Blew Head Gaskets - 1996 Advice Me thinking of Splitport Upgrade!!! - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
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Blew Head Gaskets - 1996 Advice Me thinking of Splitport Upgrade!!!

Hey I was just devastated after fixing my front end after an accident, have brake lines go bad on me TWICE in two weeks, doing the repairs, and getting new tires, battery, mast cylinder... then blowing my head gaskets less than a week later.

Well maintained car, garage kept for first 97,000 miles.. its at 120,000 miles now and its been running great for me for 4 years.

QUESTIONS regarding SPLITPORT-

I found a 2000 Mustand Upper & Lower Intake plus throttle body.. no IMRC on that year correct?

I still haven't gotten heads, what year would I need? What gaskets, would need Mustang gaskets, right?

I found so far that the fuel rail needs to be modified, something about the fuel return line.. but I'll get to that when I get to that. Right now, would just be happy finding the right cylinder heads, and getting the engine back together. Could I use my stock valve covers???

I could not give up on this car, it was halfway to the junkyard when my head gaskets blew. Look 2 days later I am almost down to the bare engine, well organized labeled the wires. Once I get the fuel rail off, I am guessing I could get all the way to the failed gasket in another 3 hours.

This is my 3rd TBIRD - 92 SC, 97 4.6L. I have read about the splitport swap and thought it would be real cool, just not worth all the work involved. Now I am taking it all apart anyway - so WHAT THE HELL. DO IT!

Help me out what heads do I need first? Other Mods besides the fuel rail?

I read this post and it got me thinking it might be more work than I am up for this late in November.
http://forums.tccoa.com/showthread.php?t=141039

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 07:46 PM
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There's a ton of information in my DIY... all of your questions are answered there except:

Q: Does a 2000 intake manifold have IMRCs? The answer to this question is pretty simple:
if you look inside the lower intake and see a bunch of butterfly valves inside and a black module on the end that actuates it, you have IMRCs that you will need to deal with.

-g

PS. If you are going to take the time to do a splitport upgrade, take the time and check out the condition of your bottom end by checking bearing tolerances. Splitport devices make HP at higher RPMs and old, worn out or poorly balanced when rebuilt engines do NOT like spinning to 5K RPM. Ask me how I know.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S4gunn View Post
There's a ton of information in my DIY... all of your questions are answered there except:

Q: Does a 2000 intake manifold have IMRCs? The answer to this question is pretty simple:
if you look inside the lower intake and see a bunch of butterfly valves inside and a black module on the end that actuates it, you have IMRCs that you will need to deal with.

-g
Thanks. I read over most of your guide pretty quickly. Yeah, a lot of information. I am not a diy car guy, not for big projects like this. Done radiator, alternator, brakes, stuff. I got a little lost in all the explanations, technical. If anyone can advise a little more, I have 20 hours to decide if I'm doing this or not. If I get the 2000 Mustang upper/lower and commit to finding heads later and getting it all done by mid next week.

Anyway I am going to read your guide again now. Just worked all day in the cold. But I have very little time to decide on this.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
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I said I want to finish my mid next week.. I meant the week after, mid week. If I just return to stock I would expect to finish by end of next week. Still need to order gaskets and head bolts.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chargedbird View Post
Thanks. I read over most of your guide pretty quickly. Yeah, a lot of information. I am not a diy car guy, not for big projects like this. Done radiator, alternator, brakes, stuff. I got a little lost in all the explanations, technical. If anyone can advise a little more, I have 20 hours to decide if I'm doing this or not. If I get the 2000 Mustang upper/lower and commit to finding heads later and getting it all done by mid next week.

Anyway I am going to read your guide again now. Just worked all day in the cold. But I have very little time to decide on this.
I had about as much technical experience as you before I jumped into this project but unlike you, I had the luxury of time. I think the 150 hrs I invested was over several months.

The instructions were detailed because a splitport adaption to a tbird is not just a simple "part A for part B swap".

If I had to get the car working in a week or so in your shoes, I would just fix the car as a singleport w/ a minimum of cost investment.
-g

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 09:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chargedbird View Post
I found a 2000 Mustand Upper & Lower Intake plus throttle body.. no IMRC on that year correct?
Correct. A 2000 lower intake will not have the IMRC's.


Quote:
Originally Posted by chargedbird View Post
I still haven't gotten heads, what year would I need? What gaskets, would need Mustang gaskets, right?
Any Splitport heads and a set of MLS gaskets.


Quote:
Originally Posted by chargedbird View Post
I found so far that the fuel rail needs to be modified, something about the fuel return line.. but I'll get to that when I get to that. Right now, would just be happy finding the right cylinder heads, and getting the engine back together.
Yes, you'll need to modify a return-style fuel rail to fit, or modify the returnless rail into a return-style. It's been done in myriad different ways. I went the E-150 rail route when I did the swap back in '02.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 10:46 PM Thread Starter
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Starting to think I should do it. It will probably take longer than expected, run into unexpected problems.

I need to talk to my friend ASAP, he is a mechanic and can cover my ass for any small problems.. just if I run into major issues, he already works 9hrs 6 days a week so that would be asking too much.

Thanks for the info.

Just thinking to myself. If I can get installed heads & covers, lower intake, exhaust manifold, a/c compressor, water pump, p/s pump .. that is the majority of the parts reinstalled. If I get delayed by misc connections I don't mind (its not under the hood work tightening bolts - its just solving issues). The fuel rail right now is one of the last things left on my car. If that needs to be reinstalled before everything else and I have a problem finding and modifying that, I won't be able to get all those parts reinstalled - thats one of my big issues.

II think my friend might be able to find some Mustang cylinder heads for a good price.

My Dad left today shaking his head, probably thinking "I hope you know what the **** you're doing." And I almost gassed myself when the a/c coolant sprayed out. lol
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-23-2013, 11:02 PM
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here is another suggestion you can take or leave its up to you, but since you are there already, why not go the full boat and do a proper 4.2L swap? find a 2002 F150 with the 4.2, and since you have already marked all your wiring, you are somewhat ahead of the game now. you can use the mustang upper intake, add an imrc control like was done on another thread. think about it because you are just not that far away from just doing a complete engine swap now. the nice thing is that you can then build your 3.8 into another 4.2 with split port heads and store that motor either as a replacement, or for another project, and you gain an education on rebuilding engines.

my mind is aglow with whirling transient nodes of thought careening through s comic vapor of invention.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-24-2013, 12:18 PM Thread Starter
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Lower Intake Manifold is stuck. I am pulling on it by the thermostat housing (i think, dont remember). Might have seen some hardened silicone seeping out the Lower Intake where the gasket would be.

Any advice? How much force does it take to get this thing out?
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-24-2013, 12:49 PM
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Double check to make sure all the bolts are out.

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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-24-2013, 01:18 PM Thread Starter
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Double check to make sure all the bolts are out.

Joe
Yup! Miss one in front and one in back. Came off with no effort at all. Thanks.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-24-2013, 02:04 PM Thread Starter
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If someone wants to look at the gaskets under the Lower Intake.




Definitely see the Front-Right corner is in bad shape. The Rear-Left is the one cylinder that's confirmed flooded. Pulled that spark plug and water drained from it. Did not pull the other spark plugs yet.

The gasket need to be replaced. If it hasn't failed already it might have soon. But I am guessing the head gasket is still going to be the REAL issue causing that cylinder to drop. Anyone?
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-26-2013, 11:12 PM Thread Starter
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Well I fell behind schedule on what was supposed to do the final day of disassembly. Got one exhaust header off, the other had the nuts stripped badly - waiting for my buddy to bring me turbo sockets for the stripped nuts. Also the header bolts are on with a lot more torque than I guessed, 15mm felt like I was going to break my 3/8 extension. Waiting to get a 1/2 15mm socket, I have 18" breaker bar.. hope that's long enough. My friend says he has one 30" and on some cars he still pulls as hard as he can to break the head bolts loose.

My friend also told me I should just fix the car, forget about split port. He kept saying the entire wire harness needs to be replaced, but I am pretty sure he's wrong about that.

Wondering if there are any performance mods I can do with stock parts, eg. porting heads, lower intake? And what cost?
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 12:06 AM
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You won't need to replace the entire harness but you will need to extend some of the connections. You will also need adapters to use Mustang 19# injectors on your stock harness (14# injectors will work but you will have pushed their efficiency. You will also need a tune to take advantage of the 19# injectors).

Again, I have 150 hours in the DIY. All of your questions will be answered there... including the performance oriented ones.

If you want some 19# injectors, I have 12 of them I'll be happy to sell for a reasonably price.
You will need the adapters and the tune though.

Regards,
-g

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