different rods of Hypo, Le-Mans, and NASCAR. The latter rods only fit NASCAR cranks, of the different cranks the NASCAR having wider rod bearings than the others. Many heads roughly identified as low riser, medium riser , high riser, tunnel port, overhead valve hemi a plethora of valve sizes and camshafts, intakes to match the head ports plus the sidewinder intake with the carb off center. On and on the 427 goes with more and more exotic stuff.

Finally the 428, this is a stroker 406 going to a more conventional looking production block with no cross bolts and center oiling the factory built this into a very potent street rod engine using a lot of bolt on parts out of the high performance 390, 406, and 427 bins.

Except for the cammer, hemi parts, the cost of which would bankrupt the Koch brothers, anything that fits the 427 wedge engines and the 428 Cobra Jets including the Super CJs will fit most any other FE block, sometimes some fudging is required but all that stuff will fit. The only rules are that 406 and 427 oil pumps go with them, 427 NASCAR cranks and rods go together, Type of port heads use a like intake. The really huge valves used on some of the 427's like the high riser, tunnel port and certainly the cammer cannot be fitted into engines with less than the 4.23 inch bore of the 427. No non 427 blocks can't be bored that far. Ford thinned up the castings heading into the late 1960's Certainly the 1964 and earlier blocks will go to 4.13 usually without trouble but it's always wise to sonic check before going this far. After that .030 overbores in anything except the 427 is about the safe limit. Any FE block can be converted into a Cammer Hemi with barrels of money.

That's pretty much an overview of the FE.

Bogie
That's awesome! Thank you for taking the time to type that up!that helps a lot! Now I just have to look for FE stuff!
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Old 02-24-2011, 03:27 PM
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one more Fe

Early 1958 engines came with solid lifters, machined combustion chambers. The 58 police interceptor thunderbird specials came from the factory with 060 O/s size pistons and resulting higher comprssion, not listed in most parts manuals. the thrust plate cams can be used by drilling and tapping the block..Don't mix up bolts on the timing cover-water pump . too long of bolt will push on the cylinder wall causing a hot spot and ring sealing problems
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Old 02-24-2011, 05:54 PM
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&*#@ ford exhaust bolts

The Ford Fe Exhaust manifolt top bolts are terrible for always breaking when you try to remove the manifold, a squirt of penetrating oil every day for a couple weeks. heat with a torch an use candle wax. My step daughter drove the FE galaxie in high school, It's been parked the last 20 years because of Exhaust leaks. 3 broken bolts and I broke 2 more trying to get them off last summer I was thinking about letting a grand kid drive it. . It's either pull the heads or engine to drill and easy out the broken bolts.. when.you put it together use plenty of anti seize.
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Old 02-27-2011, 08:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timothale
The Ford Fe Exhaust manifolt top bolts are terrible for always breaking when you try to remove the manifold, a squirt of penetrating oil every day for a couple weeks. heat with a torch an use candle wax. My step daughter drove the FE galaxie in high school, It's been parked the last 20 years because of Exhaust leaks. 3 broken bolts and I broke 2 more trying to get them off last summer I was thinking about letting a grand kid drive it. . It's either pull the heads or engine to drill and easy out the broken bolts.. when.you put it together use plenty of anti seize.
Thank you for that! I will start hitting them with some PB!
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Old 02-28-2011, 03:48 PM
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Have you looked at the Pertronix, MSD or Mallory electronic ignition conversions > All the Ford HEI Distributors for the FE that are around are way out of my budget, maybe not yours.

I like the factory cast iron 4V manifolds and the Autolite 4100 4V carbs. That's just my preference. Some of the more seasoned FE guys throw around the opinion that the Ford FE "S" intake is comparable to the Performer intake. Not the Performer RPM.

There are good rebuild kits available for the Autolite 4100 or one rebuilt and tuned by Pony Carbs; 3 - $400.00 +.

The stock Ford FE exhaust manifolds are the worst design that I've seen. And more than half of the exhaust bolts(1960) broke off in our limited experience.
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