Francis family private vehicle restoration


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July 2011: I took a 302 motor and had it machined with 351 Cleveland heads and also had it bored .040" over with flat top pistons, Sanderson Headers, Edelbrock 600cfm Carburator, edelbrock performer 302 boss intake and a .504 Cam also a GM style 1 wire distributor. Below is a few pictures of the new motor.

After motor is returned from machinist and finished with the initial build


After the motor is installed in the truck





17 Sept 2011: Got new motor installed in truck. The Headers I ordered for it would not fit contacted Summit Racing and sent me a different set of long tube headers still no luck ended up going thru 6 different sets of long tube headers and sill no luck on the fit. So I read a few articles on and they all suggested Sanderson headers. 

30 Sept 2011: So I ordered the first set FC2 that said they were for up to 1972 Ford trucks they did not fit. So I researched all the specs on the rest of their headers and decided to go with the FC4 headers. 

05 Oct 2011: Well the driver side fit but the passenger side did not so I contacted Sanderson again and they sent me a FC3 headers for the passenger(right) side still had to do a couple of real small modifications to it but it worked and was finally able to crank it. 


18 Oct. 2011: Engine is ready to crank finally. Tried to crank and just fired a few times so rechecked number 1 cylinder to ensure it was still top dead center and as I was watching the distributor turn I realized it was moving counter clockwise and noticed the plug wires were in a clockwise manner. So I rewired it and tried to crank it again and it fired right up and was purring beautifully until it started heating up and the temp climbed to 180 and then it jumped straight to 220 and stayed there for about 10 minutes and then dropped back to 180. Then it started to climb again it went to 250 and started pushing all the water out of the engine back up thru the radiator. 

19 Oct. 2011: After some research on this issue I was informed that either it is a bad thermostat or a air pocket in the block. So after extensive warming up and adding water numerous of times it finally stopped over heating so it was a air pocket in the block what a pain. 

20 Oct 2011: Still runs a little warm when it is held up around 2000 RPM’s for any length of time assuming there is still a small air pocket in it. Also need to remove the header on the right side so I can paint it will be doing that today. 

21 Oct 2011: Removed header and painted it waitng for it to dry so I can reinstall it tomorrow. 

22 Oct 2011: Replaced the header and went back to see why it is running hot. I removed the Thermostat completely after checking it twice and with it out it still runs a little hot if you run it higher than 2000 RPM as long as it is idleing it runs smooth and does not run hot. I am gonna try and work with today and see if I can get any more air out of it. Then I will check the water pump itself. 

23 Oct 2011: Worked a little with the heat problem still no luck. Had other things to do so no time to really work on it. 

Nov. 2011 thru March 2012: Worked a little o the heat problem still no fix 

April 2012 thru July 2012: Worked on the heat problem found out from that most of problem was caused by air pockets in the 302 block so I spent extensive amount of time removing the air pockets from the motor. I finally think all the air is out because now when it idles for a long period it will run hot but if I drive it down the road it will cool back down to normal. Well what I have discovered now is that when I put in the A/C unit I had to change radiators and I went from a 19" radiator to 27" radiator but I am still using the same electric fan which is a good fan it pumps 3000cfm's but it only covers 16" of the radiator. So I am replacing the fan with a dual 27" electric fan assembly so that should eliminate the heat problem all together.

Aug.2012 to October 2012: Worked on getting it tuned and running correctly and then found out after a few attemps it runs like crap with automatic transmission and the 3:00 gears in the differential. I am gonna have to change the gears out to at least 4:11 maybe 4:56 and a different transmission. 

November 2012 to December 2012: Nothing was done to the truck except crank it and let it warm up to keep everything loose. 

Jan. 2103: Change the gear ratio in the Differential to 4:11 and she runs a lot better still not as good as I would like. So I think I  am going to build a big block and put in there and use the 302 BOSS for my little 1960 Ranchero with a T5 manual transmission.