'60s & '70s I6 racing


Well-known member
Hey everyone, thought that most of you would like to read these corrispondances that my uncle & I have been having. It started out with a question of if he had raced in the Tri Cities WA area (he is from Portland OR) & then has lead to questions about what all he had done to grandma's '62 falcon. I'm planning on hot-rodding my '65 & have been asking him about what he did so I can use it as a guide. Remeber that most of this stuff is a little dated, but still interesting & informative. Take care,
'63 & '65 red tudors

In answer to your question, no, I never had the pleasure of getting
over to the Tri-City area in mom's '62.
I did however get involved in a street race with a 327 nova in Portland
about 1970/71. The only problem was tire spin and live axle spring
windup (which was a BIG problem with the V8 mustang). Having the engine above 3grand and letting go of the clutch insured that you would be beat at the start. I had Lloyd with me, and the other guy had a total 4 body's in the nova. I got off with just a squeak out of the tires, when he saw that I was leaving him behind he stood on it and lost everything in tire spin and smoke (he did not stick around to talk afterwards).
As long as you could get launched without upsetting the rear end
(traction bars would have eliminated the rear end problems) I found that I could win races just because the falcon would leave about anything behind right from the start. 396 camaro's and the big Mopar's would catch me at about 90 mph, and then it was over, but it would sure startle them when they saw the I6 under the hood ("THAT PIG?" was the normal response). There were a lot of falcon owners that copied A. Miller's 1965 formula for go fast I6 mustangs. So mine was not the only hot rod falcon out there at that time. Many of us did it because it was a cheap, satisfying way to blow the doors off of expensive factory machines.

Taking care, you do the same...
John C.

This will take more that the "25 words or less" statement.
The '62 was stock except for the '65 200" motor and '63 Daginham 4sp transmission, all from other falcons.
The stock 3:55 ratio rear end I left alone, since I wanted car as light as possible. I left the 13" wheels on it but they were the wider mercury meteor rims. The car weighed in at about 2300lb dry and empty. The 1963 1/2 model year was when Ford installed the 260" V8 as a factory option, the bodies for the V8's were beefed up and weighed 200lb more then the I6 bodies. By 1965 Ford made all the bodies the same, so there was no weight advantage to the I6's chassis after '65. The '62 of mom's with the added power would twist the body so badly that some times the passenger door would come unlatched during a power shift. The '65 and later bodied car would not have that problem.
The bellhousing for the 4sp transmission would only bolt up to the tiny 8 1/2" flywheel/clutch assembly, so I replaced all the clutch springs and added 3 extra ones. It never slipped, but I had to replace several stock pressure plates that broke from the 2600+lb spring load. Ford changed to a larger flywheel/clutch assembly on the later falcons, mustangs and mav's so you can use the later bigger clutch and 4sp transmission, more weight but worth it in reliability. The C4 auto of that time was OK, but for anything serious it needed to be modified with guts and valve body parts from the PU, light truck line of C4 transmissions (the auto's are also much heaver then the manual's).
The engine is where I spent most of my time and money. The block assembly does not require much, make sure that the pistons/cylinders are in spec (I used Jahn's 10:1 cast units), the crank polished and deburred, the rods were altered for full float pins, the cam I used was for a short flat track sprint car (NOT a smooth idling engine but blinding acceleration). The cylinder head was the major concern. If I remember correctly the heads from '69 up are better ported, but have larger (lower compression) combustion chambers. The head from the 65 will give you good low/mid torque, but will cause an asthmatic condition if you try anything serious. My remedy was to install 289HP valves, open up the valve pockets and ports, wield stubs on the manifold to mount a Jag tri power carb set (3 H6 SU's), install 289 spring retainers, chev 348HP valve springs, Ford HP 312 V8 push rods, and an adjustable falcon rocker assembly. The header system was brought together into a 21/2" exhaust pipe and glasspak muffler, so the car idled like a falcon with a bad engine and a burned out muffler.
Before I build up this engine I had modified the original 170 by machining .060" from the head to boost the compression, headers and a carter 2BBL carb from a 273 Mopar. That gave the '62 a notable increase in performance and 28mpg on the highway.
I was involved with a customer in Salem, when I worked at one of the auto parts stores (1977-79?), and helped him swap carbs around on his mustang 200". We tried several Holley's, but had problems getting good smooth transitions from low to high speed, and load/no load conditions (part of that turned out to be in the distributor). The carter YF gave the best all around performance once we found the right jet needle, but I cannot remember what needle it was now (the customer may have modified the original with sandpaper, who knows?).

Hope this helps, if there is anything else let me know...
Beating a 396 off the line....until it blows by you at 90+!

So what yr/model is the lightest weight I6 Ford sold in America in the 60"s?

I would like to see the face's of the Ricer crowd when Grandma's 4 door 63 Falcon blows by them at 90+
I'd be willing to wager that the 1960 Falcon 2dr is the lightest of the bunch. Probably just a shade over 2000 lbs. Even with only 100hp, it should scoot pretty well.
I weighed my '63 one time at the dump & with me & a bunch of junk in the back it weighed in at 2450. So maybe 2300 dry? Figure that a '60 doesn't weigh all that much less. Take care,
'63 & '65 red tudors
With the 60, there is not too many added accessories on the cars! The weight would be fairly light as mentioned. I have picture of a 60-61 falcon that has "heater or fresh air" delete on it. It had six block off buttons on it. If looks strange but would be a neat setup.