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Shaneajanderson 04-04-2019 01:58 PM

94 F150 Tow Rig
 
I already got some good input on improving the Aero of my tow rig, now I'm looking for some input on getting it better suited for towing.

Getting a different pickup might be an option, but for now let's pretend it's not.

I have a 94 F150 with the 302, 5-speed, and 3.55 rear gears. It has oversized (31") tires, and I plan to get back to the factory 235/75/15 here shortly. What I want to do is squeeze another 5-10 ft-lbs out of it, or somehow shift the torque curve down. I thought about a new cam but it seems pretty involved. I've read both ways on headers: some say shorties are best for low end torque, and others have said long-tube headers are better.

I don't really want to do an axle swap, and would prefer to keep this pretty low budget. Thanks for any input.

Piotrsko 04-04-2019 04:39 PM

Cams are easey-peasey, just don't forget to get new lifters. Watch the lift if you're not changing springs. Long tube headers were used for low end torque, dont know anymore.

You're going to lose an inch tire diameter. Maybe more if you are careful, kinda like going to 3.73 diff. Spec your tires carefully.

Fastest, cheapest way is nitrous under 3% rigged to throttle position.

ChopStix 04-04-2019 06:34 PM

Dropping the tire size will feel like you are gaining torque. But loosing tire diameter *might* affect your MPG. Only testing will answer that.

Me, I have had LRR tires increase and decrease MPG and I have yet to be able to define why. But I don't want to hijack your topic with that. So my advise is do a bit of testing and log everything to show your results.

Frank Lee 04-04-2019 06:55 PM

Lighten the load.

Shaneajanderson 04-04-2019 07:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Piotrsko (Post 595359)
Cams are easey-peasey, just don't forget to get new lifters. Watch the lift if you're not changing springs. Long tube headers were used for low end torque, dont know anymore.

You're going to lose an inch tire diameter. Maybe more if you are careful, kinda like going to 3.73 diff. Spec your tires carefully.

Fastest, cheapest way is nitrous under 3% rigged to throttle position.

I'm not comfortable with nitrous, plus it's another thing to maintain. The tires I have now are oversized, I'll be returning to the specced size.

When I look on summit they say shorties for low end torque, and long tube for high rpm power, so I'm confused there.

Shaneajanderson 04-04-2019 07:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Frank Lee (Post 595364)
Lighten the load.

A smaller camper is what I want, but I got a big no from the better 3/4

Taylor95 04-04-2019 11:43 PM

You can increase horsepower and torque by increasing airflow into the engine and airflow out of the engine. Thus less restrictive airways will yield more power. If you can advance ignition timing on your truck easily, that will also make a small difference. Regearing will make a big difference too when it comes to towing.

Shaneajanderson 04-05-2019 06:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Taylor95 (Post 595385)
You can increase horsepower and torque by increasing airflow into the engine and airflow out of the engine. Thus less restrictive airways will yield more power. If you can advance ignition timing on your truck easily, that will also make a small difference. Regearing will make a big difference too when it comes to towing.

What would you suggest for more airflow? I already took off the restrictive cold air duct from the air box, and I don't really want to mess with the heads. I'll have to check out the timing, but I thought these couldn't be advanced because they're computer controlled, though I don't remember where I read that.

I have the lowest factory option for differentials (3.55) and I don't know enough to be comfortable regearing the axles myself.

Taylor95 04-05-2019 09:24 AM

You can get a larger throttle body (or bore out your stock one), and get performance exhaust parts for your vehicle. And you could also upgrade your ignition system. Other than that you really can't do anything else without getting inside your engine.

Edit: if you have injectors then upgrading them to 12 hole injectors might yield some results.

Piotrsko 04-05-2019 10:06 AM

Rethinking this: I believe you have the plastic crack prone intake with coil packs. Therefore you also have a chipped computer ecm. Get a performance chip replacement optimized for towing.

Shaneajanderson 04-05-2019 10:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Taylor95 (Post 595396)
You can get a larger throttle body (or bore out your stock one), and get performance exhaust parts for your vehicle. And you could also upgrade your ignition system. Other than that you really can't do anything else without getting inside your engine.

Edit: if you have injectors then upgrading them to 12 hole injectors might yield some results.

That's why I was thinking headers and a cat delete. The previous owner put a glasspack to dual exhaust setup, but I don't really think it's the best option for low end, so I do the front half I might redo the whole works to 2 1/4 to a single side exit, which I prefer anyway.

Any thoughts one how much to bore the throttle body? This is the one that has two throttle body inlets stacked on top of each other. I will look into injectors.

My hesitation on a cam is mainly that I don't have a garage to work in, and I have nosy neighbors who throw a fit anytime I do an oil change, let alone if they see me pulling valve covers and the intake out of my pickup. I'm going to do some serious checking over though, and If I have the slightest suspicion that an intake gasket might be needed, I will probably just go ahead and do the cam at that point as there isn't much left to do then.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Piotrsko (Post 595398)
Rethinking this: I believe you have the plastic crack prone intake with coil packs. Therefore you also have a chipped computer ecm. Get a performance chip replacement optimized for towing.


Not sure if there's performance chips available, but my intake is cast aluminum.

Shaneajanderson 04-05-2019 10:46 AM

Well I had a Doh! moment just now. Probably the first thing I need to do is chuck my huge stupid belt driven fan for an electric one.

Piotrsko 04-05-2019 11:32 AM

Actually cat converter s IMPROVE exhaust flow because they heat it back up

Doesn't mean the intake is original.

Live in a HOA/condo/ apartment complex?

Cam change is done through the water pump part of the block no intake removal required. Do need to pull valve covers for lifter pushrod access

Frank Lee 04-05-2019 11:35 AM

Those Fords didn't have plastic intakes.

Frank Lee 04-05-2019 11:39 AM

I deleted the F150's fan many years ago. Never got around to installing an e-fan. 99% of the time it's just fine; on a hot summer day if I'm stuck at a long red light or doing something where I'm going too slow to move air through the radiator it will get hot. Then I open the windows and blast the heater. It's been so long I don't recall if I felt the freed-up power but it definitely made the engine quieter! It warms up to operating temp faster; mech fans are always spinning whether their clutches are engaged or not. Also couldn't make an fe claim but it has to help.

Piotrsko 04-05-2019 11:50 AM

I wasnt sure about the intake being plastic. That whole era is a bad dream for me.

Shaneajanderson 04-05-2019 12:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Piotrsko (Post 595402)
Actually cat converter s IMPROVE exhaust flow because they heat it back up

Doesn't mean the intake is original.

Live in a HOA/condo/ apartment complex?

Cam change is done through the water pump part of the block no intake removal required. Do need to pull valve covers for lifter pushrod access

Worse, I had a great idea a few years back to buy a trailer house cause it was cheap living, park owners are fascists (though their yard is a total dumping ground), and I live across the street from them.

I watched a couple videos on changing the cam and it looked like you had to pull the intake to get at the lifters, or is the special tool the guy talked about not getting to pull them up through the push rod holes? (sorry I don't know the right term on that one)

Edited to add: I know for certain it's the factory intake, and I looked and there's only one aftermarket option for these and it is also aluminum.

Shaneajanderson 04-05-2019 12:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Frank Lee (Post 595404)
I deleted the F150's fan many years ago. Never got around to installing an e-fan. 99% of the time it's just fine; on a hot summer day if I'm stuck at a long red light or doing something where I'm going too slow to move air through the radiator it will get hot. Then I open the windows and blast the heater. It's been so long I don't recall if I felt the freed-up power but it definitely made the engine quieter! It warms up to operating temp faster; mech fans are always spinning whether their clutches are engaged or not. Also couldn't make an fe claim but it has to help.

I'm not sure that would work for me because a lot of what I do with this is heavy, low speed (50-55) towing in the summer time.

Taylor95 04-05-2019 02:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shaneajanderson (Post 595399)
That's why I was thinking headers and a cat delete. The previous owner put a glasspack to dual exhaust setup, but I don't really think it's the best option for low end, so I do the front half I might redo the whole works to 2 1/4 to a single side exit, which I prefer anyway.

Any thoughts one how much to bore the throttle body? This is the one that has two throttle body inlets stacked on top of each other. I will look into injectors.

My hesitation on a cam is mainly that I don't have a garage to work in, and I have nosy neighbors who throw a fit anytime I do an oil change, let alone if they see me pulling valve covers and the intake out of my pickup. I'm going to do some serious checking over though, and If I have the slightest suspicion that an intake gasket might be needed, I will probably just go ahead and do the cam at that point as there isn't much left to do then.




Not sure if there's performance chips available, but my intake is cast aluminum.

Cat delete is illegal. I wouldn't do it. They also play an important role in reducing vehicle emissions. There are high flow cats if you are interested.

Easiest way to get a bigger throttle body is to buy an aftermarket one that has already been bored out. If that isn't an option, you can take it to a machine shop. Many throttle bodies are tapered at the bottom. A conservative bore would be to remove the taper. Or you could reasonably go a little bit bigger. For example, the stock throttle body on my jeep had a 60 mm opening and was tapered to 55 mm at the bottom. I bought a bored out throttle body from a machinist for my vehicle that was 62 mm all the way through. It gave me a huge increase in throttle response a little bit more horsepower and torque. I think it improved my mpg as well, but I didn't test for that scientifically. If you want you could email the guy I bought the throttle body from and ask him to bore out yours. The bonus is that he makes throttle plates. You would have to make your own if you did it by yourself. It cost me around $130 or so for the throttle body.

Shaneajanderson 04-05-2019 03:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Taylor95 (Post 595416)
Cat delete is illegal. I wouldn't do it. They also play an important role in reducing vehicle emissions. There are high flow cats if you are interested.

Easiest way to get a bigger throttle body is to buy an aftermarket one that has already been bored out. If that isn't an option, you can take it to a machine shop. Many throttle bodies are tapered at the bottom. A conservative bore would be to remove the taper. Or you could reasonably go a little bit bigger. For example, the stock throttle body on my jeep had a 60 mm opening and was tapered to 55 mm at the bottom. I bought a bored out throttle body from a machinist for my vehicle that was 62 mm all the way through. It gave me a huge increase in throttle response a little bit more horsepower and torque. I think it improved my mpg as well, but I didn't test for that scientifically. If you want you could email the guy I bought the throttle body from and ask him to bore out yours. The bonus is that he makes throttle plates. You would have to make your own if you did it by yourself. It cost me around $130 or so for the throttle body.

I know cat delete is illegal, I don't drive like a moron, and there's no emissions testing in my state, so I'm not worried about getting checked, and I'm not a tree hugger that thinks CO2 is going to destroy the world.

That said, I may buy a throttle body, I found aftermarket ones, and I doubt I can get mine machined for what they cost.

Taylor95 04-05-2019 05:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shaneajanderson (Post 595419)
I know cat delete is illegal, I don't drive like a moron, and there's no emissions testing in my state, so I'm not worried about getting checked, and I'm not a tree hugger that thinks CO2 is going to destroy the world.

That said, I may buy a throttle body, I found aftermarket ones, and I doubt I can get mine machined for what they cost.

It's not about CO2. It is about keeping NOx emissions down. NOx emissions causes a lot of adverse health conditions in the body. I like to breathe clean air so please leave your cat on.

Shaneajanderson 04-05-2019 06:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Taylor95 (Post 595424)
It's not about CO2. It is about keeping NOx emissions down. NOx emissions causes a lot of adverse health conditions in the body. I like to breathe clean air so please leave your cat on.

NOx is dealt with by EGR, cat is only to burn unused fuel and CO, neither of which are necessary.

Taylor95 04-06-2019 06:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shaneajanderson (Post 595425)
NOx is dealt with by EGR, cat is only to burn unused fuel and CO, neither of which are necessary.

The EGR may reduce NOx, but it does not prevent the formation of it together. Cats are necessary for NOx, CO, and unburned hydrocarbons. All of which have negative impacts on health.

Technology Details | MECA

Even if you do gain a minimal amount by removing the cat, it will come at a greater cost to the environment and human health. If your cat is clogged there is a thread on here on restoring it. It sounds like it is cheap.

Shaneajanderson 04-06-2019 08:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Taylor95 (Post 595469)
The EGR may reduce NOx, but it does not prevent the formation of it together. Cats are necessary for NOx, CO, and unburned hydrocarbons. All of which have negative impacts on health.

Technology Details | MECA

Even if you do gain a minimal amount by removing the cat, it will come at a greater cost to the environment and human health. If your cat is clogged there is a thread on here on restoring it. It sounds like it is cheap.

The tiny bit of driving I do will contribute nearly zero to the pollution. Also unburned fuel, CO and NOx all readily break down in oxygen, and I live in Podunkistan. If I lived in a city with NOx smog issues my Outlook would be different, but frankly it isn't an issue in ND


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