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MORE POWER: suggestions and advice

 
  #1  
Old 05-05-2004, 04:59 PM
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MORE POWER: suggestions and advice

PLEASE READ BEFORE POSTING:
Let's give this a try and see what happens.....
At the request of a regular participant (Joseph a.k.a. True 4.2), I am creating a sticky that will deal EXCLUSIVELY with users' suggestions and first-hand experiences with modifications or alterations performed in an attempt to increase horsepower. All posts should be relevant and to-the-point. No hijacking and meandering all over cyberspace here.
The purpose is to create a good "go-to" thread so that both old and new users can get good, solid info without having to wade through numerous irrelevant posts (not that we'd ever have any of those )
So, think about what you want to post and then post it. Consider it a good opportunity to pass along good info to fellow 4.2 owners. Successes and failures are welcomed. In other words, if you did something specific and it helped, or hurt, or was a complete waste of time and money, this is the thread for it.
If someone wishes to dissect a specific subject in-depth, start a new thread. If I catch it, I'll edit this thread with a link to the new thread so that others who come later might reference the new thread.
Please note, irrevelant posts or posts that threaten to hijack will be deleted.

Thanks in advance to all for your support and cooperation.
 
  #2  
Old 05-06-2004, 03:40 PM
true4.2
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Basically, here is a list of power mods for the 4.2's

INTAKES:
MAC Intake
www.motorhaven.com or www.macperformance.com

Aif Force 1 Intake
www.motorhaven.com

AirAid Intake
www.motorhaven.com

K&N Intake (77 series)
www.knfilters.com

HEADERS:
MAC headers
www.macperformance.com

JBA headers
www.jbaheaders.com or www.jbaracing.com

CHIPS:
Diablo chip (to me, there is no substitute)
www.motorhaven.com

GEARS:
4.10 gears
many sites for this, just look

EXHAUST:
(there are many, many different exhausts you could run)
Flowmaster, Flowtech, Gibson, Magnaflow, MAC, etc...
www.flowmastermufflers.com
www.gibsonperformance.com
www.macperformance.com
edit to add (Brian A): don't forget http://www.motorhaven.com/customer/home.php?cat=28
...so on and so forth...


There are also many other mods to do to the 4.2 such as cam gears, Superchargers, Throttle Bodies, Porting & Polishing, Roller Rockers, Pulleys, Electric Fans, and surely a variety of other mods. If anyone has any suggestions as far as sites or whatever, please post them here.

Joseph
 

Last edited by true4.2; 05-06-2004 at 03:45 PM.
  #3  
Old 05-06-2004, 04:17 PM
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Good Job Joe,

If you plan on racing your rig, here are a few items to consider.

Nitrous Express NO2 kit. Under 600.00 and can add up to 75 or more HP. No, if used properly, will not hurt your motor. Jegs has it the cheapest. I've personally ran dozens of 1/4 mile runs on my kit and it worked awsomely. Here's the link http://www.jegs.com/cgi-bin/ncommerc...19&prmenbr=361

If your going to boost your trucks power, you'll need either a Limited slip differential or a full locking differential. Her is a great link that lists ALL of the different brands and what applications they are best used for: http://www.reiderracing.com/differentials.htm If your looking for overall performance with a limited slip, I suggest the Zexel Torsen. Stay clear of clutch style differentials. If your looking for ultimate performance or off road use, get a full locker. I suggest the Detroit Locker.

Ring and Pinion gears. As Joe mentioned 4.10's are very common. You'll gain 3/4's a second in the quarter mile after installing this gear. You'll definetely need at least a limited slip differential when going to this gear because your bottom end will be so strong you'll just sit and spin one tire. You will lose some top end with this gear. Installing the Diablo chip from Motorhaven will give you some of this back as well as raise the top speed governor.
(be advised, if you have an automatic transmission and a supercab F150, especially with a long bed, running this gear may cause your drive shaft to spin at speed high enough to create a harmonic vibration at speeds over 80mph. It only happens in very rare cases. It happened in my case and after extensive research I solved the problem by installing a custom 5" diameter aluminum drive shaft for about 300.00. Any drive shaft specialty shop can get one for you.)

Forget gimmicky items such as the Tornado or a throttle body spacer. Their claims that swirling air creates more power are false. Do some research. Enter "Tornado" into any search engine and you find dozens of websites that are aiming to sue these companies for false advertising. Just like Splitfire was sued for false advertising when they falsly claimed horsepower increases using their plugs.

If your going to throw on an aftermarket exhaust, you WILL need to install an aftermarket free flowing intake system to compensate for the faster release of exhaust gasses. This question appears quite frequently here.

You need to build your motor much like a house. You need the foundation first. After that, everything else you add to it will make the previously installed aftermarket parts perform better. You could say that they "compound" off each other. The foundation for your truck should be an exhaust, which Joe listed many above, Intake (again look above) and a quality chip. The Diablo chip is simply the best so don't even bother asking about Superchips or Jet.

After you install these 3 items, you can work your way up from there.

Don't forget, you can view peoples user's galleries to see what they've listed as far as upgraded parts as well as viewing pictures of their trucks. Just click on their big blue user name.

And don't forget to post pictures and mods about your own truck, so that other newcomers can learn from you as well.

Tom
 
  #4  
Old 05-06-2004, 08:11 PM
horizonhuskies
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Dang, you both beat me to it, but heres how I put it:

So you want more power out of your 4.2L eh new guy? Awesome, then you’ve come to the right place. This thread is dedicated to answering those questions you have. If we miss something, go ahead and ask. After all, that’s what we are here for. So here we go….

A lot of people, almost all the regulars here, built their trucks to their needs. The first thing you need to do, before you buy anything, is decide what you want out of your truck. Don’t expect to have an 11 second 4x4 4.2L Super cab on 35” “mudders”.

First and foremost, most everyone believes that an engine that can “breathe” better can perform better. With that said, a lot of first modifications are intakes and exhaust. There are several types of intakes available for our engine. They include, but are not limited to, K&N, Air Raid, Volant, Air Force 1, and a few others I can’t think of. I have read, and understand that the filter TUBE does not matter. IE, it doesn’t matter who’s intake you buy. They range in price quite a bit, from 140ish-225ish. The determining factor on how well they work is the FILTER itself! IE, the Volant filter is a conical shape, that measures a bottom base of 7 ¾, 8” long, and 6” top. It’s a big filter. If the filter is SMALL you will not get the gains you would from a large one. So in other words, it doesn’t truly matter which one you buy, it’s about filter size. Personally, I would buy the cheapest one, the Air Raid, and grab a big honking filter.

Next we come to exhaust. Everyone loves the sound of a nice exhaust system. Depending on where you live, will dictate what you can do. I know of a couple people running straight pipes after the cat converter. That’s actually legal in some places. I personally have the Gibson SIDO (single In, dual Out) exhaust. Mine was extreme dual series, meaning each pipe exited behind each rear tire. Since then, I have had to remove one pipe, and create “turn downs”. Basically a 90* pipe of pipe meant to spit the exhaust straight down. Talk about loud. Anyhow, here are some mufflers I have heard good things about: Flowmaster 40 series, Gibson SIDO, Flowtech muffler, Spintech mufflers, Warlock Muffler (forgot who makes it, but I will find out and edit this). The warlock actually has a DO, but not like the Gibson. The warlock functions as a single out, until you flip a switch or hit a button, then acts as a straight pipe. In other words, it has a built in cut-out valve!

Now, most people get their new intakes and exhaust and expect a lot. IMHO, they increase the potential of your engine, and do give a little improvement. I personally think a chip or tuner is the best way to go to MAXIMIZE your engines current potential. There are so many manufactures, its nice to have a few choices. Here are a couple: Diablo, SCT Tuner, Ford Chips, JET, and Superchips. Do some research, and see what chip is right for you. I wont preach you have to get this or that chip.

Now, there are still more options to you. Here are some more mod’s to keep you happier. 1.8” adjustable roller rockers, port and polished heads, port and polished throttle bodies, custom camshafts, larger throttle bodies, larger MAFs, larger fuel injectors, superchargers ( I will show a link for those of you interested), turbocharger (these will be something you fab up from start to finish, there is NO kit available). Various places sell these items, so search a little on the net.

In terms of faster acceleration, there are always shift kits (auto trannies), gear upgrades, and some weight reduction you can do. Chips and tuners can also help with these. I have heard wonderful reviews for the ford tech valve body. It helps with shifts. I also know a few people that love their transgo shift kit. It is all personal preference. As far as gears, I stick with my 3.55’s, but know several people who have gone up to 3.73’s, and 4.10’s. I even know one guy with a supercharged 4.2 on 35’s with 4.56 gears, who still kills mustang GT’s!!

As mentioned above, Motorhaven (FTE Sponsor) carries several items mentioned above, including, but not limited to, the mac intake, diablo chip, umm....thats all i know of for sure. LoL!

This is all I can think of at the moment, so I hope this helps answer some first questions. If you want more info, just post and ask, I’m sure one of us here has done it or is doing it

Garrett

PS, welcome to FTE!
 
  #5  
Old 05-07-2004, 10:13 AM
true4.2
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Some sites to check into if you are just browsing:

www.motorhaven.com
www.macperformance.com
www.jbaracing.com
www.jbaheaders.com
www.seffects.com
www.truckperformance.com
www.gibsonperformance.com
www.flowmastermufflers.com

On the last 2 sites listed, just look at the end of the link and use that address.
 
  #6  
Old 05-07-2004, 10:23 AM
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Good sites for off-roading and tires are:

Transgo Shift Kits http://www.kdsperformance.com/tranhigpersh12.html
High Stall Torque Converters for Auto Trans http://www.converter.com/stallion.htm
High Performance Taylor Spiro Pro Spark Plug Wires http://www.taylorvertex.com/spark.html#spiro
2X4 and 4X4 Ford high quality lift kits http://www.fabtechmotorsports.com/ht...97_01f150.html
Speedo/odo re-calibrators for tire and gear changes http://www.4x4wire.com/dodge/reviews/truespeed/
Harland Sharp Roller Rockers http://www.harlandsharp.com/customerservice3.htm
Everything you need for off-roading http://4wheelparts.com
 
  #7  
Old 05-16-2004, 03:21 PM
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OK heres my experience, real easy stuff that makes a difference.
#1 - K&N air filter stock replacement, power gains ?, MPG - a firm 1/2 more
#2 - Diablo 3 stage chip, power gains YES, don't have a dyno handy so I can't quantify, MPG and or Miles per dollar, only had it in a week, my feel after allmost a full tank is that my miles per dollar of gas will remain the same, but boy is that same more fun. I have the 87 octane program just in case.
The most noticable change with the Diablo is the automatic trasmission. If you have an automatic, get a chip - period.
Mike
 
  #8  
Old 08-24-2004, 05:22 PM
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Reduce Friction & lower weight

No one has discussed the reduction of friction.

Lubricants... put synthetics in everything, engine, transmission, differential (be sure to add the friction additive if you have a limited slip), wheel bearings.

Air... lower the vehicle as much as possible to lower the front profile. Get rid of all the parasitic drag, e.g. don’t fly a flag, use an electric antenna, etc., keep the vehicle clean and waxed.

also

Lower the weight… get rid of all extra weight, e.g. take of the ball, don’t carry all those tools, etc.

Always remember it is how many molocules of O2 and gas you can put through the pump (the engine), how little drag you have, and what the final hp to weight ratio is. Anything to improve these makes you go faster or gives better economy.

Regards, NRK
 
  #9  
Old 09-06-2004, 07:11 AM
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Royal Purple Lubricants

Just checking in on the performance section because I want to get a repetition on comments for upgrades. Nrkmann lit a fire about lubricants and I was wondering if anyone has used Royal Purple lubricants. I think it was Hotrod tv that changed out the transmission fluid, motor oil, and transfer fluid with this lube and gained 9hp on an ls1 camaro!! Obviously there are different results with application, but for 9hp under 100 bucks I think its worth a shot not to mention with this motor oil you can go 12k miles between oil changes.
-Rich
 
  #10  
Old 04-16-2005, 04:39 AM
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The advice here rocks!

In late 2002, I bought a plain-Jane F150 XL with the 4.2 V6 and a 5-speed. I just couldn't afford the big V8 at the time. I quickly fell in love with this truck, but I did regret not having the power of a bigger engine.

As time passed and my financial situation improved, I decided it was a far better decision to enhance the performance of my little beast instead of buying a new truck.

OMG! am I glad I decided to do this.

I started with cat back dual exhaust. I could sense a little improvement in performance and I loved the new sound. Not long after, I added a K&N intake. Holy Cow! I was amazed. The change in performance was very noticeable.

I dropped about 3000 hints in the months before Christmas and it worked. I got the money to buy the Diablo performance chip as one of my presents. One issue after another cropped up and it took me until just 4 weeks ago to get the chip and install it; but here is where the true OMG comes in to play. I am so amazed. The increase in performance is incredible. I can barely keep the tires planted when I pull away from a stop. I guess I'm gonna have to put some 20's on to ensure I have good traction. (The new look won't hurt my feelings either.)

I recently had a chance to drive a 2005 F150 Supercrew with the new 300hp 5.4 engine. I know my truck is smaller and much lighter, but the supercrew just seemed sluggish and cumbersome. I truly believe my truck may be faster.

The last thing I am doing (well, maybe the last thing) for my little beast is headers. I purchased them from a site I have not seen listed here yet, www.performancecombos.com. They just arrived and I am putting them on Monday. I will let ya know how it goes.

Bottom line...

I now have 0 desire (yes zero) to upgrade to a new truck with a V8. Yea, I know. I haven't added any new tricks for upgrading the performance of this awesome little engine, but I thought it would be nice to show that these small changes DO work. I am so pleased with the changes so far, I shudder to think how it will be after I get the headers installed.

The total cost for all of these upgrades is less than $1200. I think this is a much better investment than the extra $10k I would have thrown in to get a truck with the V8 package.

Later all,

Happy in Phoenix.
 
  #11  
Old 04-18-2005, 08:17 AM
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Exclamation my 4.2 hustler!

Originally Posted by nrkmann
No one has discussed the reduction of friction.

Lubricants... put synthetics in everything, engine, transmission, differential (be sure to add the friction additive if you have a limited slip), wheel bearings.

Air... lower the vehicle as much as possible to lower the front profile. Get rid of all the parasitic drag, e.g. don’t fly a flag, use an electric antenna, etc., keep the vehicle clean and waxed.

also

Lower the weight… get rid of all extra weight, e.g. take of the ball, don’t carry all those tools, etc.

Always remember it is how many molocules of O2 and gas you can put through the pump (the engine), how little drag you have, and what the final hp to weight ratio is. Anything to improve these makes you go faster or gives better economy.

Regards, NRK
Good point, I keep mine clean and waxed, I don't have a bug guard, I use mobil 1 since the day I bought it and I get about 17-19 around town, I did get a tornado and for me I felt it has done well, I tried it in another car and it sucked. I also removed the huge muffler and used a 50 series F/M and a K&N. I had a TB spacer and I did se mid-range power, but my gas mileage went out the window. So I removed it and I see the lack of now, but I gained my mileage back. I have 43 K on my engine.
 
  #12  
Old 04-18-2005, 08:21 AM
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I dropped about 3000 hints in the months before Christmas and it worked. I got the money to buy the Diablo performance chip as one of my presents. One issue after another cropped up and it took me until just 4 weeks ago to get the chip and install it; but here is where the true OMG comes in to play. I am so amazed. The increase in performance is incredible. [/QUOTE]

Question on fuel mileage since putting in the chip? better or worse? you seem that that may not be a concern? My 4.2 is alright and it runs down the road well all things considered.
 
  #13  
Old 04-29-2005, 12:23 AM
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Talking

Honestly, I have never taken the time to measure my exact mileage. I do know this though, pre-modification (of any kind), I used to get about 6-7 days out of a tank of gas. Now I get about 9-10 days out of a tank. Yes, the Diablo chip has made a great difference in the trucks performance... and yes, I have to be careful to keep my foot off the floor board (it's so much fun!) or my gas milage drops significantly. That's no different than before though.


Bottom line, I have much more power and get generally better mileage than before the modifications. I still have not put the headers on. I will let you know when I do.

I will try to remember to check my mileage on my next full tank.
 
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Old 04-29-2005, 03:18 PM
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Thanks DR, I'll be interested in the outcome. I'd like to do the header bit, but it isn't necessary.
 
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Old 05-01-2005, 11:20 PM
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Busa01 Says that the Tornado don't really help. It may not help at the track, but for every day working and towing, it does great. Another Ford owner with 4.2, and I decided to try one. Both of us are Master Technicians, and exppected the Tornado to fall flat on it's face. Both of us with 5-speeds noticed something right away-lower range torque. Pulled it out of mine, put it in his, and same results. Pull away was better!!! Some vehicles we tested it on didn't do so well. We both average 19-21 mpg on the highway, and 16-18 both city and highway. We also installed K&N filter only. We are going to try and get them on dynos to see before and after Hp and Torque, but you can actually feel the low end torque improvement!! As sceptics,we were kinda impressed. I'm not going to tell anyone to go out and get one, but I thought you would like to hear actual accounts.
 

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