Tag Archives: 350 engine

Fordolet Stumbles… Recovers!

3 Mar

Had a couple of small glitches show up with the engine. When I tore it down, I did what I thought was a careful visual inspection of the pushrods, and they looked good. I checked that none were bent, and the lengths were all fine.

Then, rechecking them prior to installation, I found that one rod-end showed some slight galling, which I had missed. So I had to order a new set. They finally came in, and I started putting stuff together.

My ring compression tool chose that day to come apart, so I had to wait to get a new one, as installing the pistons without one would be….impossible.

When that arrived, I started again, and after I got them all in and started torqueing them, found that the engine wouldn’t turn over by hand nearly as easily as it should. So out came all the pistons, for a good ring inspection, and I found a problem with one oil scraper expansion ring. I was able to trim that, fortunately, ’cause we had no desire to pay another $135 for a new ring set, and nobody sells them individually.

She went together fine then, and turned over nicely. Got everything torqued to specs, and continued working on minor stuff, while waiting for the new polished Weiand Street Warrior intake manifold to arrive, along with the Edelbrock cast aluminum valve covers and some trim chrome.

Originally, I was going to go with the black powder-coated Edelbrock Performer, but they didn’t have the one we wanted in black, so it was the Weiand. It should look pretty good under the 650 Edlebrock Thunder AVS carburetor, and between the Edelbrock valve covers, though.

That stuff arrived today, so Sunday, we can make a little more progress on the power plant. (click to enlarge)

Distributor and water pump

Alternator ready for chrome kit

350 cid engine build

Gerardo putting together the starter

More next Sunday, folks. She’s gonna look almost as good as she runs!


The Fordolet Project Continues

13 Feb

Did the heads today… lapped in the valves, new double springs, to match the 280 degree, .480/.480 cam.  In a couple of days, I’ll go back over and finish putting in the crank, camshaft, pistons and timing gears. Had a couple of distractions today, so didn’t get as far along as I had hoped.

Found out the body work is all done on the cab and bed. Chassis should be done by next weekend, and I want to have the engine ready to mount, so I can lay out the mounting modifications. Who’d a thought that Ford didn’t allow for mounting a Chevy engine in their trucks, eh?

(Click to enlarge, but be warned, they’re large files)


'54 F-100 chassis

The chassis before chopping it to add the new front end

We want to close up the C-channel frame with some stainless sheet metal before painting it. Makes for nice clean runs for wiring and brake lines.

Heads like new

Heads are ready to go!

I had hoped to finish the heads, and install the pistons, crank and cam today.  Just wasn’t to be, I guess. Ah well…. it’ll still be there tomorrow!

Cleaning a piston

Taking a "break" to clean up a piston for a custom ashtray

Not much of a break, but once I get started, I like to keep on… getting back up to speed ain’t as easy as it used to be!

351 Cleveland

This is the 351 Cleveland we pulled out of the truck

The 351 ended up at the dump, as we couldn’t find anyone interested in it, and it was taking up too much space. Pity! A great engine.

'54 F-100 bed

How the bed looked when bought

As you can see, the bed was pretty rough. When we’re finished, it’ll be red oak, with polished stainless, boltless deck runners. The tailgate will have invisible latches, instead of the stock chains and hooks.