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Old 04-01-2013, 12:51 PM   #1
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Question Choosing an Engine to Build

Hi All,

I'm a doctoral student working on internal combustion engine development. Currently, I'm looking for an engine to build (ground up) and test my systems. My systems will be retrofitted to whatever engine I choose. Here's where I'm at.

As a general principle, the more cylinders the engine will have, the more flexibility (and complexity) I will have for my research. That said, while I would love to build a V8, my assumption is that the costs to build a V8 will likely be quite a bit higher than building a Duratec V6 or I4. I would like to stick with the Ford family. My thinking at this point is either the Coyote V8 (probably not), Duratec V6, or Duratec I4.

What are your thoughts and recommendations?

What displacements should I be looking at? I would like 4V per cylinder, but otherwise would prefer mechanical simplicity. This engine will not end up in a vehicle. It will be mounted in a dynamometer or on a stand. Don't worry about packaging sizes or anything downstream of the engine. Like I mentioned, it's for research, so only the engine is my concern. I'm looking for stability, not big power. Any ideas?


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Old 04-01-2013, 01:28 PM   #2
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Out of what you listed the 2.0 or 2.3 Duratec would work best , In my buisness I have built 150+ diff type engines if I knew more about what you were doing I might could tell you about a better engine for you research

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Old 04-01-2013, 03:09 PM   #3
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Duratec matches it's name, quite dependable in stock form & capable to handle greatly increased power when modified.

Depending on your research plans, the Zetec might be better since with it's external cog belt cam drive system & the adjustment system for it, you have infinite cam timing adjustment available external to the engine.

As Tom stated, knowing more about what type of modifications to the base engine you have in mind, as well as a basic description of external systems you'd like to attach, we'd be better able to advise you & provide useful information.

While you likely want to avoid "full disclosure" of your thesis, SOME info. would give you better information of the type you're seeking here!

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Old 04-01-2013, 06:48 PM   #4
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Small block Chevy the cheapest and easiest engine to find parts for
Parts for sale check out my thread, got a new st need to sale old parts
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:26 PM   #5
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Realistically, the engine won't matter (and you know this).
The thing you're looking for is flexibility. That is, how many repeatable and independent tests can you run on the same engine to foster the thesis.

I'm not sure what question/s you're trying to 'prove', but I can assume that it's going to be something about spark reduction, lean burn and emissions (being that's the common line I've been reading).

In all honesty, I would not pick a Ford engine. I'd look more at Toyota or Nissan, something with dual variable cams. A fixed cam isn't going to be common place for much longer and keeping with the times is your best bet for a good thesis, IMHO.
Yes is adds more variables but it also opens more doors.
But that's not to say that making a fixed cam engine operate as a variable one isn't possible, it is. It's just that those are parts you'd have to produce and test prior to the thesis.

A Nissan MR series or Toyota ZR series it where I'd look. Cost will be higher but far more practical current testing than anything else I can think of.
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Old 04-02-2013, 05:23 AM   #6
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^^ He did say he would prefer a Ford engine.

Without knowing some scope of the intended research or testing other than it being on a stand, then I'd have to say that initial cost would be more of a factor. I'd be looking to see what shows up in local auctions or body shop lots. You want a car that was hit in the rear, and that still runs in vehicle. Who knows, the chances are ok you might even end up with a 5.0 since there has to be one out there where some kid fish-tailed into a tree, the side of a building, or someone else's car.
Be eclectic.
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