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Discussion Starter #222
China influence. Edelbrock sold a lot of their stuff to China for them to copy.
Hello rickyracer1983,

You know what is sad, I bought a no-name China brand new aluminum, dual plane, high rise, air gap manifold for my Mark IV big block Chevrolet and it wasn't bad at all. It was really cheap at 180 dollars. All the holes lined really well and the ports were spot on. Knowing this what's Edelbrocks excuse........ (semi-rhetorical).

Believe it or not I was going to buy an Edelbrock manifold for it, but the reviews on Summits website weren't favourable. Add the poor reviews to the hefty price and I thought well what do I have to loose by trying the cheaper Chinesium thing. Worst case it and the Edelbrock will need machining. Turns out the China thing was truly bolt and go.

I would love to buy U.S.A. made items, but not if it's overpriced and even more work needs to be done to it. I have poked around and more more aftermarket companies are making FE components. I think I am done with Edlelbrock unless they make something (like the multiport FE manifold) that no one else is currently making.

Cheers
 

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Hello rickyracer1983,

You know what is sad, I bought a no-name China brand new aluminum, dual plane, high rise, air gap manifold for my Mark IV big block Chevrolet and it wasn't bad at all. It was really cheap at 180 dollars. All the holes lined really well and the ports were spot on. Knowing this what's Edelbrocks excuse........ (semi-rhetorical).

Believe it or not I was going to buy an Edelbrock manifold for it, but the reviews on Summits website weren't favourable. Add the poor reviews to the hefty price and I thought well what do I have to loose by trying the cheaper Chinesium thing. Worst case it and the Edelbrock will need machining. Turns out the China thing was truly bolt and go.

I would love to buy U.S.A. made items, but not if it's overpriced and even more work needs to be done to it. I have poked around and more more aftermarket companies are making FE components. I think I am done with Edlelbrock unless they make something (like the multiport FE manifold) that no one else is currently making.

Cheers
I do agree with you on Edel quality control, or lack of. I think their problem is they've spun off in so many different directions that they lost all QC. I don't think Vic Jr dying 3 yrs ago did them any favors. Bean counters took over and QC went down the shitter.
The China stuff isn't bad. You do have to clean it up, but I've had to do that on many other USA made to.
 

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Discussion Starter #224
A Little More Engine Progress


46632



Time to assemble the valve train.

More engine jewelry. All these parts are Precision Oil Pumps. It's like an erector set of valve train parts. Those bags of shims are needed to space the rockers over the valves on the shaft. The stock FE just uses tension springs to keep the rockers positioned on the shaft because the valve springs on old OEM stock flat tappet cams were so weak they weren't worried about the rocker sliding over and the pushrod dislodging. Obviously with the high spring tension of the roller cam you want the rocker precisely positioned and secure from floating around on the shaft. The Rockers have replaceable bushings and are hone to fit, hence the little brake hone. The new rocker shafts are stronger than the old ones Ford used and I bought the supported ends because the stock Ford end rockers are unsupported. The shaft has been known to break off with stiffer valve springs. All these reasons are why the original valve train is in the rubbish bin and none of the old stuff is being using. :)


46633



Ford has bolts that hold down the rocker shaft but I use the studs, so you use Locktite and screw them in to keep them from spinning.


46634




46635




46636



This where you play the shim game and shim all the rockers without being too loose or worse binding till they are over each respective valve stem.


46637




46638




46639



It's the other Port - O - Magic head. :)


46640



I spent an entire day honing, cleaning all the new valve train parts and shimming as you have to put on and take off each rocker assembly about a dozen times.


46641



Now it's symmetrical looking.

Continued in next post.
 

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Discussion Starter #225
Engine Assembly Continued


46642



Test fitting the manifold to see what all awaits me on what I have to do to machine this intake.


46643




46644



The head interface looks good. That makes me happy.


46645



I used the distributor to locate the intake because Edelbrock doesn't believe in machining for the locating pin that's mounted in the block, withcidentally has to be removed in order to use an Edelbrock intake. So you have to use the distributor as a big locating pin.


46646



This will have to be ground down. This is where the pad bracket bolts to the front of the engine to hold the York 210 compressor. The intake needs to be flat as the side of the head. Ironic the head and intake are made by the same company and they haven't yet figured that one out.


46647



Oh my, it looks like Ray Charles cast this intake.


46648



I wish I could say the other side is better......... But I can't...... :(


46649



More shenanigans. The bolt hole to mount the intake isn't flat, how on earth are you supposed to seal the hole from the engine oil directly underneath?????????? I'll have to figure out a way to machine the bolt lands flat.


46650



This is how it would look. This is a pretty poor show.


46651



I have my work cut out for me, literally.

Until next time.

Cheers
 

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Yikes!
Have fun spot facing those bolt holes. :rolleyes:

It is quite sad that Edelbrock didn't spot face those during production.
I mean... they have the tooling/machinery and it would likely be a couple minutes operation for them.
Oh well... pennies saved... at the expense of their reputation and unhappy customers.
 

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I will be interested in seeing how you do the spot facing. I'm guessing some kind of cutter chucked through the intake from the head side?

Pat
 

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Discussion Starter #228
Intake Manifold and Some Floor Pan Work

Hello all,

Just a little update on the gal 500 XL. I finished the machining of the intake, what a task that was. I have 10 bloody contiguous hours in this and am I over this intake :)


46674



I managed to do the recess for the manifold to head bolts.


46675




46676



Now that's how it should have come from Edelbrock. They all sit flat now.

This was a pain in the butt to do. So Edelbrock crudely and I do mean crudely drilled the manifold to head bolt holes. It's a 3/8" bolt but Edelbrock made the holes slightly larger than 7/16" and they are all not the same diameter. The holes were already that large and I did not want to go larger. So first I had to find the largest hole then take a 1/2" round steel rod and turn it down on the lathe till it fit the largest through hole on the manifold. Now I had to make the other ones all this one size. So I took that turned down 6" or so round rod and put a radius on the nose and cut slots like flutes on the sides at a severe angle and made a crude reamer. It's cutting aluminum and didn't need to be out of tool steel or anything. So I reamed the other smaller holes to the size of the largest hole already existing.

OK, now the holes are all the same size.


46677



Next I cut another slug out of the turned down 1/2" rod and centre drilled it for this little Dremel bit. Now I have a guide bushing to centre the cutting stone in each bolt hole.


46678



I took the cutting stone on the right and ground it down to a diameter slightly larger than the washer I intend to use. The washer is a 3/8" AN washer.

The Dremel was too weak to do this so I used a battery powered drill to spin and pull the cutting stone into the top of the manifold from the bottom side.

That was tricky but it's done.


46679



Now for the truly grueling part, porting this. My gosh did they miss the mark on casting this. I was asked initially if the rest of the runner was the same area as the port size. At first I thought it was, but it turns out it's not. The port mouth and about 1/2-1" inwards funnels down. Now this is counter productive because air flow will speed up through this hit the sudden edge, create vortices which will slow down the laminar flow, then it would dump into the head port which is larger and further slow down flow.

As sold as, it's awful, I don't think you could make anything worse. Ug....

Turns out I was able to open the mouth of the intake port and cut back 1/2" or so and the rest of the runner is size of the new port, withcidentally is the standard medium riser port size. I don't know what Edelbrock was thinking.


46680



I had to remove tremendous amounts of aluminum from this thing to achieve the medium riser port size.


46681




46682



Now were talking..... oh yes..... :)


46683



This is a fraction of the aluminum I took off. I mere fraction. I was in a Tyvek suit, gloves, eye protection, mask and a hat and I'm still removing splinters from myself.

Continued in next post.
 

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Discussion Starter #229
Intake Manifold and Some Floor Pan Work continued

46684




This what I used to port the intake and heads. The carbide bit on the left is worth every penny of 80 dollars. I've had this for years and it's still sharp as a razor. To keep the aluminum from binding to the carbide bit occasionally I coated the bit with light oil and did the shavings just fly off. Once opened up I used the cheap and chips sanding discs to smooth it out. I went through 3 and 1/2 boxes of the sanding cones doing the heads and intake.


46685



What a difference.


46686



I machined off a bit in the front to clear the air con compressor (York 210) bracket.


46687



other side


46688




46689



The shavings in the jar is 2/3's of just one side. It made a royal mess everywhere. But it's done. Now I did test the pushrods through the intake and adjusted them and turned the engine over to make sure the holes were big enough and no rod was going to hit. I'm happy to report Edelbrock was able to get that right as the holes were large enough.

I can only imagine what a machine shop would charge for this. Edelbrock was on track for making a decent intake then screwed the pooch by only going 90% then calling it done.

I appreciate that Edelbrock even attempted to create something for the ancient FE and I do appreciate the amount of engineering and manufacturing that went into this. The man hours and R&D costs are quite high, but in reality this should be a 400 or so dollar intake and not 815. They could have easily finished it like I did on a CNC mill and even made a much better cutter and guide for the spot facing with an actual carbide bit.

I don't want to go off too far on a tangent but I had to make a plastic part for my ancient strobe wheel balancer and it took loads of time to do.


46690



The original broken and melted front face is obviously on the right and my prototype is on the left.


46691



I can't find anything for this wheel balancer anymore. I think they are just about extinct so I have to make my own. This is where I can appreciate the amount of time and money that Edelbrock spent on the intake. I just just had to make one plastic part from scratch and it took me about 30 man hours.


46692



That includes the initial measuring best I could based off the old part, modeling it, printing the first one, seeing where it was still off, correct the 3D model, reprint, sand, paint and install.


46693



Sure it's a 3D printed ABS part and it will never be as nice as the injection molded part, but it's a darn sight better than the old part.

continued in next post
 

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Discussion Starter #230
Intake Manifold and Some Floor Pan Work continued

46694




Test fitting the lens and strobe housing.


46695




46696



fits like a glove


46697



All that work just to make the strobe a little bit nicer. Plus I went through the electronics and found some high ESR caps that were also electrically leaky. This should work for another 50 years.

But I digress, I just wish Edelbrock would pay more attention to their products.


46698



These are the pushrods for the 390, now 396.


46699



And of course I find several pushrods with this. So I had to use a very fine file and remove the high spots and smooth the ends.

Why is nothing ever easy.

That's as far as I am on the engine. Now for some body things.


46700



Geeze many years I started on this car by replacing part of the rear floor pan as it was rotted from rodent excrement. So there's a rear floor brace that goes over this and it has just enough large holes for mice to make a home in. I remember flushing this out originally before I realized it was rusted out from within and the sheer of mouse turds was just disgusting. It just never seemed to stop. I had no recourse but to remove the brace, if anything to clean out the crap, literally. If you didn't, you'd always have that smell that seems to emanate from somewhere and you don't know where.

Anyway I was a newbee at metal work back then and I left this and it's not that good, but I finished the welding and made sure all the metal was filled in with weld and ground flat for the floor brace. It's not the greatest, but it's strong and it's a floor pan going to be painted and covered with sound/thermal deadener and then carpet. As long as corrosion control is in place and there are no holes this will work.


46701



working on this side.


46702



The red paint is actually weld through primer and since I previously scraped most of the old seam sealer (it's asbestos mixed with rubber) I wanted to POR 15 the exposed seams first, then once that dries I can apply urethane seam sealer before the brace is welded back in.


46703



This is the brace from the donor gal 500 XL. The rear brace is the same for the gal 500 and gal 500 XL but this one didn't have rust holes through it. It's ready for install after the seam sealer is applied.

Once the rear brace is welded back in, I can remove the front braces to replace them with the XL's braces since they are different for the bucket seats vs the bench seat.

Until next time.

Cheers
 

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AMAZING WORK!!(y)(y)

I wish I had the talent and patience to do HALF of what you do........GOOD LUCK and keep your updates coming DesertXL!!:)
 

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I agree, amazing work, and just to add, Edelbrock does know how to make decent FE intake ports.
I bought a Performer RPM for my 428 before I had decided to go with the 3X2 manifold.
The ports on the Perfomer RPM intake are nicely cast and would require minimal to maybe no clean-up to match the heads.
The bolt holes faces on the Performer are not spot faced but they are cast nice and level and perpendicular to the holes.
Also, the Edelbrock aluminum heads have the intake ports CNC ed the first 1/4 inch or so into the port to match the medium riser port.

Shame on them for putting out that atrocious Victor thing they call a manifold.
 

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Wow, great job! (y) Sorry you had to invest all that time into a new intake, though. The only upside is think of all that weight savings from your aluminum dust removal. :) It's ridiculous they made the bolt holes so big and uneven. I bet that took awhile with the grinding disk.

Pat
 

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You are a true Renaissance Man! I love the detail and your fearless ability to tackle any project. Thanks for sharing everything!
 

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Discussion Starter #236
AMAZING WORK!!(y)(y)

I wish I had the talent and patience to do HALF of what you do........GOOD LUCK and keep your updates coming DesertXL!!:)
Hello Marauderjack,

Most kind indeed, thank you and of course I will share what I've learned.

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #237
I agree, amazing work, and just to add, Edelbrock does know how to make decent FE intake ports.
I bought a Performer RPM for my 428 before I had decided to go with the 3X2 manifold.
The ports on the Perfomer RPM intake are nicely cast and would require minimal to maybe no clean-up to match the heads.
The bolt holes faces on the Performer are not spot faced but they are cast nice and level and perpendicular to the holes.
Also, the Edelbrock aluminum heads have the intake ports CNC ed the first 1/4 inch or so into the port to match the medium riser port.

Shame on them for putting out that atrocious Victor thing they call a manifold.
+1

Yuppers the pictures of the Edelbrock heads clearly show the intake runners are properly sized, the exhaust ports well, not so much.

Just have to keep working through things like this.

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #238
Wow, great job! (y) Sorry you had to invest all that time into a new intake, though. The only upside is think of all that weight savings from your aluminum dust removal. :) It's ridiculous they made the bolt holes so big and uneven. I bet that took awhile with the grinding disk.

Pat
Hello 1964Fastback,

Yuppers it did take a while. Actually once I picked the best stone I had on hand it went really quick. Taking all the bolt through holes to one size then making the crude pilot bearing for the arbor took the longest time.

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #239
Not such thing as quality control or pride in their workmanship.
You know rickyracer1983, the pride does seem to be tapering off in not just my encounters but other horror stories I've heard as well. It's getting worse not better. There will always be poorly made products intermixed with well made ones on the market but for a culture so allegedly wanting to recycle and not pollute, why is everything seemingly so disposable and cheaply made.

I can't help but think this is endemic of a much larger problem.

Ug, this was depressing..:oops:

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #240
You are a true Renaissance Man! I love the detail and your fearless ability to tackle any project. Thanks for sharing everything!
Hello Jazzmeister,

Thank you for the kind words, I figured if this can either provide amusement, motivation or just what to clear avoid then it's worth it. :)

Cheers
 
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