5.4l Dohc Swap

Would you do a 5.4 DOHC swap?


  • Total voters
    23
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
Hey all,
Thought I would write a bit about a project that I have somewhat completed recently(are they ever really complete?). Apologies for the novel!

After driving home for lunch one day, I parked my 01' GT in the driveway. I went in, had a sandwich and came back out to go back to work. My beloved Mustang of 12 years decided at that time that sputtering, knocking and finally dying was a better alternative than driving back to work. I was late for work, so I jumped in the F250 and left my pony there...broken.

Fearing the worst, I started talking a bit with my buddy at work about rebuild options and possible engine swaps. He owns an 82 LX 4 cyl that he did a 302 conversion on. No replacement for displacement was the motto apparently and he convinced me to take on a 5.4L DOHC swap into my GT (a little more discussion and he might have convinced me to try a 6.8L V10 swap!). I did extensive research on the swap, including reading through several forums from years ago that went into the pitfalls of such a swap. Not one to turn down a challenge, I forged ahead full steam. After some extensive begging and pleading with the wife, I was allowed to sink a bit of our hard earned money into the project. I set a budget of roughly $1500 and went to work sourcing the engine.

As you well know there are only a handful of vehicles that Ford has put this engine in. The 2000 Cobra R, Ford GT, 2007-2012 GT500s, a few Australian models and the 1999-2004 Lincoln Navigator. With such a meager budget I'm sure you can guess my candidate! I found a 1999 Navigator that had just come into a salvage yard within 40 miles of the house. The Lincoln was running strong, but needed a new transmission. The asking price was $1200 for the complete engine which included shipping to my door. I took the plunge. A few days later on a rainy day in April, a flat bed wrecker backed into my driveway and I had my engine.

I thoroughly cleaned the engine and inspected it for wear. Everything looked really good, but I decided to put new rod bearings in it just to be safe. I pulled the 4.6L and began the process of interchanging everything that I would need from it to the 5.4. I swapped the motor mounts, oil pan and pick up, flywheel (sourced from an 03 Cobra), trans plate, and some of the accessory drive pulleys as I decided to go with the 6 rib as opposed to the 8 rib.

The next decision that I had to make was that of the intake. I could try and find one of the Boss 260/290 intakes out there and pay over $1000, maybe I could find the unicorn Cobra R unit, or perhaps a supercharged setup from a Ford GT or GT500, I could even run a sheet metal unit!

There was/is a great article out there on one of the other forums that talked about using the 2012 Coyote intake as the ports match almost exactly. I was skeptical, but also adventurous. I went out on eBay and found the intake for 60 bucks. Turns out a lot of the coyote guys like to run the Boss 302 intake on their 5.0s! I could have gone that route as well, but again with budget in mind I decided $60 versus $600 was the way to go. The next step was drilling and tapping the cylinder heads...I don't recommend this as it is quite nerve racking. I decided to fabricate some 1/4" hold down plates for the middle sections of the intake where the heads have no material. Other forums have pictures where member's have welded aluminum plates in the void on the cylinder head. In retrospect, I might have spared myself the hassle and went with MMR adapters. These units are pretty slick, but also pricey. At the end of the day I got the job done with hand tools, swearing and maybe a tear or two.

Wire harness modification was next. I retained the factory 4.6L harness and ECM. This required that I slice the coil wires and plugs out from the injector harness sections. I also had to extend these wires to compensate for the length to run the plugs to the coils in the middle of the cylinder heads. I soldered in and additional 6" on each bank and to be honest I could have used a little more to make things fit even better. I also extended the wires for the TPS, coolant temp sensor, IAC valve and soldered in a connector for the 95-98 MAFs.

I used 24lb injectors from a 96-98 Cobra and a MAF from the same. These were held down to the coyote manifold with custom fabricated fuel rail hardware and the fuel rails from the 01 GT. In order to clearance the heads, I had to use fuel injector hat spacers on the base of the injectors to raise them up high enough for the injector connectors. I believe they were 1/2 spacers.

With the fuel system sorted out, I turned to fabrication on the air intake system. I decided for now to run the throttle body from the 01 GT on the coyote intake. This required that I fabricate an adapter plate for the throttle body to intake. I used 1" 6061 aluminum plate for the adapter. I used Lokar for a longer throttle cable. I pieced together the air intake pieces from a CAI that I had previously and ordered a 90 degree silicon boot to mate the system to the throttle body. The IAC was mounted to the intake with a fabricated bracket. I used threaded hose fittings and a hose to plumb the IAC to the intake.

The coolant system was another item that I saved a ton of money on with a little ingenuity. I fabricated and "pressed" into the cylinder heads some barbed pipe fittings that I sourced from the local hardware store. I then welded some hold downs to the fittings and bolted them to the block. I ran a couple 90 degree hoses up to a T that joined the two sides together. Many trips to the parts store and I finally found the upper radiator hoses needed to circumvent the air intake system. I used an inline coolant temp sensor adapter as well as a Meizere inline thermostat housing (after a few coolant issues I opted not to run a thermostat). MMR also has a kit for the coolant system that utilizes AN style fittings.

The accessory drive was last on my list. Everything was the same as stock with the exception being the alternator. For this I fabricated a reverse mount bracket system and mounted the alternator right behind the coolant reservoir tank. Again, this could have been done differently with a bit more money, but I was determined to save as much as I could. The best method for this that I have seen is to use the Cobra lower coolant casting and a kit from MMR to mount a powerstroke alternator below the power steering pump. You could also retain the stock mounting location by utilizing a sheet metal intake with the navigator lower, or one of the Boss 260/290/302 intakes.

For the exhaust you can use the passenger side Navigator manifold, however to clear the steering linkage you must use a 99-01 Cobra manifold on the driver's side. I removed all EGR components on this swap as the intake has no accommodation for them whatsoever. I had a muffler shop fabricate the down pipes that feed Magnaflow Hi-Flow Cats, an H-Pipe, Summit Racing Street/Strip Mufflers and Pace Setter resonator tips. All O2 sensor locations remained the same.

Tuning was accomplished using a Delta Force Sniper Special Forces Gas unit.

The car is daily driven and runs very good. I don't have any dyno numbers as there isn't a shop around here that offers the service, but I can tell you that the car has more power and a lot more torque than the 4.6L. I am currently running 3.55 gears and have a set of 4.10s on the shelf, however for the sake of the tires I am not sure that I will swap them in.

I referenced several websites and forums during this swap. One great quick reference site is http://www.sullivanperformance.com/yvs450/tech/tech1.htm.

Many have reservations about this swap, but I am very happy with it. All said and done I had a great time with the swap and am proud of the work that I accomplished. I will say though....$1500 bucks because of a $150 fuel pump failure didn't make the misses too happy. :)

5.4 Swap.jpg
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
  • Sponsors(?)


Mr. Rustypwnz

Advanced Member
Jun 1, 2005
1,761
63
69
indianapolis/ valdosta ga
Finally someone that has made that damn intake work! Get some dyno time and post up. This would be the make or break point for me. Most navi swaps just don't make the hp to justify it, tq yes lol.
 
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
Thanks for the comments! I did another search for dyno shops near me and apparently now we have a couple options! I'll see about getting in there and laying down a few pulls. I know my A/F ratios could use some fine tuning!
 
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
Just a quick update on the project. I have sourced a dyno! Just waiting on a buddy to confirm dates as we are getting a group discount for multiple cars going on the same day. I should have numbers by the end of the month! :)

I also recently upgraded the throttle body! As I was walking through the salvage yard the other day looking for an idler pulley for a friend's Focus, I stopped and looked under the hood of a 5.4 F150. I thought "hmmmm....that throttle body looks bigger than the stock 4.6 Mustang unit!" Sure enough, I got it home and compared the two and it was considerably larger! Research that I have found shows the stock 4.6 unit is 65mm and the F150 unit is 75mm.

I had to reuse the 4.6 throttle body blade shaft as the F150 shaft has the cable pulls on the opposite side of the axis. This required slight modification to the shaft as needed to slide the 75mm blade into the 65mm shaft. Power is up and the 5.4 DOHC seems to pull a bit harder now with the increased air flow! Not a bad upgrade for 20 bucks!
 
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
You asked, so here it is!!! Made it out to the dyno today with a few friends. We had an 82 Hatch, 2012 GT and a 2014 in addition to my 01. I can't think of many more things that could beat this morning! :)

I made several pulls with minor tuning as we were limited on time running 4 cars and another customer lined up right behind us. The pulls were made on a Dynojet dyno.

Using Delta Force Sniper tuning software I established a base tune for 87 octane. I made a minor tweak and pulled the timing back 2 degrees during my second set of pulls. We need to schedule another session as the ECM started having issues around the 4500 rpm mark which you can see on the attached graph. The 5.4 was also running really rich around the 11 to 12 range.

All in all, I am very happy with the results! 273hp and 316ft/lbs at the rear wheels! I should have a video up on YouTube in the next week or so.

The 82 Hatch ended up having a fuel pump issue, which we will be fixing very soon. The 2012 put down 366hp and the 2014 got the win with 388hp. Torque numbers for both cars was around 360 ft/lbs. The 2012 was bone stock, while the 2014 had the Boss 302 exhaust with a JLT CAI.
 

Attachments

  • 5.4 DOHC Baseline.jpeg.jpeg
    5.4 DOHC Baseline.jpeg.jpeg
    93.2 KB · Views: 3,218

Joshdj13

New Member
Apr 20, 2015
1
0
1
31
Sorry to bump an old post but was hoping for an update. I'm planning to do a similar swap and would like to know how the stock coyote intake turned out and if you got the tune worked out an new numbers.
 
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
The engine is running strong and hasn't produced any issues! I performed an A/C delete for weight savings and reloacted the alternator to the A/C compressor location with a custom fabbed bracket. I also recently flashed to an e85 tune to help prevent any detonation. This is a higher milage mil and I want to make it last. Piston rings for a 5.4 DOHC are ridiculously expensive and I don't plan on doing a rebuild for at least another year or so. I will be sure to get some more dyno numbers if the opportunity comes up, but I am confident that I am slightly up from my last dyno session. I imagine 320-325hp and 360-375lbft are my crank numbers right now. The extra torque is perfect for autocross! During the rebuild I will most likely source another set of navi heads, do a little porting and swap in some 2000-2002 Cobra intake cams, the extra duration will help make a little more horsepower. I will also be throwing a 2 core Navigator radiator into the mix in the near future!

Took a trip to Hallett Motor Racing Circuit a couple weeks ago, have been autocrossing the car at least once a month this year and daily drive it whenever I can (rear seat delete makes car seats impossible). Life commitments take up a lot of time and leave me with little for video editing, but I hope to have some videos up soon. My youtube channel is at the following link: SchuldiesSpeedWorks - YouTube

Let me know if you have any questions or if I can help in any way!

TeamCaffeineGT
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

Micheal Nadeau

Active Member
Dec 30, 2013
258
32
49
37
Savannah, GA
I am in the middle of doing this same swap right now. Did you reinstall the knock sensors? You said you were able to reuse your 01 GT fuel rails? What cooling issue where you having that forced you to run w/o a thermostat? I am contemplating not running one as well, mine will be a daily driver. How did you handle the heater core lines? The ports in the intake, right behind where the throttle body mounts, what all did you connect their? Sorry for all of the questions, I feel like I am over analyzing this!! Got the motor from LKQ for less than $200 out of an 01 insurance total lossed 120K Navi. I've got the engine on a stand, resealed. She was clean enough inside to eat off of. Intake mounted (stock coyote) and 80 mm AccuFab on it. Have 24lb injectors, was planning on 39's. Gonna be running LT headers. trying to source an 03/03 cobra oil filter housing adapter as I am gonna use the Sullivan alternator bracket and Powerstroke alternator. I like how you did the coolant cross over. I wasn't sure how to clear the TB, so I may steal your idea there. Any tips would be a life saver. Thanks in advance.,
 
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
I am in the middle of doing this same swap right now. Did you reinstall the knock sensors? You said you were able to reuse your 01 GT fuel rails? What cooling issue where you having that forced you to run w/o a thermostat? I am contemplating not running one as well, mine will be a daily driver. How did you handle the heater core lines? The ports in the intake, right behind where the throttle body mounts, what all did you connect their? Sorry for all of the questions, I feel like I am over analyzing this!! Got the motor from LKQ for less than $200 out of an 01 insurance total lossed 120K Navi. I've got the engine on a stand, resealed. She was clean enough inside to eat off of. Intake mounted (stock coyote) and 80 mm AccuFab on it. Have 24lb injectors, was planning on 39's. Gonna be running LT headers. trying to source an 03/03 cobra oil filter housing adapter as I am gonna use the Sullivan alternator bracket and Powerstroke alternator. I like how you did the coolant cross over. I wasn't sure how to clear the TB, so I may steal your idea there. Any tips would be a life saver. Thanks in advance.,

Did you reinstall the knock sensors?
I used the 01 GT wiring harness and PCM. Not sure if the 4.6 SOHC had knock sensors as I don't remember seeing wiring for such.

You said you were able to reuse your 01 GT fuel rails?
I did reuse the GT fuel rails and they work fine. In fact I read from Sean Hyland's book that they flow better than the earlier unit that came on the engine. I employed a spacer setup and got creative. Here is a picture. I ordered injector spacers off of ebay similar to these ones: 4 12 5mm Fuel Injector Extenders 6061 Anodized Domestic Fit New Viton O Rings | eBay
5-4-fuel-rail-adapter-jpg.533696


What cooling issue where you having that forced you to run w/o a thermostat?
The major issue with the thermostat was that running the coyote intake eliminated the reenforced housing that the t-stat resided within. I bought an inline Meziere housing, however the water pump builds so much presure that it blows hoses, so I run without a t-stat. Data logging showed that during my daily commute coolant temps never rise above 180. The track and even hard autocrossing has exposed the weaknesses in my design. Don't use spring clamps! I had an issue where the water pump pressure blew the radiator inlet hose right off the radiator. I highly recommend getting a 2 or 3 core radiator that can flow better. The stock single core unit works fine for daily driving, but gets hot at the track and causes excessive pressure in the system at high rpm.

How did you handle the heater core lines?
The heater core hoses go in the same place as they do on the 4.6. I used a freeze plug with a welded in nipple in the passenger side head to accomidate the heater hose that runs to that location on the 4.6.

The ports in the intake, right behind where the throttle body mounts, what all did you connect their?
I ran a hose from these ports on the front of the coyote intake and used a vaccum tee to hook up all of the needed lines: evap for the fuel tank and vaccum pressure for the fuel regulator. I also capped one that I threaded a nipple into that was used for a remote mounted IAC. The TB that I am running now regulates the idle via an allen head screw.

Additonal Tips:
Space the K-Member. Even though I got away with not doing this, it would give you much needed room to clear the brake booster.

Make sure you are good at soldering. If you are using the 4.6 harness and PCM then you will be extending coil plug wires by 8" or so.

Source an after market throttle cable and get creative with mounting it. I am still trying to work out how to get my cruise attached. Also, with the throttle body tilted, the throttle pull range is going to be very touchy. I barely touch the pedal and it revs.

Take your time and don't rush it. Also, don't beat yourself up if something isn't perfect. Making a coyote intake work on an engine that it was never designed for and re-engenerring the cooling system to accomidate it is a challenge. I still have little tweaks I want to make and I doubt it will ever be perfect.

Let me know if you need any picts or have any additional questions. I have a driving review and build dialog video coming soon, so watch for that on the youtube channel. Best of Luck with your swap!
 

Micheal Nadeau

Active Member
Dec 30, 2013
258
32
49
37
Savannah, GA
I ended up swapping out the stock coyote unit for a Boss 302 unit. Guy totaled his car and needed to sell parts so I got a great deal. Running the Boss unit means I wont have to relocate the alternator or source the terminator oil cooler adapter housing. The 4.6 doesn't run knock sensors, so I get to eliminate that from the 5.4. I left the 5.4 heater core tube in the valley. I need to find the 4.6 one and swap it out. I thought about doing the cylinder head cooling mod for mine which would put the nipple in the passenger side head for the other heater core line. I have a terminator throttle body cable on the way. I contemplated using the Navi cable, seemed extremely long. I do have the k member spaced. I had to ditch the firewall adjuster as it had the cable against the valve cover. I'm planning on running aftermarket fuel rails.
 
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
Awesome! Hope you got a great deal on the Boss 302 intake! They were running around 600 bucks when I did my swap and to be honest if I was gonna spend that much I would just source a Boss 260 or 290 setup for a bit more. I don't drive the car in the winter weather, so having the heater core for me was purely for cooler spring mornings and for defrosting a fogged up windsheild. I am running the 4.6 oil filter housing on mine and it works just fine. Let me know how you decided to run the cooling and post some picts of your build if you get a chance!
 

Micheal Nadeau

Active Member
Dec 30, 2013
258
32
49
37
Savannah, GA
Got the intake like new for $275. I should be getting ready to fire the car up here in a week or so. Waiting on LT headers to get here and deciding on what TB to use.
 

Attachments

  • 20150703_093205.jpg
    20150703_093205.jpg
    126.9 KB · Views: 10,056
  • 20150703_092115.jpg
    20150703_092115.jpg
    137 KB · Views: 8,169
  • 20150703_091704.jpg
    20150703_091704.jpg
    68.9 KB · Views: 1,743
  • 20150702_140529.jpg
    20150702_140529.jpg
    126.9 KB · Views: 1,991
Mar 16, 2009
190
11
18
Springfield, MO
Got the intake like new for $275. I should be getting ready to fire the car up here in a week or so. Waiting on LT headers to get here and deciding on what TB to use.
Awesome! Let me know how the long tubes fit and which ones you used! I didn't think those could fit in there due to clearance. Hopefully a 3" cowl hood will clear that intake! :) You got a great deal on that intake it sounds like. MMR also sells the coolant bosses for the heads that utilize AN lines. I would recommend going that route if you can afford it. My setup was a bit crude but got the job done.

I hope to have a walk around video done on mine soon. I have in car footage and one take commentary footage that I need to edit as well. Finding time to edit is hard to come by. :) Keep up the good work! Looks good.
 

Micheal Nadeau

Active Member
Dec 30, 2013
258
32
49
37
Savannah, GA
I know its been a few weeks. I have BBK long tube headers in the car now. The header is clearanced for the steering shaft, but still needs to be modified a little to clear the steering shaft. That side went in easier than the passenger. I had to unbolt the trans and shift the tail end around to the drivers side to get the header in the car. Floor pans needed to be persuaded a little. I noticed from underneath, the engine seemed to sit lower on the passenger side. So I am planning on shimming the motor on that side to get it to sit flat. I am using the coil harness' from the navigator in order to try to keep the appearance clean. I was going to attempt to use a modified coolant cross over, just seems like securing may be an issue. I was able to source an entire mach 1 t-stat set up with hoses for cheap. Did you upgrade the fuel pump? You ever get the car back on a dyno? the 273 you had initially kinda has me worried about "was it worth it?" as I have seen others with mid to high 300. Im really hoping to start this thing soon. Work takes up so much time. Did you upgrade the fuel pump?
 

Gary Ugarek

Member
Nov 29, 1999
30
8
18
50
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Michael,

can you snap a picture of the T-stat set up and share it? I am in th emiddle of this build right now and we're trying to get everything done while the motor is out of the car versus waiting until it is in the car.

Also, did you stick with the TR3650 trans? any issues with it?