Ford often used identical blocks for engines of different displacement, making it visually difficult to identify them without looking at other engine components. Both the Ford 429- and 460-cubic-inch engines, members of the 385 family, fall into this category. Both came with the same block, so the only methods of positive identification involve locating the ID tag, measuring the stroke or verifying the crankshaft number. You cannot rely on decals or other visual items either, as they may be missing.
Count the number of bolts on the valve cover. According to Fordification, it should have seven bolts. As of 2010, the 429- and 460-cubic-inch-displacement are the only Ford engines with seven valve cover bolts. This characteristic identifies the engine as either a 429 or 460.
Locate the engine ID tag. According to Car Craft Magazine, you should see it attached to the intake manifold or the ignition coil on the front of the engine if it remains present. According to Fordification, you can decipher the tag by locating the displacement in the upper left-hand corner, followed by the plant code and year of production.
Remove either the oil pan or a cylinder head. If the ID tag is missing, you must either access the crankshaft number or measure the stroke, says Car Craft Magazine.
Those with a solid mechanical background, may prefer to measure the stroke. The stroke on the 429 measures 3.59 inches at dead bottom.
Otherwise, locate the crankshaft casting number by draining the oil and then removing the oil pan. Locate the crankshaft casting number on the crank. Car Craft Magazine designates the prefix for all 429 crankshafts (1968 through 1978) as either 4U or 4UA.
Tips & Warnings
- Special versions of the 429 included the Boss 429, Cobra-Jet and police interceptor models. According to Mustang-Cougar, each has specific features and coding.
Ford 460 Engine Identification
The Ford 460 cubic-inch engine is a big-block engine manufactured between 1968 and 1996. Best known as the engine that powered Starsky...
Ford V8 Engine Identification
Ford's V8 engines are each part of a family, including: the Y-block, the 90-degree and the 335 series. Spotting a Ford eight-cylinder...
How to Identify Engine Year for a Ford 302
The Ford Motor Company has been making V-8 engines to power its vehicles since the 1930s. The Ford V-8 went through many...
How to Identify a Big Block Ford
Used in sedans, trucks, race cars, police cruisers, generators and boats, the Ford big block motor is a mainstay in U.S. automotive...
How to Identify a Ford 312 Engine
First introduced in the 1957 Thunderbird, Ford's 312 c.i.d. V-8 belongs to the Y-Block engine family. According to Ford-Y-Block, the 312 c.i.d....
How to Identify a Ford 391
Ford's 391 cubic inch big-block, manufactured from 1966 to 1978, is a member of the FT truck engine series --- closely related...
How to Identify a Ford 428 Engine
The FE series of Ford engines has not been produced since early 1970. FE engines look the same when viewed from the...
How to Identify CCs on Ford 460 Heads
The Ford 460 cubic inch big block, a member of Ford's 385 engine family, is best known as a police interceptor and...
The Differences Between the Ford 429 & 460
The Ford 429 and 460 engines, introduced in 1976, were massive, heavy and for their size surprisingly low on horsepower. The number...
D1VE Engine Block Specifications
The D1VE engine block was a part of automotive history. Ford produced the engine for their 385-series engines in the 1970s. This...
Specifications of a Ford 429
Ford began installing mass-produced flat-head V-8 engines in its cars and trucks in 1932, several years before its other low-priced rivals. Ford...
Ford 460 Big Block Specifications
The name “Big Block” refers to a series of Ford engines that ranged from 429 cubic inches in size to 460 cubic...
429 Engine Dwell Angle Specs
Measured in degrees, dwell angle represents the amount of time the primary circuit closes in order to charge the distributor's primary windings...