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SOHC into Ford Fairmont - Questions

December 14 2008 at 8:22 AM

Jay Brown  (Login jaybnve)
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Thinking about a new project car. Pretty soon I will have two rather stout SOHC engines that need homes. The big one will go into my 64 Galaxie, to help muscle that 3900 lb. behemoth around. But the smaller one (the one that was in the Galaxie for Drag Week this year) is homeless at this point.

I have a couple early Mustangs I could put it into, but they would require some major surgery to the shock towers to make the engine fit. I'm looking for a car where no front end surgery is required. Also trying to minimize the weight of the vehicle. And I don't want to go with a late model Mustang, because there are so many of them out there.

I've been giving some consideration to a Mercury Bobcat (Mercury's Pinto) that a friend of mine has. It already has the Pinto front end (wink.gif), and it is plenty wide to fit the cammer. But the engine compartment is short, and the engine would have to be pushed back behind the stock firewall to comfortably fit the car.

Yesterday another friend of mine suggested a Ford Fairmont. He said that the engine compartment was much longer in a Fairmont, and they are not a very heavy car.

My questions are regarding engine compartment dimensions and weight. I've looked at pictures of the engine compartments of some Fairmonts, and it looks like the strut towers would be the limiting factors in terms of width. Does anyone know what the distance between the strut towers is on a Fairmont, say about 6" down from the top of the tower? (This would be about where the widest part of the SOHC would be.) Rory McNeil, if you are out there, how much room is there between the tops of the heads at the exhaust ports and the strut towers on your car? Knowing that would give me the same information...

Also, does anyone know the length of the engine compartment, from the firewall to the radiator support?

Anyone have a good photo of the engine compartment of one of these cars, without an engine installed?

Finally, I've been told that the lightest Fairmonts are the ones without the metal post in the roof. How heavy are these cars? I would want to put one together with a lightweight interior (racing buckets, carpeted interior with no back seat, etc.), SOHC and C-4, and a 9". The SOHC, C-4, and 9" together will weigh about 1000 pounds. The car would also have to have the full NHRA cage and all the normal safety equipment. Would it be possible to make the entire car weigh less than 2750 pounds with this running gear?

Thanks in advance for any information - Jay



Jay Brown
1968 Shelby GT 500 Convertible, 492" 667 HP FE
1969 R code Mach 1, 490" supercharged FE, 9.35 @ 151.20, 2007 Drag Week Runner Up, Power Adder Big Block
2005 Ford GT, 2006 Drag Week Winner, 12.0 Daily Driver
1969 Ford Galaxie XL, 460 (Ho Hum....)
1964 Ford Galaxie 500, 510" SOHC

[linked image] [linked image] [linked image]



 
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Mario428
(Login Mario428)
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I think it would fit easily except for headers

December 14 2008, 8:33 AM 

My Fairmont is sitting in the shop now under a cover. I will get some pics and whatever dimensions you are looking for.
[IMG][linked image][/IMG]

My car in the pic weight 2800ish with the iron head 428 and C-4 in it.

The shock towers are plenty wide, it would be trying to get chassis headers thru that would be an issue. A tube x-member would be a given. I ened up wrapping tubes around the frame rails just for ease of install.
Steering column relocation would also be required, the exh port would point right at it.

 
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Jay Brown
(Login jaybnve)
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Thanks Mario...

December 14 2008, 10:17 AM 

I'll look forward to the dimensions.

Isn't your car a full tube frame car? I was trying to do this with subframe connectors, factory firewall, and a cage welded to 6X6 plates on the floor. Are you pretty sure about the steering column relocation? Did you have to do that with your car?

Jay Brown
1968 Shelby GT 500 Convertible, 492" 667 HP FE
1969 R code Mach 1, 490" supercharged FE, 9.35 @ 151.20, 2007 Drag Week Runner Up, Power Adder Big Block
2005 Ford GT, 2006 Drag Week Winner, 12.0 Daily Driver
1969 Ford Galaxie XL, 460 (Ho Hum....)
1964 Ford Galaxie 500, 510" SOHC

[linked image] [linked image] [linked image]



 
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Mario428
(Login Mario428)
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Fairmont is a back half car

December 14 2008, 11:15 AM 

T-Bird is a full chassis car. Had to move the column in mine, was much easier than building headers around it. Just dropped it at the firewall a couple of inches.
When I built the tubing x-member I dropped the stock manual rack 3 inches, made a much better oil pan. Used bump spacers at the steering arms to fix geometry.
May have pics at home I can post or email.


    
This message has been edited by Mario428 on Dec 14, 2008 11:18 AM


 
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garry
(Login GJCAT427)
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Jay, I have a 64 Fairlane wagon you could put it in!

December 14 2008, 8:47 AM 

Towers allready cut for the FE TP! LOL. Really I don`t know how wide a Fairmont is but as far as the length , they put 6`s in them so that is a non issue for the SOHC. would it be light? Not sure you could get it that light without some major surgery. Are you planning street use?

 
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Jay Brown
(Login jaybnve)
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That would be cool...

December 14 2008, 10:19 AM 

I like 64 Fairlanes. Not sure I could meet the weight goals with that, though.

I am planning street use; I don't build any cars that are dedicated drag cars, because the nearest track is too far away for me to justify that.

Jay Brown
1968 Shelby GT 500 Convertible, 492" 667 HP FE
1969 R code Mach 1, 490" supercharged FE, 9.35 @ 151.20, 2007 Drag Week Runner Up, Power Adder Big Block
2005 Ford GT, 2006 Drag Week Winner, 12.0 Daily Driver
1969 Ford Galaxie XL, 460 (Ho Hum....)
1964 Ford Galaxie 500, 510" SOHC

[linked image] [linked image] [linked image]



 
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Randall
(Login scbolt)
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Re: SOHC into Ford Fairmont - Questions

December 14 2008, 9:07 AM 

[IMG][linked image][/IMG]

[IMG][linked image][/IMG]

[IMG][linked image][/IMG]

[IMG][linked image][/IMG]

These pics are from a 78 Fairmont sedan. All fox bodies Fairmonts,Mustangs and
etc are the same. This one has a 351 stroker. The distance between the towers
is right at 33.5 inches

Randall

 
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Scott66gta
(Login Scott66gta)
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lotsa room except....

December 14 2008, 10:03 AM 

the area that the lower control arm bolts to, can get in the way of headers, etc... The photos above have allieviated the issue somewhat... I know a 460 can fit into a FOX body w/ more than 5" to spare....

 
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Jay Brown
(Login jaybnve)
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Thanks! Those pics help a lot...

December 14 2008, 10:23 AM 

The SOHC is at 31" wide at the widest point of the valve covers, so it sounds like it would fit. And I'll bet I could sneak the headers through there. What is the steering rack and lower control arm setup? Is that fabricated stuff, or is it a bolt on kit that can be purchased?

Jay Brown
1968 Shelby GT 500 Convertible, 492" 667 HP FE
1969 R code Mach 1, 490" supercharged FE, 9.35 @ 151.20, 2007 Drag Week Runner Up, Power Adder Big Block
2005 Ford GT, 2006 Drag Week Winner, 12.0 Daily Driver
1969 Ford Galaxie XL, 460 (Ho Hum....)
1964 Ford Galaxie 500, 510" SOHC

[linked image] [linked image] [linked image]



 
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Randall
(Login scbolt)
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Re: Thanks! Those pics help a lot...

December 14 2008, 11:03 AM 

The rack and steering shaft are made by Flaming River brought thru Summit.

The LCAs are made by UPR. Many other companies make these also. Fox body

aftermarket parts are easy to come by.



I think the other Cammer Fairmont was in Super Ford magazine back in the 90s?



Here is a picture of my Fairmont wagon with a stock K-member



[IMG][linked image][/IMG]


    
This message has been edited by scbolt on Dec 14, 2008 11:05 AM


 
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michael
(Login phonedude)
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I remember a SF article about a B9 fairmont...

December 14 2008, 11:22 AM 

it was actually about 2 fairmonts: one with a 429 SCJ,
the other with a boss 429. This was probably late 80s / early 90s.

I don't recall one about a SOHC fairmont (doesn't mean it didn't
happen, I'm just saying I don't recall it).

 
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RJP
(Login RJP)
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Already been done...

December 14 2008, 10:01 AM 

Jay, a while back I ran across an article in one of the car magazines that featured a Fairmont with a Cammer but I don't remember witch mag. it was and it has been packed away and in storage. Maybe someone else remembers this article. Edit to add: If memory serves the article was in Mustangs and Fords mag.

60 Starliner 460, 61 Starliner 427, 66 Galaxie 428, 67 Fairlane 427, 66 Fairlane 390, 69 F-250 390, 72 Lincoln 460 and 3 Ford powered Hotboats


    
This message has been edited by RJP on Dec 14, 2008 10:14 AM


 
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Jay Brown
(Login jaybnve)
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Thanks...

December 14 2008, 10:24 AM 

If you or anybody else runs across that magazine, please let me know...

Jay Brown
1968 Shelby GT 500 Convertible, 492" 667 HP FE
1969 R code Mach 1, 490" supercharged FE, 9.35 @ 151.20, 2007 Drag Week Runner Up, Power Adder Big Block
2005 Ford GT, 2006 Drag Week Winner, 12.0 Daily Driver
1969 Ford Galaxie XL, 460 (Ho Hum....)
1964 Ford Galaxie 500, 510" SOHC

[linked image] [linked image] [linked image]



 
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michael
(Login phonedude)
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-1 for the bobcat/pinto

December 14 2008, 10:41 AM 

yeah, it would have a crazy hp/weight ratio, but ultimately you're still
going fast in a pinto, know what I mean?

I don't think you have that many choices: Ford's "light" cars
all had shock towers (falcon/mustang/fairlane/maverick/granada/etc.).
The fox cars (mustang/fairmont) would work, but there are tons of
1979+ mustangs out there. The fairmonts can look good (esp. the futura
model), but they definitely don't have the 60s muscle car vibe.

You already have a galaxie. The only other full-frame options
are 1972+ Gran Torinos or some kind of truck. While both would be cool,
I'm not sure either would be as light as you're looking for (though
I'm not sure how much a truck weighs in at).

The fairmont might be your best bet. Or consider a MII front end
on the mustang/fairlane/falcon/etc.

Just not a pinto wink.gif

 
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Bob Hasty
(Login hastyb1)
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consider this

December 14 2008, 12:07 PM 

Maverick or Comet 70 to 73. You can get a awesome car to start with for 3 to 4 thousand. You can visit Wayne to get ideas on how to get it in and mods. Dyno Don tribute car?

 
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Gary B
(Login Garyford)
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Prestigious Pinto

December 14 2008, 2:02 PM 

I'm not arguing in favor of the car, cause it seems Fairmonts have many advantages in size and availablity without a huge weight penalty (my 351-C4, 8" rear 71 Pinto weighed 2400#'s), however this is a good opportunity to share a true story:


Back when my kids were knee high, we were computer shopping and couldn't make sense out of nearly identical spec'd units. I asked a salesman about this, and his dumb explanation was "the expensive computer is like a Cadillac and the cheap one is like a Pinto".

My kids, thought Cadillacs were for old men, and having heard good stories about my old Pinto reacted very affirmatively to the "Pinto" computer. The salesguy was totally baffled, I love having kids like that.

Gary B


    
This message has been edited by Garyford on Dec 14, 2008 2:03 PM


 
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Doug S
(Login 69Cobra428)
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How about in my 69 Fairlane?

December 14 2008, 12:21 PM 

I'll help you install it and even let you drive it on occasion!

J/K

I like the idea of a Fairmont. Just get the Futura model (it's the one that does not have the boxy roof). My sister had a 1979 Futura and I just think it looks better than the other model....



Doug S
1969 Ford Fairlane Cobra 428CJ: Edelbrock Heads, RPM intake, Comp 294S Cam, FPP Roller Rockers, (468 hp, 489 ft/lbs of torque)

 
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RJP
(Login RJP)
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Jay, Found it....

December 14 2008, 12:23 PM 

Cammer powered Futura, Mustangs & Fords June 2001. Titled "Back to the Futura" [pg 32] only a 2 page spread, I thought there was more. Does have a nice shot of the engine.

60 Starliner 460, 61 Starliner 427, 66 Galaxie 428, 67 Fairlane 427, 66 Fairlane 390, 69 F-250 390, 72 Lincoln 460 and 3 Ford powered Hotboats

 
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Tom P
(Login tomposthuma)
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I recall at least two

December 14 2008, 12:38 PM 

There was a silver and black sedan and one that was a Futura "fastback" that might have been red or copper.
A tubing K Member would sure make headers easier to do.

 
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Tom P
(Login tomposthuma)
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I guess Rory is still at Dale's...

December 14 2008, 12:40 PM 

Maybe he'll see this


    
This message has been edited by tomposthuma on Dec 14, 2008 12:41 PM


 
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