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351-C Stock in 1969 Mach 1?

5632 Views 12 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  KevinMarti
At last Sunday's show, one of the "stock" entries was a beautiful 1969 Mach 1. I was surprised to find a Cleveland 351 installed because I had always thought that the 351-C was started in the 1970 production. This was a San Jose car and the owner said had a July 69 build date (the end of the 1969 model year). So could this be legit? And if so, how many 69's were built with Cleveland 351s?
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I had heard somthing like that in the past, but was always told 70' was the start. But knowing Ford, anything is possible.
none! This was debated for years and none have ever been found. Personally I wish it were true. mustang monthly or one of the magazines put it to rest a few years ago.
I have a 1969 Mach 1that I purchased two years ago and it is equiped with a 4V 351C bolted to an FMX trany and a 9" open rear. Is it stock, I don't know but thats the way I bought it? The numbers match the equipment and engine size, assembled in San Jose in late August. I found it stored in a pasture with weeds growing through the engine bay, no hood and the interior stripped out. All that remained were a shell with glass, doors, dash and steering wheel, 4V 351C, trany and 9" rear, fron suspension, grill and fenders. I pulled out with my pickup and loaded it on to a tow dolly, payed the owner $750 and .pulled it home. History of the Mach 1 was sketchy and the owner bought it as a runner. Disasembled it completely including the interior. He told me that he purchased all new interior and supposedly had everything new and still in boxes but could find the boxes. Since the car was in a pasture a certain cow gave me a lot of grief while I was pulling it out o the pasture. The cow had grown quite attached to the car and had bashed in the doors almost distroying them by rubbing and mooing and other things up against her "Tang" Original color was that Mint Green but it had been painted over with that bright orange. Did it originaly have a 4V 351C...does it really matter? And isn't something to speculate about.
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Not to my knowledge..early model '70's were still getting Windsors..then Ford started to use the Cleves..the 70 models were a mixed bag..but I have never seen a '69 with a Cleve..
This was discussed a while back. Kevin Marti even weighed in on the discussion, and definitively stated that there were NO Clevelands installed in 1969 Mustangs from the factory.

It would be interesting to see what the date codes/casting #'s are on some of these "factory" 69 Clevelands /forums/images/icons/wink.gif.
Yeah - I felt the same way, Clone Dude! I asked about the build date but did not go verifying date codes - I was NOT a judge - just curious. The guy just acted surprised that I would ask such a thing! The car got 1st in "stock" class and definitely looked "over restored" - the paint was much better than factory.

I just want to point out that by asking this question I am interested in furthuring my own knowledge, not to hammer this guy or his car. Thanks for the experienced responses, everybody.
Just as we suspected...
how in the world would even someone like Kevin Marti be able to determine that "no" Clevelands were installed in late 69 build dates? There is NO distinction (at least by Ford coding) to distinguish between C and W engines when viewing the "H" and "M" engine codes used by Ford for BOTH engines during 1969 and 1970. Keep in mind that the FIRST Cleveland parts were stamped in 1968 and in fact, that is what the early Boss head stampings are based on is the Cleveland! I have met two owners that I can recollect that were original owners on their 69 Machs and both maintained the powerplants were originals (C), although I didn't insult them by asking to check their engine date stampings. I have heard the same argument at shows between guys that the Windsor installed in an individual's 1970 Mustang is wrong as "everyone knows that ALL 70 Mustangs came with 351 Clevelands". Like a few of the posters have stated, never say never is the rule when dealing with Ford......

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I'm sure there were some type of codes on the build sheet to indicate which engine, otherwise how would they ever get the correct H-pipe, etc, on the line in the proper sequence???

Anyways, here's the link to Kevin's statement from a year ago. Somebody might want to email him and seen if anybody has ever proven that statement wrong..........

For those to lazy to click, the text of that statement follows..
One rebuttal coming up. We have been licensed by Ford Motor Company with the entire database of production records of all 67-73 vehicles built at their North American operations. The production records kept track of every engine installation for the 351, whether it was shipped from the Windsor plant or the Cleveland plant. There were no 351 engines shipped from the Cleveland plant for ANY of the 1969 model cars. People will protest. People will insist that their car does have, but they cannot offer any proof (and having a Cleveland engine sitting in your 1969 car does not constitute proof any more than me showing you a HiPo 289 sitting in my 1967 Cougar constitutes "proof" they put HiPos in 1967 Cougars). Just check the date code on the engine block for anyone who claims to have an original Cleveland in their 1969 car. The date code would have to precede the build date of the car. I would like someone to show me one installation where the date code of the block is earlier than the production date of the car.
Kevin Marti

Personally, I don't know, and don't care!!!/forums/images/icons/laugh.gif/forums/images/icons/wink.gif I know that every 351C I've seen in a 69 was NOT original....
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As one who had purchased a new 69 Mach-I with the 290 HP 351W, I followed the arrival of the Boss 302 and 1970 Mustangs very closely. Mustang enthusiasts eagerly awaited the arrival of the new 351 Cleveland engine in the 1970 Mustang as it seemed that it would finally be a hands-down brand-X beater. However, IIRC, the Cleveland was slow to get into the 70 Mustangs with the first months production still coming through with Windsors. In fact, my brother-in-law bought a 70 Mach-I with a Windsor.
It is correct that there is no distinction in the letter code in the VIN, but the Ford database we are licensed with has more detail information than that. It contains information about whether a 351 came from the Windsor plant or the Cleveland plant and that is how I am able to make the statement. And the catchall phrase, "Like a few of the posters have stated, never say never is the rule when dealing with Ford...... " may sound good, but if carried to its logical conclusion, would make it impossible to disprove a claim like, "Yeah, I know there is a 6-cylinder code in the serial number, but I swear it was built with a 428CJ engine originally."
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