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Discussion Starter #1
Looking at several crate motors, pricing etc.. I know insane price but I am looking at a Shelby 289 crate motor. Shelby Aluminum block, Shelby/AFR heads, etc etc.. about 470 HP. How radical is that to be a daily driver. Well a driver/cruiser? I was long ago (even invested in) a 5.0 out of a Explorer which had all the goodies but due to an assingment to Korea had to back out. But time is ticking down for me to leave and I was able to save money to buy me a new engine. And before I buy something that is unusable short of a race car. I am curious how drivable you think that engine will be.
Shelby 289 Engine | Call Us @ 310-538-2914 | Carroll Shelby Engine Company

For a little more they have a monster 427 with like 550hp but the energy and effort to get that in the car might be not worth ti. I think since my wagon already has a 289 this would suffice and probably give it way more balls than it actually needs.
Thanks
 

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$25k for a sbf? Regardless of the builders name or being aluminum etc that is a terrible deal..... all time low value for money in my opinion. For the same cash you could buy a brand new 305 horsepower mustang.... just my opinion of course......
Pierre
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Though I appreciate the wisdom. I am asking about HP to driveability. Would the engine be too radical to be a driver..
 

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That much horse power in a 289 will not be very happy on the street.
 

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Wow, Thats a lot of money!!

My 289 stroked to 331 put out just shy of 440HP and Tq on the dyno.
It does fine on the street, I have a T5 behind it. No issues so far. And it's a Solid roller cam.

But I would buy a different crate engine if your asking for opinions. Find one for under 10K and you will have another 15K to upgrade other parts of your car.

That's my .02

Jet
 

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HP to drive-ability is a silly question now day's.

Did you know that there are several production engines in cars driven if not daily then weekly on the roads that are 600+ HP, and you're asking about a sbf with 480+- HP?

Drive-ability is the driver not the engine. In any and all circumstances, unless it's snowing.....
 

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Since they don't give out the cam specs and with AFR 205's (2.08 valves) I'd venture a guess that power is waaaay up there in the RPM range and without deep gears, a very loose converter or manual trans you wouldn't be happy. In fact, even with the right set-up you'd rairly see good power and torque on the street. I bet that peak HP number is somewhere north of 7,000 RPM.

I hate to disagree with FE but the later model cars making those power numbers have LOTS of technology behind them and are in no way a fair comparision to old school muscle. My 450 ish HP 347 would probably be considered more radical in terms of "streetable" than the 1000 HP Shelby GT 500. Most of the new motors have varible valve timing, infinitely adjustable timing curves and fuel injection that are all computer controlled and monitored by dozens of sensors to get there. Those number didn't get there the same way as they did 40-50 years ago.

Regardless, $25K for a crate motor like this would be a waste of money in my opinion. Unless of course you're building a very special Cobra replica or something. Even then.....

John
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for saying what you did about the computers. Yes computers have done alot. I have seen GT-R Skylines with their inline 6 getting 1300HP and being very streetable. Computers have allowed alot.

There is several options out there. Even Roush crates are cheaper than those. I spoke with them in email, they have a sister company who builds Iron blocks for about half the price and the numbers are still high in HP but not quite that high. I am trying to gather if going after that much HP will make the car um.. un fun to just drive around. I remember when I was a kid, my neighbor had a 69 Z28 Camaro with this insane motor, it was near impossible to start, wouldnt idle right, I had no idea about other issues but I am sure it would go like the wind. But really 90% of the time its going to be driven normal as a normal car.

I want to put a T-5 in the car but thats alot of radical work, so I might opt to just swap motors and keep the C4 and keep the interior looking stock. I was looking at the 289 setup for several reasons. The guy who did most of my cars restoration was one of Shelby's engine builders, and the engine was built by him but that was 15 or more years ago when he did it. And it has issues now. So started examing options. I could have it gone through and some aluminum heads, headers, larger diameter exhause etc etc added, then I am seeing #'s, and thinking I can buy a crate motor for a little more, oh.. I can get an aluminum crate motor for a little more. I know that is insane money for an engine but havent seen a 289/302 crate that had that much HP and just wanted to know your guys opinion on streetability. I dont want every stop light to be a drag race just to get where I am going if that makes sense. But I want to have a little something something when I do want to make it a drag race..
I been really looking at the Ford Aluminum crate motor through Summit where its around $12K or so.
 

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It's really not much work to put a T5 in a Falcon. Just so you know.

Get a pedal setup, Install it. Modify your crossmember, or make one, or you can buy one. I would use a Hydraulic throwout bearing or slave cyl like Daze cars sells.
T5, bell housing and clutch.

Done. :)

Jet
 

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I would look into FORDSTROKERS.com . You need a 347 or 363 The extra cubes will give you plenty of power and torque down low for a street car. Use the AirGap intake. My 347 with a mild cam and only 9.4 to 1 compression made 460HP and 440 ft lbs of torque. It is a very streetable setup.
 

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Or....I probably should have suggested...you could put in a fairly mild mannered aluminum headed, aluminum intake, cam + headers 390 FE motor and you could EASILY hit 400+hp / 400+tq and drive it in all conditions without much grief. Redone motor and C6 for around or just under $10K.

This link is to a recent post on the FE forum by Survival Motorsports with actual dyno results from a mild 390 build with the edelbrock performer top end kit. It made a clean 418hp/435tq

332-428 Ford FE Engine Forum: 390 on the dyno - - a nice surprise


A little more hassle and editing to install but if I can do it then probably anyone could. The torque is available nice and low (relative to a raunchy small block) and will make any light falcon size car haul ass if you want it to.

Of course I am a little biased with regards to FE's...
 

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I've got roughly $5,000 in my 347 and for the street it's more than enough power and torque to get me in LOTS of trouble. I'm only guessing the actual HP since my one and only dyno run it was on 7 cylinders and not running well. It's a 10.5:1 347 that's set up pretty well so the power is there for sure. Mine makes most of it's power between 3,000 and 6,000 RPM and with a loose converter it comes on almost instantly. The added cubes over a 289 are a big help nobody can see the difference from the outside.

If what you really want is a stout motor that sounds like much more look at the Thumpr cams from Comp. They're supposed to sound really big and several engine builders say they actually work well and are not all noise and no go.

Check with CHP, they sell complete crate motors as well and I'm sure they aren't nearly as much as the one you're looking at and will make equal power.

John
 

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I've driven a motor these guys put together in a cobra kit for about a hundred miles on HWY 1 in CA with very little stop and go. While it's not comparable due to the trans and suspension, it was in no way fun to drive in traffic. A lot of that was the four speed and gearing but you set the rear end up to hopefully complement the motor's power band.

The idea of driving something like this in any type of urban/frequent setting seems way out of place in my opinion but that's just me and someone else may love it.

I totally agree with displacement and milder build choices for something that's not going back and forth down your cruise street or mostly sitting at meets. Of course, I'm 41 now; 25 years ago I put up with wrestling with my cars while driving. Heck, I drove an outrageous TBucket for nearly a year back and forth to high school and that was only a few miles each way. Not anymore though, never again in fact.

On the money thing, I'd far rather put another $10k into the interior, engine compartment or chassis than something like this motor and the car would be just as fast. For that kind of money, you could probably make it handle pretty well.

I really think this type of motor is for a guy building a kit or converting to a GT350 or something like that.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I just wanted to say to everyone thanks for their opinions/advice...

Im what you call a noob to this radical motor stuff. Yeah we all like the lope of a engine but how drivable they are is the question I had. I was thinking the shelby engine just for the fact of the history of the car but yeah price is insane. I could get a crate engine and call it a day.

If anyone has opinions Aluminum vs Steel for the block I would appreciate. Pros Cons etc etc..
 
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