Want to Take the V8 plunge


generalgrog

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Hello guys, I really appreciate this forum, been lurking for a while since I purchased my 95 XLT extended a few months ago. I bought the truck as project, and a way to learn about customization. I have done a lot of work to the truck, and am ready to take it further. i plan on putting a 5-7 drop, and have all the info to do that. I also want to swap the 2.3l that is in it, and put a 347 stroker in. So I have a few questions.
1) Will the 302(stroked) be a problem when I drop the ranger with the 5-7 kit?
2) I am not looking to go racing, I just really love the sound that a stroked engine makes, so as far as the 302 donor, I just really want to know what would be the easiest 302 donor. Not looking for major HP, just want something I can go get used and rebuild it and work it via my local machine shop.
3) I prefer manual transmission, so would like recommendations on that as well.

appreciate any help, and will make a build log when I get started.

GG
 
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RonD

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Welcome to TRS :)

If you buy a 1996-2001 Explorer with V8 you will get most of the parts you will need
Radiator, pulley systems, exhaust, wiring and EFI computer
Also the lower intake that fits better under ranger hood
Bonus is that Explorer V8s used GT40 and GT40P heads


The 1997-2003 Ford F-150 with 4.2L V6 engines came with the M5R2 manual transmission, 4.2l has the same bolt pattern as 302(5.0l) V8, it also has shifter in the same place as the smaller M5R1 transmission used in Rangers

Good page to bookmark here: https://therangerstation.com/tech_library/index.shtml

Look in engine section and conversion section for Ranger V8 swap info from "been there done that" members
 
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generalgrog

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Ok so a 96 to 2001 explorer 302 engine, mated to a M5R2 manual transmission. Looks like a good starting point for research.

thanks!
 

RonD

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Yes, but look to buy the whole Explorer to get all the parts, many are rusted out or have bad transmissions, even engine issues, since you want a rebuild/stroke anyway, doesn't matter, so you can get them cheap
 
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generalgrog

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Ok so since I have never dealt with a junkyard, and this is all new to me, just want to make sure I understand.

So I looked through my local craigslist and also ebay. I can buy a beat up explorer with a 5.0 for around $800. But I can buy an explorer engine off of ebay for around $400. I am thinking I would not use the radiator off of the vehicle, in favor of purchasing a new rad.

Doesn't the engine come with a wiring harness when you buy them off of ebay?

If that is not the case, I guess that would be the big reason to buy the vehicle over the engine, unless there is money to be made by selling the explorer to a junk yard minus the engine? So you buy the vehicle pull the engine and harness then sell the rest to a junkyard to try and make back as much of the $800 as possible.

Am I missing something else? What about the differential? Would I want to use the one off of the explorer to replace the rangers diff? or buy a different one that matches the mr52 tranny.

GG
 

generalgrog

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OK now that I look closer, i see that the ebay salvage yards are only selling the engine, and not all of the accessories, so now I understand to buy the vehicle.

Be patient with me, still learning. :)

GG
 

RonD

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Yes, there are quite a few bits and pieces you may need or want when doing this swap
You may want the instrument cluster, it fits, the seats and console, they fit, starter motor and exhaust pipe crossovers and Cats
If its a 1998-2001 Explorer get at least 1 key with it, for the computer and PATS module

The explorer rear axle is not bolt in for Rangers, you need to cut off the spring perches and weld them back on, to use in a Ranger
If it has rear disc brakes it may be worth while doing that swap
 
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