Hey everyone, might be getting a mark 8 - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-31-2011, 03:08 AM Thread Starter
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Hey everyone, might be getting a mark 8

Well its been some time since I've been around, but I might be getting a Mark 8 soon since I'm in the market for a car. Now its been awhile from the last time I sat happily behind the wheel of one of theses and I'm hoping(keyword) I found a diamond-ish in the rough.

Its got some issues... Its a 97, with about 154k on it, some body damage in the rear nothing bad, had a ball joint the front recently replaced. And its cheap...too cheap, but right up my price range & to a lot for some basic repairs. Now I am aware of the air bag suspension issues, and I still have yet to see the car. But is there anything else I should look for? Do the tranny issues that affected my beloved 94 cougars present in a 97 mark? Will that engine hold up for another 80k? I'm trying to be cautious as I can be, my budget doesn't allow for second chances.

Yeah if i wasn't half a sleep I could write better, but sleep is over rated...?
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-31-2011, 03:41 AM
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If your budget doesnt allow you to fix an old ass car with tons of known problems with aging parts then dont buy one. At 154k anything goes, its thunderdome. Replace everything with a bushing and ball joint for best results, the trans in a 97 is better than a 94 but that dont mean a thing, who knows how its been treated. The tc could be junk for all you know. The U joints could be wasted etc etc I could go on but use the search button when you start to have problems.

Spinning pies like wheels.

DD driving my 20 year old project

Now with new ball joints...again

Last edited by Splattered; 03-31-2011 at 03:47 AM.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-31-2011, 03:46 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Splattered View Post
If your budget doesnt allow you to fix an old ass car with tons of known problems with aging parts then dont buy one. At 154k anything goes, its thunderdome.
No my budget doesn't allow me to do it twice.

Yeah if i wasn't half a sleep I could write better, but sleep is over rated...?
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011, 12:00 AM
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No my budget doesn't allow me to do it twice.
Get a tbird or cat at least you wont be trying to fix an airbag leaking 300+ for a complete front strut from ford is hard to pay. These are all old car now and anything and everything that can wear out is worn out by now if its not fixed. A 97 mn12 doesn't have as bad a trans/tc problem in fact people use them in high hp cars and with a newer valve body and jmod they hold up well. Check all ball joints esp. front end links they always are toasted and never changed by cheap owners.

Spinning pies like wheels.

DD driving my 20 year old project

Now with new ball joints...again
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011, 01:26 AM
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It does get expensive, all depends on how much you like the car, how much you can put into it and if/can you do any of the work yourself to save $$. Plus you have to consider discontinued parts.

I bought my 94 LX in Jan 98 with 49k miles on it and didn't really start replacing everything and fixing it up, customizing it until 2006 or so. It took a bundle of cash and help from people like Splattered but it's almost done. Most everything has been replaced that can die except the heater core and exhaust but the suspension is all new within 2-3 years, tranny was done by reliable people and next week the motor will be rebuilt. Too many other little things to mention. A lot of custom interior.

Splattered is going to do the rear axle swap with a set of SC disk brake hubs and a 8.8 pumpkin once the motor is done. I plan on doing more after it's painted and it's been a long road already but most everything has been replaced with better parts and I know it will last me my lifetime at least. In those 13 years I've put around 200k miles on it and its right around 250k and ready for the rebuild. with all the work that's been done its more or less the same as a 07-09 car with a 94 body.

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90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011, 09:01 AM
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The 97/98 MarkVIII does have some issues, but it makes for such a nice daily driver, and if you can do the maintenance work yourself, it really isn't that bad. The trans in the 97 is better than the one in your 94, but not as good as a 98+ trans. If you are planning on leaving the car stock though, I wouldn't worry too much about the trans. The engine is definitely durable, so I wouldn't be concerned about that at all, as long as it doesn't have any dry knock or anything when you start it up. As for things to check;
-Rear neon light likes to go out, usually due to the ballast. The shock of people slamming the trunk is what usually does it, but if the car was hit in the rear, that could cause it too. It isn't a big deal as the rest of the lights still work and the car is legal without it, but it is something to check that would affect the value of the car.
-Blend door actuator breaks. When this happens, you have no heat, and to fix it the whole dash has to come out. Change through all the temperature settings and vent positions to make sure everything is working.
-Switch for tilt/telescoping wheel burns out. Make sure the wheel operates in all 4 directions. If the switch is burned out, there is no replacement available and you would have to replace the whole column. On my 98, only the telescoping feature burned out, so I used some jumper wires on the motor at the bottom of the column to put it where I want it, then unplugged the motor so it can't move it on me with the stupid easy-entry feature.
-Air ride, as you know, can become troublesome and expensive. A spring conversion is cheap and easy enough that I wouldn't walk away from a car due to air ride issues, but it is something to check as whether it is working properly or not would greatly affect the value of the car.
-The plastic trim on the side of the driver's seat gets cracked from people sliding in and out of the seat instead of getting up and out, and it is a 97/98 only part. I've been looking for a grey one for my car for 2 years now and have yet to find an unbroken one that is for sale separate from the entire seat.
-The rear evap tray gets rusted out on northern cars, and it is a 97/98 only part, and is obsolete from the dealer. I lucked out on this as my car was from FL, but many of the northern ones I see they are rotted and falling apart. If it rots out, good luck finding one in good shape.

-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
-97 Tbird Sport 4.6 Nice weather daily driver
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