97 2.3 turbo setup


3ncrypt3d

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Indiana, US
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1997
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Ford
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2.3
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Manual
I’ve been toying with the idea of turboing my 2.3. Right now, I know I’d have to either get forged internals, or get a t-bird 2.3 turbo. In my area there’s no t-birds with a turbo, so I’d have to get an engine online for ~2500. Would this really be worth it, as opposed to building my current 2.3? I know I’d have to add oil fittings to the block, but I’m not sure where exactly. I’m planning on getting a stand-alone ECU, just to make everything easier. Another question would be the transmission. Right now I have the M5OD-R1 trans, code M. I’m assuming that it wouldn’t really handle the power I’m aiming for(230-250). I know the t-birds had a T5 trans, would it be worth it to swap that over too?

Tl;dr buying a t-bird 2.3, or building mine? And what trans should I use? Where are the oil lines at, if I should build mine?

Thanks.
 


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scotts90ranger

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2.3 Turbo
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The M5OD will hold up fine through a reasonable build which I believe is in the neighborhood of what you are talking about, I'm probably pushing about that and my M5OD holds up fine just using some Centerforce clutch parts (their stock clutch disc and weighted pressure plate, last I checked that wasn't available as a kit)

The only real differences between the thunderbird blocks and the Ranger blocks is a oil drainback port about 2" above the oil pan in the center of the block on the passenger side, the oil supply is teed into the oil pressure port on the back drivers side of the block (or is it head, been a while...). That and the forged pistons they need to run that power level. The pistons are available but are expensive.

At some point in time I might do a mild build on the '97 I just picked up, but I'll play that by ear and I want to toy around with the stock computer to see what it can do...
 

PetroleumJunkie412

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+1 for the standalone. Running one on my 2.9. Will never own another vehicle without one.
 


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