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March 15, 2012

Sometimes customizing means doing it twice - or more

I didn't really love the way the exhaust system ended upon the Galaxie, so today I cut it apart and tweaked the rear half again to get the muffler closer to the floor and extend the pipes right out to the bumper.

After all that cutting, grinding and welding, I turned my attention to my pre 47 Flathead block. i have been searching for one for a few ears now after the original block powering my 46 Mercury truck developed a massive crack. Here's the link to that tear-down on GJ.com and here's the link to a thread I put up on FTE - Ford Truck Enthusiasts.

Early Flatheads have part of the bell housing cast into the block, so it doesn't really fit on a standard engine stand. Below is a method of attaching a FH blcok from the exhaust manifold bolt holes:

As is fairly obvious, this engine stand was made completely from scrap. The base was made from the parts that held my BendPak lift together during shipping and the engine cradle bits where just procured this week from my local steel recycler. The entire cost? About $35 including the casters.

I've actually been through several blocks to find one that MIGHT be salvageable. A lot of the blocks you find now-a-days have either been tossed for a good reason, or have been sitting in out in the elements exposed to water for years. This one has some light rust in one cylinder, but I'm hoping that can be repaired during boring. When I take it in for a hot tanking, I'll have them magnuflux and sonar the block to look for cracks and casting irregularities.

Lastly for today, lets talk tools.
Today I finally replaced my drill bit set.  I had long been relying on High Speed Steel (HSS) sets and sharpening them - either by hand on the grinder which is a difficult skill to master, or with a specific sharpening tool like the Drill Doctor. However this time I promised myself I'd by some quality bits so when I saw this Titanium Coated set from Canadian Tire, on sale for $40, I jumped!

Regardless of what you buy - quality or not - using tools other than for what they where intended will often lead to failure. Case in point was me using the hammer below to pry a rubber bushing from one of the lower control arms.....D'oh!

Don't forget to check out the website at www.E-tekRestorations.com ! Special thanks to www.Eastwood.com and www.CarCraft.com !