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3.0/3.2 SHO swap

rubydist

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The main bearings have not been an issue on the SHO motor, and the bearings are not available anywhere (for years now) so I recommend not even removing the caps on the mains. The rod bearings have been the issue. 119k and never replaced means they are in dire need of replacing. The rule in that community is that rod bearings need changed every 100k or less.

There are some people who have made and sold the spacers for raising the intake so it can be turned around - you can search on shoforum and may find some available.

The one head actually hangs over the flywheel at that end of the engine, so there are several things that potentially run into the firewall, but most noteably the thermostat housing and the head. You will need to modify or find one that has an angle instead of going straight out, because the stock thermostat housing will make the radiator hose go into the firewall.

When you are working on motor mounts, have the exhaust manifolds on the engine so you can work around them - they actually flow quite well and if you can use them you should.
 


holyford86

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@rubydist you are a wealth of knowledge and know more about my swap than I do thus far, I appreciate all of the help you are giving me and no doubt it will make the process much easier for myself and anyone else who attempts this in the future.

I have noticed that parts availability for these engines is becoming quite limited so it is good to know the issues and get them sorted out before parts are not available at all.

After looking at the car a little bit more I am glad that the manifolds are not the standard front connected into back manifold that is so common on front drive things and that will save me a bunch of time if I can indeed use the stock units.
 

turbo91xlt

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For an engine that's designed for 7-8k rpm its kinda silly to run a truck transmission that's shifts like a truck transmission behind it. When I was researching to do the swap to my GT (had the donor car and all) I found that Canfield makes (or at least when I was looking) an adapter for vulcan 3.0 to sbf http://www.cididit.com/adaptor_plate.htm

Get that adapter, and a custom flywheel from Spec or whoever then you can run superior sbf clutch and transmissions that engine deserves. The downside is that is a costly endeavor that few people (let alone ranger owners) are willing to spend.

I have since decided to go with the classic proven 2.3t / t5 swap in my '88 GT as I have the built drivetrain from my '91 2wd that's been sitting around for a decade that I wanted to finally be able to use. HOWEVER if I somehow manage to finally acquire an '89 GT I will be revisiting the SHO swap.
 

holyford86

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I know it isn't ideal to use the M5OD but it is the most cost effective route to go. I will be swapping the top cover/shifter to a later one to shorten the throws a bit though. T5 transmissions are difficult to find and expensive around here also. It took some looking to find a usable 3.0 two wheel drive transmission and the shifter bushings are still trashed. I have 200 into this project so far and that netted me the SHO, a transmission and a rot free truck that needs a cab (rolled). I will build on it as time and funds allow though.

I'm having trouble even locating a stock flywheel for this engine as it appears that all of the parts houses specify the incorrect one and the aftermarket units are a bit spendy for my budget at this time
 

rubydist

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The Canfield adapters have been out of stock for some time, but you might find one in the wild. The last one I had was purchased by a guy in England because of how hard they are to get.
 

turbo91xlt

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I'm sure you could just send them an email and they'd gladly whip one up for you on their CNC machine. I doubt they got rid of their program for making them.
 

pat8703

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Have you seen my thread in this same forum? I have detailed all the hard stuff to make it work.

Use the sho mtx flywheel, Lumia z34 or custom disk, sho pressure plate, sho starter, ranger pilot bearing, m5od engine plate, and m5od tranny. You have to modify the motor plate and tranny to clear the sho rear main seal. I have pns my thread for arp flywheel and pressure plate bolts.

You'll need .5" intake manifold spacers to flip the intake. You'll also have to section the pressure equalization tube to get the proper firewall clearance.

You have to notch the power steering pump bracket to clear the front upper control arm bracket.

You will have to make custom engine mounts - there isn't anything on the market that will work. I deleted the ac bracket and used it's mounting points, but you can use the 3 bolt holes at the bottom of the bracket for the drivers mount.

The stock header will not clear the steering shaft. No way no how. Custom header will be needed

You have to notch the front cross member to clear the oil pan. Iirc, it's 1.5" that gets cut out of it.

You can occasionally find a quicktime sho to t5/t10 bellhousing on eBay. I got one nib for $300. And then you can run a t5 to t56 adapter and run any long snout t56.

The thermostat housing fits fine, but you will need to shorten the tube going to the oil cooler for firewall clearance. You will also need to run a second degas canister from this point.

You will HAVE to clearance the fire wall to the left of the brake booster to clear the drivers side cylinder head.

The only thing I didn't figure out is wiring, which isn't a problem for me because I'm going to be running a standalone.

The only other thing is don't run a rear mount radiator. Just leave it up front and run an e-fan.

I am doing the swap because I love the motor, but if you haven't started yet then my advise is don't. Do the 5.0 swap instead. Parts are extremely difficult to get and very expensive for the sho motor if you plan on making any more power than stock. And chances are your motor has been sitting long enough that the bores are rusty and will need a rebuild. I thought I could do the swap for 2k with a lot of left over parts in my shop, and I'm in it about 8k now.

But if you go through with it, I had total seal make a set of custom stock bore piston rings that I'm not going to be using. If you're interested I could sell them to you.
 
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