52 head in a 53

frank-k

Active Member
I have a rebuilt 52 head and was wondering if I can use it in my 53. The shop manual says they are not interchangeable. ?????
 
That is in the shop manual?! I would think they are interchangeable. I had heard that the '53 was slightly improved for a gain of 5HP, but I cannot confirm that! The parts manual shows the standard trans. head interchanging from '50 to 53 for use with aluminum pistons. Don't know why.
 
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firstofeight

Active Member
'52 head

I have a rebuilt 52 head and was wondering if I can use it in my 53. The shop manual says they are not interchangeable. ?????

Frank, what is the '52 head from? I can not imagine it not working if it is from a 263. Perhaps some small difference. Compare the two side by side. Can you , or some one with a '53 shop manual, show us the text that says they will not interchange?

Ben
 

Jenz38

Active Member
I would say yes too , its interchangable... like all 263ers...
I've heard, the only differend is that they start in '53 with testing the new alu pistons for the next year starting nailhead.
 

frank-k

Active Member
Frank, what is the '52 head from? I can not imagine it not working if it is from a 263. Perhaps some small difference. Compare the two side by side. Can you , or some one with a '53 shop manual, show us the text that says they will not interchange?

Ben

Hi Ben,
The manual says;
"For the 1953 production, slight changes in the shape of all piston heads and cylinder head combustion chambers have provided increased compression ratios without adversely affecting detonation characteristics. Modification of the combustion chambers permitted relocation of the spark plugs 5/16" nearer the center of the chambers, thereby shortening the effective flame travel."
"The 1953 engine is identical with the 1952 engine except for the non-interchangeability of pistons and cylinder head"

I am going to pull the head this weekend and I'll compare the two. Iknow the new head is from a 1952 263, but that is all I know.
 

firstofeight

Active Member
'52 head

If possible, perhaps you can take pictures of them side by side and post. Would be interesting.

Ben
 

CNC-Dude

Active Member
You could probably do a quick casting numbers check on the 2 heads to see if they are the same casting number, this would reduce the doubt of interchangeability by at least half if they are the same.
 

frank-k

Active Member
Maybe time for a rebuild???
 

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firstofeight

Active Member
Heads

frank, thanks for the pictures. The piston/block pictures look good. I can not make much of the head pics. Was hoping for a side-by-side comparison. Can you see the difference?

May I inquire the reason you wanted to install the new [rebuilt?] head? From what one can see of the block, the engine is pretty clean. Is there much of a ridge at the top of the cylinders? Perhaps mic the cylinders to determine wear.

Ben
 

frank-k

Active Member
The biggest difference I noticed on the heads was the spark plug location. I was trying to get the whole head in the picture; a close up may be better.
There are a couple of deep vertical scores near the top of the bore; maybe 1/2" long. If you look close at the pictures of the pistons, there are deep nicks in the edge of the pistons. I am thinking I have to replace pistons for sure. Perhaps pulling and doing a complete rebuild would be better??? Compression in order 1-8 was 40, 53, 70, 30, 60, 40, 70,70
 

frank-k

Active Member
Here are some pictures of the bore
 

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frank-k

Active Member
better pics

Here are a few more photos. I think the head is going to work, but I.m thinking I have replace pistons at the least. I tried to get a better picture of one of the pistons. I'm looking for opinions. I think I should pull the motor and do a complete rebuild.
 

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The spark plug location will be where the '53 head gains its 5hp over the '52 head. You may want to hang on to the '53 head, someone may want it.
 

frank-k

Active Member
Got back out in the barn today after a long hiatus...working every weekend and got wrapped up in another project car. I decided I am going to pull the motor and do a complete rebuild/overhaul. Can anyone recommend a machine shop/re-builder in the northeast with straight 8 experience?
 
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