Speed Secrets: Getting 500-Horsepower Out of a Small Block Ford

Getting 500-horsepower out of a Small Block Ford is not as simple as it might seem. In this episode of Speed Secrets, Richard Holdener explains the exact formula to get your SBF to reach these numbers.  

When thinking of building a high horsepower Small Block Ford, the first modifications that come to mind are Induction system and head flow. While those simple modifications will get you a long ways, there are two key elements that will make hitting your target horsepower rating easier – Displacement and camshaft.

One rule in making real power that has never wavered  is bigger is better. Meaning that more displacement equals more power. To explore a sure fire way of building a 500 HP Small Block Ford, Richard Holdener with Speed Secrets teams up with his friends at Comp Cams. 

Starting with a 347ci Stroker, the most common displacement for a Small Block Ford Stroker, and tossing in the right induction system and plenty of head flow, the right camshaft will make all the difference. So, grabbing the Comp Cams catalog and picking out a cam ground specifically for a SBF Stroker application will equal success. This 347 SBF Stroker with forged flat top pistons received ARP head studs, a double roller timing chain, and a 28oz damper.

Additionally Comp supplied the hydraulic roller lifters, Spyder assembly, hardened pushrods, 1.6 ratio roller rockers, and of course the Comp XFI236HR-14 camshaft with a .579 Lift, 236/249 Duration, and a 114 LSA. Adding CNC ported 17 degree 195 Broadix heads, a Speedmaster single plane high rise intake, and 1 3/4 inch long tube headers Richard moved the SBF to the Dyno where it produced 499.6 HP @ 6,600 RPM and 441 Lb-Ft of torque @ 5,300 RPM, proving it is just what happens when you combine displacement, plenty of head flow, the right induction system, and the right camshaft.