My Truck

Let's hear all the gory details about your car and how it became alternative fuelled.
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Kiowa
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:10 pm

My Truck

Post by Kiowa » Tue Jun 28, 2011 1:14 am

I am new to this forum but I’m not new to LP. I bough my F150 Ford 4X4 new in 1979 for a work truck. It had a 300 CID 6 cylinder engine with a 4-speed transmission. I liked the truck but having been a gear head my whole life building hot rods, drag and stock car racing; I needed just a littlie more power. So, I put a turbo charger on the 6 cylinder. It worked well enough but I had to run a water injector to keep it from pinging. During this time I wet a guy that was running PL gas and he begin to tell me all this good stuff about propane. Well one thing caught my attention “115 octane”. It seamed to me that it would make an excellent fuel for a turbo charged engine if you set the engine up right.

I was able to find an L.P. gas Conversion. It was used but appears to be in good condition. It was a dual fuel installation using a model CA300A mixer and a Model E converter made by Empco. I set it up to draw through the carburetor and it worked great. I gave up on the dual fuel thing in short order and went to straight LP gas. The LP had enough octane that I did not have to run the water injector and it handled 15 pounds of boost without any problems, however for normal day-to-day driving I usually keep it dialed down to about 7 or 8 pounds. I had a lot of fun shutting down V8 with it.

200,000 miles later, I retired my truck from work and restored it as a hot rod and show truck. New paint, 3-inch suspension lift, 460 engine, new gears and I don’t even remember all the rest.

The engine was a 1974 Ford 460 block, DIVE-A2B, bored .030 over. The stock deck height was 10.310. We took off .030 to end with a deck height of 10.280 and used TRW flattop forged pistons L-2443F

For heads I used 1970, Ford 429 Police Interceptor, C9VE-A. The combustion chambers were 73.5 cc. Cleaned up the ports and shaved .030 off the heads to end up with 68cc chambers to get 13 to 1 compression. Bronel Bronze guides and hard valve seats with Rev’s stainless steal CJ vales. The intakes are 2.245 inches and the exhausts are 1.725 inches.

The cam is a Crower pn.22242, grind number 284HDP. The advertised specifications are, intake: 284º at lift.552. Exhaust: 290º at lift: .567. Crane Energizer roller rocker arms pn 13744-16, with a 1.7 ratio and 7/16 studs. The push rods are 3/8 inch x 8.600 inch long chromemoly from Ford Power Parts, pn 1658.

Using MSD Ford Billet Distributor pn 8580, with the curve starting at 1250 RPM bring in 9º, (18º crankshaft) at 2200 RPM. The initial is set at 10º to give a total of 28º. I do not use vacuum advance. The coil is a MSD BLASTER 3 Power Tower, pn 8223. MSD box is MSD-6A pn 6200. MSD 8.5 Super Conductor ignition wires pn 31199.

Edelbrock Performer intake manifold with its heat passages blocked off. The LP carburetor is made up of a Holley 850 CFM base plate with an Impco AA3-80 adapter and two Impco CA-425 mixers. Two Impco model E converters with Silicone Diaphragm and Blue Springs.

Fender well exhausts headers from L&L Product’s pn 79750A and it’s all held together with ARP fasteners.

I am very happy with the setup it’s easy to start, runs as smooth as silk and has more power then I know what to do with.

By the way, we put the 460 on the dino and she checked out at 535 HP at 6250 RPMs, and torque at 530 ft/lbs. at 4750 RPMs. On LP gas. Not bad.
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Picture 048B.jpg
New 460 1999 B.jpg


Frank
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Re: My Truck

Post by Frank » Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:41 am

Great write-up and welcome to the forum!

Why did you decide to not use vacuum advance in your 460? How did you fabricate your air cleaner?

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Steptoe
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Re: My Truck

Post by Steptoe » Tue Jun 28, 2011 7:49 pm

Sold on LPG...nice one.
Curious...
What milage do u get around town and open road....and i mean normal driving not granny footing it?
and
with the curve starting at 1250 RPM bring in 9º, (18º crankshaft) at 2200 RPM. The initial is set at 10º to give a total of 28º.
So u have in crank degrees, intial/idle of 10 deg, cent curve moves off around 1250 rpm, all in 28 deg @ 2200 rpm.
I have found with curves that fast they come off so low the cent bounces around even to an idle of 500 rpms....in a GM pionts and GM hei with std weights...
Did u also go to light weights or something?
Cheers
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Kiowa
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:10 pm

Re: My Truck

Post by Kiowa » Wed Jun 29, 2011 3:04 am

Frank and Steptoe
Thank you for your comments.

My decision to go without a vacuum advance was based on a combination of things. First off, I was not interested in economy, I was looking for power. We had used the MSD Pro-Billet Distributors in our stock cars and there a grate unit. They come with an assortment of springs and bushings, which you use to set the curve. Where it starts, how fast it comes in and where it stops. There quite easy to setup and very accurate, but they are designed for racing and do not come with vacuum advance. In the old days, we would use stock distributors and modify the curve in them and they only worked so well. On the 300 CID 6 cylinder that I started out with in this truck, I used a stock modified distributor and it always gave me fits.

I have a question here, on the forum I have read of having problems burning up starters by having the timing advance too far. Back to the old days on a flat out race engine, we would lock up the flyweight or mechanical advance and set the initial at 35 to 40º. That was really hard on starters, but I can’t imagine that kind of advance on an LP street engine.

When I was putting this engine together, I had a great team of consultants helping me. I don’t know if I should give there names. One was a man that worked for a Propane place near my home and two other guys where in California at the Impco plant. If you have ever read, an Impco Carburetion Service Manual you have read there names. Apparently, Empco sponsored a Ford truck that ran in the Baha 1000 some time in the early 70 and did very well. My engine is based on that engine. They put together the parts that I would need to build the carburetor system. One of the parts was a cast aluminum base plate for a round air cleaner. It has two holes that fit over each mixer. I assume it is an Empco part.

A stock 460 of this year usually got around 12 to maybe 14 miles to a gallon on the highway. I get 10 to 12 miles to a gallon on the highway and 9 to 10 around town. Now remember it’s built for power and it has 4.11 gears. Based on what stock trucks get I do not think what I get is that bad. And like I said, economy was not that important to me for this truck. This engine was built in 1999, that is 12 years ago and only has 15,129 miles on it.

I’m sorry I am not sure what you are referring to in, ‘the cent bounces around even to an idle of 500 rpms.’ My engine runs extremely smooth even with the cam it has. It will idle as smooth as silk at 600 RPMs but I run it at 850 RPMs because it runs a lot cleaner there. At 600 RPMs the HC goes way up.

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Steptoe
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Location: JAFA , New Zealand

Re: My Truck

Post by Steptoe » Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:20 pm

I have a question here, on the forum I have read of having problems burning up starters by having the timing advance too far. Back to the old days on a flat out race engine, we would lock up the flyweight or mechanical advance and set the initial at 35 to 40º. That was really hard on starters, but I can’t imagine that kind of advance on an LP street engine.
This more applies to street engines. and do a lot more stop start in shorter periods to a race engine....and why race engines usually have heavy duty aftermarket units......when the intial is high, takes more to turn over amps get up into the 900 and even higher...this heatsa up armitures, particlarly chev....the solder joint sofen, ends up with dry joints...
When the car is cold ..fine when warn the starter is dead.....which then leads to most thinking the issue is from header heat....Also there are not many auto sparkie, and starter rebuild shops around now that have a growler to check armitures.
‘the cent bounces around even to an idle of 500 rpms.’
If u take a stock ford, chev, lucas dizzy and lighten up the springs, the cent curve comes off before idle...so idle is not running on the intial VA or just intial...
I get 10 to 12 miles to a gallon on the highway and 9 to 10 around town.
]I assume that mpg of LPG ???
And a US gal about 4L ???
Even so, thats prerrty damn good...In NZ ....convert to $ per gal, then to 91 octane petrol mpg on current prices highway comes to about 25 mpg equivielnt of petrol.
My Spelling is Not Incorrect...It's 'Creative'

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