Progress Thread My budget '93 5.0 rebuild (pic heavy).


5 Year Member
Nov 12, 2003
Well, the time finally came for me to pull the motor out of my '93 ragtop and freshen it up to go into my other project. It was a good car. I've enjoyed cruising with the top down for the last 3 years. I originally bought it for $1500 and after I pulled the motor/trans, I sold the carcass for $1000 so I'm pretty happy, financially. It'll live on in my '54 Customline!
Lots of pics so I'll have to do multiple posts.

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Here's the beast in question. I'll rebuild it as cheaply as possible and everything will be stock. 225hp will be more than enough for my '54 and besides, I can always add heads, valvetrain and induction later.

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The Mustang's 5 digit odometer read 97K and at 28 years old I was expecting a well worn, 197K mile motor. Turns out, it really was owned by a little old lady who had only driven it 97K, serviced it regularly and was very gentle with it. Pulled the pan and heads and was greeted by this.....

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before rebuild1.JPG

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No sludge build-up and barely any ridge at all. Had the bores mic'd and the worst one was .005 out which meant I could get by without boring it and buying new pistons! I pulled the rotating assembly and put fuel line over the rod bolts so as not to nick the crank journals.

rod bolt covering.JPG

Once it was down to a bare block, I chased all the threads.
Tip: Autozone and O'Reilly's tool loaner programs have thread chaser kits for free!
O'Reilly's tool loaner program - thread restorer set

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Next, I went over the decks with 80g on a piece of exhaust tubing, in two directions, to check for low spots or any warping. The scratches were evenly distributed indicating a flat deck.




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5 Year Member
Nov 12, 2003
Another issue was I needed to plug the center mount dipstick hole since the dipstick was now in the front timing cover. I simply tapped it, spread some thread sealant on an 1/8" pipe plug and filled the hole.

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Next task was cleaning up the cylinders. Got a ball hone off of Amazon.....
240 grit Ball Hone
and went to work. 45 passes per cylinder and the last 10 very quickly to produce the 45* crosshatch. Lots of 30wt oil as lubricant. Came out rather nice!

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Addressed the lifter bores too. 220g taped to a stick of 1/2" PVC fit perfectly. An up and down twisting action cleaned them up nicely without removing any material.

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Now that the block was more or less prepped, I wanted a good bite for the engine paint to stick so I reinstalled the pan, heads, covers, etc and plugged and sealed all holes and gave the block a good sandblasting.

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This is the paint I used. Primer and Ford Red.

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5 Year Member
Nov 12, 2003
Tore the motor back down, removed all oil galley plugs and gave it a thorough washing with hot, hot soapy water. Used a high pressure nozzle to rinse everything out then blew it dry with compressed air.

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This is the re-ring kit I ordered....
'93 5.0 H.O. engine re-ring kit

I also replaced the oil pump, shaft, timing set and a whole bunch of other superfluous stuff.

I checked the end gap on the rings by installing them an inch or so into the bore. All between .018 and .022.

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After I wire wheeled the tops of the pistons (don't wire wheel the skirts), I cleaned out the ring lands with an old broken compression ring then installed new rings (well lubed) with a ring expander.

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Ford 5.0's are notorious for leaking rear main seals. I want to prevent that at all costs. Installed Fel-Pro's crankshaft repair sleeve.
Fel-Pro 16250 crank repair sleeve
I ran a thin film of this on the inside before I tapped it on....
Loctite 518 Flange Sealer
I also used Ford Racings RMS to button it all up.....
Ford Racing rear main seal
When I install the flywheel I slather thread sealant on the bolts and that should prevent any RMS leaks.

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I thoroughly cleaned the crank and all oil passages and hand polished the journals with fine steel wool.

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Next, I set the crank in the block, torqued the caps and Plastigage'd all the mains. All within spec.

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Re-assembly was pretty straightforward.
Tip: Install the cam first, before the crank/rods/pistons! This allows you to grab it from both ends, facilitating installation so you don't nick the cam bearings.
Lathered it up really good with cam lube.

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5 Year Member
Nov 12, 2003
Next, I lubed up the main journals with Lubriplate and installed the crank.

mains with lubriplate1.JPG

Installed the rest of the rotating assembly and started methodically putting everything back together.



The upper intake 5.0 cover plate was a crusty mess, so I cleaned it up. Gave it a quick sand blasting, covered it with Krylon satin black paint, then sanded the paint off the raised portions with 400g on a block. Finished it off by polishing it on my buffer with jewelers rouge. Like new!

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Slapped on some Ford Racing valve covers, cleaned everything up.........and she's 'bout ready to go!




I've got exactly $900 into this motor. It's basically a brand new motor!
Head and machine work was $450 alone, the rest was parts and materials.
Sure beats a couple of grand for a crate motor!

Next up is color on the firewall and door/trunk jambs.
Firemist Green BC/CC
Once that's dry, I can bolt up the trans and slide the combo in.
Getting closer!
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5 Year Member
Nov 12, 2003
I threw the motor/trans back in, just to get it out of the way for now. I'm currently doing body work on the front fenders and pulling the doors to prep the jambs. Next up will be pulling the motor back out and laying color coat on all jambs, firewall, inner fender panels, etc. If you want to see the whole build, the link is in my signature.