Progress Thread I'm restoring my dad's fox body and I have some questions regarding my engine restoration

Fitzjack

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May 9, 2019
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I'm finally able to bring myself to work on my dad's car since he passed away and after driving it quite a bit I have started noticing the engine needs a bit of freshening up. I'm by no means the mechanic my dad was so that's why I'm here asking for input on my parts list because I may very well be completely out of my depth here. The car will be going off for paint and rust remediation very soon, which upon getting it back I plan to redo the brake system and start ordering parts to freshen the engine up and give it a little performance back.

My parts list is as follows:


This car has extraordinary sentimental value to me so all in all I'm just trying to make it look and sound good while also not being incredibly slow. I also plan to use it in small car shows that we host to raise money for a local homeless shelter so I'll be dressing up under the hood and the interior a little bit more once I have it all running reliably. I'm open to any and all suggestions that could make my life easier during this process.

Thanks for being an awesome community!
 
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LILCBRA

I wish I didn't have all of these balls in the air
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Nice! I may as well be the first to ask because someone else will at some point: do you have pics to post? Everyone loves pics! :D

As far as not being the mechanic your dad was, none of us really are until we jump in and get to work. Our fathers have quite a bit of experience on us all.

As far as you head selection goes, what made you choose those heads? There are a number of threads here that give opinions, facts, and comparisons on different head manufacturers and I'm sure there will be a multitude of opinions on your part selection, but from a numbers standpoint there are better heads out there for around that same price. I'll post a thread I started a while back asking about "cheap" heads for reference, but the ProMaxx heads have better flow numbers and are actually a little cheaper than what you've listed. Others here also have them and they like them. I bought a set for my convertible project but they're still sitting in their box, so I don't have much of an opinion to offer as far as performance or reliability goes.

 

Fitzjack

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May 9, 2019
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Nice! I may as well be the first to ask because someone else will at some point: do you have pics to post? Everyone loves pics! :D

As far as not being the mechanic your dad was, none of us really are until we jump in and get to work. Our fathers have quite a bit of experience on us all.

As far as you head selection goes, what made you choose those heads? There are a number of threads here that give opinions, facts, and comparisons on different head manufacturers and I'm sure there will be a multitude of opinions on your part selection, but from a numbers standpoint there are better heads out there for around that same price. I'll post a thread I started a while back asking about "cheap" heads for reference, but the ProMaxx heads have better flow numbers and are actually a little cheaper than what you've listed. Others here also have them and they like them. I bought a set for my convertible project but they're still sitting in their box, so I don't have much of an opinion to offer as far as performance or reliability goes.

ProMaxx was my second choice. I'm just more familiar with BluePrint so I opted for them. I'll definitely be looking at that list and those heads specifically, but my driving factor is assembled aluminum heads. I hate assembling heads because I always drop something somewhere I shouldn't which restarts the entire process.

I plan to take some pre-paint pictures this weekend when I finish getting some body molding off of it. I actually have to find a dash assembly because someone broke in and ripped the stereo out of the dash which busted it all to hell. But aside from that and carpet fading it the seats are in good shape considering the age.

I really appreciate your suggestion and your statement about our dad's is spot on. Mine started working on things as a small kid helping his neighbor so he had a lot of time on me but I also got taught by him so I have an advantage he didn't lol. I really miss him so working on his favorite car he own (he always claimed his Ventura was his favorite but the fox was the one that didn't get sold) makes me feel like he's still here and close to me.
 
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General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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Have you picked a shop to do the body paint work yet?
Do you have any rust in the frame rail area under the battery or master cylinder? I ask this because bodywork is some areas needs the engine removed to do right.
How many miles on the engine?
 

Fitzjack

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May 9, 2019
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Have you picked a shop to do the body paint work yet?
Do you have any rust in the frame rail area under the battery or master cylinder? I ask this because bodywork is some areas needs the engine removed to do right.
How many miles on the engine?
Yeah I have a body shop in mind and from my inspections, I don't see that rust but I could always be missing it. The motor has around 85k miles on it as well, so it isn't too terribly high mileage for the age.

My dad was a good enough body man that he was able to keep the rust mitigated and always able to apply primer on it. He just never got around to getting it painted and once he was diagnosed with cancer he just didn't have the time or energy to fool with it. It has sat since he passed so it has developed some rust but now that I got the title and stuff sorted I'm quickly picking up where we left off.
 

General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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85k on a 5.0 is not high miles, I'd pull the engine freshen up the gaskets, install cam, heads and paint it, then you can inspect the frame under the master cylinder real good, are you going to paint the 'dog house' (engine compartment)?
 

Fitzjack

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85k on a 5.0 is not high miles, I'd pull the engine freshen up the gaskets, install cam, heads and paint it, then you can inspect the frame under the master cylinder real good, are you going to paint the 'dog house' (engine compartment)?
It's all being sandblasted and painted by a close friend of my dad's. I have an old 89 F150 with ~400k on a 302 so I know it'll run like crap for longer than most things will run period. Same for a 350 out of a chevy.

That reasoning is why I was just looking at heads, cam, intake, new EFI, and gaskets really. It still has a ton of life left in it but once it dies, it's aluminator time.
 

90sickfox

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This will be an awesome task to document here.

The smog pump delete pulley isn't needed. A shorter belt will bypass that. Just need to remove the pump and that system. I assume you're going to change the exhaust to high flow cats that don't need the air pump. The heads ( depending on which ones you get ) may need thermactor plugs screwed in.

What are your ultimate plans for the car. Drive ability is sacrificed with major performance upgrades. If the car is running I'd advise sorting out the suspension and brakes first.

What year is this mustang ?
 
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Fitzjack

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This will be an awesome task to document here.

The smog pump delete pulley isn't needed. A shorter belt will bypass that. Just need to remove the pump and that system. I assume you're going to change the exhaust to high flow cats that don't need the air pump. The heads ( depending on which ones you get ) may need thermactor plugs screwed in.

What are your ultimate plans for the car. Drive ability is sacrificed with major performance upgrades. If the car is running I'd advise sorting out the suspension and brakes first.

What year is this mustang ?
It's an 86 GT hatchback with a 5-speed. I have "high flow" cats on it already so it basically is just robbing power along with that heavy fan. It's not going to be a daily driver at all, mostly weekend cruising and car shows.

We already switched it to the 88 front-end so it may one day get a 5-lug swap. I'm running a 93 Cobra brake booster, I need to get a different master cylinder as mine has a hairline crack right on the cap. I'm also eyeballing a set of coil-overs to drop it an inch but I'm not 100% sold on that idea yet. I also can deal with nearly anything for daily driving, hell during college my daily was an E36 BMW that I'm pretty sure burnt more oil than the Valdez spilled.
 

Fitzjack

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And where are the pics?
Coming soon. When I went and got it I found out my family had used it as storage after my dad passed away. I'll be grabbing some this evening while working more molding off of the car and putting a few interior pieces together. Just keep in mind, it is ROUGH right now due to sitting while a familial dispute occurred, but I will repair it to what me and him always talked about.
 
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HemiRick

I'd be looking at jacking under the house
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I just put a set of the Blueprint heads on my engine w a E274 cam and am very very happy w them....One thing I see missing from your parts list is bigger injectors, I'd recommend 30 lb. There's a U-tube video of those heads making 406HP w a very similar cam.
 

General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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Ok,88 suspension, got it, whew.
LEDs for headlights? They suck for the people coming at you, now projectors are a different story, they are actually headlights that place the light in the right area unlike leds that just light up everything, they blind on coming traffic.
 

Fitzjack

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Ok,88 suspension, got it, whew.
LEDs for headlights? They suck for the people coming at you, now projectors are a different story, they are actually headlights that place the light in the right area unlike leds that just light up everything, they blind on coming traffic.
The set that we bought for the trucks weren't like most aftermarket ones. the DOT is a lot stricter on commercial vehicles but they're hard to source if you have an issue so I'll most likely go with projectors just for convenience. Yeah it's just the 88 suspension since it sat a little wider and made it handle a little better. It also has the front seats out of the Turbo Coupe my dad had which I think are super comfy compared to stock seats.
 
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Ryuk

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Coming soon. When I went and got it I found out my family had used it as storage after my dad passed away. I'll be grabbing some this evening while working more molding off of the car and putting a few interior pieces together. Just keep in mind, it is ROUGH right now due to sitting while a familial dispute occurred, but I will repair it to what me and him always talked about.
I drove my 90 to work the other day. The paint is dead so it doesn't look as good as it should. A rough looking car is one with a story.
 

Fitzjack

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I drove my 90 to work the other day. The paint is dead so it doesn't look as good as it should. A rough looking car is one with a story.
Mine has burnt twice, once before I was born due to the cats stopping up and a second time while I was in high school because I bumped the cigarette lighter and didn't know it. My dad put it out both times before it was a total loss, but it developed a few quirks the first time such as the speedo not working and my dad just never got around to fixing it.

It was also a cop car to the best of my understanding before the guy got it to sell to my dad.
 
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General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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Mine has burnt twice, once before I was born due to the cats stopping up and a second time while I was in high school because I bumped the cigarette lighter and didn't know it. My dad put it out both times before it was a total loss, but it developed a few quirks the first time such as the speedo not working and my dad just never got around to fixing it.

It was also a cop car to the best of my understanding before the guy got it to sell to my dad.
Look for a metal tag screwed to the radiator support behind the head lights. That will tell you the truth if it's still there.
If it is don't lose it.