Turtle Wax Tech Tips
Wax On, Winter Off:
To keep your vehicle cleaner for longer during winter months, make sure to give your car a thorough wash and wax before the cold weather hits. Wax will help prevent oxidation from dulling and damaging your vehicle's exterior. For best results, first use a product that will deep clean your vehicle's exterior and remove any stubborn dirt and stains. Then select a long-lasting car wax, such as ICE Paste Polish, that can be applied to the entire exterior, including all metal, plastic, and rubber surfaces, and will provide a protective barrier against road salt, snow, and other inclement conditions.

Prepare the Interior: Winter elements can also cause damage to the inside of your car. To prevent tracked-in mud, slush, and snow from staining your interior, prep your vehicle with protective floor mats and clean them with an interior product, such as ICE Total Interior Care, which leaves behind a protective barrier against stains. Don't forget to remove any water-based products, which can freeze and crack during winter, as well as any unnecessary items that can weigh down your car and lower your fuel efficiency.

Handy Tips
Q:
There are two different bellhousing sizes for C4 transmissions that mate to small-block Fords. How do you identify a large or small bellhousing C4 and what parts do you need for each?
A: Here's a good tech tip for determining what bellhousing C4 you have and what flexplate and index plate you need. To determine if you need a 157 tooth or 164 tooth flexplate measure center to center from the top starter hole to the block mounting hole above it.

1.5 inch = 157 tooth flexplate
1.75 inch = 164 tooth flexplate

Ford discontinued carrying many of the starter index plates a few years back but Total Performance in Clinton Township, Michigan, has started cutting them out for the various applications. They carry pretty much any Ford starter index plate (586) 468-3710.

Q: What is the small-block Ford firing order and what is the cylinder numbering?
A: All factory 351Ws are 1-3-7-2-6-5-4-8
All HO 302s are 1-3-7-2-6-5-4-8
Non-HO 302s are 1-5-4-2-6-3-7-8

The camshaft dictates firing order. You can install either firing order cam in a 302 or 351W. The best way to check if you are not sure of the firing order is to bring the No. 1 cylinder up on the compression stroke. Then with the help of another person, see what cylinder builds compression next.

If it is No. 3, it's the HO302/351W firing order. If It's No. 5, it's the non-HO firing order.

The cylinders are numbered 1 through 4 righthand side (passenger side) front to back; 5 through 8 left hand side (driver side) front to back.

The best we can do on knowing why Ford made this change is: The reason for the change in firing order from 302 to 351W was to reduce the loading of number 1 main journal that occurs when the front cylinder on each bank fires in sequence.

Tom Wahl, Lakerville, Minnesota / '62 Ford Fairlane 500
Tom's cool white Fairlane is something of a sleeper. Built using a 23,000-original-mile car, you couldn't guess there was a 347 Ford V-8 lurking under the hood! With 540 hp backed to a four-speed and 9-inch rear, this car would definitely surprise most folks at the traffic light! The '62 rolls on 18- and 20-inch Schott wheels.

Jim Talaga, Plainfield, Illinois / '47 Ford Sportsman convertible
Dave Martin created the mahogany and maple wood pieces on Jim's convertible, which contrast the maroon paintjob from Ron Kral's Shop in Lockport, Illinois. Tim O'Connell of O'Connell Specialties gets the credit for building the car while the interior and the top came from Schober's Custom Hot Rod Interiors in Yorkville, Illinois. Just as nice underhood, Jim's ride is powered by a '95 Lincoln 4.6L engine backed to an AODE trans.

Harry Hartkemeyer, Cincinnati, Ohio / '47 Mercury convertible
Though he's owned the car for the last seven years, Harry spent four years working on it. Under the hood and smoothie engine cover is an '01 Ford 4.6L V-8. Top up or down, the Merc 'vert looks stylish either way.