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Discussion Starter #1
The motor in my '97 LX went roughly two years ago, and I have just now had time to start getting this thing back on the road.

I've got the original motor out, heads off, everything separated out and starting to look at options. It appears that the original bottom threw/broke a rod on cylinder 2 so it is toast, and not a candidate for going back in. I have the cams which I would like to re-use and possibly the NPI heads. So for the amount of time and effort I would like to put into this I have come up with a few options.

1. Stock PI motor and swap the cams (Comp XE262H, NPI spec)

2. NPI block and a pair of used PI heads. Swap in the cams, granted they will
work without PTV clearance issues.

3. Mark VIII block with NPI heads and cams mentioned above.


I am trying to weigh out the best cost/power potential/work involved to determine the most feasible solution.

Any advice will be much appreciated.
 

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I would look for a lower mileage explorer motor, and swap your cams in. The extra power you'll get from the higher compression of PI heads on an NPI bottom end is not worth the cost, effort, and extra weight. Also figure the newest NPI bottom end would be 13 years old, and the newest MarkVIII bottom end is 15 years old, so at that point I would want to do a rebuild, which just adds to the cost and time involved. You can probably find an explorer motor with under 100K miles for $600 or less, then swap your cams, new valve cover gaskets, timing chains and guides, new front and rear main seals, oil pan gasket and oil filter adapter gasket and new fluids, and you can have the car back up and running for $1000 or possibly less.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I would look for a lower mileage explorer motor, and swap your cams in. The extra power you'll get from the higher compression of PI heads on an NPI bottom end is not worth the cost, effort, and extra weight. Also figure the newest NPI bottom end would be 13 years old, and the newest MarkVIII bottom end is 15 years old, so at that point I would want to do a rebuild, which just adds to the cost and time involved. You can probably find an explorer motor with under 100K miles for $600 or less, then swap your cams, new valve cover gaskets, timing chains and guides, new front and rear main seals, oil pan gasket and oil filter adapter gasket and new fluids, and you can have the car back up and running for $1000 or possibly less.
I hadn't considered this option. The explorer had an aluminum block correct? Any clue what the factory compression is on this motor?
 

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Yes it is an aluminum block. The compression ratio is somewhere in the 9s:1
 

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dont forget to factor in the price of a tune to run that PI motor without pings. and while your in their, may as well get a new T/C :)
 

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Aluminum block is KEY on these cars!!! Tad more power from NPI block with PI heads, but trust me the weight you save off the front end is irreplaceable. The car will handle FAR better with the 80ish pounds off the front!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
dont forget to factor in the price of a tune to run that PI motor without pings. and while your in their, may as well get a new T/C :)
Definitely going to get it tuned. I was thinking of going with a mark torque converter or one from an auto stang.

Aluminum block is KEY on these cars!!! Tad more power from NPI block with PI heads, but trust me the weight you save off the front end is irreplaceable. The car will handle FAR better with the 80ish pounds off the front!!!
That is what I would prefer. With the upgraded springs and shocks she handled really well. As good as my '08 Bullitt, but without the rear end kicking out when you hit bumps.

Anyone had issues running cams in these motors? I've found lots of info on the stock PI, NPI and Teksid, but not much on the explorer. I figure the same applies with a standard PI motor. PTV issues past stage 2 depending on the cam specs. So I should be good to go with the stage 1 comp NPI's I have correct?
 

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The rotating assembly is the same as a standard iron-block PI motor, so if the cams would work in a PI mustang, they will work in an Explorer motor.
 

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If u find more then one explorer 4.6 let me kno. I can use one for my mustang
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The rotating assembly is the same as a standard iron-block PI motor, so if the cams would work in a PI mustang, they will work in an Explorer motor.
Thanks for this info. That is what I was looking for.

If u find more then one explorer 4.6 let me kno. I can use one for my mustang
I definitely will. Not having much luck at the moment. CL seems to be pretty bare, but I will keep checking.
 

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I don't know about C/L but what a local Pick n Pull. i have seen a couple at ours, but i don't need one yet. but do plan on buying one in the next 6 months, just to do a fresh build for my bird.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I don't know about C/L but what a local Pick n Pull. i have seen a couple at ours, but i don't need one yet. but do plan on buying one in the next 6 months, just to do a fresh build for my bird.
There are a few on the yard at pull a part, but they don't designate what motor is in them. Probably all V6, but I'm going to go check this weekend.

Any idea what torque converter setup is in the transmission on these? Is it worth grabbing the trans at the same time?
 

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There are a few on the yard at pull a part, but they don't designate what motor is in them. Probably all V6, but I'm going to go check this weekend.

Any idea what torque converter setup is in the transmission on these? Is it worth grabbing the trans at the same time?
As long as you do your research on repinning and tail shaft housing length, yup much better than your 4R70W.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
As long as you do your research on repinning and tail shaft housing length, yup much better than your 4R70W.
Thanks GM, I'll just grab motor and trans at the same time then.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Ok, so I have a few options in the works but I need a little input.

I was able to find an '02 GT PI motor with timing chain noise (guessing its the tensioner on either side) for a very reasonable price.

I also found a block via craigslist that is posted as being from a Crown Vic, but looks suspiciously like aluminum for an extremely reasonable price. I will post it below, if someone can help me identify it I would appreciate it.




The oxidation in the center is what lead me to believe it is aluminum. If so I can take the heads from the GT and put them on the aluminum block and have an extremely reasonably priced setup. If it turns out to be an iron stocker, I'll just roll with the GT and replace the timing components.

I am having a difficult time finding explorer 2v V8's for a decent price, so I'm having to get creative.
 

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That is definitely an aluminum block. Its hard to tell from the picture what it came out of, because of the front cylinders being down and the carbon deposits, but that looks to have flat top pistons in it, in which case it would be a bottom end from a DOHC motor, and with PI heads would yield about 13:1 compression, so not a good choice for a street car.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
That is definitely an aluminum block. Its hard to tell from the picture what it came out of, because of the front cylinders being down and the carbon deposits, but that looks to have flat top pistons in it, in which case it would be a bottom end from a DOHC motor, and with PI heads would yield about 13:1 compression, so not a good choice for a street car.
I knew it had to be aluminum. Not sure why it would have been in a Crown Vic, unless they had done a swap. The only way to tell between teksid and WAP would be the casting marks in the top correct?

For the price I may pick it up anyways. The guy had it listed poorly. I had to really dig to find it. As a bonus it is in the same area I will be picking the GT motor up in the morning.
 

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That is a WAP block. It may have been in a Mercury Marauder.

Another option would be to swap the GT pistons into the aluminum block. You are already almost there, and you could then replace the rings and bearings while you are there.
 

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That is definitely an aluminum block. Its hard to tell from the picture what it came out of, because of the front cylinders being down and the carbon deposits, but that looks to have flat top pistons in it, in which case it would be a bottom end from a DOHC motor, and with PI heads would yield about 13:1 compression, so not a good choice for a street car.
or from a 05+ Mustang GT.

If that is indeed a 4V bottom end, from the info I've gathered, that would be static CR ≈11.8:1 with stock PI heads. Do-able for a street car, but larger cams are a must to bleed off some of the dynamic CR, and it has to be dyno-tuned like a mo-fo. I mean hours and hours invested into getting all the tables correct.

If it is a 3V bottom end, then....

http://forums.tccoa.com/showthread.php?t=133414
 

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Discussion Starter #20
or from a 05+ Mustang GT.

If that is indeed a 4V bottom end, from the info I've gathered, that would be static CR ≈11.8:1 with stock PI heads. Do-able for a street car, but larger cams are a must to bleed off some of the dynamic CR, and it has to be dyno-tuned like a mo-fo. I mean hours and hours invested into getting all the tables correct.

If it is a 3V bottom end, then....

http://forums.tccoa.com/showthread.php?t=133414
I talked to the guy this afternoon, and he used the "PI" heads for a mustang project. He didn't know enough about this block to list it as aluminum so I'm not sure he knows what the heads went on. Either way I am picking up the GT PI motor tomorrow and will go check this one out while I'm in town.

GM do you think my comp 262's would be up to the job? They are listed as mild, but seemed pretty aggressive.
 
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