Progress Thread Slow Boat To China

Discussion in '1979 - 1995 (Fox, SN95.0, & 2.3L) -General/Talk-' started by hoopty5.0, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. I put the front suspension back under the '87 to fab up the motor mounts since the accessibility is... Well it might be the easiest engine stab in the history of doing so:


    Unfortunately, I could only go so far on my own, I have to have another set of hands to help move things around and work the hoist.


    I am re-using the stock motor mounts from the truck it came from, but will be highly modified. This is what I enjoy most, making ideas into real things. Once I get my buddy over to help, we should make quick work of it.


    The engine needs to come forward an inch or two, for firewall clearance and the mounts dont quite line up either.

  2. I goofed. Motor is coming back apart. Apparently you can't use common sense when putting together an LS. More on that later
  3. I quit. For today at least. One of those days that no matter which way you face, you're still peeing into the wind.

    The main caps on the motor are stamped 1-5 for their position in the block. They're all stamped on the same side (driver's side) or so I thought. Numbers 1 - 4 are stamped on the drivers side. Apparently #5 goes in backwards so the stamp goes on the passenger side.

    Why does this matter? Because the front and rear caps (1&5) have ears on one side of the cap:


    And these ears are meant to face inboard of the engine. If they don't, the front and rear main covers will not bolt on to the motor.

    Ok so just remove the oil pan and flip it... easy, right?


    The harmonic balancer, then timing chain cover, then oil pan, then oil pump/pickup then the windage tray, and THEN the main cap. Whew. It took forever just to type that, much less do it.

    So I said screw it in a huff of irritation. Yes, all of this could have been avoided had I done something as simple as snap a picture of the engine before I took it apart or even google it. Did I? Well....

    Determined to not be in a holding patter for the day, I attempted to tackle the motor mount problem from another angle. After thinking about it last night, I decided that bolting the trans up to the motor and sticking it would be easier and smarter. I could get the angle of the engine right and having the tail shaft on a solid surface would further steady the motor.

    So here we go:


    Shortly followed by the realization that I had indeed hit another hurdle that would shut down progress for the day:



    The oil pan hangs too low. It's the truck pan and has a deeper sump. so when you try and get the sump to clear the K member, the trans hits the tunnel on the body.

    Solution? Money, duuuuh. Either I pay to have the pan modified and welded or I buy a car pan. Since Im starting a new job with less pay and now have a wedding coming up, money is now just as scarce as time.

    So after all that, I tried to take the entire k member and front suspension out of the '85 in one piece, but it was hot, I was hungry and that was enough for one day.

    Maybe more tomorrow.

    That's all for today.
  4. I feel like I'm reliving my project now. My car is/was a heartbreaker. 2 steps forward, 1 step back.
  5. Chin up dude. How many times did I post a defeat thread, detailing how I trudged up from the garage filthy, sweaty, and broken,...only to re-attack the thing the next time and win?

    Every project eventually kicks your ass. I'm watching Scott's project right now waiting for the nitty gritty stuff that will kick his ass too.

    There will be a solution to the problem,....typically involving time, money or both. You just need to justify it in your head, and work out a plan,...then the "win" posts will follow shortly after that.
  6. oh I'm by no means defeated. It goes without saying that when you step up from a bolt-on kit to a "wonder if this'll work" - frankenstang type creation that the pieces of the puzzle don't just fall into place.

    I have to admit that I am pretty befuddled about the main cap though.

    The biggest issue I have is not having help, but my buddy is coming over tomorrow. I decided this evening the next plan is to unbolt the K member to get the engine in, then bolt it back in so that I can build the motor and trans mounts. The car pans are a lot smaller so I wont (knock on wood) have any clearance issues when I make the pan swap. After that it should get rolling pretty smoothly since the next stage is a truck load of fab work with the hot side, roll cage, and re-making the mounts for the ARB and rear coil overs.

    I put the '87 shell up for sale today locally for $300 so hopefully it'll go sooner than later - all the exterior pieces are easily worth the asking price and it has a title.

    Sharad - Haven't seen/heard much about your car lately since that shake down pass video. News?
  7. Not trying to be negative but it kinda seems like you're trying to reinvent the wheel with this some aspects. A lot of this stuff has been done and there are swap parts and even whole swap kits. A few examples: motor mounts, k-member, oil pan, etc. I know at this point you don't really have the money to buy that stuff but a few months ago when money was a little more available you could have gotten at least some of the stuff. Are you just doing it yourself because you rather do it that way or are you just sharpening your fabrication skills? Just wondering, carry on.
  8. stangboy mainly just because I can. I enjoy making things instead of shelling out whatever they want for the kit. And aside from making the parts, Im still trying to stay under or at my $10k budget, so that alone forces me to be unconventional at times.

    And besides, isn't this a little more interesting to read than "I bought this and bolted it in. Isn't it purdy?" ;)
    stangboy likes this.
  9. You and me both brotha! We all know its inevitable.

    Hoopty, looks like you literally bit off a little more front end than you can chew. hah! This is all a pretty huge undertaking, and honestly one that I probably wouldn't attempt myself, so I give you props for going at it strong. Keep at it. Projects like this are bound to bite you a few times.
  10. Back in the game, gents. Went out this morning and loosened up the K member, didn't even get around to taking it off before the motor slid on in. Snugged it back up and set the motor down to start fabbing the mounts.

    V1.0 - Didnt like because I couldn't get the bolt for the cradle in/out, so I did some more chopping:



    V2.0 - Worked like a charm, all bolts for block and cradle very accessible. I think Im going to need a washer or 3 between the mount and cradle to shim it up a little because the steering rack is 1/4" from the pan. Shouldn't matter since the mounts are solid, but ya never know.



    After getting them tacked up how I wanted, I set them in the vice and got to work. Here's a before and after:







    The pan still hangs dangerously low....


    Trans mount was next:


    DOM tubing for the new mount:


    And that's as far as I got today. The lunch bell rang and gotta do other stuff. Finishing the trans x-member will be another 5 mins of prep and welding and that'll be done too.

    Tomorrow, I hope to swap front suspensions and strip the '85 engine bay of all the crap and grease. Maybe the momentum will hold...
  11. dak0.jpg

    Why the goofy little kerf? why not just plate it w/o the little cut out?
  12. "C" for complete!

    Haha I was just lazy. I'm not all the way done with them yet, I was just running out of time today and wanted to make sure they were gonna fit right.
  13. You should take the oil pan out cut the contact point and fab up a piece to clear the k member just like they did on fast and loud sorry i just like watching that show and that could work for you as long as it wont affect your rotating assembly
  14. It's aluminum, unfortunately. I'm gonna see where it rides once all the weight is on the front end. If it won't work, the cheaper and easier option is to just buy a car pan for $50 - $100
  15. Or take a baseball bat to it
  16. Glad we're on the same page ;)

    As for today. Finally got an extra set of hands around to help. Dropped the entire front K member, springs, brakes, etc in one hulk of heavy metal. We wrapped a pair of rachet straps around each A arm and spring perch to keep the springs from killing us when we unbolted the strut. Worked like a charm.





    And the '87 has sold for $300 hahaha. Gotta finish cutting all the stuff I need to keep out before it goes this week.
  17. Registered it here in Florida and I've been driving it on the street. Been posting pictures and videos on

    Tentative track outing on 8/2/13.
    hoopty5.0, stykthyn and stangboy like this.
  18. The 87 rolled away today on 85 suspension front and rear. So basically I bought an '85 coupe for $450. I'll mark that as a win in my book if y'all don't mind.

    The only loss today was my dewalt 18v sawzall. the lock for the blade is stuck shut srtthis - I demand a refund!
    Sharad likes this.
  19. haha send me the catalog number i may have parts for it at my desk