3.8 to a 5.0 conversion. - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 07:12 AM Thread Starter
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3.8 to a 5.0 conversion.

Can anyone give some advice on how to do the 5.0 swap. My 3.8 spun a main rod bearing and dont feel like rebuilding it, oblonged the connecting rod. Time for an upgrade and need to know what all goes into the swap. Plan to use a 88 mustang involved in rearend accident. Drive train is still good.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 07:26 AM
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Can anyone give some advice on how to do the 5.0 swap. My 3.8 spun a main rod bearing and dont feel like rebuilding it, oblonged the connecting rod. Time for an upgrade and need to know what all goes into the swap. Plan to use a 88 mustang involved in rearend accident. Drive train is still good.
what year car are you swaping it into?

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 07:36 AM
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If it's a 1988 you're swapping into (like your profile says), I'd grab a 5.0 donor car and use it for all the parts.

Basically - EEC, harnesses, motor, mounts, radiator, wiring, transmission (maybe), wiring, suspension, wiring, brackets, wiring, hoses, wiring, and wiring.

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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It is an 88 and ive had it for about 5yrs. And its been good to me now to give her a face lift and a few upgrades. Have wanted to do the 5.0 upgrade for a while now. Just need some direction on how and where to start nd what needs changed over.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 09:00 PM
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Then the FIRST thing - bar ANYTHING - to buy is the EVTM for your 1988 TBird.

Helm Inc is out of stock ( http://www.helminc.com/helm/Result.a...elected_media= ), but luckily, eBay has a few ( http://www.ebay.com/itm/1988-Ford-Th...ht_1567wt_1110 for one) - I'd grab that and cross check the wiring differences.

After that, the factory service manual ( see the Helm Inc. link, and on eBay, http://www.ebay.com/itm/1988-FORD-MU...#ht_706wt_1110 for one ) to help figure out what may be different.

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 09:26 PM
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Agreed The engine and trans from the Mustang will be a bolt in affair but the wiring may or may not. Definitely grab the engine harness and PCM, there's a chance it's a direct plug and play since the EEC side harnesses are usually prewired for 6 and 8 cylinders.

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
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Had planed on gutting the tbird and slowly changeing parts over from a doner car, still unsure of what I will faced up against, will be fun. I have looked for an 88 tbird with the 302 already in but they do not come cheep I will look into those book and at the other
items thank for the help
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 10:07 PM
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You're better off anyway since the Mustang doner has the H.O. and any 5.0 Fox Tbird(stock) will be the regular standard output which is hardly any better than a 3.8.

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 11:17 PM
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You're better off anyway since the Mustang doner has the H.O. and any 5.0 Fox Tbird(stock) will be the regular standard output which is hardly any better than a 3.8.
Are you sure that is true? The '88 Thunderbird I took my trac-lok out of had the 5.0L HO in it, and my boss is buying an '89 Fox Cougar that has the 5.0L HO in it.

The 5.0L HO engine first appeared in 1982 and by 1987 was rated conservatively at 225hp.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 11:21 PM
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100%. The only fox cars that had the 5.0 H.O in them were Mustangs, Lincoln Mark VII and 84-86 LTD LX, all others were standard output

89s were MN12s and the 5.0 didn't become available until 91

-Matt
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 11:22 PM
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Are you sure that is true? The '88 Thunderbird I took my trac-lok out of had the 5.0L HO in it, and my boss is buying an '89 Fox Cougar that has the 5.0L HO in it.

The 5.0L HO engine first appeared in 1982 and by 1987 was rated conservatively at 225hp.
Yeah he's right..The only Thunderbirds that came stock with the 5.0 HO were from 91-93..



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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 11:30 PM
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Yeah he's right..The only Thunderbirds that came stock with the 5.0 HO were from 91-93..



Rayo..
So you are saying that the car I pulled my trac-lok out of was in my imagination? Whatever, I know what I saw - my buddy is the one that hauled it to the scrap yard after I pulled the posi out. And as far as the 89 Cougar, I might be wrong there - I've only seen the car once and it's being driven around town right now so I'll get a chance to see it again (maybe I have the year wrong on that one).

As a matter of fact, you're calling my boss Dan a liar too because he wanted to pull the 5.0 HO out of the '88 before we junked it, but didn't get the chance.

I suppose somebody COULD have swapped the engine or even just the HO plenum into the Thunderbird, but it didn't look it.

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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 11:37 PM
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I'm not saying he is but the fact is no Fox tbirds/Cougars ever had the 5.0 H.O. from the factory. It could have easily been easily swapped or converted by someone and since there aren't any notable external differences, it could easily look stock. Hell the 5.0 EFI and 5.0 H.O. upper intake plates are interchangeable, maybe someone just swapped those.

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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 11:38 PM
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I suppose somebody COULD have swapped the engine or just the HO plenum
That's probably what happened...




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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-07-2012, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by XR7-4.6 View Post
I'm not saying he is but the fact is no Fox tbirds/Cougars ever had the 5.0 H.O. from the factory. It could have easily been easily swapped or converted by someone. Hell the 5.0 EFI and 5.0 H.O. upper intake plates are interchangeable, maybe someone just swapped those.
Yeh, Dan and I had talked about that option when we looked at it. The car just didn't look like anything had been messed with, but you never know.

And like I said, I could have the year wrong on the Cougar, but the current owner is an old man who bought the car BRAND NEW, so I KNOW nothing has been messed with on this car. You should see it - it's in beautiful shape and the guy is fixing to stop driving (he's really old). My boss wants that Cougar so badly he can't stand it! lol

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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 12:20 AM
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It's possible he's just misadvertising it. The 87/88 XR7s deviated from the Thunderbird's blown I4 or V6 top of the line hierarchy and is easily assumed it's having the 5.0 meant it would presumably be the H.O. I wouldn't be surprised if a few misinformed customers thought that and maintained that belief over the years. It's definitely not an 89 if it has any kind of factory installed V8

If they did have H.O.s at the time it would have severely cut into Mark VII territory, as well as(and we know Ford managements longtime position on this) the Mustang.

-Matt
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 12:32 AM
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Originally Posted by XR7-4.6 View Post
It's possible he's just misadvertising it. The 87/88 XR7s deviated from the Thunderbird's blown I4 or V6 top of the line hierarchy and is easily assumed it's having the 5.0 meant it would presumably be the H.O. I wouldn't be surprised if a few misinformed customers thought that and maintained that belief over the years. It's definitely not an 89 if it has any kind of factory installed V8

If they did have H.O.s at the time it would have severely cut into Mark VII territory, as well as(and we know Ford managements longtime position on this) the Mustang.
It's not being misadvertised - I've seen under the hood of the car. I'll find out tomorrow from Dan where the guy lives and go take pics if I find time tomorrow.

The car was at the shop for an oil change is how I saw it - that's when Dan was showing me the car and drooling all over the place because of the 5.0L HO under the hood. He has a thing for the 302's and hates the OHC modulars; I always tell him - "To each their own!"

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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-08-2012, 09:24 AM
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Hell the 5.0 EFI and 5.0 H.O. upper intake plates are interchangeable, maybe someone just swapped those.
That was what I was gonna say.
They look the same except for that plate.

As for the question.
If you get an HO and have the older AOD, you can get the stand alone wiring harness to run the engine. Connect in the gauge wires and would be good to go. It isn't really that difficult (with prior mentioned wiring manuals).

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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 03-09-2012, 07:25 AM
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Or some combination like this?

http://www.coolcats.net/modifying/mid_ho.html

I would love to have an 87-88 thunderbird with a 5.0 H.O. in it
http://www.coolcats.net/modifying/ho_conversion.html

As for the swap, There's some great info here!
http://www.coolcats.net/modifying/ho_transplant.html

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