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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
I was thinking 351w with carburetor that would be replaced with mad or ez efi setup in the future. I've not driven a car with the 400 hp I'd like, I've opened up a friends Raptor but I assume not the same.
 
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With the assumption that I plan on driving the car 3-4 days a week during nice weather, is 400 hp too much?

Thanks
Blasphemy !!! :) With a FI engine, you can have your cake and eat it much better than with a carburetor. 400HP with a carb from a small CI engine will not be too streetable. But with FI and roller cams . . maybe a small air pump . . ABSOLUTELY.
 

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The amount of Horsepower that is too much for the street is 100% derived from your own opinions regarding comfort, fuel economy, tire life, maintenance, engine life and any number of other factors. For example I consider my top fuel drag car the perfect car for running out to get milk (although I will admit it gets tough to keep it from curdling on me before I can get home no matter how fast I go though) other though look at the 4,000 engine revolutions max between full tear downs as a negative.
 

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I have a 65 mustang that has a 347 stroker that dynoed at 423 peak HP. And has a Nice torque curve of 400tq at 2000 rpm maxing at 450tq at 4000 rpm. It is a pretty mild build with goods heads and a very streetable cam. 224 intake and 232 exhaust duration with 0.544 lift. I love driving this car and I could drive it all day every day. It is not the fastest car I own but it is IMHO the perfect combination for fun streetable use in an old school hot rod.
 

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I was thinking 351w with carburetor that would be replaced with mad or ez efi setup in the future. I've not driven a car with the 400 hp I'd like, I've opened up a friends Raptor but I assume not the same.
Uh... no. The Raptor isn't even on the same planet as what you're talking about.

That thing weighs in at over 6,100 lbs!

A 200hp Mustang would be about as fast as a Raptor.

Before you spend the money, you really need to drive another modified car and figure out what you really want.
 

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Blasphemy !!! :) With a FI engine, you can have your cake and eat it much better than with a carburetor. 400HP with a carb from a small CI engine will not be too streetable. But with FI and roller cams . . maybe a small air pump . . ABSOLUTELY.
X2.. Easy to make HP. Adding a small turbo would livin things up. :thumbsup: we have 2 street cars here with turbo's.. 650/740 rear wheel hp. Gets high teens mileage driving it normal. Anyone could take it to the store or whatever without any problems. We put 4/5 K miles on them each summer. Drives like a reg car. IDLES like a new car. These are benefits of mid 80s technology.
 

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HP is addictive and is NEVER enough...lol. I would LOVE a new Shelby. 662 hp, 24 MPG and a top end of over 200 MPH, all bone stock yet I would still want to "tweak" it. I suppose it boils down to personal comfort level and budget.
 

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Before you spend the money, you really need to drive another modified car and figure out what you really want.
AGAIN, this is the best advice anyone can give you here.

Here is your decision tree in order of precedence:

1) What do I want based on similar experiences (driven cars). Make friends at a local club. Guys are normally willing to take you for a ride to show off their cars.
2) How much do you want to spend?
3) What compromises are you willing to make (noise/fuel economy/ reliability/endurance)?
4) Revisit #2 If you buy a high $$$ torque monster and don't make other mods to the car, I'm betting you won't enjoy it very much. Other mods will be necessary to prevent/repair broken parts and to help you put the power to the ground

These threads normally devolve into "Yeah Billy has a 289 that makes 450+ N/A" Which might be true, but is not what most people consider "streetable." You have tons of options and you can bet someone on this board has tried it.

What I considered streetable when I was 24 is very different than what I consider streetable today.
 

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You want just enough to break the tires free when you want to make a point, but not so much that you lose the rear end on every corner. These cars are light, and don't need a ton of power to be a lot of fun to drive.
 

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I have a 65 mustang that has a 347 stroker that dynoed at 423 peak HP. And has a Nice torque curve of 400tq at 2000 rpm maxing at 450tq at 4000 rpm. It is a pretty mild build with goods heads and a very streetable cam. 224 intake and 232 exhaust duration with 0.544 lift. I love driving this car and I could drive it all day every day. It is not the fastest car I own but it is IMHO the perfect combination for fun streetable use in an old school hot rod.
This is exactly what I plan for my '65. I don't want to deal with stuffing in a 408, which would just blow away my skinny tires anyway. If you use a "big" head, you can run a smaller cam. IMO, for a 347 or smaller keep the duration @ .050" to ~230 or less for all around drivability.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
With spring coming and a most of my sheet metal work done Im looking at the calendar and budget trying to figure how, what, and when I will do stuff. In mid April the car will be going to the shop to have the front end pulled a bit, and some body work. So for the next month I think ill start working on the 8.8 explorer swap, wiring harness, and tacking the Rod and Custom cross member in place (ill let the shop double check it and do the final welding). It could be at the shop a week or 2 months, which leaves me time to think about engines.

option 1
Crate engine. Plug and play
option 2
buy a cheap Fox body drive train and update what I can with my limited skills. drive, fix, and repeat.
option 3
pay someone to look over my shoulder and hold my hand while I build it.
 

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Like others said, if you go with a 351 based engine, you can make more power and retain better drivability. My 408 makes right at 600 on motor, with a hyd roller, and runs on 91 octane. I drive the car all the time. Long distances, short distances, it doesn't matter. I put around 7000 miles per year on the car.
 

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Have you done any engine work before? Many will disagree, but my take is that I'm "saving" money doing everything else, leave the engine to a pro. I know it's not brain surgery, but there is many small details capable of leaving you with an expensive boat anchor, or just an under-performing engine package. I'm comfortable doing a head/cam swap, but not the bottom end.
 

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I'll chime in...

First, as others have said, your definition of streetable may vary from that of others. Second, what makes 400hp streetable has as much to do with suspension as engine. How well does the car put that 400hp (or more accurately the torque) to the ground? How well does your driveline control the power?

If you want to enjoy that 400hp, you're going to need good tires that can keep it hooked, a well-built suspension that can keep those tires firmly planted, ...

600+ rwhp is definitely streetable, IF you have a well-designed car to handle it. My 13 is a great car to drive fast, or to get groceries. My wife drove it from AK to FL, following me in a truck pulling a trailer. But it's got all the supporting cast to manage the hp well.

My advice: don't build for a number. Build a car to do what you want it to do. Building for a number becomes a constant source of solving one problem and creating two more. As others have said--if you want a great performing street car that you can DD, and have some spirited weekend drives, maybe an autocross or two, you'll probably find that ~300hp in a well-set-up car will be all the power you need, and much more enjoyable. When some parking lot king scoffs at your low-horsepower engine, just remember, you built your car for you to enjoy, not for him to be impressed--and know that his 500 hp beast only effectively uses about half of that power.

And yeah, even with 600+hp from the factory, the mod bug still bites. :)
 

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Blasphemy !!! :) With a FI engine, you can have your cake and eat it much better than with a carburetor. 400HP with a carb from a small CI engine will not be too streetable. But with FI and roller cams . . maybe a small air pump . . ABSOLUTELY.
You can up that streetability considerably with Rhodes variable lifters, and probably eliminate the need for an air pump. A friend of mine once bought a 92 GT convertible with a B303 cam, which he swapped out for an E303 so it would be smoother for his wife. I found out about it, and asked why he didn't save time and a bunch of money by using Rhodes. His reaction-

 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
Is there a 351 engine that is more plug and play friendly than others? Can a lightning engine be dropped in with a fewer changes than one from an f 150 or van? Can you use the bottom end and make changes to the top end of a late model 351? If so which engines are best?

Thanks for all the input
 

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What are you guys referring to when you say small air pump? The only one I know of is for emission controls.
 

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A Raptor would work a 200hp Mustang all the way down the track.
Maybe, depends on the weight of the mustang and if we're talking rwhp.

But either way, my point is that the Raptor with 400+hp is NOTHING to compare a 400hp Mustang to. It runs a 14.8 in the 1/4 mile. Doesn't take much power at all to make a mustang that quick.

400hp mustang? 12's easy if not faster if set up right.

No comparison.
 

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400hp mustang? 12's easy if not faster if set up right.

No comparison.
If its RWHP its low 11s/high 10s in street trim with drag radials ;)
 
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