So... What Engine Do I Need - Or Want?
I decided I wanted a Ford 302 (5 ltr) V8 with a desired output of between 350-415 bhp. But there was a problem. I couldn't work out how to drip-feed it with a modern-day management system. Lots of head scratching ensued, and I nearly gave up to go the Chevy LS route with fuel rails and all kinds of whizz-bang stuff. But I really wanted an EFI based system feeding a Ford engine.
So... not being ready to compromise, it was back to the drawing-board and me losing sleep wondering what to do. And in this theme, it was back to the web to surf-and-suffer to find out what options were out there... I really didn't want to go the carb' route.
Then, [for once] the web quickly came up trumps, and I discovered the existence of square-bore EFI carb' lookalike units. These, having all the necessary electronic management gubbins neatly embedded within a carburettor lookalike unit... A Eureka moment if ever there was one. This discovery made me a very happy-chappie indeed because, one of these perched on top of my V8 will allow me to retain the classic vintage look whilst taking advantage of modern-day electronic fuel and system management.
As a general comment, it seems the carburation industry trend is to bring carb' looking EFIs to the traditionalist [if there is such a thing.] Examples being: the MSD Atomic (MSD Performance,) the Holley Terminator (Chucks Garage,) the Edelbrock E-Street EFI (Power Automedia,) and the Fast EZ 2.0 (Hot Rod Magazine.) They all appear to have a strength and an individual variation on a theme that will tick-a-box. And from what I've seen and read, they all provide the performance, the reliability and the vintage configuration admirers expect to see when taking a peek under the bonnet.
So with my surfing-and-searching and defining-and-deliberating finished, I've decided to get my engine [and gearbox] from the Engine Factory. A US company.
With respect to buying an engine from the UK, I did make inquiries to a number of companies. However, some didn't help themselves when I started to delve into their product specifics. Specifically... I don't think I'm being too picky by wanting a shed-load of information before parting with a shed-load of cash for a shed-load of engine. And trying to get some of them to define their "turnkey" products was like pulling teeth; their definition being a very loosely-defined, broad-brush term, they having their own interpretation, and me having mine.
As my engine is a major "long-pocket" investment, I needed information on parts, necessary ancillaries, bling, assurances, and the total price (to include VAT and delivery.) And if I wasn't able to obtain these fairly easily, I moved on... Bottom line was, some UK companies did have a very impressive stock, and most provided a very friendly and comprehensive pre-sale service, but overall, their products were not quite right for me or for what I wanted to achieve.
So... why did I opt for the Engine Factory? Well... my further-afield search strategy was the same and I did look at a number of US sites. But essentially the Engine Factory ticked all the boxes. When navigating their website it was by far the most comprehensive and informative and it contained many videos demonstrating customers engines; and when I did a search on YouTube I found Petrolhead videos of the company at shows and events demonstrating "stuff".
Moreover, after my initial inquiry, I was phoned by their Ford engine production manager (Christian Nelson) to discuss my detailed requirements. They also have a UK rep' so I'm as confident as I can be that what I order will be of the quality I expect.
My Ford 302... V8 (what else)
5 ltr, 350 bhp in it's new home... (well nearly)