Heads for my 289. - Vintage Mustang Forums
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 08:49 AM Thread Starter
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Heads for my 289.

My 68 has a basically stock 289. It was rebuilt years ago but we put some crappy heads off a late 70's 302 I think because we were told we needed the hardened valve seats for unleaded gas.

the person who rebuilt the motor didn't even want to put the heads back on. I had no money at the time to deal with the heads.

So I've basically been driving it like this for about 20 years. It's a Sunday driver car. It runs great and has pretty good power but in the back of my mind I know it would have alot more power with better heads.

I have a 600 holley, aluminum intake, headers, dual exhaust, mild cam.

I have been wanting to save up for some aluminum aftermarket heads. These heads just popped up for sale locally. See link? Would they be any good for me? Would they work?

I don't know much about the cc's, compression, valve size, etc. I just want a reliable strong running sunday driver motor. Keep in mind I'm in Canada so I'm using canadian prices. Aftermarket aluminum heads I think would be very expensive to buy in Canada. i don't have $2000 plus dollars for that.

What's your thoughts on these heads?

https://www.kijiji.ca/v-view-details...earch%20Alerts

1968 Fastback, 289, 3 speed.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 09:03 AM
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Those E7 heads are ok.. But I think the 66cc combustion chamber will be too large for your 289. For a 289 you need under a 58 cc combustion chamber or less to have a decent CR.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 09:10 AM
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Pass on them. Nothing really special about the E7 heads. The combustion chambers is too big. 66 cc is 10 to 12 cc larger then a 289 head and will result in more then a full point loss of much needed compression. You really want a chamber around 55 cc. Depending on whether you have flat top with 3cc valve relief or C code style with 13cc with dish, you'll be anywhere from maybe mid 9's to low 8's. 66cc will put you low to mid 8's to low 7's in compression.

Most aftermarket heads are around 60 to 65 cc. The added flow of the heads will make up for loss of compression except at low rpm. I'd suggest finding a set of 289 heads, mild bowl clean up and maybe 351W valves along with some exhaust port work. I would suggest GT40P heads as they were probably the best mass produced and head and they work very well. They have a 60cc chamber which would be about a half point loss but doable. Or you could have a shop slightly cut them down to 55cc. The down side with these heads is their altered plug angle that doesn't work with most headers. They will work with stock exhaust manifolds with some minor grinding. If you can get a deep socket on the rear bolt of each header tube on the driver's side, the P head will work. Honestly I think your best bet is a fixed up set of 289 heads IMO
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 09:35 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys. Iíll pass on these.

I wish I had kept the original 289 heads that were on my motor. I could have had them redone. Unfortunately they got tossed I think many years ago.

I hear stories how a good set of heads can give you a 30-80 HP increase. I have these crappy heads on that are probably loosing HP. So ďboltingĒ on some heads and gaining all that HP is what I want.

1968 Fastback, 289, 3 speed.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 09:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Stangfire View Post
Thanks guys. Iíll pass on these.

I wish I had kept the original 289 heads that were on my motor. I could have had them redone. Unfortunately they got tossed I think many years ago.

I hear stories how a good set of heads can give you a 30-80 HP increase. I have these crappy heads on that are probably loosing HP. So ďboltingĒ on some heads and gaining all that HP is what I want.
Do this to the heads you have, and you'll get what you want for the cost of a head gasket set, it'll take most of a Saturday.

Port-matching

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-27-2019, 11:26 AM Thread Starter
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Do this to the heads you have, and you'll get what you want for the cost of a head gasket set, it'll take most of a Saturday.

Port-matching

Interesting. Thanks. Iíll look into that. So itís just the exhaust ports that you do?

Iíd probably want to check the numbers on my current heads and see exactly what I have first.

1968 Fastback, 289, 3 speed.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 08:36 AM Thread Starter
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What about this? I found a guy locally selling these. Not sure what he wants yet. Iíll find out...........



I have 65 289 hipo heads, double wound springs, ported, and cc'd. They are real HIPO heads with the 20 mark near the frost plug on the casting.(only 19, 20, and 21 were on the HIPO engines)





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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 08:40 AM
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What about this? I found a guy locally selling these. Not sure what he wants yet. Iíll find out...........



I have 65 289 hipo heads, double wound springs, ported, and cc'd. They are real HIPO heads with the 20 mark near the frost plug on the casting.(only 19, 20, and 21 were on the HIPO engines)





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Nice heads, but you will likely be paying a premium for the "hipo" designation that could get you into a better flowing modern aluminum head. Hipo heads were great for spinning to high RPM, but did not flow any better than a standard head. Now these should flow better given they have been ported.

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 10:10 AM
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What is the compression ratio and oil consumption of your current engine. Basically, what is its health? Also, what is the oil pressure (lower oil pressure can indicate wear in your bearings)? If your current engine is beginning to show wear from your 20 years of use, perhaps this is the time to start looking for a roller 302 to put your money into. You can keep driving your car with the current engine while you tear down and rebuild your 302. I'm sure folks here can point you towards the best value to power return 302 engines to look for.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 10:10 AM
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Find out what heads you already have. And be happy you donít save the original heads. In 68 289s where 2 barrel engines and 302s were 4 barrel cars. In an attempt to reduce emissions the 289 cars used large chamber heads that lowered compression. They run well but have no power. The 302 got special 1 year only J code heads. These heads were essentially the same as the earlier 66-67 289 heads with the small chambers. The original 68 289 heads were probably the worst heads ever used for a performance standpoint.

The most earlier 289 and the 302 J code heads had 54.5 Cc chambers.

The 68 289 heads had 63 cc chambers.

Most 70s 302 heads had 58.2 cc chambers.

Some late 70s heads had massive 69 cc chambers.

Your best bet is to find some 54.5 CC chamber heads and have them cleaned up. No need for hardened seats on a Sunday only driver. You can just add some oil treatment instead.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 11:44 AM
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IIRC the codes on the heads pictured in the original post, "E7TE" are truck heads from the 1980's. More specifically "8J23" is the casting date September 23, 1988 and "8J15" is the casting date September 15, 1988.

url]http://i87.photobucket.com/albums/k156/jefftepper/IMG_0027_edited-1.jpg[/url]

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 12:05 PM
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IIRC the codes on the heads pictured in the original post, "E7TE" are truck heads from the 1980's. More specifically "8J23" is the casting date September 23, 1988 and "8J15" is the casting date September 15, 1988.
From LMR website

E7TE cylinder heads came equipped on all 5.0L Foxbody Mustangs between the years of 1987-1993. They featured a 1.782" intake valve and a 1.46" exhaust valve, with a combustion chamber size ranging between 60.6-63.6 cc. Factory port volume was 127cc intake and 44cc on the exhaust side with an average air flow of 125 CFM between 0.100" and 0.500" lift.

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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 12:31 PM Thread Starter
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What is the compression ratio and oil consumption of your current engine. Basically, what is its health? Also, what is the oil pressure (lower oil pressure can indicate wear in your bearings)? If your current engine is beginning to show wear from your 20 years of use, perhaps this is the time to start looking for a roller 302 to put your money into. You can keep driving your car with the current engine while you tear down and rebuild your 302. I'm sure folks here can point you towards the best value to power return 302 engines to look for.


The motor was rebuilt 20 years ago and has about 5000 miles on it. I didnít do anything to the heads though. Just bolted on some newer (late 70ís) 302 heads.

If the car sits for a month it will smoke for a couple minutes when I first start it. I suspect thatís oil leaking down the valves.


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1968 Fastback, 289, 3 speed.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 12:34 PM Thread Starter
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Find out what heads you already have. And be happy you donít save the original heads. In 68 289s where 2 barrel engines and 302s were 4 barrel cars. In an attempt to reduce emissions the 289 cars used large chamber heads that lowered compression. They run well but have no power. The 302 got special 1 year only J code heads. These heads were essentially the same as the earlier 66-67 289 heads with the small chambers. The original 68 289 heads were probably the worst heads ever used for a performance standpoint.



The most earlier 289 and the 302 J code heads had 54.5 Cc chambers.



The 68 289 heads had 63 cc chambers.



Most 70s 302 heads had 58.2 cc chambers.



Some late 70s heads had massive 69 cc chambers.



Your best bet is to find some 54.5 CC chamber heads and have them cleaned up. No need for hardened seats on a Sunday only driver. You can just add some oil treatment instead.


Thanks for all the info.

I agree I should find out what heads I currently have. I have no idea what my compression ratio is.

I think whatís important is to get the small cc heads and port the exhaust. I think Iíd be happy with that. I do t need a race car but I think my current heads and sucking up a lot of potential HP.


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1968 Fastback, 289, 3 speed.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-07-2019, 03:01 PM
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The motor was rebuilt 20 years ago and has about 5000 miles on it. I didnít do anything to the heads though. Just bolted on some newer (late 70ís) 302 heads.

If the car sits for a month it will smoke for a couple minutes when I first start it. I suspect thatís oil leaking down the valves.


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So just a little over a tank of gas per year on average. Are you planning to start driving it more often? I've been taking my Mustang for all my little daily driving needs recently. It has been nice. I hope you get yours to a condition where you'll enjoy it more as well.
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