Gasser HotRod Forums banner
1 - 20 of 113 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A couple weeks ago I responded to a thread about the UPS guy arriving and then Vall and I exchanged a couple messages. In my last message I said I'd document the process of the modifying the BBC headers to the Ford FE.

photo 1 The box from Speedway
photo 2 The headers unpacked
photo 3 The Ford FE flanges
photo 4 The flanges compared to the BBC port spacing, not that bad
photo 5 3' long piece of 2" OD exhaust tube

That's all the photos I can post on the this page
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
BBC fenderwell headers for a Ford FE part 2

photo 6 Cutting the 3" stub
photo 7 The 3" stub will give me plenty of material to make the tubes match
photo 8 A 3/4" drive, 1 3/8" socket fits perfectly inside the 2" tube to keep it round while forming the rectangular hole to fit the FE flange.
photo 9 In the vice squeezing it together.
photo 10 Ready for first test fit
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
BBC fenderwell headers for a Ford FE part 3

photo 11 After a little more work with the hammer
photo 12 Nice tight fit but the corners need a little work
photo 13 Stubs all set in with a nice tight radius on the corners after a little more work with the hammer and they're ready to be tig welded by my buddy
photo 14 Flange all welded
photo 15 Nice tig welds, these won't ever crack

Next step is to cut the flanges off the BBC headers and start matching everything up. I'll tack weld them with my mig and then have my buddy do the tig. More photos to come.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,464 Posts
Awesome job. Great pics. Both you and Vall are very talented.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Looks great! I'm having similar problems with making BBC fender well exit headers fit my 383chrysler. The ports are pretty different will take some time to get right
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
13,524 Posts
Great looking welds! Will running the stubs straight out create any alignment issues? Wonder if they might have been angled to align with the BBC tubes, so butting them might be easier later?
I have one of those Ridgid tubing cutters I bought at a swap meet cheap. I love it for exhaust work!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The existing fenderwells I have leave the flange at pretty much a straight angle, unlike the nice swept curves of the mandrel bent headers, and then with cut and welded curved pieces begin to angle down to the outside of the frame. I know I'm going to have to do some minor (I hope) piecing together with small cut pieces from curved tube. I thought I'd give myself enough length with the 3" long stubs so when I start the fitting process I have plenty to cut; like the old infantry grunts mantra, "better to have and not need than need and not have." In the end though I'll have a set of headers with very few welds and that don't crack or look like a jig saw puzzle of pieces welded together; again I hope.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,489 Posts
Freeride, try small block chevy headers, the ports are pretty close to the big block Chrysler. The tubes are pretty small though, so if you are going to race it, might not work.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Today I took that leap of faith and cut the BBC flanges off; I'm committed now.

Photo 1 New bi-metal 24tpi blade in the recipricating saw and ready to go.
Photo 2 First one's done
Photo 2 Both done
Photo 4 Anybody need a pair of BBC header flanges?

Next step will be bolting the flanges to the block and determining how much trimming is needed on the stubs for the position I want the headers in. After I have that completed I'll do a good solid tack weld on one of the tubes while the flanges are still bolted to the motor. Next will be some heating with the rosebud welding tip, a little tube realignment, putting them back on the motor to double check the position then taking them over to my buddys house for the final tig welding.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,464 Posts
Yeah you're committed now. Lol. You'll do fine. Anyone that bold to cut the flanges will do fine with his skills to get it done. I can tell that about you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the vote of confidence Mario. I could do this all myself with my mig welder but with my buddy and his talent with a tig I'd be crazy not to use him; this way I know the welds well never crack. The port difference between the front and rear ports isn't that great. I'm only going to have to move those tubes about 1/8", both to the inside. Both center tubes need to be moved in towards each other by 1/4" to 5/16" not really that much as long as I get a good, long heat path along the whole tube so when I start to move/bend it, it doesn't crimp in one spot; but with that minimal distance I really don't expect a problem, I hope. If it does crimp, oh well, cut it out and weld in a new section.
In a prior post I commented on an Ansen inspired drag brake I made many, many, many decades ago. I look back at those days, with none of the needed tools, complete lack of experience, very limited funds and material, figuring it out as you went along and hoping it worked; but man those were fun times. I still have, and use, a T handle tap wrench I made in a junior college machine shop class I took in 1968.

Steve Bauman
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,464 Posts
Very cool. You got an early start. Good for you. I was a late bloomer. On the job training at a shell station. 1975. The rest is history. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Well, I finally got some time this past weekend to get something done on this project.

Photo 1 Flange bolted to motor. What I did next was just held the header in place, tilted it up to where I wanted it and looked at the gap at the bottom and figured about 3/8" of an inch to cut off.

Photo 2 Put the flange on the metal band saw table and tilted the table until the bottom of the stub was even with the bottom of the blade and the top of the stub was 3/8" to the inside.

Photo 3 The finished cut.

Photo 4 Put the flange back on the motor, held the headers up at the new angle and it was right on. I tack welded the rear tube to the stub and proceeded from there. Heated the tubes, bent them into the right position as best I could and tack welded them. The one tube that gave me a little trouble was the #7 because heating and bending wasn't going to work. As I looked at it I thought if I cut the tube and then rotated it a bit it might work. Out came the reciprocating saw. I cut the tube repositioned it and and it was going to work. There was a crescent shaped gap underneath but as luck would have it one of the cut off angled stub pieces worked great after a little dressing on the disc sander. Got it all tack welded up and dropped it off at my buddys house for the tig welding. Here it is waiting to be bolted on.

Photo 5 Bolted up. Plenty of clearance and I think look pretty good. Took a photo from the outside but the header is to dark to show up. For whatever reason the other side isn't going to be the slam dunk this side was. I think I'm looking at more sectioning of pieces than the first side. Bottom line though is I'll still have spent a whole hell of of lot less money in the end; $204 for BBC fenderwell headers from Speedway vs. $600+ from Mad Dog or Patriot for FE fenderwells. After I get the next one done I'm sending them to this place http://swaintech.com/race-coatings/race-coating-descriptions/white-lightning-exhaust-coatings/ that I found on line for their coating.

When these are done I'm going to clean up and paint my old fenderwells, list them on ebay and hopefully recoup a little cash!!
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,464 Posts
Awesome job. Thanks for all the pics. I may use some of what you did on a small block fender well header. Mine will be custom for sure.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
13,524 Posts
You made that look way too easy! You could probably remake those and sell them to all the guys scratching their heads and wondering how they can get inexpensive headers for a similar application! Very nicely done!
Surprised the passenger side will be harder? That seems to usually be the easy side for most cars.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Hi Vall,
I thought I'd get what I thought was going to be the difficult side done first; it took most of the day Saturday. There's something strange going on on the right hand side of the car though. When I held the header up to the stubs it was like "WTF". I scratched my head, swore, closed the hood, swore some more, shut the garage door, didn't put any tools away, just walked into the house; it had been a long ass day. Sunday being Mothers Day I wasn't able to do anything because of being with the girlfriends family all day; probably just as well, my back was killing me from the previous day. It's a bitch getting older. This Saturday is a new day and maybe with a fresh mind and a not so aching back I'll be able to figure out what's going on in my engine compartment.
Mario, these photos are for you. It's the T-handle tap wrench I told you about making in 1968. In the photo of the top of the tool you can still just see where my initials, SB, were stamped before being sent out for heat treating.

Steve Bauman
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,464 Posts
That's pretty cool steve. I'm seeing a vintage snap on tool box too. I almost married one in 76. Chickened out. Payments to snap on were a bit much back then. It showed for delivery and I told him to take it back. Still got my craftsman top and bottom roll away from back then. Mom helped me out with that and I cherish it.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
13,524 Posts
That's pretty cool steve. I'm seeing a vintage snap on tool box too. I almost married one in 76. Chickened out. Payments to snap on were a bit much back then. It showed for delivery and I told him to take it back. Still got my craftsman top and bottom roll away from back then. Mom helped me out with that and I cherish it.
When I worked at Cadillac in the late 60's everything was Snap On and I was just an apprentice, so that was tough on my salary! The Snap On dealer also carried Kennedy tool boxes, so I ended up getting a Kennedy at a big savings. Of course you got a lot of peer pressure from the other mechanics for not buying Snap On, but I was really happy with the Kennedy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Mario,
I know what you mean about getting help. When I first started messing around with cars I only had my dads tools. He had a bunch of various hand tools and a basic Craftsman 1/2" drive socket set. I was 18, (1967) going to junior college and working part time for Standard Stations when I purchased my first set of tools; it was a pretty comprehensive Craftsman combination set. Fast forward to 1974. My buddy and I were renting a shop space in an industrial area where we kept our "race car" and also did side jobs for some extra cash on weekends. I went out there one Saturday morning and when I parked, my heart sank; the lock was missing from the door. I opened the door and the first most obvious thing was the empty spot where my tool box should have been. After looking around the thieves had also gotten our yet to be installed Hilborn injection set up, a spare M-22 Muncie and a bunch of other stuff. Where this story is going is that a fellow mechanic where my buddy worked was quitting and needed quick cash so he was selling his tools and roll away, cheap. I didn't have the cash, but my sis came through. That's where that vintage Snap on box came from; it was filled with mostly Craftsman tools. Unfortunately my sis isn't here anymore, she died way to young, but I still have her gift to me and will until I'm gone. Believe me when I say I know what you mean about cherishing what you got with the help of your mom.

Steve Bauman
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,464 Posts
Sad there are those type of people in this world. Hilborn, m22 and toolbox.
Family is forever. That is heart touching.
 
1 - 20 of 113 Posts
Top