Building a 351-W for fuel economy [Archive] - 460 Ford Forum

: Building a 351-W for fuel economy

03-09-2011, 06:54 PM
I have a 351-W in my 55 sunliner and since it has the wrong cam I am going to tear into it and see if I can change it to get the most gas mileage out of it,the motor is a mid 80s probably with junk smog heads and probably dished pistons too. Right now it has 2.79 gears which might be too tall for a heavy car and going to change it to 3.00 or 3.25 and keeping a 3 speed automatic trans instead of a AOD,I want the motor at its peak torque and efficiency at 60 to 70 MPH. I am trying to figure out what cam would be the best and should I change the heads too while I am in there.

03-09-2011, 07:48 PM
what id look for is a 1994-97 351w hydraulic roller engine... put your distributor and intake and carb on it... that engine will basically already be what you are asking for.

03-09-2011, 09:35 PM
I will look for one and I presume they were in trucks and vans only.

03-09-2011, 10:59 PM
Yep trucks and vans but dont just assume its a roller motor, while by no means an expert I can only offer my observations. I have found two 351w that were not roller cam, one was a junkyard motor we grabbed out of a 94 f150that we put up as being rebuilt, but a one owner 95 f250 came in the other day that needed intake gaskets, guess what, not roller cam. Your guess is as good as mine as to why not.

03-10-2011, 11:48 AM
comp cams offers a sbf economy and high torque that i was looking at for mine.
Xtreme Energy™, XE250H
Very Strong Torque, Excellent Mileage, Smooth Idle.
its a 302 grind but cams are swappable in the 302 and 351w.
Heads I would get the dooe 351 w heads as there the best older cast in flow ans valves (stock) the 302 dooe,s are not the same so make sure the heads are stamped 351.
Get the older timing gear set or dial in the cam and drive. :-)

Peace and Love Ron

03-19-2011, 07:07 PM
I have decided just to change the cam so I can get by untill the Y block gets built,there is no sense in changing a bunch of parts if the motor is only going to be in the car a year or so. A cam that starts to come in at 2000 to 2500 rpms is no good in a car with highway gears.

03-19-2011, 10:33 PM
In my 351W powered 53' Customline I used a VooDoo Cam. I don't know the part number but the lift was 499/499. It worked great and sounded good; I also had highway gears and used a 570 Holley Street Avenger. Fuel Mileage and Torque were good. I used the HO 351 Block with the D00E heads for a little extra compression. I just went through a painful 351W build three years ago, so if you have any questions let me know. I made every mistake along the way you can think of, but eventually got it right.-Jim

03-19-2011, 11:18 PM
My motor was built by someone who claimed they knew Ford motors but did not do the work and had a assembler that would rather build chevy motors so who know what I got,I just want it to run a little better untill I get the Y block built and the 351 will go in my 65 custom 500. After I got back from Daytona I noticed the motor takes awhile for the lifters to quit making noise but has great oil pressure so I dont know if its cheap lifters or he installed used rocker arms and pushrods,I broke the motor in just when the zinc was being reduced in oil but one would think if there was a cam issue it would have shown up earlier since the motor has about 10,000 miles on it.