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Discussion Starter #1
So I’m taking apart the 410 in our 1966 Mercury Monterey. My grandpa bought this new in 66 with a bench seat (he had 4 kids and wife), 4-speed, 410 police interceptor motor, specifically no power steering, brakes, nor A/C since he didn’t want anything robbing HP from the motor. The car is all original, totally mint condition, and only has 55k miles.

I am stripping the top end so that we can out hardened seats in (tired of adding lead additive to the gas). My grandpa is still alive but he passed the car down to my dad who has entrusted me to do the engine work. Anyway, I’m of the opinion that it should be put back together with ARP bolts instead of concours correct AMK bolts. Stainless bolts have many advantages and ARP are nearly indestructible, so if I ever have to take it apart again in the future (the car will be passed to me after my dad), that things will go a lot smoother. Then again, the car will no longer be concours. We have made other changes to the car but nothing that can’t be taken off very easily and returned to original. So, am I crazy? Considering the options and in certain areas, lack of options, we have always assumed it was one of a kind. We’ve also run into several Mercury experts at shows who have assured us that it is one of a kind. My grandpa had to special order it from the dealer like this and it took 3 months to come in. The dealer called him and told him to come get this stupid car off his lot because he’d never be able to sell it with all the crazy options/lack of. I can almost hear the collective screams of the concours folks on here, haha.
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Discussion Starter #3
Why do you need to harden the seats? Do you have a burnt valve?

Allen
Because we are tired of always having to remember to keep lead additive with us and to put it in with each tank. My dad also suspects the car had a miss on a cylinder, so a top end rebuild will give him peace of mind. Anyway, that’s not really the issue since no show judge will ever be able to see what kind of seats we have once they’re bolted on haha. My worry is the bolts issue. I feel a big responsibility since this car is not only one of a kind, but also a family heirloom.
 

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The engines were painted with all assembled, so once the engine is detailed, would you even be able to see what kind of bolts are used? Maybe use originals/concours in the most visible spots if it makes you feel better. I love that you have the car and you cared enough to consider what is best. Nothing beats original parts in my book. If it wasn't that hard to break loose after 50+ years, I wouldn't worry too much about next time!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The engines were painted with all assembled, so once the engine is detailed, would you even be able to see what kind of bolts are used? Maybe use originals/concours in the most visible spots if it makes you feel better. I love that you have the car and you cared enough to consider what is best. Nothing beats original parts in my book. If it wasn't that hard to break loose after 50+ years, I wouldn't worry too much about next time!
I’ve already broke one bolt and I haven’t even got to the exhaust manifold bolts (that’s tomorrows project). I’m sure with the help of my oxy torch that they should be fine, but without it, I wouldn’t hold out much hope.
 

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No need for anything crazy, the Ford bolts lasted this long just fine. I've re-used bolts that were in good condition and only had to replace those that were either damaged or rusted. IMO, just get the bolts from AMK and leave it stock. They'll outlast you and probably your kids.
 

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Stock replacement head bolts will be fine. No need to use ARP bolts.
And lots of people are running unleaded gas in their older engines that don't have hardened seats without using lead additive.
 

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If its not fully apart, put it back together and forget the additive. If you EVER burn a valve, then do it but I have been running vintage cars since they weren't vintage adn NEVER put hardened seats in any of them from English to old Hudsons to you name it - you will not dammage anything your already gonna replace if you do put the seats in eventually. I have NEVER heard of anyone burning a valve in an old car due to fuel. As for ARPs, I would not put anything that had a 12 point head on it that looks dramatically different, Since its a stock motor, I would use new stock bolts unless they are hidden under the valve covers. Leave the motor unmolested, its a good survivor story...

cool car btw
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Okay, so you guys wore me down and I decided to go with AMK bolts. But if I break off these non-stainless bolts in the future, you’re all coming over to fix it with me! (Beer will be furnished of course)
 

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Acool, thats an awesome 60s survivor ! I'd use the factory head bolts, but I'd use ARP with plenty of antiseize on the exhaust manifold bolts. Have you done a compression test ? Are the heads on the engine yet, or are they off ? LSG
 

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Worn seats due to lack of lead is a concern if you're running it to work and back on the daily. Since I assume this is going to be a weekend warrior at best tearing it apart chasing a nonexistent issue is a great way to cost yourself money, time and heartache.
 

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Recessed valve seats were only a problem on a very few engines and cylinder heads but it was a problem sometimes. I wouldn't have a problem pulling the heads to have them checked. Not like they are transverse mounted DOHC VVT's or anything. Some fresh gaskets (and exhaust manifold bolts) will do it good anyway, right?
But really I probably would have nailed down exactly what that "suspected miss" was before taking things apart. At least you'll know if valves were a cause or not and their state of health.
 

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Bubble Bust. Its a mid-60s 4-door Merc. It has way more value to you than actual value. Do what you want and enjoy it for what it is.
 

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The ARP bolts/studs are just a waste of money if you aren't getting head-lifting issues...and I don't think it sounds like you are building it for enough power for that to be the case. I would say 95% of the builds of any given engine do not require ARP hardware. In fact, out of all the engines I have ever built(including ones running 25+psi of boost), I have only needed to use ARP head studs once...and that wasn't even because of holding strength (it was because I was using a Volvo head on a Ford block and the stock head bolts weren't long enough...so I ended up usingARP VW head studs). I have however used ARP connecting rod bolts several times...mainly because most aftermarket rods tend to come with them.
 
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