Lovejoy engine rebuild options

Yeah, I know I said I was 100% sure I wanted to go ahead and do a 351W… But I’m getting a little more realistic on costs and times involved with some of this stuff, especially since the body work is going so well and so fast…  If I get all of the body and chassis done in another month or two, I’m not going to want to wait a year to build a fancy performance motor to put into it.  And besides which, I got bored and curious what my options for engine rebuilds would cost.

The idea is, which engine would be cheaper to do a full(roughly) Stock(mostly) rebuild, given the same parts/brands of parts for each one.

The options being the 351M I have on the stand, the 460 that came out, and the possible 351W that you mentioned.

Parts cost only, assuming none need block or crank machine work, and assuming the cams look good/can be re-used. 

(Although, at the cost these hit, especially the full kit on the 460, at that point I might as well spend the $130 to $150 average on a good new cam and be done with it…  )

Each of these setups includes a adjustable timing gear set, to get rid of Fords horrendous stock retarded setups… Which on average only costs about $20 more than a dead stock setup.

I am figuring bearings, seals/gaskets, timing set, and I figure if its all apart might as well do new lifters.

 And on that theory I priced push rods… Usually from what I’ve seen they get re-used a lot in low end stock rebuilds if they look good(Dad and I left them in the 400 when we did it), but I figured “why not” and priced them anyway on the odd chance of finding any bent etc.

An interesting note; all three of these motors take the same exact lifters(according to summits cross reference anyway..).

I did all of this at summit racing for consistency of pricing, and ease of doing it; they have it all to compare on one site.  Somewhere else might be cheaper, but this should give ballpark figures to compare for the different engines.

So, the first theory is the dead cheap option, main bearings, seals and a timing set in the 460;

$187.91 Total

Main Bearings $64.97

Gasket kit $69.97

Timing set/chain $52.97

The next option is a full bearing kit on the 460, with timing chain set, lifters and push rods…

$426.75 Total

Timing set/chain $52.97

“re-ring kit”  $216.97

Lifters $76.97

Pushrods $79.84

The next option on the 460 is the same, but with a different kit that adds pistons, and oil pump…

$771.77 Total

Rebuild kit $561.99

Timing set/chain $52.97

Lifters $76.97

Pushrods $79.84


And, $614.96 WITHOUT the lifters and pushrods.

I just priced a the full rebuild like that last option on the 460, for the 351W and the 351M…  I know nothing about the history of that 351M, and its kinda rough, so to err on the safe side I am assuming it will need a full kit, short of machining etc like I mentioned above, if it looks OK inside…

Same for a 351W, no idea what to expect there for condition… And I got tired of pricing and sorting parts… 

So, on to the 351W…

$612.77 Total

Rebuild kit $337.99

Timing set $37.97

Lifters $76.97

Pushrods $159.84 (these dang things are $10 a piece!!)

And, $375.96 WITHOUT the lifters and pushrods.

And, on to the 351M

$565.77 Total

Rebuild kit $392.99

Timing set $47.97

Lifters $76.97

Pushrods $47.84

And, $440.96 WITHOUT the lifters and pushrods.

So anyway, for “Full” rebuilds;
460; ~$772 // ~$615 without lifters, pushrods
351W; ~$613 // ~$376 without lifters, pushrods
351M; ~$566 // ~$441 without lifters, pushrods

Ironically, the one that is the hardest to get performance parts for or to do a hot build of, is the cheapest to do a stock rebuild of with all my options….

If I leave out the horrendously expensive pushrods(and those were the only ones listed for it!) for it, the 351W wins.  

In the long run, the 351W would probably cost the most for this truck, since it won’t bolt to my C6, I’d have to get a new trans.  

The other two will bolt right into the truck as is, other than motor mounts for the 351M needing moved a bit.   All of the accessories, alt, ps pump, brackets etc that came off the 460 Should go onto the 351M with little to no mods.  Except a balancer… And getting that might be fun; no one makes one, its junk yard/craigslist etc only to get a 351M/400 balancer.

The 351M might turn out spendy though, because some idiot broke off the balancer bolt in the end of the crank, so I KNOW it will need at least a little machine work just to fix that, and hope the crank isn’t hurt…

 These kits include pistons and rings, although I’m not sure I’d want to go to that much trouble unless I found something wrong with a piston, or a bore needed honed etc.. Dad and I left the pistons alone in the 400 in the red truck, and its gone 14 years on top of the 12 years that was on them at that time.

Then again some of the cylinder bores in that 351M are pretty rough, and not knowing the history/age/mileage on the 351W, doing them while its already apart might be the smarter way to go.  Hate to go to all the trouble to assemble an unknown motor and then find out the rings are shot and it burns oil like a Studabaker!

I’m actually thinking my best option is to do a half step between the first two options on the 460, the full bearing kit and timing set at ~$265

Timing set/chain $52.97

“re-ring kit”  $216.97

So at ~$265, or only ~$77 more than the first option, I’d also get rod bearings, and cam bearings, and rings if I decided to do them….    Call it roughly $300, and I think its still in my current budget for this summer. And it will all go back together and bolt right back in just as it came out…  

Then again, another ~$75 and I can get all that plus pistons and oil pump in the 351W!! But thats back to the need of another trans, which I’m pretty sure is outside my budget this year(even if I was working steady.. those things are expensive!)

 I can always drop a grand or more into a hotter than stock/mild performance build of a 351W(into a 396 for instance) to put in it later, do it over time to slow down the cost, but have the truck driveable in the mean time.

The other cheap option is to pull the 351M from the Bronco, re-seal it again, on the stand where I can really get at it to do it right(I think its what, 3 times now I’ve redone the rear main with it in the truck and I still end with it leaking!). Put it in Lovejoy, and then later do the ~$300 mid re-build option above with the 460 to put into the Bronco.  

But I have this sneaking suspicion that once I have that 351M out of the Bronco, and really look at it on the stand to re-do the rear main again, I’ll probably find it has issues just like the 460, like a loose timing chain, or any number of other bad little things I could find…  

But anyway, at least now I have some ideas on what it would cost, for several options on any of the three motors.. Just gotta decide how I want to move forward, and pick an engine to do. And find out Exactly what it needs, to get an exact cost to start saving for.


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