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is a 1997 mark 8 tranny, better then my 1996 tbird tranny, why if so
 

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It should be, but only a little.
The 97 should have updated accumulator pistons and it should have a change in the case to help the forward clutch. It may have a mechanical diode, but even if it does, that one may be a problem. It does have a different MLPS so you would need to use yours.
I wouldn't bother with that swap unless it were entirely free and you don't mind the work to do it. The difference isn't that great and there are too many if's. I would get a 99 and do it right. If you don't want to do that, get the updated accumulators and new valve body gaskets for the 96. Swap the accumulators and do a j-mod and you will have spent you time and money more effectively
Now, if you were asking about a 95 and that 97, then it would be worth the effort.
 

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a 97 mark tranny would only be marginally better. For a trans swap it would be a near drop in. Not stronger, but an equivalent replacement.
 
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