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Having learned to drive in the early 70's starting a car with a carb is still second nature. I never had problems starting a carbed car that sat out over night in subzero weather (other then the occasional dead battery) or baked all day under the sun on a day with a temperature of 90 in the shade. You learn to do. The sound and feel of a car with a four barrel carb is one of the best things about driving these old cars.
 

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I never said EFI is better than a carb but I fully believe it is. If a carb was better car manufacturers would still be running them today.

I can say that my car will hit by simply turning the key and is ready to immediately leave the garage. No pumping the gas pedal, no having to hold the gas pedal open just the right amount, no waiting for the car to warm up. My car was carbed and its what made me into a believer in EFI. The car had a rebuilt carb on it and a brand new carb, but something was always needing tweaking. Either a float would stick, or the choke would need adjusting, or whatever its not for me.

My 351C 4v and my 428CJ are both running EFI and are both ready to run as soon as the key is turned. I get a kick out of watching my dad fire up his carbed cars and they start and die, or he has to pump the pedal 10 times because the cars have sat to long.
All this and more.

Carbs do their job perfectly adequately. But EFI does it so much better and with so much less drama it's not even in the same ballpark. There's a reason many racers have gone to EFI in addition to the OEMs and those of us who have switched will never go back.

Yeah it only takes 20 min to rebuild a carb but you have no choice because it's on its 3rd clog this year because ethanol is destroying your fuel system or it sat for a week and varnished up one main jet and half an air bleed. Or a float's stuck because.. who knows.

With EFI you go and turn the key and it starts. Drive away. You cruise along at 15:1 or so. Give it some gas and it goes to stoich. Give it a bit more and it goes to 12.5:1. Oh, it's pinging a bit under full throttle? Couple clicks and you've pulled out 2° of timing. Needs a bit more timing at idle? No problem. Want 50 more rpm at idle? Sure. Got some sort of issue you're having trouble diagnosing? Data log it and look at the graphs to see what's happening.

You can do all those things if you want but generally you don't even have to.
 

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I grew up driving carbureted cars and don't remember ever having issues. I have had an eddlebrock 1406 on my car since I have owned it, I have learned to rebuild it (which I do about 3x per year like jcoby said, due to this terrible CA gas) and tune it. But it takes a lot of time, nowhere near troublefree. Besides the 3 rebuilds per year I also need to retune it at least twice a year when the weather changes. This typically doesn't bother me because I enjoy tinkering on the car, but I can say I do envy the guys who can just turn the key and go. There is always a little doubt in my mind when I go to crank my car.
 

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All this and more.

Carbs do their job perfectly adequately. But EFI does it so much better and with so much less drama it's not even in the same ballpark. There's a reason many racers have gone to EFI in addition to the OEMs and those of us who have switched will never go back.

Yeah it only takes 20 min to rebuild a carb but you have no choice because it's on its 3rd clog this year because ethanol is destroying your fuel system or it sat for a week and varnished up one main jet and half an air bleed. Or a float's stuck because.. who knows.

With EFI you go and turn the key and it starts. Drive away. You cruise along at 15:1 or so. Give it some gas and it goes to stoich. Give it a bit more and it goes to 12.5:1. Oh, it's pinging a bit under full throttle? Couple clicks and you've pulled out 2° of timing. Needs a bit more timing at idle? No problem. Want 50 more rpm at idle? Sure. Got some sort of issue you're having trouble diagnosing? Data log it and look at the graphs to see what's happening.

You can do all those things if you want but generally you don't even have to.
I was only mentioning things related to fuel control but you bring up a good point with spark control.

I'm not using the spark control of the FiTech as I didn't have any luck with that but when you have spark control its amazing the amount of control you have. My 351C is basically running a Fox EEC4 setup with a 460 TFI distributor and I can control timing at any RPM, any load, and to the nearest .25 degree. Now some might wonder why you need that but when you're trying to avoid knock, or cam surge you can tweak things like you never could with a distributor.

The AFR is also the same kind of adjustability and it can all be seen in a datalog either real time as the car is running or at home on the couch after a nice drive.
 

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I was only mentioning things related to fuel control but you bring up a good point with spark control.

I'm not using the spark control of the FiTech as I didn't have any luck with that but when you have spark control its amazing the amount of control you have.
FWIW, all I had to do was remove the vacuum advance and lock out and stab in a duraspark distributor from a non-roller engine, clip the connector and the black wire, add the MSD molex connector to the other two wires for the pickup signal. I set the rotor position and base according to the docs so it could advance timing and it fired right up. You could probably even get rid of the bigger rotor cap and adapter and run the stock distributor cap and rotor and nobody would even know it's electronic if you kept the vacuum diaphragm in place.

I don't know if any of that would translate to your setup or not; I don't know anything about big blocks.

I'm currently helping to build a turbo 5.3 LS. A carb wasn't even considered. >:)
 

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i addressed that in the later part of my post.

Lesson: NEVER post after taking serious medication labeled "do not drive or operate heavy machinery when taking this medication"


Z.
...
Don't worry, I take serious meds all the time. :surprise:
 

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I have a Fitech with ignition control unit and it is really FANTASTIC!!!

It is OK to run an 100years old carburator design but remember that most EFI like Sniper and Fitech is also a regular carburator....They are just electric! :)

And it is sooooooo much better in every way so to those who defend the mechanical carbs please try an EFI before posting how bad you "think" it is.

The extra cost of it is of course high, but the buyer decides if it is worth it.

If you are on a budget buy an mechanical and be prepare to have issues all the time.. Sure you can learn if you like and have the tools.

If you want power, drivability, simple to tune and (maybe) more milage let the computer do the work! But be prepare to spend and installation is hard for most people.

Also you get so much more extra out of an EFI system like control of the ignition and control of the radiator fan!
Aggressive cams suddenly behaves much better with EFI

I have worked with carbs for 20years but EFI has reprogrammed my brain totally!! ....Just hit the key and go!

https://youtu.be/GUqGN59K8P0
 

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For a 260 V8 the FITech 400 hp unit ($795) would be fine (FITech Fuel Injection FiTech 30003 Go Street 400 HP EFI Conversion). You need to spring for a 4 barrel intake though. ebay is your friend (Ford 289-302-5.0 WEIAND 8011 4 barrel intake manifold Mustang Torino GASSER 347 | eBay).

A slighter more difficult swap (but low cost) would be to just get a complete modern EFI off of a totaled V8 Mustang (or other Ford) from the junk yard and swap it all over - lots of threads on that in the forum.

Or even better just get a period correct Ford Autolite carb.

Just my opinion.
 

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I know this is not a carb vs. efi topic, but I have to add. I've never had to rebuild my carbs 3 times a year. Once they are right, thats it. That goes for the 4 Weber 2V carbs in my sig pic, as well as every Autolite or Holley that I've used.

I use good fuel filters. and change or clean the element yearly. That doesn't seem to be too much maintenance to me. But maybe it is for some folks.

You can get better emission control with efi vs. a carburetor, which I believe is the primary reason we don't see new carbed engines anymore. Certainly not any reason related to performance.

my 2 cents


Z
 

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Why not use a carb? Cold start driveability, constant AFR correction in all conditions, better mileage, better emissions.

And while we're at it, why use disk brakes? Drums work well if you adjust them right. As a matter of fact, why have a car? We can all ride horses!
 

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As a matter of fact, why have a car? We can all ride horses!
Yeah, I tried that. It would buck unexpectedly and I could find no way of tuning that out. The emissions were horrible regardless for AFR, not to mention the horsepower.
 

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I know this is not a carb vs. efi topic, but I have to add. I've never had to rebuild my carbs 3 times a year. Once they are right, thats it. That goes for the 4 Weber 2V carbs in my sig pic, as well as every Autolite or Holley that I've used.

I use good fuel filters. and change or clean the element yearly. That doesn't seem to be too much maintenance to me. But maybe it is for some folks.

You can get better emission control with efi vs. a carburetor, which I believe is the primary reason we don't see new carbed engines anymore. Certainly not any reason related to performance.

my 2 cents


Z

I was reluctant to post again to this thread but agree with Z.

The plastic car sat in storage for about a year while I was working on some home projects. After retrieving it from storage they leaked a bit so I rebuilt those carbs. First time they had been off the car since 2003.

The holley on the mustang has been rebuilt 4 times since '82. Most recently because it had not been started in about 5 years and it just seemed prudent. I also wanted to replace the throttle plates that had been drilled (in '82) for a big lumpy cam that is no longer in the car.

EFI is great. Couldn't imagine a new car without it, but there is nothing wrong with carburetors.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
For a 260 V8 the FITech 400 hp unit ($795) would be fine (FITech Fuel Injection FiTech 30003 Go Street 400 HP EFI Conversion). You need to spring for a 4 barrel intake though. ebay is your friend (Ford 289-302-5.0 WEIAND 8011 4 barrel intake manifold Mustang Torino GASSER 347 | eBay).



A slighter more difficult swap (but low cost) would be to just get a complete modern EFI off of a totaled V8 Mustang (or other Ford) from the junk yard and swap it all over - lots of threads on that in the forum.



Or even better just get a period correct Ford Autolite carb.



Just my opinion.


I actually was able to fine one that's matching numbers for this car except it was for a manual not auto so all nUmber match but that. Anyways I'm saving for efi. I appreciate all the comments and suggestions though!


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Discussion Starter #36
Yeah, I tried that. It would buck unexpectedly and I could find no way of tuning that out. The emissions were horrible regardless for AFR, not to mention the horsepower.


I love animals but I couldn't do that! I'm allergic to everything outside! But I like your thoughts! Lol


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General Motors :: GM TBI Products :: Complete TBI Kits :: Universal TBI Kits :: #HF289 Ford 289 CID TBI Conversion Kit

For the OP, that's who I'd call if you have to go EFI. I like EFI, my cars will be converted as soon as I put the unit on that are sitting in the trunk. (I grew up with carbs, i know how to tune em and I have the pieces to do it but I'm still going with EFI) However, I don't think anything is simpler than a Ford 2bbl carb, and if that's what I ran on my old cars it wouldn't get swapped out. They are about the easiest thing to work on in the automotive world. Maybe putting the air cleaner wing nut on is easier. If you had the proper one and tuned it right I don't see any gains on a 260 2bbl by going to a EFI.
 

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How is tuning handled with that setup? it looks to be a standard narrowband O2 sensor so it really should only be able to see and adjust for stoich. Thats something I'd want to really find out about before purchase. It looks as though its just a recycled GM EFI system so making sure it's tuned correctly to run OP's small block would be a concern.
 

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Carbs do their job perfectly adequately. But EFI does it so much better and with so much less drama it's not even in the same ballpark. There's a reason many racers have gone to EFI in addition to the OEMs and those of us who have switched will never go back.
I put this very question to a friend who has a serious speed shop, with a chassis dyno built into the floor. He said it's easier to get good performance from EFI, but for balls-out maximum performance the carburator beats it by maybe 5%. It's just harder to get there. He has the advantage in experience, and of course his dyno makes it possible to operate cars at wide-open throttle while setting adjustments.
 

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I actually was able to fine one that's matching numbers for this car except it was for a manual not auto so all numbers match but that. Anyways I'm saving for EFI. I appreciate all the comments and suggestions though!
I assumed with my prior answer your goal was to have a smooth-running daily driver, on a budget. Installing a correct carburetor at a cost to you of roughly $2-300 would do that, versus over $1500 (for the EFI kit and intake manifold). But you are apparently looking for a reason to buy the EFI.

If you want to achieve your stated goal of a good-running daily driver, contact someone like KP Carbs and ask them about providing a proper C4ZF-E.
 
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