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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 06:16 AM Thread Starter
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Choosing my next MN12

I've been without an MN12 for about three years now. Those of you who know my wife and I know that we've picked up a pair of Mustangs over the years (an 86 GT for her, a 96 GT for me). We took our one year old and our nephew to Carlisle this year, and it was a real eye opener. There's just not enough room for all the stuff that having kids means you have to pack, and frankly I've been missing my thunderbirds without one.

At first glance, we both thought about buying an SC (mostly for the 5 speed ). The SC just has an aura to it, that I've wanted one since they were still new in the showrooms. I've been doing my SC diligence ever since, and I'm considering now whether I'd be better served to go back to another 4.6L car. While I'd lose the 5 speed, I do have the Roush/SVO 4.6L supercharger unit for it. It's ultimately a more reliable car that way, and with the supercharger it'd have more power than a lot of SCs (unless I dumped a small fortune into one). I've rebuilt several AODE/4R70Ws over the years, and still have parts in stock for one or three, so no worries there. I have to say, I'd thought that the intercooler on the 3.8L SC would mean it'd make power much easier than the non-intercooled Roush unit, but it doesn't look that way. I don't know if the 8 intake runners vs. 6 makes the difference, or the OHC vs OHV, or the increased displacement of the 4.6L. Maybe a little of all of the above. Overall though, I'm considering the idea that with kids I'm not going to have the time and money to be doing several iterations of the 3.8 engine. I'm looking at wanting a one and done solution, fairly reliably. But it's not a true SC then.

What says the club?

Tom

96 Mustang GT 5spd. w/ 248A Option (GTS). Stock for now until I get the Roush on.

97 Thunderbird 4.6L LX /w Sport Package
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 06:46 AM
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I've always liked the SC's... silver just sets them off. IMO
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 07:34 AM
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Ira just listed his 94SC 5-speed for sale. That is a beautiful car, and seems to be everything you want.

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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 09:35 AM
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 10:17 AM
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I'm also a big fan of the Mark VII's... beautiful cars, the LSC's are so cool. But very weird braking setup!

Last edited by Natesriv; 06-28-2017 at 07:04 PM.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 11:34 AM
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The 89-92 SCs used basically the ABS system as the Mark VII. I love those too, best looking car of the 80s IMO

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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 01:54 PM
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I'm going to be a contrarian here and suggest that if you want more space, don't buy a tbird. Here's why:
- Buy something with 4 doors. As your kid gets older, it's going to be more of a pain when he/she starts exerting his/her independence by not wanting to get into his/her seat and you are already late for some event. Having 4 doors gives you more access to shove that kid in his seat.
- While you think you are bringing lots of crap around now w/ the diaper bag, it's only going to get worse as you kid ages and you'll need to bring stuff to entertain him/her more than just a rattle/blinky toy. Even if the kid can be entertained with a smartphone, you might be hauling around all of his baseball gear/etc.
- Both of your cars are older so it's nice to have something that's reliable. I live in a dense city so having a Prius is big enough and you'd be surprised at what you can carry in the back because of it's size/shape. The big value (besides the MPG) is that I've literally opened the hood of this car 3 times since I bought it (I take it for oil changes since IMO it's cheap enough to pay a guy for the labor). There's just nothing to mess with. In your case, a Camry, a decent SUV, a (gasp) minivan/wagon, or even a crew cab truck might be a more practical option.
- Or go a little more luxurious with a slightly newer but sporty sedan like an Lexus IS or a Infiniti G35. Mid 00 models of both are cheap enough now. Just don't make the mistake and buy something german as you'll regret it.
- If you want to go faster, find something else with a 4.6L. Personally, once you have a reliable 4dr in your fleet, I'd take one of the mustangs and make that the silly car with the supercharger.

PS. If you want another tbird, sell a mustang.
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 02:29 PM
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My TBird may or may not be available (depends on the financial aspect of things). But it's a 63K mile pretty much excellent condition Bird, I also have a Vortech for it and I just recently finished up a full performance suspension (full front suspension, Tokicos and Vogtland) and rear Bilsteins and Vogtland springs. 1.6 inch drop, poly rear swaybar bushings, new front swaybar bushings, etc. I love the new ride but I'm broke as hell now lol!

Let me know if you're interested.
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 06:42 PM Thread Starter
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MadMikey,

Yes, I saw that car come up. Terrific car, and worth the asking price, though its a little more than I've got lying around. I'll explain in a minute.

s4gunn,

I'll elaborate on the situation for a bigger picture. We've got a neon and a 4wd dakota truck for DD use, though eventually the neon will be replaced by something newer like maybe an Edge. The mustangs are toys that generally don't see DD use, especially in winter. Hers was my wedding gift, so that's staying, but my 96 I paid $1000 for from a coworker. It's a fun car, but I'm seriously considering doing the paint/body work and reselling it. I do paint for a living, to me it's not that big a deal. If I keep the 96, my SC budget will stay low, but if I sell it, I can buy a really nicely done MN12 in it's place. As for space, my two younger sisters and I remember being in elementary/middle schools when dad originally bought the 95 4.6L bird that I later bought for myself. We fit dad and us three, for weeklong vacations comfortably. We were begging him to buy a mustang, but dad was smart enough to buy a roomier car.

The roush/svo unit someone would have to pry from my cold, dead hands. lol. Even if I sold the 96, I wouldn't necessarily get more cash for the car if I were to install it. The labor in/cash out just wouldn't make sense.

I'm not in a huge rush to buy, unless I come across the right deal. I nearly bought an SC I went to go look at, but the floors were gone in it and that's not the kind of project I'd want to take on. If I find a car that needs paint but runs for cheap, for me that'd be a great deal. But if I don't get a deal quickly, it gives me time to redo the 96, and resell it for the bigger budget. In the mean time, I'm vacillating over buying an SC or another 4.6L to use the SC unit I already have. Choices, choices!

96 Mustang GT 5spd. w/ 248A Option (GTS). Stock for now until I get the Roush on.

97 Thunderbird 4.6L LX /w Sport Package
24k B&M Cooler, 1" lowered, Steeda UD Pulleys, Dynomax cat-back, J-mod, 3.73's, PI intake, PI cams, 03 GT MAF/Tube, SCT tuned - Gone but not forgotten.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 07:30 PM
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I only mentioned it because it seems to be exactly what you were looking for. It is already built and done, it is reliable enough that he takes it on long road trips, and it is slightly modified so that it will have more power than a stock SC, and even doing all the work yourself, you couldn't build that car for what he is asking.

As an alternative, if you do find the right 4.6 car to swap your blower onto though, the 5-speed swap isn't that bad of a job, so if that is your only reasoning for wanting the SC, the money you save by getting a 4.6 car could cover swapping in a T45 or TR3650.

-91 Cougar LS, coming soon, complete overhaul with a 427" Windsor.
-90 XR7 5-speed black on black w/sunroof, MP2, coated rotors, double intercooler, 15%OD, ported heads, comp stage 1 cam, 85mm TB, 90MM LMAF, 80# injectors, and ported big valve heads
-98 Mark VIII LSC, Procharger P600b, TR3650 swap and 3.73s.
-90 SC Automatic rustbucket winter beater
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 08:42 PM
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Long time no see Tom! I had the same thoughts as you a few years back when I wanted another MN12, minus the family/space need. If you remember my black LX...it ran mid 12's N/A and was an attention getter locally. My 95 5-speed I currently have has some very stiff suspension, and just about all bolt-on's. All in all, this SC is much more fun. The torque, the manual, and the suspension...this thing handles like it's on rails...and I haven't even got a decent set of wheels/tires on it yet.

FYI, there's actually a few early SC's around me right now for under a grand. They need some TLC, but could be a good base.

~Jeff

*signed off
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2017, 10:01 PM
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Here's one to think about. https://eugene.craigslist.org/cto/6182850759.html

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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-29-2017, 04:35 AM Thread Starter
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Long time no see Tom! I had the same thoughts as you a few years back when I wanted another MN12, minus the family/space need. If you remember my black LX...it ran mid 12's N/A and was an attention getter locally. My 95 5-speed I currently have has some very stiff suspension, and just about all bolt-on's. All in all, this SC is much more fun. The torque, the manual, and the suspension...this thing handles like it's on rails...and I haven't even got a decent set of wheels/tires on it yet.

FYI, there's actually a few early SC's around me right now for under a grand. They need some TLC, but could be a good base.
Yeah, no kidding! Didn't see you or Steve this year at Carlisle, hope the WV crew is doing well. I didn't think the SC suspension was really that different in practice of driving it around. Maybe the engine weight/ weight distribution is better since the SC engine is shorter and mainly sits further back? Honestly, I would be looking at a car show car/weekend cruiser more than a drag strip terror for where I'm at in life right now. The main thing I need is a chassis that isn't rotting out. Rotted fenders, doors, etc. I can replace, but if I can avoid welding in floors and rockers it would save a lot of headaches. Don't really care about color. Wouldn't really like black again, unless it was a 35th anny. Those cars always looked awesome. We all know how the old paint fades and the clear peels, that's nothing to me. Mechanicals, etc. is more a thing that if I could at least get in it and drive it home, that would be a big plus. From a mechanical view, 93+ are better, but it's not the end of the world to swap spindles and gas tanks. At this point, its not unlikely the calipers are on borrowed time the way it is. It's a great time to be buying anything, as the economy really hasn't recovered from where it was when the 08/09 crash happened. Everything is in peoples front lawns for sale (cheap!) if you have cash.

96 Mustang GT 5spd. w/ 248A Option (GTS). Stock for now until I get the Roush on.

97 Thunderbird 4.6L LX /w Sport Package
24k B&M Cooler, 1" lowered, Steeda UD Pulleys, Dynomax cat-back, J-mod, 3.73's, PI intake, PI cams, 03 GT MAF/Tube, SCT tuned - Gone but not forgotten.
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-29-2017, 01:51 PM
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Check this one out in Missouri.http://semo.craigslist.org/cto/6188271004.html
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-29-2017, 04:58 PM
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My favorites have always been a 32v swapped 96-97 cougar or a bird, 96-97 sport model or anniversary edition cougar or 96-98 mark 8 lsc, imo they are far faster than superpoops not off the line but anything on a roll. And the 32v 4.6s imo are so beasty sounding and have what seems like a limitless topend..
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post #16 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-29-2017, 05:06 PM
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And sc's are finicky unreliable rust magnets. With that sunroof drain and skirts it's a moisture trap in front of those rear wheels. Plus them good headgaskets Ford decided to use.. my 2 superpoops I had blew headgaskets sold one then built the other only got it to throw a rod a few thousand after the rebuild.
But then I've sprayed 175 shot in an all stock 4.6 for countless bottles worth,and it was a dry kit. Also ended up nodding that car and it was a daily driver running low 14s and mid 13 on bottle..
So I'd go for a 4.6 you can always 5 speed swap that 4.6 And put poopercoupe bumpers and ground effects on and have a superdupercoupe
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post #17 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-02-2017, 08:27 PM
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Yeah, no kidding! Didn't see you or Steve this year at Carlisle, hope the WV crew is doing well. I didn't think the SC suspension was really that different in practice of driving it around. Maybe the engine weight/ weight distribution is better since the SC engine is shorter and mainly sits further back?
I can't speak for Steve, but I've been super busy the past month in preparation to move. Actually haven't been up since...08 I think.

I should not my SC doesn't have stock suspension. All bushings/bearings in the steering and suspension have been replaced. It also has H&R springs, and Koni manual adjustable shocks all around. When set on firm, it has maybe a few inches of suspension travel, and it's rock solid. I'll be picking up a set of 18's in a few weeks, so that should improve it even more. Also have a RSTB that should add to the fun as well.

Trust me, these things are much more fun when you have a man-pedal.

~Jeff

*signed off
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post #18 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-02-2017, 10:39 PM
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post #19 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-03-2017, 10:06 PM
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MadMikey,

Yes, I saw that car come up. Terrific car, and worth the asking price, though its a little more than I've got lying around. I'll explain in a minute.

s4gunn,

I'll elaborate on the situation for a bigger picture. We've got a neon and a 4wd dakota truck for DD use, though eventually the neon will be replaced by something newer like maybe an Edge. The mustangs are toys that generally don't see DD use, especially in winter. Hers was my wedding gift, so that's staying, but my 96 I paid $1000 for from a coworker. It's a fun car, but I'm seriously considering doing the paint/body work and reselling it. I do paint for a living, to me it's not that big a deal. If I keep the 96, my SC budget will stay low, but if I sell it, I can buy a really nicely done MN12 in it's place. As for space, my two younger sisters and I remember being in elementary/middle schools when dad originally bought the 95 4.6L bird that I later bought for myself. We fit dad and us three, for weeklong vacations comfortably. We were begging him to buy a mustang, but dad was smart enough to buy a roomier car.

The roush/svo unit someone would have to pry from my cold, dead hands. lol. Even if I sold the 96, I wouldn't necessarily get more cash for the car if I were to install it. The labor in/cash out just wouldn't make sense.

I'm not in a huge rush to buy, unless I come across the right deal. I nearly bought an SC I went to go look at, but the floors were gone in it and that's not the kind of project I'd want to take on. If I find a car that needs paint but runs for cheap, for me that'd be a great deal. But if I don't get a deal quickly, it gives me time to redo the 96, and resell it for the bigger budget. In the mean time, I'm vacillating over buying an SC or another 4.6L to use the SC unit I already have. Choices, choices!
Fair enough. It sounds like you have the practical options covered already and you have a good deal more car storage capability than me so why not find the exact MN12 you want.

If you aren't married to the 96, paint and flipping the mustang sounds like a fine idea. You can then decide after your work is done if you really want to keep it or get more money for your toy MN12.
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post #20 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-08-2017, 11:19 PM
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Go for the 4.6 with the blower and get it done Tom. If you want to make it manual you could do that later or just make a really good automatic.

As for me, yes I was at Carlisle this year with the MAMN12 crew at the SCCOA Tent on Saturday and made my way around the fairgrounds to visit my FN10 and Marauder/SC folks.

After 3 years of fighting heart issues, open heart surgery and various other related surgeries, I'm back at it. The 1MTNCAT will soon be on the prowl again once I get the powertrain finished and installed this fall.

Look forward to seeing you at some point.

Steve
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post #21 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-10-2017, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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Go for the 4.6 with the blower and get it done Tom. If you want to make it manual you could do that later or just make a really good automatic.

As for me, yes I was at Carlisle this year with the MAMN12 crew at the SCCOA Tent on Saturday and made my way around the fairgrounds to visit my FN10 and Marauder/SC folks.

After 3 years of fighting heart issues, open heart surgery and various other related surgeries, I'm back at it. The 1MTNCAT will soon be on the prowl again once I get the powertrain finished and installed this fall.

Look forward to seeing you at some point.
Steve,

Sorry I missed you then at Carlisle. You could've met my little one, she turned a year old in May. Always next year!

Glad to hear you're on the mend. Hopefully they've got you all straightened out and ready to go again. Can't wait to see what you're building this go around.

As for my dilemma, I'm really jazzed up to get back in the saddle with an MN12. SCs are great, but I'm looking at how they respond to mods vs the 4.6/svo combo and it's a tough call. 280-300rwhp is doable with upgrades I think for an SC. But built with my attention to detail, the 4.6/SVO would match that easily, and for less money. There's a couple of options of shortblock to put under it, and a few items I've got under my hat for now. It might all just depend on what car I come across for a good deal. I'm surprised you're not recruiting me for the sign of the Cat!

Tom

96 Mustang GT 5spd. w/ 248A Option (GTS). Stock for now until I get the Roush on.

97 Thunderbird 4.6L LX /w Sport Package
24k B&M Cooler, 1" lowered, Steeda UD Pulleys, Dynomax cat-back, J-mod, 3.73's, PI intake, PI cams, 03 GT MAF/Tube, SCT tuned - Gone but not forgotten.
MAMN12 Drag Racing Team [email protected] In need of updated times.
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post #22 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-16-2017, 11:04 PM
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Steve,

Sorry I missed you then at Carlisle. You could've met my little one, she turned a year old in May. Always next year!

Glad to hear you're on the mend. Hopefully they've got you all straightened out and ready to go again. Can't wait to see what you're building this go around.

As for my dilemma, I'm really jazzed up to get back in the saddle with an MN12. SCs are great, but I'm looking at how they respond to mods vs the 4.6/svo combo and it's a tough call. 280-300rwhp is doable with upgrades I think for an SC. But built with my attention to detail, the 4.6/SVO would match that easily, and for less money. There's a couple of options of shortblock to put under it, and a few items I've got under my hat for now. It might all just depend on what car I come across for a good deal. I'm surprised you're not recruiting me for the sign of the Cat!

Tom
I've got a spare stock 106K mile 95 Cougar here I will be parting with sometime soon. Needs some work. LOL!

Steve
1996 Cougar XR7 Special Edition (Street & Strip)
"There's a bad, built NA 4.6L COMING Spring-Summer 2018"

Elite member of the Halfshaft snapping, Auburn eating, Tranny crunching, Piston Melting, Tire lifting, 500+ lb ft Torque Club.

Cougar ET-Stock 4.6 shortblock/Stock PI headswap Bullitt NA 12.94 @ 105+
Nitrous 11.75 @ 114 MPH

2008 Ford Powerstroke 6.4 TT F250 4X4 Supercrew: 12.82 @ 105 MPH

"IN MEMORY OF MY FRIENDS JOEL BENDER 1979-2006", JOHNNY LANGTON 1975-2011, and MICHAEL VIVERETTE 1953-2013"
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post #23 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-17-2017, 12:17 AM
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The Eugene Craig's SC is a little too pricey for the miles and work needed IMO but for the right price it could be compelling. It's pretty far from PA too...
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post #24 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-17-2017, 05:43 AM
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as for someone mentioning a 4 door option, When I was a kid my family motto was "Never give the kids a door!" this was the 70's by the way.

I've come into this world with nothing and still manage to have some of it left.

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