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Old 07-17-2020, 11:27 PM   #1
texas_snake
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Rebuilding a 4.6L Rant. Advice from those who have done it

OK, I have been working out building a replacement 4.6 4v (looking at teksid). Thinking over good parts and I don't see issues there (good parts availability I think). Expecting a .0020 overbore.

My rant is about the lack of clear information and direction on building an engine with these tight specs. It would be nice to have a common cookbook on building say a 600rwhp 4.6 vs say 1000rwhp one. What I refer to is all the info around machining the block more than anything else.

My research over a couple weeks (and looking over books like the Sean Hyland book) has brought up these details (my head is spinning) :

- Original Ford engines did not use torque plates
- But everyone seems to say that is really needed on a modular (things can be distorted quite a bit with heads on). I get that. Others have stated they have done it without it and things were OK, but I am sure they are missing some compression and perhaps have some nvh.
- Ideally the torque plate should be full size similar material as the aluminum heads. But now even MMR has take their 4.6 torque plate off the market (to buy or rent). Seems 5.0's are all the rage (I get that I guess, but hoped 4.6 would stay longer). So the ones left on the market need shims.
- Should even use 2 torque plates (or head on other side). But I never see this much getting done for any machining videos for these engines or others using torque plates).
- Should even line hone (some say always vs just checking crank bores are in spec). Might have some factory taper. I expect to have the crank micro polished.
- Line hone should also include 2 torque plates bolted on to avoid distortion for the crank. Anyone actually having their machine shop do this?
- And I even saw rings should be fit with torque plates on. I also never see this happening. Not to say some shops have these standards, I am just not seeing it. Only talk on it.
- Debur the block after machining (just about everywhere?)
- I will certainly balance the rotating assembly.

Additionally there are no longer any real machined blocks to buy new. Only really 5.0 options now a days.

Those who have been through this, where did you draw the line and what HP did you shoot for (thus quality of your build).

Additionally, I have a very good machine shop that does Torque Plate work, but don't have 4.6 plates. Need to buy it or see about making it. But also I want to get back with them on these specifics. Or is some of this just crazy picky and not needed for say 600rwhp+ ish power for street use. Also this is a budget with quality build, not a dream build.

Thanks in advance. I am on hold until I fully have the machine work picture straight.

My 351w was sooo much easier to build (I realize things have changed).
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Old 07-21-2020, 09:09 PM   #2
glittle75
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Location: Burlington, NC
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Re: Rebuilding a 4.6L Rant. Advice from those who have done it

Quote:
Originally Posted by texas_snake View Post
OK, I have been working out building a replacement 4.6 4v (looking at teksid). Thinking over good parts and I don't see issues there (good parts availability I think). Expecting a .0020 overbore.

My rant is about the lack of clear information and direction on building an engine with these tight specs. It would be nice to have a common cookbook on building say a 600rwhp 4.6 vs say 1000rwhp one. What I refer to is all the info around machining the block more than anything else.

My research over a couple weeks (and looking over books like the Sean Hyland book) has brought up these details (my head is spinning) :

- Original Ford engines did not use torque plates

Correct

- But everyone seems to say that is really needed on a modular (things can be distorted quite a bit with heads on). I get that. Others have stated they have done it without it and things were OK, but I am sure they are missing some compression and perhaps have some nvh.

The head studs reach so far down in the block, its not absolutely needed, but always better to over build than not.


- Ideally the torque plate should be full size similar material as the aluminum heads. But now even MMR has take their 4.6 torque plate off the market (to buy or rent). Seems 5.0's are all the rage (I get that I guess, but hoped 4.6 would stay longer). So the ones left on the market need shims.

There are shops that still have 4.6 plates, but most of them are mustang specific shops.

- Should even use 2 torque plates (or head on other side). But I never see this much getting done for any machining videos for these engines or others using torque plates).

Depends on how bad the block is

- Should even line hone (some say always vs just checking crank bores are in spec). Might have some factory taper. I expect to have the crank micro polished.

Line bore should be checked, but almost always needs bored. The front of the crank has a belt on it, driving the accessories. The tensioner is always pulling on the crank snout. The middle and rea journals lack this tension. So the alignment bore is usually to compensate for this. The front bore will be out of round. This is especially prevalent on supercharged engines.


- Line hone should also include 2 torque plates bolted on to avoid distortion for the crank. Anyone actually having their machine shop do this?

My shop just put the heads on.


- And I even saw rings should be fit with torque plates on. I also never see this happening. Not to say some shops have these standards, I am just not seeing it. Only talk on it.

I fit the rings on a stand in my garage. no plates or heads on.

- Debur the block after machining (just about everywhere?)

Yes, this will also make install easier, less edges to cut your hands on lol.


- I will certainly balance the rotating assembly.

Extremely important. A good shop will balance within half a gram or less.

Additionally there are no longer any real machined blocks to buy new. Only really 5.0 options now a days.

Those who have been through this, where did you draw the line and what HP did you shoot for (thus quality of your build).

Additionally, I have a very good machine shop that does Torque Plate work, but don't have 4.6 plates. Need to buy it or see about making it. But also I want to get back with them on these specifics. Or is some of this just crazy picky and not needed for say 600rwhp+ ish power for street use. Also this is a budget with quality build, not a dream build.

Thanks in advance. I am on hold until I fully have the machine work picture straight.

My 351w was sooo much easier to build (I realize things have changed).
I sent my stuff to TKM in NC. They are up there with the likes of Pro-Line. I explained that I want everything done to be able to handle 1500hp. I only plan to make 1000 maybe.

I brought them a block, all rotating parts, all ARP hardware, Heads, and a few odss-ends.
I wanted everything cleaned, balanced, block decked to be flat, line honed, bored .030", heads milled .010", crank polished, etc. I assembled the engine in my garage.

My bill out the door for machine work was $1300-ish from them. Keep in mind they are a very high end machine shop, and they charge a premium for that reputation. But you get your stuff back, wrapped in plastic, signed off inspected by at least 2 people at EVERY operation, and have complete confidence in the work.

I got home and checked things to make sure, the largest deviance in a matched tolerance I could find was .0005". And thats with me using Starret tools to measure everything.

You get what you pay for when it comes to machining. Unfortunately, you can't see bad machine work with the naked eye. You dont know something is wrong until its too late.
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:02 PM   #3
texas_snake
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Re: Rebuilding a 4.6L Rant. Advice from those who have done it

Great info. Thanks for all this. Really helps.
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