Mark Houlahan
Tech Editor, Mustang Monthly
August 26, 2011
Photos By: Steve Turner

Horse Sense: While you've got your sparkling fresh modular strapped to an engine stand for the installation of a main support, you might want to invest in a high-volume oil pump to keep everything lubricated and cool in your investment. If you do, however, be sure to add a seven-quart oil pan because at high rpm, the high-volume oil pump will suck every drop of oil out of a stock pan, and the oil drains in the cylinder heads will not be able to drain the top of the cylinder heads fast enough. That's bad, mmm-kay.

Give a racer a part and he'll figure out a way to break it. Then, he'll figure out a way to make it stronger and try to break it again. It's the burden of evil that a racer carries, but it means stronger and better parts for guys down on the street level. Whether it's a valvetrain, transmissions, blowers, or engine blocks, manufacturers are constantly field testing their wares via product sponsorships and sometimes even their own race cars.

While Ford's modular engine has been around for 12 years now, the push to make big power out of these engines has only been coming on strong in the past couple years. It used to be if you owned a 4.6 Mustang you could stick a blower on it, run the boost at sane levels, and keep a lot of fuel in it, and the engine would (usually) stay together. Then companies started throwing out beefy connecting rods, CNC ported heads, new intakes, big-bore and stroker kits, and the list goes on. It's now not unheard of to talk about 500-800hp modulars, many of which are built for the street!

To make that kind of power takes a strong foundation, and to help the modular block tackle the kind of power output we're talking about, a main bearing cap support system is essential. Tying the main caps together for strength via an aluminum or steel support bolted on top of the main caps by studs and lock nuts has been popular on small-block Fords-especially strokers-for many years. The modular engine family is recently getting the same help. Marrying the main caps reduces the tremendous stress the engine block receives during power output through the block webbing, main caps, and fasteners.

D.S.S. Competition Products, known for years in its efforts to build a vast array of performance engine products, has developed the MODular Main Support System to help with the stress levels high horsepower modulars are now seeing. CNC-cut from 6061 T6 aluminum on D.S.S.' own in-house CNC machines, the MODular Main Support (PN MSS1030; $359.95) fits both 4.6 and 5.4 blocks, including those fitted with stroker crank kits. The support is a simple installation during the buildup of a stout modular program. We caught Tom Naegle, owner of D.S.S., on film as he installed one of his new main supports during a recent visit to his shop. Check it out.

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