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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, it has been quite a while but it's good to be back!

I am in need of some guidance regarding a recent engine swap in my 97 bird.

The back story:

It has been quite a while since I have posted, mostly due to the fact that my motor exploded roughly 6 years ago. Since then the car has been parked in a garage in Alabama, basically untouched. I had some spare time this past week with the 4th Holiday to begin swapping over the transplant engine which I acquired roughly 2 years ago.

Details on the donor motor:

'02 mustang GT 4.6L, purchased from Craigslist. By all accounts looks clean inside and out. All T-bird specific parts required have been changed out. Mounts, oil pan, pickup tube, flex plate, etc.

Issue I am having:

After swapping the old motor for the new, I have come to the point where the engine is mated to the trans, and all bolts have been snugged. The crank pulley will not rotate at the point where I am applying more torque than I am comfortable with on the crank pulley bolt. If I unbolt the motor from the trans and back it off about a half inch I can rotate the motor easily with a breaker bar, and can also easily manipulate the torque converter. Mate them back, and no movement. Additionally, with everything bolted up there are not enough threads exposed at the TC to get the nut on. I can get a regular nut started that does not have the offset threads of the factory nut. My thoughts are maybe the nuts need to be on the TC enough to pull the TC forward because it's pushed back and binding on the housing.

If anyone has experienced a similar issue, or can provide any insight it would be greatly appreciated.
 

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NO! There should be no pulling of the TC forward when you tighten the nuts, they should be sticking out of the flex plate with the converter 100% seated in the Trans (and be sure that it is).

You say this engine came from an 02 Mustang GT, was it an auto or a 5 speed? If the latter I'd suspect you left the clutch pilot bearing in the crank, preventing the converter from seating.
 

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What Matt Said. Keep in mind at this point you should inspect the the converter and the front pump bushing for damage.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for the swift responses.

You are exactly right, and I can't believe I did not check that. That is 100% what the issue is.

At this point the motor has to come back out, and the TC is likely toast. Any recommendations on an upgraded replacement? I don't want to pile a ton of work on myself, but if there is a direct swap that is an upgrade I would like to spring for it.
 

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Thank you for the swift responses.

You are exactly right, and I can't believe I did not check that. That is 100% what the issue is.

At this point the motor has to come back out, and the TC is likely toast. Any recommendations on an upgraded replacement? I don't want to pile a ton of work on myself, but if there is a direct swap that is an upgrade I would like to spring for it.
Mark VIII/Marauder/Mach1 TC is a direct swap, slightly higher stall speed, and dirt cheap. They're also smaller diameter and won't balloon.
 

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Mark VIII/Marauder/Mach1 TC is a direct swap, slightly higher stall speed, and dirt cheap. They're also smaller diameter and won't balloon.
But is a different flexplate required with all three of those choices?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Great info, and ideas.

So, after removing the manual bearing is there a replacement bearing that needs to go in the crank for the auto trans, or does the TC just mate up directly?
 

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Nope, no need since there's no input shaft running through, the converter spins at engine speed 100% of the time. There's a nub on the end of the converter that seats inside the empty hole.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Awesome, thanks for your help Matt.
 

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I came across this same issue at work. Turned out the used motor was from a car with a stick and the pilot bearing was still stuck in. I removed pilot bearing and she fit perfect.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I came across this same issue at work. Turned out the used motor was from a car with a stick and the pilot bearing was still stuck in. I removed pilot bearing and she fit perfect.
How far did you get before realizing the issue? Did you fully torque the trans to the motor, and if so was there any damage to the torque converter when you separated them?
 

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No damage to torque converter. We got it bolted up but couldn't turn crank. Separated it and felt the pilot bearing shoved all the way in. I never believe the tags on used motor anymore.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I wanted to provide a quick update on the issue I was having and my progress. Once I got the motor back out, I looked and the throw out bearing was indeed there. Knocked the bearing out using the bread and socket method. Put the motor back in, buttoned everything up, and she runs! I drove her 231 miles from South AL to Atlanta yesterday with no major issues.

One thing I am running in to is that the new motor does not seem to have a temp. sending unit for the temp. gauge. or maybe it is just that I can't find it. Has anyone who has done a late model 4.6 PI swap run in to this issue? and if so how did you mount the second sensor? I have seen people run a T fitting off of the ECT temp unit hole and mount both sensors on the same hole, but I would like to avoid going this route if possible.

Thanks in advance.
 

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I wanted to provide a quick update on the issue I was having and my progress. Once I got the motor back out, I looked and the throw out bearing was indeed there. Knocked the bearing out using the bread and socket method. Put the motor back in, buttoned everything up, and she runs! I drove her 231 miles from South AL to Atlanta yesterday with no major issues.

One thing I am running in to is that the new motor does not seem to have a temp. sending unit for the temp. gauge. or maybe it is just that I can't find it. Has anyone who has done a late model 4.6 PI swap run in to this issue? and if so how did you mount the second sensor? I have seen people run a T fitting off of the ECT temp unit hole and mount both sensors on the same hole, but I would like to avoid going this route if possible.

Thanks in advance.
Yes. I believe people drill and tap the intake manifold near where the sending unit sensor for the guage is on the NPI manifolds.
 

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I wanted to provide a quick update on the issue I was having and my progress. Once I got the motor back out, I looked and the throw out bearing was indeed there. Knocked the bearing out using the bread and socket method. Put the motor back in, buttoned everything up, and she runs! I drove her 231 miles from South AL to Atlanta yesterday with no major issues.

One thing I am running in to is that the new motor does not seem to have a temp. sending unit for the temp. gauge. or maybe it is just that I can't find it. Has anyone who has done a late model 4.6 PI swap run in to this issue? and if so how did you mount the second sensor? I have seen people run a T fitting off of the ECT temp unit hole and mount both sensors on the same hole, but I would like to avoid going this route if possible.

Thanks in advance.
Yes. I believe people drill and tap the intake manifold near where the sending unit sensor for the guage is on the NPI manifolds.
Yup..the pi manifold needs to be tapped for the 2nd coolant sensor..the pi intake had actually had a flat spot where it's saposed to be tapped on the coolant crossover..
DON'T try a T fitting for the sensor, it won't read correctly..
I've even seen people use a piece of pipe in the upper radiator hose and have that tapped and the sensor installed into that.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I appreciate the replies, that's what I figured. For those of you that have drilled and tapped the crossover, has anyone done it with the intake in the car? I would think the intake would need to be out to keep metal shavings from getting in the coolant passages.
 

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I appreciate the replies, that's what I figured. For those of you that have drilled and tapped the crossover, has anyone done it with the intake in the car? I would think the intake would need to be out to keep metal shavings from getting in the coolant passages.
Intake has to be out or else you will destroy the water pump for sure. It's aluminum so you can't use a magnet to pick up chips either. Some people install a inline temp adapter on the radiator hoses for gauges. Best bet since the ECU is already getting the temp from where it wants. The gauge is bonus.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Hey Guys,

I have some bad news, and wanted to get some advice on next steps with the car/motor. I got the car running with the new motor and had been driving it for a bit before things started to go south. The car had plenty of power and was by all accounts very strong right after the swap. Eventually it began to develop a rough idle, loss of power and misfire in cylinders 1 and 4 according to my scanner. I racked my brain and replaced and checked all of the obvious culprits. What I eventually ended up finding, once I pulled the valve covers, was three rocker arms had popped off and they were laying in the head, and one of the intake valves was stuck in the closed position and the spring, retainer and locks had all popped off. No sign of the locks, assuming they ended back up in the oil pan, since while the car was running rough, there were no indications that there were issues with the bottom end. Since then I have replaced the hydraulic lifters and rockers for those three valves and got the spring retainer, and new locks back on to the one valve. It appears to be completely stuck because when I attempt to rotate the motor by hand the back of the valve stem wants to slip off of the back of the rocker arm once it gets to the point where the cam lobe would start pushing it down.

I do not see any way around pulling the head at this point and at the very least having the valve guides, and valves looked at by a machine shop. My question is what could have caused this? I don't want to go through the trouble of pulling everything apart and putting it back together only for this to happen again because it is the symptom of some other issue. My immediate thoughts are oil starvation could have cased this, or the previous owner (Mustang guy) did god knows what to this thing before he decided to ditch it. Any help or insight here is much appreciated.
 
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