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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-03-06, 12:00 AM Thread Starter
Classic not Plastic!
Rhett Walker's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2006
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Manifold and Cam choices

Hey guys

I'm just about to rebuild my 302w for my ZD Fairlane, she is a cruiser but i want a little more kick without going ridiculous. Needs to retain fair economy and run on maximum of premium unleaded as up north its hard to find BP.

For starters one of my heads are cracked so a new pair is on the way (el cheapo paper ones for a hundred bucks) I will port match them to whatever I use and give the exhaust good clean out and polish the chambers. I was advised against touching the intake as usually any attempts to modify them by an amature you lose power. Something to do with maximum atomisation. Any tips on playing with heads yourself? My mate had a standard 302 clevo, he fully rebuilt her put in a mild cam, 4 barrel and manifold, using the stock iriginal heads, he polished them (all himself) to literally a mirror finish. He had the heads sitting on his coffee table for about 3 months doing them constantly by hand. Now that car went hard, alot harder that any other basically standard 302 I've been in. Don't ask me any more questions as thats about all I know about what he did to em. So any comments, suggestions, links etc to help me out?

As for the manifold, some people reckon the edelbrock performer is the way to go and other say the weiand xcelerator mini high rise is the way to go. Any suggestions? I would like to run the new Holley Street Avenger as I have heard nothing but raves about them.

Also, when running the standard diff gears, whats a good cam? I saw these kids in America under direction by a race technician, they stuck in a roller cam and roller lifters but no roller rockers, something about budget. How much is a roller cam - lifters and is it worth while?

Don't forget its for a reliable every day use, nothing exotic or overly juicy.

Thanks for the help!


Gimme an old classic cruiser any day over a new car. I can jump on my fairlane all day long and not even dent it, just bump a new car 'n' your off to the panel beaters...
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-10-06, 04:44 PM
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Re: Manifold and Cam choices

For a daily driver the Edelbrock Performer RPM is a great choice when you have improved air flow.

Polished ports are not real good on a carbed engine, except for race engines, because the roughness of the stock port helps to keep the flow turbulent enough to keep the fuel suspended in the intake charge.

You can't even compare Clevo heads to Windsor heads.

For daily driving you will want a short duration cam for low end torque. With stock heads you won't have enough flow to make power up top. Anyways you do a lot of low RPM driving on the street, especially with stock gears.

A roller cam will give you more area under the curve. What this means is that the valve will open and close faster, providing a longer time that the valve is open farther than on a flat tappet cam. A roller is almost always a better choice, but you have to get a "retro-fit" cam which is ground on a smaller base circle than regular cams so that the roller lifters will set down into the bores at the depth that they need to be for proper oiling.

The carb needs to be sized to the needs of the engine. Too big a carb will kill performance at the bottom end.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-14-06, 06:49 AM
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Re: Manifold and Cam choices

Hi Rhett,sounds like you just need a mild basic set up with minor mods.
manifold - realistically any good aftermarket 4 barrel(dual plane)will do fine.Ultimately as Ohio XB said a performer RPM is a great choice,but if you are on a budget a 2nd hand performer can be found quite cheap.
heads - lots of improvement can be found in the exhaust ports even for first time porters.Remove the thermolactor lumps in the roof of the port and streamline the valve guide boss.Blend the bowl area.match port the openings to the gasket line.You can polish the exhaust ports if you want.
On the intake side tread very carefully.I would advise just blending and de-dagging in the bowl,mostly just blending above the seat area.If there are any big bits of casting flash in the ports take them out but thats it.No polishing allowed here.
Back-cutting the valves will also help.
Camshaft - the cam dynamics/blue racer range of camshafts offer very good value(Made by Crane cams).Can sometimes get cam & lifters for under $200.
the second one would do nice with your standard converter and gears.Don't forget the new valve springs as well.
With a rebuilt bottom end,600 vac sec,upgraded ignition and extractors this would be a nice daily driver.
Hope this helps.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-16-06, 12:20 AM
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Re: Manifold and Cam choices

Hi Rhett
I have a ZD fairlane myself with 302W, I have gone with an iski megacam part #381271 (.496 lift) lumpy but idles well without stall, an edlebrock performer RPM intake, 600 vac sec Carb an a set of flowtech headers (well priced) and it has made a very noticeable difference (although I have put a 2300 converter in) the Manifold is good for street use as its good from 1500 through to 6000rpm , i was runing a 465cfm holley, it was good but it ran out of legs pretty quick and thats why i went to the 600cfm and its great, I have no problems with idle, only when i first start it when cold it needs to idle @ about 1500 but then its sweet and is safe at about 700rpm. I reakon I have a pretty good sort of combo alhough the only other thing i would do is a bit of basic head work as we all know how well windsor heads breathe!! I have also put a stage 2 shiftkit in my C4 (I assume thats prob what you are running?) and a B&M ratchet shifter, it eats hondas no problem and its got very good pick up on open road
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