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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For 1966 only, Ford used a casting for a 289 4V hi-po head that was used on the Shelby AC cobras. Some appraise this as the best 289 head ever made by Ford. Ford sold the casting molds and recently, my neighboring business, TOE Performance Products (they build racing engines) bought the molds. Today the owner toured me through the shop again and showed me quite of number of engines, including several Winston cup engines they built, plus new casting of the 1966 289 hi-po head. The interesting aspect of this head is that the exhaust ports are enlarged and raised, compared to the production car 289 hi po head. One of the engines they built is a naturally aspirated 347 stroker with a 390 carb, which pulls 630 hp on the engine dyno. This is a race motor for a class that limits displacement and carb size. All in all, it was a nice tour. They loaned me their bench in their clean room, plus a micrometer, and let me mike the journals on the crankshaft of the 302 I am building. The journals are all standard, in that they have not been turned, and fall within spec. Nice to know that crank is good before installing the bearings and dropping it in the engine.

TOE uses redline synthetic racing oil in all of their engines. For break-in, they use a petroleum oil, plus an additive made by Redline which adds back the zinc and other additives that keep you from wiping out a flat tapped cam. With the redline product, they break in the engine (the additive is primarily for ring/cylinder wall fitting since most of their engines are roller blocks).

If anyone is interesting in this additive, send me a private post and I'll get together a group buy at the jobber price.

Also got a visit with their race car and learned a few things about the engineering on that. One thing I did not know is that rather than painting the car, they apply stick-on vinyl, using a heat gun to roll it over the body curves. It looks like metallic paint. Also, the roof has "flaps" which extend when the car spins out and goes backwards. The flaps keep the car from developing lift and standing and spinning on its nose.

Well, back to the shop. I have finned valve covers to paint and an oil pump to tear down, clean, and re-assemble. I wonder if I can get TOE to do a free engine dyno pull when the engine is complete? hmmmmm.
 

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So the heads used on the 64 1/2 to 65 "K" code engines and the 67 "K" code engines are the same; but the 66 "K" codes are different? I had never heard of that, sounds very interesting.

Your tour sounds like a lot of fun! :)

John Harvey
 

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From what I get from this post is that only the cobras got the special head and that all other shelbys recieved the standard hipo head?
 

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Well, by 1966, Shelby American was making only 427 Cobra roadsters, so, there seems to a hole in this story. And the engines where 289 Hi-po's same as you could order in a Mustang except with headers and an intake change on the GT 350's.

Anyway, I've always thought there was a need to remake thes heads and improve them.
Just tell me they look exactly the same on the outside, are cast iron, and have that tell-tale 19,20, or 21 cast into the upper mount.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Roddster said:
Well, by 1966, Shelby American was making only 427 Cobra roadsters, so, there seems to a hole in this story. And the engines where 289 Hi-po's same as you could order in a Mustang except with headers and an intake change on the GT 350's.

Anyway, I've always thought there was a need to remake thes heads and improve them.
Just tell me they look exactly the same on the outside, are cast iron, and have that tell-tale 19,20, or 21 cast into the upper mount.
I was looking at the unfinished casting. The only finish work was on the exhaust ports. They are larger and raised compared to a K-code Hi-Po. This was a dedicated track head and not put into any street cars. It is like the hypo in several respects. Interestingly, in the bare casting, the valve spring pockets found on the HiPo are actually "cone" shaped upward, and have to be machined down to form the spring seat pocket. The only casting numbers I recall are a 289 with two dots above it on the front of the driver's side head (and of course rear of the passenger side head). I'm going over today to pick up the crank and will ask for more info and try to find some casting numbers.
 

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Sounds like the GT40 heads from the 1960s. I've seen a set.
No,I'm not confusing the weslake gurney heads either. The GT40 heads are of a standard configuration, just bigger ports.
 
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