1954 to 59 Ford Tune-Up OEM Specifications
239 to 430 Cubic Inch V8 Engines

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Year Model Displacement Cubic Inches HP (1) Compression Ratio Compression Pressure Spark Plugs
1954 U4 239 115 7.2 130 H10 .035"
1955 U5 272 162 7.6 130 870 .034"
1955 T-Bird P5 292 193 m 8.1 135 870 .034"
1955 T-Bird P5 292 193 a 8.5 135 870 .034"
1956 U6 272 173 m 8.0 155 870 .034"
1956 U6 272 176 a 8.4 155 870 .034"
1956 M6 292 200 m 8.0 155 870 .034"
1956 M6 292 202 a 8.4 155 870 .034"
1956 T-Bird P6 292 202 m 8.4 155 870 .034"
1956 T-Bird P6 312 215 mo 8.4 155 870 .034"
1956 T-Bird P6 312 225 a 9.0 155 870 .034"
1957 B 272 190 8.6 155 870 .034"
1957 C 292 206 m 9.1 155 870 .034"
1957 C 292 212 a 9.1 155 870 .034"
1957 D (4V Carb) 312 245 9.7 155 870 .034"
1957 E (2X4V Carbs) 312 270/285 9.7 or 10.0 155 870 .034"
1957 F (Supercharged) 312 300 8.5 --- --- ---
1957 T-Bird C 292 206 m 9.1 155 870 .034"
1957 T-Bird D (4V Carb) 312 245 9.7 155 870 .034"
1957 T-Bird E (2X4V Carbs) 312 270 9.7 155 870 .034"
1958 C 292 205 9.1 160 F14-Y .034"
1958 B (2v carb) 332 240 9.5 180 F14-Y .034"
1958 G (4v carb) 332 265 9.5 180 F14-Y .034"
1958 H (4v carb) 352 300 10.2 180 F14-Y .034"
1958 J (4v carb) 430 375 10.5 190 F14-Y .034"
1958 T-Bird G (4v carb) 332 265 9.5 180 F14-Y .034"
1958 T-Bird H (4v carb) 352 300 10.2 180 F14-Y .034"
1959 C 292 200 8.8 160 F14-Y .034"
1959 B (2v carb) 332 225 8.9 180 F14-Y .034"
1959 H (4v carb) 352 300 9.6 180 F14-Y .034"
1959 J (4v carb) 430 375 10.0 190 F14-Y .034"
1959 T-Bird H (4v carb) 352 300 9.6 180 F14-Y .034"
1959 T-Bird J (4v carb) 430 375 10.0 190 F14-Y .034"

Note:(1) Some horsepower ratings based on transmission type (m=manual, mo=manual overdrive, a=automatic). No code letter indicates that rating is the same either way.

Year Model Cubic Inches   Ignition  Timing    BTDC Valve Clearance (1) Intake      Exhaust Breaker Gap (inches) Dwell Angle (degrees)
1954 U4 239 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1955 U5 272 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1955 T-Bird P5 292 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1956 U6 272 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1956 M6 292 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1956 T-Bird P6 312 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1957 B 272 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1957 C 292 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1957 T-Bird D 312 2 Man / 6 Auto .019" H .019" H .014-.016 28
1958 C 292 2 Man / 6 Auto .018" H .018" H .014-.016 28
1958 B (2v carb) 332 2 Man / 6 Auto .026" H .026" H .014-.016 28
1958 G (4v carb) 332 2 Man / 6 Auto .026" H .026" H .014-.016 28
1958 H (4v carb) 352 2 Man / 6 Auto Zero Zero .014-.016 28
1959 C 292 2 Man / 6 Auto .018" H .018" H .014-.016 28
1959 B (2v carb) 332 2 Man / 6 Auto Zero Zero .014-.016 28
1959 H (4v carb) 352 2 Man / 6 Auto Zero Zero .014-.016 28
1959 J (4v carb) 430 2 Man / 6 Auto Zero Zero .014-.016 28

Note (1): Specifications marked with H shows setting is made with engine HOT.

Timing Mark: See images above
Distributor Rotation: Counter-clockwise
Cylinder Numbering   (front to rear): Right Bank: 1-2-3-4         Left Bank: 5-6-7-8
Condenser Capacity: 0.21 to 0.25 microfarads

All Specifications are per Motor's Auto Repair Manuals and/or Ford-Mercury Shop Manuals. Some discrepancies occur.

Adjusting Ignition Timing

When checking engine timing with a strobe type timing light, disconnect the vacuum line from the carb to the distributor. Engine should be at idle speed. Connect timing light high voltage lead to wire going to Number 1 spark plug and the appropriate low voltage leads to the battery connections per timing light instructions. Be sure to check polarity of connections....stock electrical systems are 6 volt positive ground through 1955, and 12 volt negative ground from 1956 onward. Loosen distributor hold-down bolt and adjust timing by twisting distributor until timing marks line up between groove on pulley and indicator. Tighten distributor hold-down bolt and re-check timing. Re-connect vacuum line to distributor.

When setting breaker point gap be sure to check ignition timing after making the adjustment. There may be an oiler on the stock distributor body to provide lubrication for the distributor drive shaft. Also, a light film of breaker point grease should be applied to the eight-sided cam (or rubbing block) when the points are serviced.

The condensers are generally rated at 0.21 to 0.25 microfarads. This can be checked properly with a meter designed to read condensers and capacitors. A simple ohmmeter can test for complete failure, but will not give an accurate reading for specified ratings. If moving a condenser to a more remote location than its original mount in the distributor, be sure to check its rating with the longer lead wire.

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