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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have waited a long time to get this project moving, and it is time to get it documented.

I bought this car back in 2010 and it has been waiting for my personal touch ever since. The car has a neat history and I am anxious to get my first "Ford" under way. I bought the car from the step-father of my ex-girlfriend. Funny how life presents you with certain opportunities, right?

This is a car that was originally customized in the early 70s. The story is that Phil (my ex-GF's step-father) customized this car with the help of his father (Phil Sr.) around 1972. Phil Sr. was somehow affiliated with the local Ford dealership and thus they had access to a host of Ford parts. The Ford aficionados among you will spot various, high performance, highly sought after Ford parts in the original car. I won't give away all the secrets, but hopefully people will chime in as they spot the parts.

The theme (or the philosophy of use) of this car is that it that of an Old Skool street/strip car. Think of it as a throw back to the late 1980s to early 1990s "street machine." I realize that this isn't a pro-turing build, but I have been a member of this community since 2001 and there isn't another place on the internet where I would rather post this project.

As Tony Soprano would say "enough with the preambles..." Here are some pictures of the car as it was when I first got it and as it sits today....













This is the state of the car as it is now. The engine that came with the car is gone and will be replaced by something that I am much more familiar with.












No doubt you all recognize this particular engine...don't hate...







I absolutely love the patina on this car and I will do all I can to preserve it...





Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I wanted to use as many OEM style parts as possible. This makes getting replacement parts easier and I like how the newer parts are designed.

When I built my RX7 the swap kit for that was designed around 4th gen F-body motor mounts. I really liked the clamshell design that allowed for good vibration control and at the same time are almost indestructible. So for this build I decided to use the same motor mounts.



The oil pan is a front sump pan from a 04-06 Pontiac GTO. These pans are almost identical in dimension to the stock early small block Ford pans.

Customer headers are not in the budget and from doing some research it didn't look like any stock manifolds were going to work very well. The issue is the width, not only between the shock towers, but also down at the frame rails. The Cougars (and Mustangs) had a rear steer arrangement and the steering box sits right along the frame and creates problems for exhaust routing.

I decided to try the Holley cast exhaust manifolds because they are narrow, tuck really close to the engine and are designed to dump the exhaust towards the rear of the engine. The engine had to be offset a little towards the passenger side in order for the exhaust to clear the stock steering box.



As you can see, the clearance is a little tighter on the passenger side:

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Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I thought I would post a few more pictures.

The new GTO pan fits these cars like a glove. There is plenty of clearance all around the crossmember. Also in this picture you can see the custom mounts that were made by the Schwartz crew. The U-shaped brackets are welded directly to the bolt on plates that used to hold the SBF mounts. It's a simple design but one that will work very well.



Here is a shot of the driver's side mount:



What I am really impressed with is how well the Hooker cast manifolds fit this chassis. I realize that these manifolds are note early meant for any specific application, but their compact design and rear exit makes them suited to a wide range of applications where room in limited. I also recall that long tube headers don't add a significant amount of power LS engines that are relatively mild. If I want to make more power, I guess I can always turn them around :smoke:

The manifolds take a 2.5" head pipe and use readily available flanges and gaskets. Here is the passenger side:



Space it tight on the driver's side due to the steering box, but it all fits:



Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How about a few more pictures...

Changing the oil filter will be a snap!




Driver's side engine mount...



Modified stock transmission crossmember. It remains to be seem if it will work with a TKO 600...



Passenger side motor mounts from the front. As you can see there is plenty of room between the manifolds and the shock towers.



Passenger side motor mount from the rear:



Another shot of the driver's side engine mount from the rear:



Overall shot from underneath the car. As you can see it is a pretty solid car and doesn't have any sort of rust issues...



Stay tuned for more...

Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So today I did a little more investigative work on the rear axle. The car is in storage but I was able to get a few pictures with a long arm reach, a cellphone, and some luck...LOL

Nodular carrier...



Factory pinion snubber...



4.30 gear with a Detroit Locker, dated second week of April, 1970...



Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well...here it is, 2009 LH8. I am very pleased with what I got. This engine is exactly as advertised and I totally believe that it only has 386 miles on it. It was shipped on Wednesday and arrived at my door this afternoon. I'll get it mounted on an engine stand over the weekend and start collecting more parts.









If anyone is ever considering getting parts from a salvage yard, I can recommend Fierge Auto Parts in Quincy, IL with confidence. They were very nice to deal with.

Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So I had a chance to mess around with the engine today. I got it off the pallet and mounted on an engine stand. This makes working on the engine much easier since I can roll it around and rotate it. I got the water pump off, it will be replaced by a LS2 Corvette style pump. The balancer will also be swapped over to a Corvette style unit. I like using the Corvette style accessories because the alternator will be mounted up high on the driver's side. Since this car doesn't have power steering, I will only need an alternator. Holley makes some really nice accessory brackets for these engines that are affordable and look very nice without having that bling...bling look.

I doused the engine with some Purple Power degreaser and took the intake off. After getting rid of a mouse nest under the intake it cleaned up pretty well:



I then flipped the engine upside down. This is the stock LH8 oil pan that GM actually markets for doing swaps into various older cars. Frankly it doesn't work really well in any application because the sump is fairly deep so it tends to stick down lower than the front crossmember on cars like 64-72 a-bodies and 1st gen Camaros. It obviously won't work on the Cougar because I need a front sump pan:





So off it goes:



These engines have a full length windage tray that does a very good job of keeping the oil down in the pan instead of slinging it up into the crank.

However, when using different oil pans, you have to get the matching windage tray. Since I plan on using the 2004-2006 GTO front sump pan, the windage tray has to go too:



Here is the GTO windage tray:



Here I have the GTO pan mounted along with the Hooker exhaust manifolds. These probably will hurt ultimate performance, but I am not looking to squeeze every last ounce of performance from this engine, so fitment is more important. I am also able to reuse the MLS exhaust manifold gaskets.



Here is a close-up of the valve train.



I will swap the springs out for stock LS9 springs and also use titanium retainers which will reduce valve train weight even further. This makes valve control easier and will allow me to raise the red-line. I plan on setting the rev-limiter in the 6750RPM range and shift at 6500rpm.

The current plan is to run the GM ASA cam. I know it is an older design but by all accounts it makes great mid-range and upper RPM power. It is also easy on the valve train since it was designed for endurance oval track racing. These cams also sound fantastic!



Time to start ordering some more parts...

Andrew
 

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Pretty cool, glad you are taking your time and not hacking it up.
 

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So you're replacing a dual quad Boss 302 for an LS? What did you do with the Boss?
 

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Put what you want in it your car ! That Vega in avatar has a 393W and I have a tube chassis Beretta with the same so you get a pass on this one;)
 

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What a complete waste of a build. Why couldn't you put a coyote or some other ford engine in it. You should move this to other build thread.
 

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What a complete waste of a build. Why couldn't you put a coyote or some other ford engine in it. You should move this to other build thread.
U pay for it!
 
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