03 February 2013

ugliest headers award

The biggest cut n weld project left to do on the 40 project,
the exhaust manifolds...
ford in a ford

Since working out of the garage,
it's been a totally different experience to get work done.
With the time change it feels weird to work past 530 - dark time,
whereas before I wouldn't even get started til after 530!

Friday was one of the first good night grooves in a long time.
I'm not sure what it was,
something just clicked that hadn't in a long time.

Luther Ingram - "if lovin you is wrong i don't want to be right"
Installment #3 in our oldies month!

Just like the song says.
Sometimes you just gotta do what you gotta do,
and in this case my mistress(es) are the car projects...
ford 302/5.0 headers - 1990 vs 1970 

Where to start.
A buddy Mike had donated some really bitchin cast iron headers.
The bummer was the passenger side didn't have the right angle,
and the driver side missed the steering perfectly,
but had a nasty crack right down the center.
That crack could be brazed up,
but then I'd have to find and buy the correct passenger header.

I had always liked the nasty 1990 lincoln sheetmetal headers,
and since the passenger side fit,
only the drivers side needed modification.
The newer manifold had to match the early cast iron layout.
Although these are some really cheesily made headers,
there is a gasketless flange joint that has a leakproof design,
and I had planned smart enough to have kept all the pieces.
modifying 1990 lincoln exhaust manifold

Last week the project was started,
and the easy part of the project was knocked out.
At this point I found out that these were not a solid pipe,
but actually a double sheet metal insert type design.
Really strange and a pain in the butt to weld.
cut n paste

The outlet was adjusted to the center,
with enough clearance to the steering shaft, box and u-joint.
exhaust to steering clearance

Fortunately I had a similar 351 windsor engine lying around,
and the headers could be built without fighting the port alignment.
header jig

I realized my welder situation needed a serious upgrade.
The little maxstar 150 is a good welder,
but the scratch tig with the positive ground isn't as precise as I'm used to.
I'm bigtime spoiled with the dynasty DX,
and it was brought back into action.
Way too big for the cramped garage!
overkill dynasty dx

Why didn't I drag this here months ago!
It was like hanging out with an old friend.
In no time the last port tube was tweaked to match.

The pain in the butt was grinding the inside smooth.
Usually I'd blow air through the pipes,
and see if they have a whistle or not.
No air compressor here for now so better safe than sorry.
(a propane torch works good too!)

Now that the gap was a fixed size,
my grandfather's (papa) old beverly shear was put into play.
This was the game changer,
as typically I'd use a grinder to cut,
which means loud,
which means no working late.
beverly (style) shear

This thing cut the thicker sheet metal close enough to
only need a good hand-filing to fit.
All of a sudden the time blurred a bit...
stool time!

...and a good couple power hours flew by.
Closest thing I've had to the "sweet spot" of work in a long time.

The modifications were ugly as hell,
but they were exactly what was needed.
They reminded me of some of the trophy truck stuff I've seen,
crude but effective.
modified 1990 lincoln exhaust manifold

Since I had been working to the typical 34 watt light bulb,
there were a couple hiccups in the welding,
and the next day everything was sealed up.
The sensor hole in the passenger side was also plugged.
1940-1990 SBF headers

Here's where I'll throw you for a loop.
I ended up using the leftover BBQ paint from the caddy headers,
so now they're white.
My excuse other than being too cheap to go get black,
is the white makes it really easy to see any exhaust leaks.
white header

The white shows just how ugly even the stock manifold is!
302/5.0 sbf in a 1940 ford

They're not sealed up so they can be sprayed over.
The thing is installed I kinda like them!


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