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1988 to 1996 F-150 The earlier OBD-I F-150 including the 4.9L, 5.0L, 5.8L, and 460 engines.

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  #1  
Old Wed, March 10th, 2010, 02:13 AM
Sidewinder4.9l Sidewinder4.9l is offline
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Default 1994 4.9l upgrades?

Do you guys have ANY kind of tuner/chip/whatever for a 1994 4.9l engine....Engine seems to be a bulletproof setup, just needs some help achieving its' potential...Any help will be GREATLY appreciated


-Wes
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Old Mon, August 30th, 2010, 01:31 PM
osprey osprey is offline
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Wes,

Sorry for the lateness in this response, as I hardly come to this board anymore after getting rid of my 2003 5.4 and 1999 4.6 powered F150's and retuning to my 1993 F150 with the 4.9 and 5 speed, but I do have some very meaningful experience with the 4.9/300 6 from years of experience.

The best thing to do with the 300/4.9 for good performance is to improve the exhaust system. I personally use the EFI exhaust manifolds that come on the '87 and later 4.9s stock, then use a Walker/Dynomax #15022 catalytic converter (dual 2" in/single 2.5" out) and 2.5" pipe to a 2.5" in/out muffler (currently a Dynomax #17788 Turbo muffler), and a "Y" connector to dual 2.25" pipes exiting out the rear. The exhaust sounds like an old P51 Mustang aircraft; that is the best description I have for it. And, it will give you much better performance and fuel mileage (about 2 MPG in my case).

On the intake side, go with the K & N FIPK kit for better airflow. The stock system is quite restrictive. This will give you far better performance. I know that prior to changing my intake system, I had to downshift into 4th, and sometimes 3rd, just to get up some hills north of Phoenix; today I can climb up those same hills in overdrive with no problem. I also get another 1 to 2 MPG improvement with the FIPK.

The ignition system is fine in those years. The only thing I would recommend is to use Motorcraft or Autolite Copper Core plugs; anything else is a waste of money on a 4.9. I do recommend a good cap, rotor and wires, usually Accel or MSD cap and rotor with Taylor wires, and an Accel or MSD coil. Also, bumping the initial timing up by 1-2 degrees in increments and testing for ping is good for both performance and mileage. Stock initial setting is 10 degrees, I am currently using 13 degrees initial, and picked up about 2 MPG over stock, along with more pep during acceleration. 16 degrees started to ping a little on grades under acceleration, so I backed her off to 13 degrees.

Double check the measurements of the radiator core, and see if the Flex-A-Lite #295 electric fan will fit your radiator core dimensions (it should if you have A/C). This one change brought another 1 to 2 MPG to my F150.

All of this in consideration, I now get 18 to 20 MPG in the city, and depending on terrain of the highway can get anywhere from 20 MPG in hilly terrain to 24 MPG highway at a steady 65 MPH on the flats to Tucson or Yuma.

1993 F150, regular cab, short bed, 4.9, 5 speed, 3.08 gears, 255/70 15 tires. Only other things done are to add DJM 2" rear drop shackles, stock aluminum wheels, and a tonneau cover that added 1-2 MPG highway.
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Old Mon, August 30th, 2010, 03:24 PM
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cleatus12r cleatus12r is offline
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Nice post, osprey!

That's some DANG GOOD INFORMATION!
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Old Tue, August 31st, 2010, 02:52 PM
osprey osprey is offline
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Thank you, Cleatus, for the vote of confidence.

Other things you MIGHT want to consider on the 4.9/300, depending on your location and other factors:

180 degree thermostat- I have tried it in a long term (1 year) test, and do use one becasue of my location in Hell's Foyer (Phoenix), and the fact that I do have hills to climb going north or east of town. I did not see any significant change in fuel mileage with this change, but I did notice that the engine did not get as hot in hill climbing when the ambient air temperature was in the 100+ range.

Gearing- I FULLY believe that the 4.9/300 acts very much like a diesel, and should be geared accordingly. The engine should not be ran over 2000 RPM at cruise (1800 to 2000 RPM at cruising speed gives me the best mileage), and it should not be ran past 3000 to 3500 RPM at any time. This comes from over 100k miles on the current F150, and over 250k on a 300 in a 1955 F100. That explains why I run a 3.08:1 gear in my current truck, and ran a 3.00:1 in the '55.

The 4.9/300 is a torquey little brute, and runs like a little gas fired diesel. If properly geared, and RPM kept in its power band, it will last well over 400k miles with proper maintenance and give great MPG very reliably.
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Old Wed, September 1st, 2010, 03:50 AM
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Or you can do like a friend of mine did and turbocharge it. Pushing well past it's mechanical limits (but surviving!!) it was able to put down 300 RWHP before 3500 RPM. That's 575 ft. lbs. at the rear wheels! He quit running 18 PSI of boost (stock bottom end) after that run.
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