Page 1 of 1

1958-60 MEL exhaust manifolds

Posted: Mon 9. Dec 2013, 15:42
by RocketdyneF1

I´ve noticed that Fomoco used 2 different style exhaust manifolds on the 1958-60
MEL V8´s. There was the "standard" Lincoln & Thunderbird design and the "ram horn"
Mercury & Edsel design. I wonder wich of these styles flows better.
I think the only technical difference between the 360-HP Mercury 430 and the 375-HP
Lincoln 430 are the exhaust manifolds, wich indicates that the Lincoln design is the
better one, but somehow I think that the Mercury ram horn style actually flows better.
At least the high performance Chevy small block uses ram horn style exhaust manifolds
versus the regular small block´s standard design manifolds. Any suggestions?

Re: 1958-60 MEL exhaust manifolds

Posted: Sun 15. Dec 2013, 10:08
by keithol
I ran into the exhaust manifold thing way back in the sixtys when I stuffed a 58 Mel into a much smaller framed '56 Mercury. I think the reason for the shape of the manifolds was to fit the engine into the frame that had been designed for Ford, Edsel, and Mercury beggining with the 1957 Models . I had to install a lincoln manifold on the right bank so it would clear the suspension on the '56. The lincoln exited further back because of the body/ frame design . Otherwise looking at both designs I wouldn't think either would have a power advantage.

Re: 1958-60 MEL exhaust manifolds

Posted: Thu 19. Dec 2013, 08:46
by 58-Pagoda
A Lincoln guy once told me his theory that Lincoln marketing claimed a higher HP of 375 vs. 360 to justify their pricier cars over Mercury even though the 430 was the same engine other than the exhaust manifolds. The fit is tight in a '58 Lincoln which requires the log style manifolds over the ram's horn style.

I've always found the following article interesting because they featured a picture of the Mercury style exhaust manifolds in their coverage of the Super Marauder option when it was being released to the public. They incorrectly refer to the manifolds as the intake manifolds, but to me the manifolds are pictured prominently in glossy paint which suggests that Bill Stroppe must have found their design acceptable as one of the components that made up the 400HP super marauder package.

Re: 1958-60 MEL exhaust manifolds

Posted: Fri 20. Dec 2013, 09:43
by RocketdyneF1
Thanks for your replies!

I am rebuilding a 1958 430 MEL V8. I want it as powerful as possible useing all factory
parts / specifications. I wasnt sure about the exhaust manifolds but now I am.
I´ll buy a set of Mercury style manifolds if Bill Stroppe favoured them!

Re: 1958-60 MEL exhaust manifolds

Posted: Tue 24. Dec 2013, 09:47
by 58-Pagoda
You can also, sometimes, find header flanges for sale on Ebay. There is a guy who specializes in selling CNC header flanges on ebay and occasionally offers some for the MEL. There is also a fellow by the name of Brian Estrada who has custom-made Lincoln-style exhaust logs in the past. You can search for him on here and may find a picture of them.

Please post some pics of your '58 build- there are plenty of people who would love to see them. I like the early 58's in particular.

Re: 1958-60 MEL exhaust manifolds

Posted: Fri 1. Jul 2016, 06:42
by RocketdyneF1
I think I can finally answer my own question.
Ted Eaton did a dyno comparison on exhaust systems for the Ford Y-Block V8. As the Ford MEL V8, the Y-Block was also buildt with chassis clear - overhead log style exhaust manifolds and with ram horn exhaust manifolds, both look very similar than the MEL manifolds. The ram horns were only used on 1961 - 1964 medium duty trucks, all other applications had the overhead log style manifolds. The test mule was a .060 over 312. There were 2 different port sizes available on the chassis clear - overhead log manifolds, with the bigger port manifolds the engine made 5 HP more than with the small port ones. With the ram horn manifolds, the engine made another 4 HP more than with the big port overhead log manifolds. So the Ram Horn manifolds are indeed better. That means the Mercury version of the 430 is actually a bit stronger than the Lincoln version despite its slightly lower rating. Since the 4 HP difference was in a way smaller, less powerful 312 engine, the difference in the larger, more powerful 430 is likely higher.