Looking for a new camshaft for your 5.0L Ford engine? Then you need to take a look at our best cam for 302 Ford truck reviews.
We know how difficult it is to find a camshaft that fits your truck’s engine perfectly but also lasts a lifetime. With so many brands and models available out there, it becomes an overwhelming task.
That’s why we decided to bring a comprehensive guide with everything you need to know to pick a new one.
Below, you’ll find some of the highest-quality quality camshafts for 302 Ford truck engines, a buying guide to help you pick the right one, and a lot more.
|COMP Cams CL12-600-4|
|COMP Cams 12-242-2|
|COMP Cams CL12-212-2|
Care to learn everything we have to teach you? Then keep scrolling!
- 1 10 Best Cams for 302 Ford Truck in 2020: Top Rated Cam For Ford 302 Performance Upgrades
- 1.1 01. Ford Racing M6250E303 5.0L Cam – Best for Performance Improvement
- 1.2 02. COMP Cams 12-600-4 Thumpr Flat Camshaft – Best for Smooth Rides
- 1.3 03. COMP Cams 12-242-2 Xtreme Energy Hydraulic Flat Cam – Best for Carbureted Engines
- 1.4 04. COMP Cams Magnum Hydraulic Flat Cam – Best for Roughness
- 1.5 05. Edelbrock 2122 Performer-Plus Cam – Best for Stable Performance
- 1.6 06. Crane Cams TruckMax Roller Camshaft – Best for Off-Road Performance
- 1.7 07. COMP Cams 35-514-8 Xtreme Energy Roller Cam – Best for Power & Efficiency
- 1.8 08. Lunati 10120102LK Bare Bones Hydraulic Flat Cam
- 1.9 09. Falcon Performance RV Torque Camshaft
- 1.10 10. Lunati 10350101LK Bare Bones Hydraulic Flat Cam
- 2 How to Pick the Best Cam for 302 Ford Truck
- 3 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- 4 Conclusion
10 Best Cams for 302 Ford Truck in 2020: Top Rated Cam For Ford 302 Performance Upgrades
It wasn’t easy to find cams that both fitted with the 302 Ford truck engine and were also worth considering for their quality. But after spending several hours looking for high-quality models, we found 10 that will probably blow your mind:
01. Ford Racing M6250E303 5.0L Cam – Best for Performance Improvement
- Certified Ford camshaft
- 266/266 degree duration
- 444/0.444-inch valve lift
We’re going to start with the best camshaft for 302 Ford. That would be the M6250E303 from Ford Racing Parts. It offers every single feature to take your 5.0L motor to another level.
The first thing you’ll notice after setting this camshaft up on your engine is the fantastic performance improvement. It will push the power further so you can get the most out of your machine. For the cost, you can’t go wrong with this cam.
Keeps Handling Stable
Even though the camshaft improves performance exponentially, the vehicle will still work as usual. You won’t notice much of a difference when driving it around. Especially with a manual transmission, the driveability this camshaft offers is fantastic.
You won’t have any problem fitting this camshaft with 351W blocks, 302 roller cam blocks, or even 289 blocks. There’s also the chance to make it work with models going from 1969 up to 2011 without a single issue. That’s enough to say it is conveniently compatible with most 302 engine trucks.
- Get your truck engine on another level
- Improves the engine responsiveness
- Works well with a wide array of Ford trucks
- Delivers a smooth engine performance
- A bit expensive
02. COMP Cams 12-600-4 Thumpr Flat Camshaft – Best for Smooth Rides
- 2,000 to 5,800 RPM
- 227/241 degree duration
- Hydraulic flat design
Looking to get the most out of your 5.0L engine? Then the Thumpr flat camshaft from Competition Cams won’t let you down.
Your engine can get a lot more potent with this hydraulic camshaft. Paired up with the right set of components, you can increase the amount of horsepower your truck delivers. The same will happen with the torque. From 2,200 to 5,800 RPM – your truck will perform fantastically.
Booming Engine Sound
Alongside a fantastic engine performance improvement, you also get exceptional sound delivery. The early intake valve opening on the Thumpr will create the ideal overlap for a booming exhaust noise. Your truck will make everyone around turn their head.
No need to modify the engine and gear system as it will match your truck without a single problem. You’ll enjoy the smoothest rides while enjoying a faster and more resounding performance overall.
- Increases engine sound
- Smooths out the engine
- Improves power decently well
- Works for many applications
- Can be tricky to set up
03. COMP Cams 12-242-2 Xtreme Energy Hydraulic Flat Cam – Best for Carbureted Engines
- 110-degree Lobe Separation Angle
- .050 duration
- 1,600 to 5,800 RPM
Coming back with Competition Cams, we now find the 12-242-2 Xtreme Energy Hydraulic Flat Cam. Your truck will perform like no other with this camshaft.
The 220/230 pattern plus the .050-second duration of the camshaft will make your truck a lot more responsive. You won’t have to worry about handling, throttle, or overall performance. The engine will respond to your commands without a single issue.
Another excellent feature to consider is the .470/.480-inch valve lift. This is the perfect lift to get your engine to another level in performance. From the speed to the acceleration, your truck will tackle everything with total confidence.
Great Results Overall
Not only will this camshaft make your engine more robust and responsive, but it will also improve the way you stop and accelerate. The extra duration of the piece will assist your power brakes well enough to give your truck an extra touch of fantastic performance.
- Fits on a wide array of engines
- Perfect for smoothing rides
- Increases engine responsiveness
- Helps with braking & handling
- The idle is pretty rough
04. COMP Cams Magnum Hydraulic Flat Cam – Best for Roughness
- 230/230 degree duration
- .480/.480 inch lift
- 2,000 to 6,000 RPM
The Magnum 224/224 from Competition Cams is yet another high-end camshaft you can’t dismiss. From the performance while driving to the idle experience, it will change your truck completely.
You get a .480/.480 valve lift with this flat cam. This will change the way your truck performs both on the street as well as in idle. You’ll feel an extra roughness when the engine turns on and a magnificently responsive throttle from the time you install it.
Boosting up your truck performance won’t take much of an effort with this camshaft. The 2,000 to 6,000 RPM operating range ensures you can get the most out of your truck with this one. Along with the 230/230 duration and the 0.50-second system, it will make the engine a lot better overall.
For people who want to take their engine to a whole new level without putting much strain on the parts, this one will be an almost perfect choice. It doesn’t harm train parts, works well with mild-ratio rocker arms, and fits traditional valve springs without a single scratch.
- Doesn’t cause engine stress
- Delivers better performance
- Gives a rough engine sound
- Improves throttle responsiveness
- Can be a bit difficult to install
05. Edelbrock 2122 Performer-Plus Cam – Best for Stable Performance
- Full hardware kit
- .448/.472 inch lift
- 112-degree lobe angle
Want to give your V8 engine a boost in performance as well as maximum riding smoothness? Then the 2122 Performer-Plus camshaft from Edelbrock is precisely what you need.
The first thing you’ll notice after setting up this camshaft is the enhancement in the power of your engine. You can increase the horsepower and torque of your truck by just installing this piece. Its flat hydraulic design will make this improvement without affecting the durability of your engine.
Smooth Engine Operation
Another advantage of the hydraulic design on this camshaft is the ability to reduce pressure and increase the smoothness of the movement. You won’t have to worry about overstressed or unstable engine performance when using this camshaft.
Perfect for Most Trucks
You will love the multiple compatibilities of this piece with most engines. It goes well with most low and mid-range machines. It’s all thanks to the combination of 270/280 duration with .448/.472 lift and the 112-degree lobe. This cam won’t put too much strain on the engine, making it safer.
- Delivers a smooth engine
- Fits a wide array of truck engines
- Gives the engine a power boost
- Requires little effort to set up
- Not for demanding applications
06. Crane Cams TruckMax Roller Camshaft – Best for Off-Road Performance
- 220/228 duration
- 114 lobe separation angle
- 2,000 to 6,200 RPM range
Everyone wants the best roller cam for 302 Ford truck, but few want a camshaft for off-road improvement. The TruckMax from Crane Cams is that kind of piece.
Great Off-Road Performance
Want to give your truck a considerable performance boost? Then you’ll find the enhancement of HP and torque to be ideal. It will keep your truck on the perfect idle and with mild supercharging to give an exceptional off-road performance improvement.
Along with its ability to push your truck to the max, it will also set up with no fuss. The low-RPM torque system with the bolt-on upgrade design will fit on your 302 truck with little effort. No need to modify or change a single thing to install this camshaft.
The roller camshaft design that fits both low and mid-end trucks and SUVs will not be a problem to match. Whether you use the truck for off-road drives, for towing, or just commuting – you will find this camshaft almost perfect. The compatibility level it offers is outstanding.
- Unbeatable engine boost
- Super-fast setup
- Improves off-road performance
- Works well with different engines
- Incredibly expensive
07. COMP Cams 35-514-8 Xtreme Energy Roller Cam – Best for Power & Efficiency
- .544/.555 inch lift
- 1,500 to 5,500 RPM
- 216/224 degree duration
By now, you should be aware that Comp Cams is our favorite brand. And it is not a surprise why it makes the best cam for 302 Ford truck, like the 35-514-8 Xtreme Energy Roller camshaft.
The combination of a hydraulic design with a computer-controlled system will make your truck a lot more stable. You will have a decent RPM measurement of no more than 1,500 to 5,500 RPM. It will fit old trucks without problems, always offering the smoothest ride in idle and maximum torque.
While it is a perfect choice for meeting old truck demands, it also works like a charm to get their performance to another level. The .544 to .555 inch lift will be enough to maintain the engine performing well at all times.
The combination of a 216/224 duration, a .050 inch lift, plus the 112 lobe separation angle will decrease the amount of wear it receives. Add the computer-controlled design for an even more efficient and reliable camshaft performance that lasts.
- Improves power and efficiency
- Decreases engine wear
- Efficient computer-controlled design
- Wil last a lifetime
- Requires valve spring upgrade
08. Lunati 10120102LK Bare Bones Hydraulic Flat Cam
- 2,000 to 6,000 RPM
- 224/234 degree duration
- 112-degree lobe design
Perfect to give your truck a decently smooth engine performance, the 10120102LK from Lunati won’t disappoint.
Smoothness & Durability
This is a flat tappet camshaft with a hydraulic design. This combination will ensure smooth idle performance, decent mid-range, and stable high RPMs. You won’t have to worry about your truck getting unstable or wearing out too fast when using this camshaft.
Decent Quality for the Buck
You don’t need a high-end camshaft that pushes your car to the max. Instead, a low and mid-range piece that can get your truck through years of use is what you should go for. The Lunati Bare Bones camshaft is super-affordable and still manages to perform well.
A combination of a 112-degree lobe separation angle with 224/234 duration at .050-inch is enough to push the engine a bit than what it usually can. This should be enough to get an extra touch of acceleration and throttle responsiveness, so your truck becomes amazingly stable and easy to handle.
- Fits well with many engines
- Decent cost for its quality
- Improves truck stability
- Offers a mild power boost
- Makes your engine noisier
09. Falcon Performance RV Torque Camshaft
- 280/290 degree duration
- 1,200 to 4,700 RPM
- .448/.472 inches lift
Trying to keep your truck torque to the minimum? Then you need a small camshaft that works for less demanding activities, like the RV Torque Camshaft from Falcon Performance.
A combination of flat-tappet design with the hydraulic build will keep the camshaft always working within low limits. This includes a total RPM range of 1,200 to 4,700. That’s the ideal range for people who don’t want to push their trucks too far. Instead, they want maximum durability out of their engine.
The small valve lift at .448/.472 will be enough to prevent the consumption of too much fuel. It will also reduce the production of smog. You can expect your engine to perform amazingly efficient from the first moment you install this camshaft.
Keeping the engine working within proper limits should be enough to ensure excellent truck performance. You won’t have to worry about the engine over-compressing or over-stressing, increasing the stability of the ride, and reducing the amount of wear the engine receives.
- Doesn’t stress the engine
- Reduces smog production
- Maintains a stable idle & ride
- Increases engine durability
- Not recommended for heavy use
10. Lunati 10350101LK Bare Bones Hydraulic Flat Cam
- 1,500 to 5,500 RPM
- 214/224 degree duration
- 472/0.496 lift
The last model in our list comes directly from Lunati camshafts. The 10350101LK is a bare-bones hydraulic flat camshaft for people who want maximum efficiency.
Highly Efficient Performance
With an RPM range of 1,500 to 5,500, you can expect this camshaft to reduce your engine’s wastefulness exponentially. This will end up in a more efficient and smooth experience. You won’t have to worry about over-stressing your engine with this one.
Decent Power Boost
While the engine power range is not the best, it still manages to improve your horsepower and throttle response. Even the acceleration will be better with this cam when compared to an OEM model. That’s enough to say it is totally worth having.
Another fantastic advantage of this cam is the super-low price it offers. Delivering 0.472/0.496 inches of valve lift plus the 214/224 duration at 0.50-inches, it becomes a budget option for people who want decent performance improvement.
- Slight but the noticeable power boost
- Will make the engine more efficient
- Exceptional cost for its quality
- Increase engine acceleration
- Demands a custom pin install
How to Pick the Best Cam for 302 Ford Truck
After reading our best Ford 302 camshaft selection, you should be ready to make your last pick. If you aren’t, then don’t worry. Below we have the most critical factors you should consider before making a final choice. So keep scrolling and learn!
· Types of Camshafts
The first thing you’ll have to think about is what type of camshaft you’re going for. Here, you will have to pick between flat and roller cams. Then, choose either hydraulic or solid cams. Below there’s more info about them:
Flat & Roller
First, let’s start by explaining what a flat camshaft refers to. You will mostly find it as a flat tappet model. It refers to the surface of the lifters (the piece that moves) as it is seemingly flat. This is not just a purposeless design; this flat surface helps to increase ramp speed (opens the valves faster).
Then you will find roller camshafts. These are more rounded, looking almost like casters or wheels. The advantage of this design is the wear and the overall efficiency by reducing friction. Apart from that, they increase performance exponentially by operating with less abrasion.
Here, you will find that roller camshafts are slightly better overall, especially when it comes to durability. But they’re not as affordable as flat camshafts. That’s why you’re likely to find both options available, so you can pick the one that best meets your demands.
Hydraulic & Solid
Once you’ve chosen between the roller and flat-tappet camshafts, it is time to pick between hydraulic and solid models.
As the name says, the hydraulic camshaft comes with an internal hydraulic-like mechanism. This system adjusts the shaft to keep zero valve lash while working. For people who want a quieter engine and less wear on the valve-train, then a hydraulic camshaft is perfect.
However, hydraulic camshafts prevent the engine from stably going over 6,500 RPM. This usually happens because the auto-adjusting design doesn’t help to achieve such a level of performance, producing instability by over-compressing and over-stressing.
Solid cams are entirely different. They don’t have the self-adjusting internal mechanism, so they can handle higher RPM and more aggressive performance without over-stressing. They are perfect for achieving higher results in either speed or just power (can reach over 7,000 RPM).
The drawback of solid camshafts is the constant wear of the valve lash. This will require continuous maintenance and upkeep. And in some cases, it may even cause damage. So if you are looking for maximum performance but don’t mind about some wear, solid camshafts are your way to go.
· Power Range
Now it’s time to consider the power range your truck works best at. This will be affected by the type of camshaft you pick. For example, solid camshafts will have a higher RPM range than a hydraulic model.
But overall, you should consider this power range so you can match it better with your desired engine usage. For example, if you’re looking for a maximum RPM boost, then you may need at least 6,500 RPM as the maximum range and no less than 2,200 RPM in the low end.
In case you’re looking for a more stable performance for commuting, then a camshaft for 1,200 RPM in the low end and about 5,000 RPM for the high end should be enough.
· Valve Lift
As the name says, this factor is all about how far the camshaft lifts the valve with its movement. The more lift the camshaft offers, the better the performance you get with the engine.
Here, however, you will have to consider several other things. Overall, though, a high-performing camshaft can more than .550-inch of total lift. That’s enough to get excellent engine power without affecting the RPM much.
If you’re looking for more street performance, then you will appreciate something with a .450-inch lift or less. That should be enough to maintain a smooth engine performance without affecting the ride.
While camshaft valve lift refers to how far up they go, the duration refers to how much time they stay lifted or opened. This is also important because the more time they spend opened, the more air and fuel that can go into the engine and out through the exhaust.
This duration is expressed in degrees of camshaft rotation (inches). The standard measurement for the lift is .050 inches. However, you will also find camshafts with 0.04 inches up to 0.08 inches. That’s why a general-purpose camshaft will usually deliver .050 inches as the best measurement.
· Lobe Separation Angle
The angle of the lobe separation doesn’t change much from one camshaft to the other. But it is still essential to consider it.
This angle is usually located at 110 degrees. That means the valves of the exhaust and the intake open with 110 degrees of difference. When the valves open at the same time, the pressure drops inside the cylinder.
How does this affect camshaft performance? Well, the lower the degree of separation between the valves, the faster the pressure drops. This causes the engine to work at a quicker rate, so to say.
So with a 108-degree lobe separation angle, you will have higher engine speed and power as well as higher roughness and compression than a 112-degree camshaft,
· Dual-Pattern Cams
The best cam for 302 Ford truck should come with a dual-pattern design. This refers to camshafts that have different durations on the intake and the exhaust.
What a dual-pattern cam offers is the ability to work with engines that have less exhaust flow or that have a restricted port.
The 302 engine at 5.0L is precisely that kind of engine. That’s why a dual-duration camshaft is such an excellent option to go.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
You veered through our reviews for the best cam for 302 Ford truck and took a look at our buying guide. But even after all that, you’re still confused about camshafts.
If you have a doubt that you want a brief yet helpful answer for, then you may find it below:
What is a camshaft?
The camshaft is an engine part that transforms rotational motion into reciprocal motion. It has cams or lobes that turn when the engine starts. When they turn, they help to open and close the engine valves. Most camshafts are usually made of hard metals like steel or cast-iron.
What does a cam do for a truck?
The camshaft operates both the exhaust and intake valves by controlling them mechanically with the egg-shaped cams or lobes. When the camshaft rotates, it pushes the valves up and down consistently. This rotation becomes energy on the engine by lowering and lifting the valves where air and fuel go in.
Depending on the quality of the camshaft, you can calculate the amount of RPM the truck can offer. Some camshafts can also increase overall power. And in some cases, they may even improve efficiency. So a cam on a truck can have many purposes.
How much does a cam cost for a truck?
It depends on the quality of the piece. But most mid-range models can range anywhere from $100 to $300. If you’re looking for a high-end piece, then you may want to spend at least $400 for it.
How to replace camshaft?
The process is not necessarily easy, but it is totally possible even if you’re a beginner. Below you’ll find some steps to follow for replacing a camshaft:
- Start by accessing the camshaft. You will have to remove the timing cover for this, which can be pretty tricky.
- First, try to disconnect the battery lines, remove the radiator cap, and then release the valve. This should help you drain the coolant first.
- After draining all the coolant, you can remove the intake manifold. Use a small hammer and a chisel for this. A flat-head screwdriver may also help. You may need to clean the block rails off gunk first.
- Now you should be facing the valve covers. There’s a high chance you will have to turn the engine over several times to remove the rocker nuts. Then remove the Mass Air Flow and Intake Air Temperature sensors. Follow by removing the spark plug wires.
- Proceed to get the hoses off the valve covers. And then get the covers themselves out. You can now access the crankshaft.
- With the crankshaft insight, it’s time to remove the old camshaft. If you don’t have a camshaft removal tool, you will need to use your hands. Just turn the block slowly without damaging the bearings.
- The old camshaft is out, so you should be ready to install the new one. First, however, you will need to wash everything insolvent. This will remove dust and grease. If the new cam comes with hydraulic lifters, then clean them with a rag instead.
- You should now lubricate the new camshaft. Use an oil conditioner for the job. Apply the oil by rotating the cam on the block. Don’t scratch the bearings.
- It’s time now to set the timing chain. With the rest of the parts lubricated, you need to set the timing gear to Top Dead Center. Torque the assembly as necessary.
- Be sure the timing gear on top has the dot at 6 o’clock. The lower timing gear should have its marking at 12 o’clock. This will prevent any improper valve movement later.
- Now piece up the oil pan into the engine. Apply some silicone if necessary. Then tighten it up.
- Proceed by installing the new lifters. You will need to lubricate them first. Drop them in place gently but ensuring they can move without a problem once they’re set up.
- Reassemble the rest of the engine now. Start with the water pump and the heater hoses. You will also need to reinstall the radiator cap and piece up the hoses in place.
- Adjust the timing and make sure it works as needed. Just let the engine run for this and look for any awkward engine noise. If you hear anything, adjust.
- Finish by starting the car and measuring the oil pressure. If everything works nicely, then you’ve successfully installed the new camshaft on your engine.
This process will take you between 2 to 8 hours. If you’re entirely inexperienced, it may take you a bit longer. Be extra careful not to damage anything while doing so.
You won’t have to run an engine with a worn-out camshaft anymore. Just pick the best cam for 302 Ford truck from our list, and you’ll get exactly what your truck needs.
Follow our recommendations, consider our buying advice, and get educated with our FAQ section. After doing all that, you should be ready to pick the perfect cam for your Ford truck.
So, what are you waiting for? Take a pick now and enjoy it!