Ford Performance Crate Engine

Randy Folsom

Supporter
I am looking at this crate motor from Ford for an RCR40. I want street friendly with low RPM power. My questions are where can I get a sump, oil pump and filter setup that fits the RCR40. For the front end, it is my understanding that an electric water pump and shop made brackets for the alternator and A/C compressor are the way to go. I will probably use a Porsche G96 transaxle just because they are readily available, but I do have concerns about the mismatched gearing, that is first and second gear are not particularly useful.
 

Randy Folsom

Supporter
I am looking at this crate motor from Ford for an RCR40. I want street friendly with low RPM power. My questions are where can I get a sump, oil pump and filter setup that fits the RCR40. For the front end, it is my understanding that an electric water pump and shop made brackets for the alternator and A/C compressor are the way to go. I will probably use a Porsche G96 transaxle just because they are readily available, but I do have concerns about the mismatched gearing, that is first and second gear are not particularly useful.
I am also looking at a similar engine configuration from Prestige. If anyone has guidance on which is likely to be better, please let me know.
 

Phil G

Supporter
No need for electric water pump or anything special for the RCR Chassis. Shorty water pump and fits fine. CVF has complete setup just need a AC bracket. Check out Prestige Motorsports Facebook page they have a nice 347 readily available and can supply correct pan.
 

Howard Jones

Supporter
A couple of questions,

1. What do you intend to do about headers?

2. Do you EVER intend to run the car at high RPMs for extended lengths of time? By this I mean, like at an open track day where engine revs will remain above 3500 for 20-30 mins at a time or open road races (worse), or even fun night drag races with several runs back to back.

3. Streetcar only?
Then, what speed do you believe will be your normal freeway cruise speed? 65, 70, 75, 80 ?
Are the streets around your home, mostly residential with 25 MPH SL, boulevard 35-45, or rural >45-50.
You intend to tour with mostly freeway speeds above 65-75

4. Do you have any idea how much HP you want? Not dream/wish/brag about, but actually want.
 

Randy Folsom

Supporter
Howard,

Good questions. I live in Texas, so 70 to 80 mph is common. I might do a track day here and there, but I have no racing experience so lack the skills to drive at high speeds for extended periods. Also, not installing a full cage, so racing is out of the question. I am looking for between 400 and 500 HP. Given the power to weight ratio, I feel like that will keep me paying attention without killing me. I expect most of the time the RPMs will be between 2K and 3K with the occasional 5K RPM burst. I like the period look. The period look is easier to clean for those show and tell moments, not to mention less expensive than bling. I was thinking eight stack, but more research has lead me to understand that I probably wouldn’t like how the it runs at lower RPMs.

Cheers, Randy
 

Chris Kouba

Supporter
Randy,

I have a similar, older FMS long block package which is 350h/350tq and I am quite happy with it. I'm at ~2400 pounds and it moves along nicely, with what sounds like the same mission profile as you- no racing, maybe a track day, mostly enjoyable street running. Even at this relatively modest power level, the analogy I come back to is it's like taking a racehorse on a carousel.

I am fuel injected (presently working through an issue) and run through a ZF with a lightened flywheel and the experience is delightful.
 

Chris Kouba

Supporter
BTW, once you hear what the cross-over pipes sound like at WOT, you'll be spending a lot more time in the higher RPM ranges.
 

Randy Folsom

Supporter
Good to know that 350/350 is enough for good fun on the streets. I am going to use a Quaife ZF (ZF2) QBE63G. Given that I am going with a high torque setup, a lightened flywheel makes sense. Yes, I am sure there will some WOT show and tell opportunities . Looking forward to that. Are you running straight pipes? Guessing not. I have seen a few different muffler setups. Any recommendations?
 

Howard Jones

Supporter
Engine build : So the reason I ask about engine rev range use is this. If you intend to stress the engine with revs. Even if only once in a while then it needs to be balanced dynamically. That means all the rods, pistons, and ring packages need to be matched weight each and then assembled on the rods that also have been matched and then checked for equal weight as a unit. The crank, dampener, and flywheel need to be balanced as a unit also and every bearing clearance needs to be measured with mics, not plastiguage.

Production engines are matched to a standard weight +/- how much the builder thinks will work and not spend a lot of labor. Pistons and rods are chosen to fit in a weight range not equally matched. Cranks are balanced to a standard equal to the production goal and not with the dampener and flywheel down to as close to zero as possible. All this will matter if you run the motor on track or at sustained high revs, even a few times. The block needs to be line bored and the cylinders need to be at least checked for taper and roundness. A check for deck surface squareness should be done as well. Also, check and see how much the block has been bored. Some do .30 over and others do .40. .30 gets you one more bore should you ever need it.

Crate motors are not balanced. They are close enough for a street motor.......usually.......Engine builders cannot afford to spend the labor to do so. They are however a good way to get all the parts. Take it out of the crate, send it to an GOOD engine builder, and tell him to put it back together balanced and clearanced correctly. You will want the build sheet with all the measurements on it. This is not cheap but much less than buying all the parts separately, doing all the machine work, and then assembling it. Nearly everything can be reused except the gasket set.

Now you have a really, really good motor that can take what you throw at it within the parts design envelope for a very long time.

Headers: I think an RCR GT40 will accommodate a 351W without issues, 351s are taller than a 302 and the headers usually will not interchange. So this is a consideration. Especially if they are a cross-over type. A 351W will make about 50-70 hp more than a 302 of the same specification and at the same cost as a 302. I like them for street cars, especially because you can build a pretty low-spec motor and it will still make 375Hp all day long forever. This will be a hyd roller cam 10 to 1 pump gas motor with a Holley on top. 400 hp is also easy with an engine like this (just a bit more cam) and it will run on pump gas. It will not need an expensive GRBX, clutch, cv joints, axles, stub shafts, wheel bearings on and on.

Gear ratio selection: Gearbox specs. Here's where the money you same on the engine will be put to use. First, the GRBX needs to be able to live with the torque the motor makes plus about 20-25% but not less than 400 ft/lbs. This will put you in the Porsche G50 range as well at others.

Gears: Don't spend a lot of time worrying about a low 1st. They can be useful, in stop-and-go traffic, leaving intersections at legal speeds, going up driveways, loading on trailers, etc. 5th should net you about 2100-2300 revs at your favorite freeway speed. Here in Texas, that will be about 75mph this will also give you a top speed of about 175-180 with a rev limit of 6000 more or less. Thats enough. 2nd needs to be good for about 65mph and 3rd for about 100ish with 4th revving out to about 135-145.

I would recommend you spend the money and install a TBD like a Quaife-type differential in the GRBX. Best money I ever spent.

Waterpump? Do it the first time and put an electric pump in it. The new ones are really lifelong service parts. They are being used in a lot of modern production cars. Just really a better way to go. Especially in a mid-engined car. This can be a much longer discussion but the length and odd layout of the system in a very low mid-engined car is an issue. Electric pumps can address nearly all the points easily that a mechanical pump cannot.

Where in Texas are you? I'm in New Braunfels.
 
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Randy Folsom

Supporter
Howard,
Thank you so much. That is a lot of good information. I have just made arrangements to buy a Quaife QBE62G which is rated to 500 HP. https://shop.quaife.co.uk/shop/gearboxes/h-pattern/synchromesh/qbe62g/

The one I am getting most likely has the ATB differential. Not sure what the final ratio is could be either the 3.5 or 3.75. The seller doesn’t seem to know what he bought, but it is still in the original crate so hopefully it is all good.

I was thinking about a 351W instead of a stroked 302, but wondering if the additional height might be a problem in the RCR40. Someone mentioned that they had to raise the deck on the rear clip to make room for insulation / heat shielding so the exhaust doesn’t melt the fiberglass. Not a problem on a race track with plenty of air flow, but getting stuck in traffic could cause problems.

I am in northwest Austin, so not too far away.

Cheers, Randy
 

Phil G

Supporter
Randy
I would not let the deck height be a deciding factor when choosing the 302 vs 351. There is approx 6 3/4"between cross member and body to work with and the exhaust fits pretty tight regardless of deck height. I believe the photo is of Brians RCR 347. Mine is a 351 and the exhaust uses the same amount of space.
DA6F5ECD-F826-4DAB-A183-C5D102357FE7.jpeg
tempImagedui4qw.png
 

Howard Jones

Supporter
I would search Quaife transaxles here on this site. There have been issues in the past with these but I think they may have been related to high-power cars being run on track. If you hold your power to 400-425HP, it should be fine.

Call Fran about the deck height. He will know. But I think this has not been a problem with power trains that have a "flipped" orientation transaxle. This type of installation will usually lower the entire engine/gearbox about a 1 1/2". Again, ask Fran.
 
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Sean S.

Supporter
Randy
I would not let the deck height be a deciding factor when choosing the 302 vs 351. There is approx 6 3/4"between cross member and body to work with and the exhaust fits pretty tight regardless of deck height. I believe the photo is of Brians RCR 347. Mine is a 351 and the exhaust uses the same amount of space. View attachment 130769View attachment 130770

Randy,

I Also agree that the deck height isn't a big worry. I'm running a 351W with 1 7/8" primaries to 3" collectors. I have about 1" clearance there. I will try to get a better picture when I get a chance, the first one attached is before final fitment of the rear clam-shell. I had to move the rear of the clam-shell up quite a bit from where it was when this photo was taken. The last one attached is hard to see the clearance, but if you zoom in you can tell there is quite a bit of room there.

I am running a Porsche G50/52 trans-axle.

The engine is running a short water pump with CVF front dress, only issue with the 351W that I have run into, is that the alternator is what limited how far forward my engine would go in the chassis. I have the water pump pulley pretty close to the firewall with no hump. The alternator is within 5/16" of the suspension support bracket. I am however very happy where it sits. Even with the long G50/52, everything sits inside the body(after a few modifications to the trans case).

Regards,

Sean
 

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Randy Folsom

Supporter
Sean, thanks for all the pictures and information. I think I have my drive system figured out. I picked up a Quaife QBE62G transaxle yesterday. I plan to mate that to a 347 from prestige using a Safir clutch kit. Like you, I will go with CVF front dress, but need to decide if I want an electric water pump or a belt driven shorty. Also need to decide on v-belt or serpentine. There are so many dependencies, for example, the folks at Safir supply a different fly wheel depending on if the engine is internally or externally balanced.I went with the 347 because I eventually want to get a Weber eight pack and the original cars did not use the webers on the the 427s.
Cheers, Randy
 

Randy Folsom

Supporter
Engine build : So the reason I ask about engine rev range use is this. If you intend to stress the engine with revs. Even if only once in a while then it needs to be balanced dynamically. That means all the rods, pistons, and ring packages need to be matched weight each and then assembled on the rods that also have been matched and then checked for equal weight as a unit. The crank, dampener, and flywheel need to be balanced as a unit also and every bearing clearance needs to be measured with mics, not plastiguage.

Production engines are matched to a standard weight +/- how much the builder thinks will work and not spend a lot of labor. Pistons and rods are chosen to fit in a weight range not equally matched. Cranks are balanced to a standard equal to the production goal and not with the dampener and flywheel down to as close to zero as possible. All this will matter if you run the motor on track or at sustained high revs, even a few times. The block needs to be line bored and the cylinders need to be at least checked for taper and roundness. A check for deck surface squareness should be done as well. Also, check and see how much the block has been bored. Some do .30 over and others do .40. .30 gets you one more bore should you ever need it.

Crate motors are not balanced. They are close enough for a street motor.......usually.......Engine builders cannot afford to spend the labor to do so. They are however a good way to get all the parts. Take it out of the crate, send it to an GOOD engine builder, and tell him to put it back together balanced and clearanced correctly. You will want the build sheet with all the measurements on it. This is not cheap but much less than buying all the parts separately, doing all the machine work, and then assembling it. Nearly everything can be reused except the gasket set.

Now you have a really, really good motor that can take what you throw at it within the parts design envelope for a very long time.

Headers: I think an RCR GT40 will accommodate a 351W without issues, 351s are taller than a 302 and the headers usually will not interchange. So this is a consideration. Especially if they are a cross-over type. A 351W will make about 50-70 hp more than a 302 of the same specification and at the same cost as a 302. I like them for street cars, especially because you can build a pretty low-spec motor and it will still make 375Hp all day long forever. This will be a hyd roller cam 10 to 1 pump gas motor with a Holley on top. 400 hp is also easy with an engine like this (just a bit more cam) and it will run on pump gas. It will not need an expensive GRBX, clutch, cv joints, axles, stub shafts, wheel bearings on and on.

Gear ratio selection: Gearbox specs. Here's where the money you same on the engine will be put to use. First, the GRBX needs to be able to live with the torque the motor makes plus about 20-25% but not less than 400 ft/lbs. This will put you in the Porsche G50 range as well at others.

Gears: Don't spend a lot of time worrying about a low 1st. They can be useful, in stop-and-go traffic, leaving intersections at legal speeds, going up driveways, loading on trailers, etc. 5th should net you about 2100-2300 revs at your favorite freeway speed. Here in Texas, that will be about 75mph this will also give you a top speed of about 175-180 with a rev limit of 6000 more or less. Thats enough. 2nd needs to be good for about 65mph and 3rd for about 100ish with 4th revving out to about 135-145.

I would recommend you spend the money and install a TBD like a Quaife-type differential in the GRBX. Best money I ever spent.

Waterpump? Do it the first time and put an electric pump in it. The new ones are really lifelong service parts. They are being used in a lot of modern production cars. Just really a better way to go. Especially in a mid-engined car. This can be a much longer discussion but the length and odd layout of the system in a very low mid-engined car is an issue. Electric pumps can address nearly all the points easily that a mechanical pump cannot.

Where in Texas are you? I'm in New Braunfels.

Howard, I am going to be picking up a motorcycle in Dale this coming Wednesday evening. Since I am driving down I-35, I was wondering if I could stop by in the afternoon to pick your brain about my power train options. Cheers, Randy
 
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