Definitive answer on convertible mounts.


Daniel Black

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There's tons of V8 swap info on here and online but so many choices and opinions. I have an '87 2.0 Ranger that uses the same mounts as a 2.3. So do the 5.0 fox body convertible mounts work for a 4-cylinder? People have been doing these swaps for over 30 years, it should be set in stone by now what works and what doesn't.
 


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I personally have used the convertible mounts. And the 94-95 mustang mounts. I had to swap them side for side. And also open up the existing holes in the crossmember. But they work great for me. No issues.
 

Daniel Black

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Thanks a ton. That's what I've been looking for is first hand experience. I hope it'll be pretty straightforward. I don't have PS, PB or AC to worry about and my truck is already Duraspark ignition so I'm wired for that. Now I just need to work out a mechanical fuel pump that'll fit since that's what the 4-cylinder has and I'll need to lengthen the alternator harness to reach the passenger side or rig up some drivers side brackets. I read about someone that made the slots too deep and ran into problems so I'll set a bare block in there to sneak up on it. Thanks again.
 

baddad457

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If you're going carbed, skip the mech fuel pump and use a low pressure electric pump. One of the small one wire, 30-35 gal/hr pumps is all you need. Wire it to the ignition hot wire. And on the mounts, I used the 'vert mounts but bolted them permanently to the cross member and used 7/16NC x 2" studs (using nuts to secure the block) in the block instead of the factory bolts. Studs are easier to get lined up while dropping the engine into place on the mounts, than trying to get bolts in the hole in the block. Mount the Alternator on the driver's side. I used the 86-91 Crown Vic brackets, but these also mount the P/S pump too so you might want to see if you can eliminate the P/S pump to use them.
 

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I highly recommend wiring up a factory Ranger inertia switch in-line on your fuel pump harness. In the event of a wreck and your fuel line comes loose or is ruptured, the inertia switch will cut power to it, which could save your life and possibly save your truck from being consumed by fire. They're cheap at any junkyard.
 

baddad457

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I highly recommend wiring up a factory Ranger inertia switch in-line on your fuel pump harness. In the event of a wreck and your fuel line comes loose or is ruptured, the inertia switch will cut power to it, which could save your life and possibly save your truck from being consumed by fire. They're cheap at any junkyard.
X2 on this. With him having a carbed Ranger to start with, it slipped my mind.
 

Daniel Black

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Thanks for all the information. Is there a set place the motor needs to go? There's lots of holes in the stock crossmember. Do I just try to get the motor back as far as possible? Also, I'm using the big bellhousing made for a 164t flywheel, does it need to go in with the motor? Looks like it might not fit over the radius arm crossmember going from the tunnel side. I'm stuck with oil pan troubles at the moment. My motor is old and made for a front sump pan so I don't have a dipstick hole in the block. I'm trying to find a 79-80 pan that has the dipstick in it but they must be pretty rare. Aftermarket pans cost a mint.
 

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I used the convertible motor mounts too. They work fine but I think the engine could sit lower in the engine bay with different motor mounts... regardless, they do work. I'm pretty sure I had to cut new slots in the crossmember to accomodate them, and I have the engine slammed back as far as I could. I have just barely enough room to get access to the bellhousing bolts.
 

baddad457

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Thanks for all the information. Is there a set place the motor needs to go? There's lots of holes in the stock crossmember. Do I just try to get the motor back as far as possible? Also, I'm using the big bellhousing made for a 164t flywheel, does it need to go in with the motor? Looks like it might not fit over the radius arm crossmember going from the tunnel side. I'm stuck with oil pan troubles at the moment. My motor is old and made for a front sump pan so I don't have a dipstick hole in the block. I'm trying to find a 79-80 pan that has the dipstick in it but they must be pretty rare. Aftermarket pans cost a mint.
On my 89, I centered the carb pad between the fenders. Using the frame to center it is an exercise in futility. Then with the carb pad centered and leveled, aim the tailhousing at the pinion yoke on the rear end. You will need to flatten the body seam in the transmission tunnel to ever hope to access the bell bolts, especially with a big bell transmission. And you're right, the early fox body pan with the dipstick in the pan is a rare item today.
 

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You may be able to run a timing cover that has a dipstick in it. Though it may require the use of a different, or mixed and matched, front accessory drive system..

As for the bell housing going over the radius arm crossmember, it will, but it's always a fight. Both my AOD and my T5 both fit over it when installing the transmission from underneath in my 87, but it was definitely a struggle. A body lift helps with this of course.
 

baddad457

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You may be able to run a timing cover that has a dipstick in it. Though it may require the use of a different, or mixed and matched, front accessory drive system..

As for the bell housing going over the radius arm crossmember, it will, but it's always a fight. Both my AOD and my T5 both fit over it when installing the transmission from underneath in my 87, but it was definitely a struggle. A body lift helps with this of course.
Dipstick in the front sump will yield a false reading. When the oil fills the front sump, it runs over the hill to the rear. So the front reading isn't what's in the rear sump where the pickup tube is and that's the level that counts. On my 89 Ranger, the cross member between the radius arms was removeable
 

Daniel Black

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Dipstick in the front sump will yield a false reading. When the oil fills the front sump, it runs over the hill to the rear. So the front reading isn't what's in the rear sump where the pickup tube is and that's the level that counts. On my 89 Ranger, the cross member between the radius arms was removeable
Mine is not removable at the moment. I guess I could make it removable if I have to. I have a stock front sway bar that looks like it might cause some clearance issues with headers but I haven't got that far yet. I tried to get in touch with Ford to see if I could buy the piece that rivets into the pan for a dipstick but they'd need a part number and who knows what it might be.
 

baddad457

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The part that rivets the pan will no longer be an in stock item. Best bet is bite the bullet on an aftermarket pan or go with a late model roller motor. I wnet through all this back when I did my swap 20 years ago. There's just too many obstacles to overcome using an older 60's and 70's engine. If I recall, I cut the rivets holding the trailing arm cross member and replaced them with bolts to get around that part.
 

Daniel Black

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205/60R15 & 225/60R15
I finally got to talk to someone at the parts store that can actually spell CAR. Dorman still makes a '79 Mustang pan and I can get the pickup tube. I'll have to make a dipstick but that won't be a big deal. I'll be about $110 into it. Too much for an oil pan in my opinion but it beats trying to find one at a junkyard and having to pull it.
 


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