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Old 05-21-2017, 08:43 AM   #201
Bored&Stroked
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Default Re: New block

Couple More Options, Ideas to Consider:

1) Making a 21 stud version would be the most valuable if the outside of the block really looked like an original - so that somebody taking a pretty serious look at it in a car could not tell the difference. As others noted - this demands that the front of the block have the necessary configuration that a "pump in head" 21 stud would have. (Lots of little nuances here).

2) The internals of the 21 Stud could mimic the 24 stud - such that you could run a 24 stud crankshaft, rods, bearings, etc. - in it. I would deliberately setup the mains to support the later cranks - due to bearing availability.

3) Bores: You would want the 21 stud bores to be at a minimum 3 3/16 inch - such that the later 29A through 8BA rods would fit through the bores.

4) Oil Pan: I have not looked enough at the pan rails to compare 21 stud to 59A to 8BA. I will give this a closer look - but you may have to have some provisions to support different pans and breather setups. A 59x pan does look different than a 32 - 36 pan and the breather systems vary quite a bit.

====================== Back to General Ideas ================

A) Simple is Better for Most: Most folks will want to easily be able to buy/machine/setup a block using all their components. This give them maximum flexibility for both stock and performance applications.

B) Design Improvements - Strength and Material Thicknesses: While the above is true, nobody is going to be hurt by better strength in key areas, more material/thicknesses in weak spots, better ports/flow, etc.. So - the key is for the design(s) to support both --- giving us all the BEST of all worlds. (I know, this is the most difficult engineering/design challenge - the more options, the more complex, the more costly to produce).

C) Oiling the Lifters: I've seen some talk about pressurized lifter galleys. While I'd love this as "a configurable option" - it may present some real problems for most (if done with one big long galley like many OHV designs). The reason is that the stock lifters and many performance variants are NOT designed for a pressure galley - so many lifter designs will leak pressure (through the lifter). If there was a plug/port to drill out to turn this capability on/off, then the builder of the engine could decide how/when to use it. I would use it for many race situations where I have high lift - and or a lot of 'side load' on the lifter bore (think big roller cam). Tod - be happy to talk about this more, show you a whole range of lifter designs, etc..

D) Priority Main Oiling - 100% filtered: Yes - this would certainly make sense, but would probably require an oil galley down the side of the block - or external lines . . . could be done, but might be a pain. We use external priority main oiling on our Flathead Cadillac Bonneville engine - which has a long galley cast into the side of the block. I do think it is important for the design to include a 100% filtered oil setup - but one that uses the stock 49-53 pump in the stock location . . . as this is what MOST people will run. These blocks will not be approved for Bonneville racing - so there will probably be almost nobody who cares about dry-sump setups.

E) Different Oil Pump? - Another idea/option to ponder - is to see if it is possible to redesign the rear main cap to support a SBC style pump - with a 'drive shaft setup' coming from the stock location. Now - this might be total overkill, but I'd sure like to be able to use better quality pumps than we seem to be getting for flatheads these days. (I know - this idea is probably a bit too wild and expensive for most!)

F) Intake Ports: There has been a lot of chat about better flowing ports with solid/press-in guides (like the Flathead Cadillac). I think a LOT of improvements could be made here - as long as you solve the bigger issue of how to bore the lifter holes - obviously this is the big pain in the butt portion of the problem. I'd love to see a much better designed intake port, bowl and guide setup - that would be worth the money in itself (for us performance hounds).

G) Exhaust Ports: Yes, the challenge in the center is the room that it takes to improve flow. Given the larger bore desires (3.5"), you might consider making the ports "taller" to increase the flow - as you'll have problems going 'wider'.

H) Cubic Inches and Performance: We really need more cylinder wall thickness than we have today at 3 3/8" bore -- I'd like to see .220 or so (such that I can go to a 3.5" bore and have good wall thickness for boosted/blown applications).

I) Crankshaft Throw Clearance: I'd probably pickup a 4 3/8" stroke SCAT crank and a H-Beam rod - to see how the block and cylinder clearances setup on the bottom end.

J) Camshaft Journal Material, Cam Lift and Crankshaft Clearances: Many of us would love to have more material in the front/center CAM bearing areas - so we could use larger bearing diameters for larger lifts. One thing to checkout (with the 4 3/8" crank and rod) is what type of clearances do you have with the cam? How close are you getting to hitting the cam? While I'd love a 'raised cam' design (to clear the crank), this causes all sorts of drama with valve angles, port designs, new cam/crank gears, etc.. Not worth doing . . . but worth at least checking things out in your design.

K) Mains 3 or 5: Would be great to have a 5 main block as a potential option. Now - this would only be for guys chasing more serious horsepower levels --> Arduns, blown engines, etc.. There are definite limitations on the available journal sizes for the two "new mains" - given the dimensions of the block -- there is only enough room for a 1/2" to 3/4" side bearing (depending on throw thicknesses on both sides, what type of radius numbers are used in the corners, etc). Obviously this 'market' is much smaller than the guys who want to run normal crankshafts -- but my guess is that the high-end of the market might want this option.

L) Main Caps: If you make the block stronger in the main areas (very important), then you should also consider much stronger/better cap designs -- with enough material in the block to support 4 bolt caps - maybe quite wide to spread the clamping load out. (Think after market 4 bolt caps for performance SBC motors). Also, I would get rid of the 'half circle' cap indexing methods in use on the stock engines -- no reason to have these index methods when you can use some more modern methods. Also, by NOT having the semi-circular index methods, would make it a LOT easier to retrofit a full stud-girdle across the bottom end. Guys like me (especially on 3 mains) - will probably design a whole 2.5" or so thick stud girdle that covers the whole pan rail. Having better/easier indexing methods (not 6 half circles bosses) would make this easier. As a matter of fact, boy would I love a stud-girdle 'option' to be cast out of cast iron and available as an option for the block. Beats the hell out of having to fabricate one out of aluminum billet or steel.

Okay . . . too much coffee today . . . too many ideas to ponder and I better get to work actually getting something done on my cars - versus pondering the future!

Take care and I LOVE this whole thread and project.

B&S
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Old 05-21-2017, 11:06 AM   #202
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Default Re: New block

I remember seeing one example of a "whole pan rail" girdle. It's been a while so I can't remember the details of whether it incorporated the caps or if it just surrounded them and augmented structure there. A special pan had to be fabricated but it looked like it was going to beef things up pretty well.

Just about every avenue has been explored before with these engines. They are truly an Icon in the histories of automotive development and racing technology.
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Old 05-21-2017, 11:11 AM   #203
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Default Re: New block

Quote:
3) Bores: You would want the 21 stud bores to be at a minimum 3 3/16 inch - such that the later 29A through 8BA rods would fit through the bores.
I was wondering about that, thanks for answering my unasked question.

I'm not sure how big you can bore a block with the 21 stud pattern in the deck, not even considering cylinder wall thickness. It might not be much bigger than 3.188 so this would limit the range of bore size possible if the min is near 3.188 and the max is also near 3.188.
(Stock bore on 221 CI 21 stud engines is 3.062)

Tod - have you spoken to any pro flathead builders yet, have any contacted you? I imagine they would drive a lot of the potential sales.

A new block would permit crate engines to be built and sold.
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Old 05-21-2017, 11:14 AM   #204
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Default Re: New block

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Originally Posted by Yoyodyne View Post
I was wondering about that, thanks for answering my unasked question.

I'm not sure how big you can bore a block with the 21 stud pattern in the deck, not even considering cylinder wall thickness. It might not be much bigger than 3.188 so this would limit the range of bore size possible if the min is near 3.188 and the max is also near 3.188.
(Stock bore on 221 CI 21 stud engines is 3.062)

Tod - have you spoken to any pro flathead builders yet, have any contacted you? I imagine they would drive a lot of the potential sales.

A new block would permit crate engines to be built and sold.
Nobody has asked about dealing for me yet.

Tod
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Old 05-21-2017, 11:28 AM   #205
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Default Re: New block

Lots of good stuff being posted here! I am plodding along on the design. It is moving along as I have time.

Given that my block may be non-sanctioned by most bodies I am thinking of making the underside metal wall, where the exhaust manifold flanges bolt, a straight flat surface from front to rear. Since it won't help or hurt sanctioning I figured it would add a little coolant capacity and straighten out the flow a little. Opinions?

I'm also wondering about port flow improvement. Design will be restricted by the stock diameter (1.031) valve guides. I have decided that I will stick with stock on this so that machining the lifter bores is not driven by special tooling and headaches from smaller diameter guides. I may change my mind if I can get a tool to do it with, say a .750 diameter guide. Anyway, if I stick with stock size the ports are pretty much restricted by the location of the guides. The only solution would be to be able to drop the guide down about .120, but then I would need to drop the spring seat area down the same amount so that the clip will slide around the guide underneath the seat. That "solution" would compress the spring more, though. That might create a problem. Ideas?

I'll get back about other points being brought up asap.

Tod
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Old 05-21-2017, 12:19 PM   #206
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Default Re: New block

So I take it that the lifter bores can't be put in from the bottom?
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Old 05-21-2017, 12:23 PM   #207
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Default Re: New block

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Originally Posted by Yoyodyne View Post
So I take it that the lifter bores can't be put in from the bottom?
Right. That is no doubt the reason for the stock valve guide size.

Tod
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Old 05-21-2017, 04:27 PM   #208
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Default Re: New block

I like the idea of keeping the valve/lifter area stock. Some modes to the water jacket in this area will help those that want to search for more power happy. As for the center exhaust port, it's the best flowing port in the engine. Just use a flow bench. The fact that it is used for two cylinders has no affect on flow, as the cylinders don't fire at the same time. In fact, The firing order of the Flatheads fireing order is such that all the end cylinders fire in succession first. Then the center 4 cylinders fire in sequence one side at a time. Now with the proper exhaust manifold you can use this to evacuate the end cylinders. Plus you don't need to make any mods to the block. So leave the center exhaust port alone. Pretty soon we'll get nothing.
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Old 05-21-2017, 05:11 PM   #209
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Default Re: New block

In order to keep a .200 wall thickness for 3.500 bore I would have to Siamese the front two and rear two cylinders in the water jacket. Increasing the bore means less sand between cylinders. The sand in those areas needs to be substantial enough to hold up under the heat and weight of iron during casting. Larger bores will end up with an effect on coolant flow. If I go to .180 wall at 3.5 bore I will have only .14 thickness of sand between cylinders. That is asking for scrap castings. I suppose I could Siamese between them at strategic places from the bottom of the cylinder. Since the deck will be .500 thick instead of .26, there will be added strength up top. But where there is sand between the cylinders I need to make it enough to hold up during casting. I can probably go to 3.9 cylinder wall OD and make it work.

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Old 05-21-2017, 05:17 PM   #210
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Default Re: New block

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Originally Posted by Ol' Ron View Post
I like the idea of keeping the valve/lifter area stock. Some modes to the water jacket in this area will help those that want to search for more power happy. As for the center exhaust port, it's the best flowing port in the engine. Just use a flow bench. The fact that it is used for two cylinders has no affect on flow, as the cylinders don't fire at the same time. In fact, The firing order of the Flatheads fireing order is such that all the end cylinders fire in succession first. Then the center 4 cylinders fire in sequence one side at a time. Now with the proper exhaust manifold you can use this to evacuate the end cylinders. Plus you don't need to make any mods to the block. So leave the center exhaust port alone. Pretty soon we'll get nothing.
I was thinking about using the dipped design of the center exhaust port on the 2 ends as well. I'm going to try to keep the exhaust ports close to original right under the valve, but try to smooth out the flow some and get rid of as many sharp angles as possible. I just don't see the sharp corners helping exhaust flow. Since the area of the port diameter where the exhaust manifold bolts on is about 1.5 square inches, if I can keep the port no less than that all the way through, it should do nothing but help flow. More "direct" and less turning.

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Old 05-21-2017, 05:29 PM   #211
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Default Re: New block

Just a thought, you would have more chances of selling a new block that was like a new replacement from Ford. If you can interchange the front and rear cores to cover more years, so much the better. Racing flatheads are great, but the race car builders have been dealing with the stock blocks for a long time. Improvements that are simple to do and don't eat up a lot of R&D keep projects from getting sidelined. JMO, and them Model A engine are pretty cool.
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Old 05-21-2017, 05:35 PM   #212
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Default Re: New block

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Just a thought, you would have more chances of selling a new block that was like a new replacement from Ford. If you can interchange the front and rear cores to cover more years, so much the better. Racing flatheads are great, but the race car builders have been dealing with the stock blocks for a long time. Improvements that are simple to do and don't eat up a lot of R&D keep projects from getting sidelined. JMO, and them Model A engine are pretty cool.
I want to keep it a close to stock as possible and definitely so that all stock parts will bolt right on. I am designing the molding to do exactly what you propose - allow the casting of different front and rear configurations. The half bell being further down the list.

I have been making foundry tooling for 40 years and I will be able to make just about everything with as little pattern work as possible.

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Old 05-21-2017, 05:45 PM   #213
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Default Re: New block

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Originally Posted by Tod View Post
I was thinking about using the dipped design of the center exhaust port on the 2 ends as well. I'm going to try to keep the exhaust ports close to original right under the valve, but try to smooth out the flow some and get rid of as many sharp angles as possible. I just don't see the sharp corners helping exhaust flow. Since the area of the port diameter where the exhaust manifold bolts on is about 1.5 square inches, if I can keep the port no less than that all the way through, it should do nothing but help flow. More "direct" and less turning.

Tod
Tod your idea on the exhaust port flow is exactly how the French flathead blocks were cast. The French block has a number of design improvements similar to what you and others have mentioned. Maybe someone could loan you one of those blocks so you could see these improvements first hand.
Ron
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Old 05-22-2017, 11:13 AM   #214
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Default Re: New block

I always figured the block would have to grow longer to get a non-siamese cylinder pairing internally. 3.375" was about as big a bore as they ever went with these blocks unless they started cutting the cylinder walls away and installing sleeves. Sleeves would be better if the deck it thicker. The cylinders are the largest amount of support for the top deck.
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Old 05-22-2017, 11:38 AM   #215
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Default Re: New block

Gang, I think the single center exhaust port is inevitable if you're going to run a Flathead Ford. If Tod does the heat riser area sold then a racer could machine that area for extra porting.

I think exhaust flow with some basic improvements will prove to be more than adequate until inlet breathing is vastly improved.

Me personally if I were the one calling the final design parameters it would be an 8BA all the way. The 59A style engine could be made with a slightly different set of moulds for the front of the engine.

I wouldn't fiddle with the "half bell housing" when there are tons of adapter rings still out there.

An 8BA is just a better engine in many ways when thinking in terms of driving and utility.

You can make an 8BA look like an earlier engine anyway.

I think we would be lucky to have a fully modern interpretation of the most evolved and servicible Flathead design.

Maybe down the road an early 21/24 stud hybrid could be developed but for maximum bang for the buck a kick ass 8BA would make a lot of dreams come true.
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Old 05-22-2017, 02:22 PM   #216
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I did just a little modeling today, so far. I had some parts that needed an operation in a small machine and I had to do it myself. Then I tore out some 3 phase wiring and reworked the whole mess. Maybe I'll get more done this evening after relaxing the pain away.

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Old 05-22-2017, 06:03 PM   #217
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Default Re: New block

Question for the forum - What rods would you use with an 8BA style crank w/4" or longer stroke? Would 8BA rods with non floating bearings clear the rest of the motor?
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Old 05-22-2017, 07:28 PM   #218
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Default Re: New block

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tod View Post
In order to keep a .200 wall thickness for 3.500 bore I would have to Siamese the front two and rear two cylinders in the water jacket. Increasing the bore means less sand between cylinders. The sand in those areas needs to be substantial enough to hold up under the heat and weight of iron during casting. Larger bores will end up with an effect on coolant flow. If I go to .180 wall at 3.5 bore I will have only .14 thickness of sand between cylinders. That is asking for scrap castings. I suppose I could Siamese between them at strategic places from the bottom of the cylinder. Since the deck will be .500 thick instead of .26, there will be added strength up top. But where there is sand between the cylinders I need to make it enough to hold up during casting. I can probably go to 3.9 cylinder wall OD and make it work.

Tod
Hey Tod - I like the way you're thinking it through. Having partial flow between the cylinders is probably a good idea - versus a "full siamese" top-to-bottom. I really like the idea of a 3.5" bore. With a 4 3/8" stroke crank, that would give us a 336 cubic inch flathead! With solid improvements in both intake and exhaust port designs - we'd have enough air flow to support the cubic inches . . . that would be really fun!

Keep up the good work and let me know if I can help you in any way!

Dale
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Old 05-22-2017, 07:35 PM   #219
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Default Re: New block

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Anyway, if I stick with stock size the ports are pretty much restricted by the location of the guides. The only solution would be to be able to drop the guide down about .120, but then I would need to drop the spring seat area down the same amount so that the clip will slide around the guide underneath the seat. That "solution" would compress the spring more, though. That might create a problem. Ideas?

I'll get back about other points being brought up asap.

Tod
I don't see a problem dropping the guide down - as most of us have to shim the springs about .120 anyway (to get enough spring pressure with high performance cams). The more important aspect of the port is trying to improve the flow path, the floor and the transition into the bowl - lots of improvements can be made there.

If you could design the port to bowl transition area to handle more flow and make it possible to hand modify the tops of the stock guides to blend into the floor and not create a dead spot - that would be great.

Had another sort of wild idea (haven't thought it through), but what if you 'raised the deck' to give you more port volume above the guide? Yes - it would require longer valves - but that is not that big of a deal (just need to source something that works). Pistons wouldn't be a big deal as the long stroke cranks have to move the pin way up anyway - so moving the pin back down would actually be a good thing (not so close or into the ring pack for large strokes). Just thinking out loud here . . .

I highly suggest that you pickup JWLs book on performance modifications - he shows a lot of methods of port rework with the stock block . . . many would be worth thinking about for a new block. Also, there is no reason to not go to about a 1.7" intake valve and a 1.6" exhaust --- though with port improvements in the exhaust side, I believe a 1.5" valve would handle all the flow.

I definitely would not supply the block with a 'factory relief' - this will make it possible for the high-dollar Ardun crowd to use the block . . . and they'd surely be interested in the 3.5" bore.

Keep the ideas flowing gang . . .

D
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Old 05-22-2017, 07:43 PM   #220
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Default Re: New block

For a thread started 17 days ago, and just shy of 10,000 views,and over 200 replies, I'd say there is a lot of interest in somebody casting and supplying new Ford Flathead blocks
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