Carburetor Spacers
#1
I need to install a 1/2" carb spacer.  It's on a 351W with an Edelbrock Torker II intake manifold.  I have two phenolic 1/2" thick spacers, one with an open center and one with 4-holes.  I'd like to install the one with 4-holes.  My concern is this, with the open plenum of the single plane intake manifold there is nothing to support the center of the bottom side of the 4-hole spacer.  Does this work okay, or is there risk of the 4-hole phenolic spacer breaking if installed like this? I've installed aluminum spacers like this, but the phenolic is rather brittle.
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#2
Mike,

Check out the attached link and see if it helps answer your question.  It may or may not.  I am running late for work this morning so need to sign off.


http://garage.grumpysperformance.com/ind...tion.1038/
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#3
Thanks.  Good reading material.  I had a dual plane intake on my car, Weiand Stealth, but switched back to the Edelbrock Torker II I had.  Mostly because for some reason the Torker II physically fits on my motor better.  First, the Weiand Stealth had large gaps at the front and rear seals where we commonly use silicone.  Second, the Torker II has the same L-shape water passages that match my 1969 cylinder heads.  I often wonder if difference in fitment has something to do with the 1969 351W block having a 0.020" shorter deck height.  Plus the block decks were resurfaced when the block was squared and the heads were resurfaced as well.

Everything I read about spacers indicate a 4-hole spacer on a single plane helps to increase the low RPM performance a little.  1/2" thick isn't much so there might not be any difference from 4-hole or open.  A 1" spacer puts the carb too high and I'd need to come up with a different air cleaner setup.

My only reservation with the 4-hole spacer I have is because it's phenolic, being only 1/2" thick will it crack with nothing supporting the center of it on the Torker II intake?
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#4
Have you considered a wood spacer over a phenolic?  I would think a wood spacer would be more durable and you would not have to worry about it cracking like a phenolic. Also, they say the wood also has better heat transferring properties.  Check this one out:

https://www.cjponyparts.com/edelbrock-ca...CFEALw_wcB

Also, I can't remember but is isn't there a gasket sandwiched between the spacer and manifold?  I assume you couldn't use a 4 hole gasket on the bottom.
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#5
From everything I have read, the only drawback to a wood spacer is they tend to absorb fuel.  That kind of makes sense.

As far as gaskets when using a 4-hole spacer on a single plane intake manifold, there is a 4-hole gasket between the carb and spacer, then an open center gasket between the spacer and the intake manifold.

I originally installed one of those thick open center carb base gaskets that Holley sells, 5/16" thick.  I had to remove the carb and the carb was stuck so bad I had to pry it off.  The gasket tore and I remembered the same thing happened last time I tried one.  Thus, the reason I am switching to a 1/2" spacer.  Those thick gaskets help insulate but the coating on them sticks, then the gasket tears and they are not reusable.

I am installing the spacer basically for two reasons, to get air cleaner to fit over the top of the distributor cap, and to help keep the carb cooler.  On this intake the carb pad is centered to get more equal runner lengths, thus further forward than stock.  Because of that a 14" diameter air cleaner will hit the dist cap which is why it needs to go over the top of the dist cap.

I think the ideal spacer is one of those 4-hole to open tapered style that High Velocity Heads sells.  They get great reviews but are extremely expensive.  I haven't found any copies of the 1/2" thick version yet.
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#6
Just a follow up.  I installed the 1/2" thick phenolic open spacer.  We'll see what kind of affect it has when I drive it.  Probably minimal, if any, since the article Mustangmike found mentions you need 2" thick spacers to have noticeable changes.  Also, the Torker II for a 351W has a very ow profile so Edelbrock recommends using a 1" open spacer with it, if it will fit under the hood.
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#7
I know I put a phenolic spacer on my Mustang to prevent vapor lock.  I believe it was an inch spacer.  Since I installed it on the manifold before I started the engine for the first time it is hard to notice any performance gain.  I ended up installing the spacer because I ran into hard start issues with my first Mustang. It fired right up when it was cold but when the engine was hot there was a lot of cranking before the engine would start.  The spacer solved the problem.

Let us know how you make out.
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#8
Very interesting.

Thanks for sharing your findings.
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