Engine build questions

darkfader

Mustang Master
Feb 16, 2017
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I’m ready to start acquiring parts and send this block to the machine shop, but I want to be sure my plan is going to work properly. I was hoping you guys could help me out with this.

Car background: 93 GT, 5 lug/cobra brake upgrade and full Maximum Motorsport suspension in progress. 3.73 gears

Here’s the original plan:

1. Have the block bored .030” over. Use the SCAT 331 stroker kit with Trick Flow pistons for the bottom end. My machine shop will balance the rotating assembly for me at that time as well.
2. I had hoped to use the Trick Flow Track Heat top end kit for a “less hassle” combo since everything is basically matched for me.
A. My concern here is it appears that the heads in the kit don’t have upgraded valve springs? It sounds like I’d want the upgraded springs.
B. I’ve also seen many comments saying that a custom cam would be better. Does a custom cam mean I’d need custom length pushrods? If it starts to look like half the kit isn’t what I want, then I’ll have to piece together a kit which defeats the purpose.
3. Upgrade fuel system with 30lb/hr injectors and I think a 255 fuel pump?
4. Exhaust. Would I prefer long tubes or shorties? If LT, do I go 1 5/8” primaries or 1 3/4”? I had planned on a simple flowmaster catback for that classic sound.
5. Tuning. I’m totally tuning illiterate. I have a Bazzaz on my race bike with an auto tuner and it does everything for me. The closest dyno to me would be a several hour drive. I worry about initial startup and of course running properly whenever I want to take the car out after a proper break-in period. I’ve looked at the megasquirt system and that seems like what I’d want. If I’m reading correctly, I can eliminate the MAF altogether with this? If not, what size MAF/TB would be best suited for this arrangement. Then would I be able to tune remotely through some of the guys in that big megasquirt thread? If I can eliminate the MAF, I would just run a fenderwell CAI.

I’ll probably put a new clutch in and reinstall the T-5 for now because it was flawless when removed. But I’d love to eventually put a T-56 in the car at some point. That’ll be an expensive project that I don’t feel is a necessity at this point. I realize the scat kit will require 28oz flywheel and harmonic balancer.

I’m sure I’ve probably forgotten some things so if any of you guys can lend some advice I’d greatly appreciate it. My main goal is a car that starts up and has good drivability and reliability. I have no certain horsepower goal, just a car that is peppy and can be driven through town just as well as the mountains. Thanks for any help.

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RangerJoe

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I think there are better options out there if HP is the name of the game. If you buy it as a kit, the springs should be matched to the cam, but you may want to call Trickflow and get their recommendation.
There is no guarantee on pushrod lengths. You need to measure and may end up with a custom length either way you go.

I have gotten away with no tuning on my car and it runs pretty well. I have probably left some power and drivability on the table though. Stock block scat 331 with afr 185s, ed curtis custom cam and systemax intake.
As for the exhaust, I say go with as big as you are willing to fool with. Meaning pita to install and ground clearance. For me a set of Anderson big tube shorties was the compromise.

Joe
 
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a91what

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If you decide to go with MegaSquirt and want the car to run on the first turn on the key, I can help there. MAF tuning is stupid simple with the megasquirt, my car drove well before any tuning even began. I even have a video of it on youtube. I can build you a base tune if thats the route you go. I suggest using a 90mm lightning MAF, it is very accurate and cost is low you can get one with the pigtail you need for under $100.

If you have any MS based questions let me know.
 
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darkfader

Mustang Master
Feb 16, 2017
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Davis, WV
I think there are better options out there if HP is the name of the game. If you buy it as a kit, the springs should be matched to the cam, but you may want to call Trickflow and get their recommendation.
There is no guarantee on pushrod lengths. You need to measure and may end up with a custom length either way you go.

I have gotten away with no tuning on my car and it runs pretty well. I have probably left some power and drivability on the table though. Stock block scat 331 with afr 185s, ed curtis custom cam and systemax intake.
As for the exhaust, I say go with as big as you are willing to fool with. Meaning pita to install and ground clearance. For me a set of Anderson big tube shorties was the compromise.

Joe

I guess my confusion lies in the fact that the Trick Flow 170’s in the kit are a different part number than the 170’s that sell separately which claim to have upgraded springs. I want to buy once/cry once. And I’d prefer to build the car and be done with it.
If you decide to go with MegaSquirt and want the car to run on the first turn on the key, I can help there. MAF tuning is stupid simple with the megasquirt, my car drove well before any tuning even began. I even have a video of it on youtube. I can build you a base tune if thats the route you go. I suggest using a 90mm lightning MAF, it is very accurate and cost is low you can get one with the pigtail you need for under $100.

If you have any MS based questions let me know.

Thanks man, I’ll definitely be in touch. So plan on keeping the MAF?
 

a91what

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I guess my confusion lies in the fact that the Trick Flow 170’s in the kit are a different part number than the 170’s that sell separately which claim to have upgraded springs. I want to buy once/cry once. And I’d prefer to build the car and be done with it.


Thanks man, I’ll definitely be in touch. So plan on keeping the MAF?
Its completely up to you what you want to run, I am just saying that MAF is an option and its easy to tune if we can get the curve for the MAF you decide to use. It will take alot of the guess work out of the learning curve for you.
 

darkfader

Mustang Master
Feb 16, 2017
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Davis, WV
Ok. I’d rather have the least amount of guess work for sure. Lol. It’s still a while away from that point but that’s one piece of the puzzle figured out. Thanks again.
 

Davedacarpainter

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Its completely up to you what you want to run, I am just saying that MAF is an option and its easy to tune if we can get the curve for the MAF you decide to use. It will take alot of the guess work out of the learning curve for you.
Not to keep pointing it out, but Steve, you're a good guy.
 
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General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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I will jump in here cause I'm a 'keep it simple' kinda guy, ranger joe said it all, that combo your looking at should not 'need' a tune, the ed curtis custom cam thing will do wonders. Talk to trick flow about the springs, and/or ed curtis, they are pretty important, don't stress about leaving a few ponies on the table just make it fun to drive, dependable and easy to maintain. The stock ecu really works pretty good with mild bolt ons. I like long tube headers but short tubes are a good choice and the real difference will not be noticed, mid length headers, if they make them for street stangs, would be a good choice.
Do the research, make a plan, unless of course you want 10 second time slips then don't pay any attention to me.
 
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darkfader

Mustang Master
Feb 16, 2017
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Ok. My main concern was an improper A/F ratio. The last thing I want is to blow the thing up after a total rebuild. I guess I’ll get with Trick Flow and get their recommendations on my fuel system setup and go from there.
 

CarMichael Angelo

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I will jump in here cause I'm a 'keep it simple' kinda guy, ranger joe said it all, that combo your looking at should not 'need' a tune, the ed curtis custom cam thing will do wonders. Talk to trick flow about the springs, and/or ed curtis, they are pretty important, don't stress about leaving a few ponies on the table just make it fun to drive, dependable and easy to maintain. The stock ecu really works pretty good with mild bolt ons. I like long tube headers but short tubes are a good choice and the real difference will not be noticed, mid length headers, if they make them for street stangs, would be a good choice.
Do the research, make a plan, unless of course you want 10 second time slips then don't pay any attention to me.
Don't pay attention to him regardless of what et you're looking for...unless the et you're looking for is from a different planet.

Then that dude is living in his new garage in Florida.
 

darkfader

Mustang Master
Feb 16, 2017
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Davis, WV
Honestly, ET’s and HP is not a goal at all. The car was a great deal of fun with just exhaust and a hot air intake. With both the front and rear main seals leaking the way they were, I decided to take the engine all the way down and refresh everything. While it’s apart, I might as well make improvements. Im fine with N/A. The main goal is reliability and drivability. I haven’t seen any complaints with the TFS top end kits other than the cam should be swapped out for a custom grind. Although in all my searches I hadn’t found anyone with a stroker and the top end kit. The tuning aspect was my biggest concern but im certainly not worried about leaving some HPs on the table as long as the thing runs right.
 

General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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Look, mike is wrong, the garage ain't done yet so I haven't moved in. And you shouldn't pay much attention to my ramblings, I don't have a lot of experience with big dollar builds, high hp numbers and low ets but all you gotta do is keep it simple, pay attention to the details and stick to a plan. Mike will keep you from making any big mistakes.
 
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CarMichael Angelo

15 Year Member
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Honestly, ET’s and HP is not a goal at all. The car was a great deal of fun with just exhaust and a hot air intake. With both the front and rear main seals leaking the way they were, I decided to take the engine all the way down and refresh everything. While it’s apart, I might as well make improvements. Im fine with N/A. The main goal is reliability and drivability. I haven’t seen any complaints with the TFS top end kits other than the cam should be swapped out for a custom grind. Although in all my searches I hadn’t found anyone with a stroker and the top end kit. The tuning aspect was my biggest concern but im certainly not worried about leaving some HPs on the table as long as the thing runs right.
buy a complete long block then. There are numerous companies selling complete turnkey combos that only need a few add on accessories be added and you'll be the recipient of the advertised power without the "what else will I need" issues that come when attempting piecing stuff together.
 

darkfader

Mustang Master
Feb 16, 2017
236
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Davis, WV
buy a complete long block then. There are numerous companies selling complete turnkey combos that only need a few add on accessories be added and you'll be the recipient of the advertised power without the "what else will I need" issues that come when attempting piecing stuff together.

I had toyed with that very notion since the day I brought the car home, but that simply won’t satisfy my overwhelming desire to build it myself. No concrete decisions have been made. All that exists at the moment is a vision. I’ll make some calls, create a comprehensive list, and then make some tough decisions. I will admit I am stubborn.
 

RangerJoe

I leave the horn on while driving
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Honestly, ET’s and HP is not a goal at all. The car was a great deal of fun with just exhaust and a hot air intake. With both the front and rear main seals leaking the way they were, I decided to take the engine all the way down and refresh everything. While it’s apart, I might as well make improvements. Im fine with N/A. The main goal is reliability and drivability. I haven’t seen any complaints with the TFS top end kits other than the cam should be swapped out for a custom grind. Although in all my searches I hadn’t found anyone with a stroker and the top end kit. The tuning aspect was my biggest concern but im certainly not worried about leaving some HPs on the table as long as the thing runs right.

My brother n law built a 347 with the top end kit way back in the day before there was a stage 2 or 3 cam. It was the old twisted wedge heads, intake and stage 1 cam. He drove that engine for a year or so before he ate a lifter. He rebuilt it with a 282 extreme energy cam and systemax intake, keeping the heads. He said it made a night and day difference in the performance.

If HP is not a big concern, it will work fine for you, and still be plenty of fun.

Joe
 
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