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Old 05-22-2005, 08:59 AM
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Replacing the Timing Chain '64 Ford 390

Hey guys,

Pretty novice here with the motor, but I'm getting better.

I've recently replaced the points and set the timing, but I am finding that the engine seems to go out of tune really fast. It will be running great one day, then I'll start it up the next and she's running rough again.

My friend said that it sounds like a worn timing chain, and with 90+K I wouldn't be surprised a bit.

Can anyone point me towards a good article re: timing chain replacement on a '64 ford FE 390?

Thanks

B

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Old 05-22-2005, 10:43 AM
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390 timeing chain

go to the local library and copey the pages frome a manual. the fes ar very easy to change dont have to drop the pan. justloosen the bolts 2 rows behind front cover good luck
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Old 05-22-2005, 12:28 PM
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  • rotate motor to tdc #1 cylinder, (passengers' side front is #1.)
  • unbolt the fan shroud.
  • unbolt and remove the fan. now the shroud will come out.
  • remove the water pump.
  • loosen and remove the harmonic balancer.
  • take a screw driver and pry the key way out of the crankshaft, allowing the crank spacer to come off the crank. might need to use a little light hammer persuasion to get it moving.
  • remove the timing cover bolts. don't forget the 4 or 5 that enter from the bottom of the oil pan.
  • unbolt the fuel pump eccentric
  • slide the old timing set off.
  • clean up the front end.
  • install new gears and chain. and reverse the removal process.
    use plenty of sealer on the timing cover, esp around the bottom near the oil pan.
BE CAREFUL NOT TO DROP ANYTHING INTO THE OPEN OIL PAN. IF YOU DO, GET A MAGNET AND A HANGER TO FISH IT OUT.....

don't ask how i know about the magnet hanger.......
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Old 05-22-2005, 02:18 PM
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dist

This might seem like too easy a fix. the plate the points are mounted on will cause erratic actions from the car. Its like something is always changing, and it is. the plate can be purchased from any NAPA dealer, or just try another dist, before you tear into something you may not be able to do.
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Old 12-25-2011, 12:49 AM
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blocks

Trying to figure out what i have got here my blocks got 352 on it but i got to reading some were that all early FE blocks has got 352 on them. Can anybody help me out. Whats the easiest way to find out by looking at it.
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Old 12-25-2011, 01:48 AM
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I believe on a Ford FE engine you can take a spark plug out, and look straight down onto the cylinder.
Set the cylinder at TDC. Stick a piece of clean welding rod into the cylinder, straight down until you hit the piston. Make a mark on the welding rod, with a sharpie, or other felt pen.
Turn the engine 180 degrees. Put the rod down the cylinder again, and make another mark. Measure the distance between the marks.

About 3.5 inches, 352 or 360. About 3.78 inches, 390, 406, or 427. About 3.98 inches, 410, or 428. The 406, 410, and 427 are rare engines. 428 engines are uncommon, but they are around. There is a 427 SOHC version of the FE engine. You may find pictures of this engine, but you will probably never see one in real life.

You can take a 352, bore it .050 over, use 390 pistons, a 428 crankshaft, and rods, and the 428 external balance flywheel, or flex plate, and make a 410.
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Old 12-25-2011, 01:16 PM
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don't mix up bolts

If you Mix up bolts , use one too long on the front of the engine it can press against the cyl wall and cause a hot spot, damage rings.
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Old 12-25-2011, 02:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy Boy
Hey guys,

Pretty novice here with the motor, but I'm getting better.

I've recently replaced the points and set the timing, but I am finding that the engine seems to go out of tune really fast. It will be running great one day, then I'll start it up the next and she's running rough again.

My friend said that it sounds like a worn timing chain, and with 90+K I wouldn't be surprised a bit.

Can anyone point me towards a good article re: timing chain
replacement on a '64 ford FE 390?

Thanks

B
To begin with, timing chains do NOT run good one day and not the next. They don't heal themselves. Problem is most likely ignition related. Do you do anything to make it run better again??
Also, points nowadays have mostly inferior materials and may need to be adjusted very frequently.
Test the timing chain wear before you just put one in.
Take out the spark plugs and start with the timing mark at "0". Turn the crank back and forth untill you feel it hit resistance and note how far you went from one direction to the next. If it is more than about 1/4", you need a chain set.
The chain won't fix the problem you describe, though.
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Old 12-25-2011, 02:41 PM
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He may have found the issue in, oh, 6 1/2 years, lol!
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Old 12-25-2011, 04:24 PM
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Some of the Rides that I have built!

I know my chevy's guys! Ford are new to me! But I will have them mastered soon. I want yall guys to know that I know a little.
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Old 12-25-2011, 04:31 PM
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327 motor

This here is a 327-375, nothing to special runs great. lol
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Old 12-25-2011, 04:54 PM
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Vega Motor

This is a car that I built. It was just a shell when I got it. I done everything that you see here to it. Its got a 400 small block engine, bored ported and polished heads.Roller Cam set up, runs real good.
6.90s threw the 8 th mile.
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Old 12-26-2011, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6666666666
Trying to figure out what i have got here my blocks got 352 on it but i got to reading some were that all early FE blocks has got 352 on them. Can anybody help me out. Whats the easiest way to find out by looking at it.
Please start your own thread and not resurrect a 6 year old thread.
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Old 12-26-2011, 06:16 PM
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Intakes for ford big bb

Hello friends i was just woundering if any of you guys hand aluminuim intake for a big block ford.
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Old 12-26-2011, 07:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy Boy
Hey guys,

Pretty novice here with the motor, but I'm getting better.

I've recently replaced the points and set the timing, but I am finding that the engine seems to go out of tune really fast. It will be running great one day, then I'll start it up the next and she's running rough again.

My friend said that it sounds like a worn timing chain, and with 90+K I wouldn't be surprised a bit.

Can anyone point me towards a good article re: timing chain replacement on a '64 ford FE 390?

Thanks B

The points ignition on these were never very long lasting between tune ups one can only imagine what the parts quality is today. The condenser value is also important the points trade material across themselves pretty quickly when this isn't right, something else that wasn't all that good even back in the day. By now the bushings in the distributor are probably worn as well letting the shaft wander which will change the gap. None of this is to say the timing set isn't worn, a silent chain running over gears, the cam gear's teeth might even be nylon, doesn't last forever.

To check the can drive get it running with the timing light on it and the vacuum advance plugged off. Rev it up a couple thousand RPM then slam the throttle shut. If the timing marks go under the base setting and back up again maybe cruising this zone a couple times; the chain and gears need replacing, for that read Crazy Larry's input, one can tell he's been there done that. Another hint is if the base timing needs resetting all the time, but this can also be fast wear on the points and or the bushings wearing out in the distributor or even the block, which isn't bushed but the distributor shaft extension rides in the block to give the bottom of the shaft support for the oil pump drive. These high mileage motors get one to many of these problems.

All these blocks have a 352 number on them, other than indicating it's an FE or FT block it's meaningless information, like no one couldn't figure that out by lifting the intake manifold. That would be a good exercise over at Gold's gym. The "Mechanics Lift"; with greased hands and fingers, bend your body 90 degrees over a buck, stretch your arms full length ahead of your shoulders, then jerk 60 pounds straight up, hold and reset down without damaging a gasket set. Repeat till exhausted.

Bogie
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