This past winter I got what I thought was a great deal on nearly a complete driveline for my 1950 F3. $150 for a Dana 60 with 3.54's that’s a direct bolt in for my Timken with 4.86's, and the real killer deal, $200 for a Ford 300 Inline Six, complete from carb to pan (minus alternator and starter) and a T18 four speed, the guy even pulled everything out for me and had it hanging from a tractor when I pulled up.

The guy I bought it from had a whole row of 70's Ford’s that he was parting out, and the particular truck that the engine came out of he had only driven 10-15 miles home. He said that it ran and drove pretty well but smoked pretty bad, and the original seller had said that it was a rebuilt engine. I bought it with the hopes that it was simply a worn set of rings or valve seals.

Originally the plan was to do a dingle-ball rebuild on the engine and a Roadkill-esque build on the truck (don’t get it right, just get it running), keeping the single barrel carb, factory manifolds etc. with plans to upgrade later.


Well this weekend I finally got to tear into the engine to assess what needed to be done, and what I found wasn’t great. Before even pulling off a single part, I noticed that copper silicone gasket maker was used on every gasket and seal possible, and a rebuilt number tag (with no indication who rebuilt it) was stuck to the side of the block with a massive glob of clear bathtub silicone. Not a great start.

The next step was to remove the intake and exhaust manifolds, which as you can see below, didn’t end well.


The exhaust manifold is broken clean in half, and the mounting tab for the intake is busted off as well. Ok, lets get deeper. Off came the valve cover and behold! (no pictures) One of the rocker studs is bigger than the other 11! Wonderful! We continue the journey, off with the head!


Well shit. Guess I know why it was smoking, and to continue our theme, based on markings there’s no less than 3 different brands of pistons in this engine.

I figured I’d stop here for the day and price out some parts before going any further. I plan to crack open the bottom end this week and see how that all looks, but other than the one buggered piston everything looks to be in good shape so far. A new set of pistons and I should be back in the game, but I haven’t decided yet whether to find a cheap set of factory manifolds, or to just bite the bullet and buy some performance goodies.