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Old 05-03-2013, 10:05 PM   #1
mickeyc
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Default flathead I.D.

I recently picked up a flat head motor. The block has the number 59 with an L below it. The heads are center of head water outlet with an A cast into the head. I have asked a few flat head guys and they do not seem to be familiar with the L casting. I think this may have been a factory replacement motor for the 59 a or ab motor. Anyone have any thoughts or info about this motor? thanks mick.
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Old 05-03-2013, 10:34 PM   #2
ford38v8
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Default Re: flathead I.D.

Mickey, if the L is large, and immediately below the 59, then it is is what is known as a 59L block. A much smaller L, grouped with other smaller casting numbers would not have significant meaning.

59L blocks were produced in the 1945 and later time frame, some were military, some commercial, and some were replacement blocks. Most if not all 59L blocks were factory relieved. The fact that yours has A heads may mean that it was a replacement block, as the A heads were earlier.

It would be interesting to know if the A heads on your engine had been flycut to accommodate the wider stance of the later valves, of if your block had the earlier valve configuration.
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Old 05-04-2013, 05:19 AM   #3
JM 35 Sedan
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Default Re: flathead I.D.

If you remove a head, check to see if it is relieved and measure the bore diameter. That should tell you/us exactly what you have.
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Old 05-04-2013, 07:54 AM   #4
russcc
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Default Re: flathead I.D.

59L, is usually either a truck or bus engine. Some are 3 & 1/16, and some are 3 & 3/16 bore. Mine is a factory relieved, 3 & 3/16ths, with Stellite exhaust vales seats. The Flathead King up there in Maine, (Walt Dupont) has a real good handle on them. You will likely see his response here.
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Old 05-04-2013, 09:51 PM   #5
mickeyc
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Default Re: flathead I.D.

Thanks guys. I do not want to disassemble this motor as I was assured it is a properly running motor? The motor is currently in a 32 chassis and is about ready to fire up. The previous owner showed me a short video of this motor running. I will run it and check for compression and oil pressure
etc.
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Old 05-04-2013, 10:02 PM   #6
mickeyc
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Default Re: flathead I.D.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ford38v8 View Post
Mickey, if the L is large, and immediately below the 59, then it is is what is known as a 59L block. A much smaller L, grouped with other smaller casting numbers would not have significant meaning.

59L blocks were produced in the 1945 and later time frame, some were military, some commercial, and some were replacement blocks. Most if not all 59L blocks were factory relieved. The fact that yours has A heads may mean that it was a replacement block, as the A heads were earlier.

It would be interesting to know if the A heads on your engine had been flycut to accommodate the wider stance of the later valves, of if your block had the earlier valve configuration.
The L is large and by itself directly below the 59 lettering on the block.
The previous owner assured me this motor runs very well? It is currently installed in a 32 chassis. I will try to start it as soon as I can get to it.
I want to do a compression and oil pressure check on the motor. Also if it does run well I want to install this in a stock Model A I have. The A has a knock in its motor and I thought the flat head would make a nice replacement?
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Old 05-04-2013, 10:47 PM   #7
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Default Re: flathead I.D.

Mickey, the 59L is a high revving engine. Do your best to keep the rubber on the ground.
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Old 05-05-2013, 07:00 AM   #8
mickeyc
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Default Re: flathead I.D.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ford38v8 View Post
Mickey, the 59L is a high revving engine. Do your best to keep the rubber on the ground.
Thanks Alan. What do you mean by a "high revving engine?" I am not
very knowledgeable about Flatheads, but am learning. Is a better breather
because of the relieved block? Or perhaps a shorter stroke? What do you think about it as a power plant for a Model A coupe? I bought this motor as part of a package deal to acquire a 32 chassis. I had planned to sell
the motor, but I think I am starting to like it!
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