small block


When you go looking to make huge power from your 5.0-liter Ford, the limiting factor will always be the weakest link in the chain. In the case of our supercharged 331 stroker buildup, the weakest link turned out to be the production block. Like most enthusiasts, we had no budget for a DART racing block or even a Ford Racing Sportsman block, but we decided to tempt fate nonetheless and go for a big power number on the dyno. Considering that the stock fuel-injected 5.0-liter was rated at a measly 225 hp, even a 300hp buildup would offer a welcome change in performance.


While the small-block Chevy is the popular engine choice for many enthusiasts, many are now relying on a Blue Oval heart for their performance bodies. With its link to Ford, the original body manufacturer for many of the classic cars we see today, the small-block Windsor-style Ford engine offers several advantages. When compared to Chevy, the lack of firewall clearance for a number of Chevy engine swaps is due to the rear distributor position of the engine. The front-mount distributor position is the more logical place to drive the distributor and the oil pump. Not to mention, it’s much more convenient.

539HP 383 On Pump Gas

Time and time again, our advice to those interested in learning about stout-running engines is that it’s the total combination that makes it all happen—considering, of course, that components are prepped, cleaned and assembled as if in a “clean room.” 

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