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 a good day's work

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PostSubject: a good day's work   Sat Sep 01, 2012 9:38 pm

I got a lot done today. I took a rear diff out of a 97 mustang GT and stuck in in the FAng. I had to machine the rear brake discs and replace the pads, but that was no big deal. I got the parking brake working also. I took the cables from the 97 and they fit perfectly. I also had to make one brake line as the lines were different. I also put the hollow style big-sucka rear anti roll bar on at the same time. Then I had to put the old diff in the 97 so I could drive it out.
I pulled a front anti roll bar off a 88 mustang I bought last week, stuck it in, it’s a big sucker and it fit just fine, and the car seems to handle better, but I’ll know more once the brakes are fully bedded-in.
I am using 06 mustang allow wheels, and it seems they are a bit closer to the outer edge of the rear wheel arch. The axle & shaft assembly are ¾ wider on each side on the sn95 mustangs.
It feels good taking out off, but as expected it runs outa puff when you get moving, but I think my fuel mileage will increase in town, but its going to suck on the motorway.
I also grabbed the tilt wheel from the 88, I just got to change it over to automatic style so my shift lock actuator will work, I was lucky, this one has cruise control switches as well.
Even better, I snagged the Ford Motorsport 160 mph speedo/cluster assembly. It won’t fit my car as it has a 93 Mustang dash, but I’m pretty sure that he wiring connector shells could be re-pinned to work just fine.
I managed to buy a 92 Mustang 140 mph speedo head for my car, its only got 25k on the head.(them things are expensive!) this seems a bit of overkill as I’ll be putting a 96 dash in when I put the 4.6 in (when ?????) shouldn’t have any probs unloading the clusters.
I aint fussed about the power seats, as I had that before, but when they crap-out, it’s a tight fit!
I let the rest of the 88 go for 200 bones, I sold it to a guy who wants to put the nose and dash on his 80 coupe. I let him have the whole car including the posi diff, 5.0 loom tank & lines. He got a great deal, and I don’t have any storage issue/debates.
I ran out of time today, but I have a 8,8 posi 3.27, I got to change the axles over to the 5 lug style and swap the backing plates over. I hoping to unload soon.

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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Fri Sep 07, 2012 12:42 pm

Nice! You really need to post some pics of that thing.
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Sun Sep 09, 2012 5:26 pm

[img][/img]
[img][/img]
i like everthing so far, but it still needs more evaluation time, i have been sufferring a bog-out in hard right hand corners on a 1/4 tank or low fuel level, i found that the the internal fuel tank baffle pan/catch can has broken loose, i found this by parking the car on a hill in the drive, when it was time to leave, the eng failed to start, i thought the fuel gauge was wrong, when i shook the car, you can hear the baffle assembly rattling around, aparently this is a common concern???? after rolling it onto the flat ground, it fired-up.
i like the acceleration of the 3.08 rear end,although the speedo is off, it says 75 when im doing about 55, but my fuel milage has atually increased increased between home and work, which is a bonus. i'm totally satisfied with that. i was absolutely amazed how good everthing fit, even the brake lines from the 97 that go from left side to the right side from the tee fitting fell into place. the front & rear roll bars were a direct exchange.
i would it would be a good idea to get a friend to help when you put an 8.8 with rear discs in, they are considerably heavier than the 7.5.


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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Tue Sep 11, 2012 7:54 pm

Awesome! And I love that you drive your car enough that you notice a change in fuel mileage. Mine pretty much just sits. It's always got something wrong with it such that I don't trust it for normal use. I'm really keeping my fingers crossed that that will be different by next spring. I say that every year though... <sigh>
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:30 am

Come-on man, you have a beautiful car, and by what I have seen of the pix, the workmanship is outstanding.
You can’t expect to make as many mods as you have done to your car and not expect and teething problems. The car can’t be that unreliable, you are probably freaked because you have altered it so much and worry about it.
These cars are all 30 y/old, there aren’t 2 of them that are built the same,(thankfully) some 4/6 &8 cyl, most have carb, a few fuel injected, 4 lug & 5 lugs, manuals, auto, show car ready, beaters, we all have problems.
There is no rule-book or workshop manual to refer to when you get into trouble, but you never know, somebody on the site may provide an answer, like you did about the transmission mount.
Mine was just a means to keep me out of trouble as I am never satisfied very long with my cars, and this Fairmont allowed me to experiment on a vehicle that didn’t matter. I had or have no idea where this will go. I do know that it will never be done….that’s my problem.
I use all OEM parts from various cars, some fit and work better than others, you just gotta try. Don’t look at it as a bad choice; look at it as a challenge.
I know that the economy isn’t what it used to be, but its not all about money. Its about satisfaction, will you ever be satisfied???
I spent loads of time doing all kinds of mods to this car over the years, ignitions, engines, starters, alternators, suspensions, I’m still not happy with the car. But I am satisfied with everything else in life.
It’s a shame the members of this forum are so spread-out, hell, we could share all kinds of info and learn from each other, swap parts and help each other out. We could start a revolution and maybe FORD would resurrect the Fairmont as a retro car like they did with the Mustang.
You keep going the way you are, you’ll get there.
drive it/pound it/enjoy it.

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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:57 pm

Yeah, I imagine I'll always be tweaking it. And I exorcised the automatic transmission demon this year, so I don't have to worry about that anymore, although, my clutch is chattering a bit... drunken What kept me from driving it more for most of this summer was a BAD leak in the rear end. Someone had JB Welded a drain plug on the cover. Not a hard fix, but I didn't want to take it apart until I was ready to rebuild the rear end. It's apart now. But to give you another example, I always smell gas back by the gas tank. Why?! There's no reason that should be happening, all the seals are new, and the tank is mounted like it's intended to be (unlike last year). But it scares me. Plus I'm losing coolant, and I haven't found a leak yet. I guess maybe it's just been that long since I drove an old car regularly and you just lived with that stuff. Once I get the rear end put back together, I promise I'll enjoy it this fall.
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Thu Sep 13, 2012 10:22 pm

Funny you should mention cooling system leaks, I had similar issues, when the engine was first installed I had to top-up the cooling system a few times, I found the radiator was the problem, I reckon it had some small blockages internally, creating air pockets, and as it cooled down, it would suck the water into these “pockets”.
Also if I gave the little cow a fair amount of whip, it would puke coolant out of the overflow bottle, my first remedy for this was to put less coolant in the recovery tank, second remedy was to get rid of that radiator!! I had loads of parts at that time, but good radiators are scarce, I put one out of a manual mustang 5.0, it has more cores and offers better cooling. Now that you have a manual trans, look around for one.
Problem solved, until I started slowly started losing coolant again, no leaks-damn, also started running lean and crappy hunting idle. So I replaced the lower intake gaskets. Both problems solved. I noted poor gasket material sealing in the corners of the lower intake. But not enough coolant escaping into the cam valley to show up in the engine oil.
A year & ahalf later, Here we go again, where is this mysterious slow coolant leak, all hoses and the heater core are good, no smells or steam from the heater vents. After a while the engine seemed to idle rougher than usual, so I replaced the lower intake gaskets again, this time with fel-pro gaskets as they were leaking in the corners again. I have lost faith with “Mr Gasket” on this engine. If the manifold is not warped, there sshould be no issues. It may have just been old gaskets, the headgasket ledgeswere straight and level, no corrosion on the lower intake?????.
These engines have a funny torque sequence for the lower intake, so beware.
So far so good since May of this year.
You may want to send the radiator to the radiator shop and have it checked for flow.

If you have a fuel smell, check your tank and lines for stains, especially at the joints.
You should have a plastic line from the (vapor canister up front on the right side lower engine bay area) to the top of the fuel tank.
On the injected engines, the fuel line is pressurized at a minimum of 30 psi, so whatever fuel the engine does not use flows to the return fuel line from the fuel rail and sends whatever fuel that isn’t used back to the tank, this fuel is also heated up by the heat from the engines fuel rail. This can build pressure up in the tank, it has to escape.(vapor line). The fuel filler cap also has a vacuum relief and pressure relief, you might change that just to see if it sorts out the issue

If all looks good, run your car over to the local Ford dealer. Talk to someone and tell them what you have done and you have a fuel smell. They can hook up the smoke machine and check you vapor lines and fuel filler cap. We usually help out the hot-rodders because we like to see what they have done!
Look at the photo in the corners where the water jackets are, that’s where the leaks/seep were.
[img][/img]
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Fri Sep 14, 2012 11:33 am

I think part of my problem is the fact that I put a different lower intake on from the one the engine came with. I got a spare a couple of years ago so i could clean it up and paint it while still using the car. You might remember, I swapped for the cleaned-up intake and started having billowing white smoke out the tailpipes. We fixed it during the F/Z bash 2010. I think what we ended up doing was replacing the lower intake gaskets again and torquing it down better. But problems linger. Along with losing coolant, it still runs like crap and someone suggested I might have a vacuum leak at the lower intake. Maybe the gasket surface for either the heads or the intake is a little warped and they don't match up. That sounded like a pain to deal with among all the other projects i'm doing this year, so I've just let it go. Also, I replaced a leaky radiator with a new one last year, so I would hope there's nothing wrong with it!

The fuel lines are new braided this year, and the vapor line I replaced it about halfway back with new vacuum hose. The fill cap is old though, so that might be worth swapping for a new one. But, I need to pull the tank anyway to fix the gauge, so I will look for stains when I do that. Good idea!
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Sat Sep 15, 2012 12:51 am


Sorry to air all this stuff out on the forum, but maybe some else may prosper also. Are you using the original style fuel filler pipe and quarter or half turn (metal)cap? I am uncertain what the features were on the old style fuel cap were so far as venting and vacuum were concerned. I chose the newer style screw-on type cap with the vent hose running into the tank. I used the filler tank head from a ranger into a piece of fuel hose for the vent that runs into the tank. The I used a piece of large filler pipe hose into some exhaust pipe that was bent to fit (pain in the back side to get the right angle) and ran that piece of pipe into the fuel tank. I remembered reading about different fuel filler caps somewhere and these screw-on click-click types were for the injected engines as they provided a vacuum relief to keep the tank from imploding and also provided a regulated pressure relief, anyway, I’m not an engineer, but once in a while I get lucky, and the old saying is “better to be lucky than good” simple but effective. Why I did it this way I don’t know, maybe I didn’t have a filler pipe that fit at the time, now I have a fine selection of various sizes.
I used hard plastic line from the canister to the rear of the car to minimize any distortion (swelling or crimping) in this line.
Is the timing set correctly, you have to disconnect the gray 2 pin service plug that is located near the TFI module in the distributor. Timing should be around 10 btdc on a warm engine.
Vacuum leaks are usually accompanied by a “loping” or “hunting idle”. The vacuum leak can be detected fairly easily on a warm engine, just spray some carb cleaner or brake cleaner along the base of the lower intake, see if the revs increase or decrease, if note in rpm is obvious, you are good to go, this can be a fire hazard, but what the hell, there’s a slight delight delivered from the pain of dancing on the razors edge. Keep a extinguisher or water hose handy.
If you need an upper or lower intake I have 3 lowers and a matching low milage upper & lower intake from a 90? model. (Why I only have one upper, I don’t know.)
One thing that is overlooked is a slight leak from the EGR valve, although not common, can cause a crappy idle. They can get a bit of crud stuck in them and not fully seat closed.
If you have ruled-out the lower intake, you may want to check and set the idle speed & TP sensor (throttle position) voltage. I have a good article on setting the tp sensor and idle speed somewhere, I’m sure you can find one online, try stangnet or modded mustangs or lincolnsonlne to name a few. I kinda just “do it”. All is well, if you don’t go above .99 volts. Its real easy once you’ve done it a couple of times. A check engine light isn’t set for the tp unless there is a major fault, bad tuning or setting is not a fault. Sometimes you have to do a little filing on the bolt holes, but not always.
Do you have any white gunk on the oil filler cap, suggesting a coolant leak, (mine did not).
Do you have mass air flow or speed density, I made mine speed density as the pcm I had was for speed density and since I had a stock cam, speed density was reliable and cheap. If you have mass air make sure the intake hose- pipe is tight and not leaking between the throttle body and the MAF sensor. If the MAF gets dirty, it can cause all kind of problems without setting the check engine light, although it will if sees anything in the parameter tables that it judges incorrect. There is a special MAF SPRAY CLEANER on the market, I have used it and it sometimes works pretty well.
post a series of pix showing your engine. Are you using the tab and tad vacuum valves, do you have a smog pump, are all lines secure and not leaking, did you have a auto trans, I see you have a 5 speed now, did you change the PCM to manual trans PCM and alter the wiring accordingly?such a pretty car!! Keep us all posted.
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Sat Sep 15, 2012 12:47 pm

I seem to have hijacked your thread anyway... haha. Good call on the fill cap thing! You're just a wealth of knowledge. My filler neck is from an '82 Fairmont (no doubt carbuerated), and it has a divider running down the length of it to allow the air to escape as you fill. I couldn't use my original because they went to a smaller diameter filler neck in '82, and my tank is from an '85 LTD. I'll have to see if i can find a click-click type cap that will work on it! That may just fix the problem!
My idle definitely hunts. I've adjusted the timing several times now in an effort to straighten things out. Another problem I have is my harmonic balancer doesn't have the numbers and scale on it to help set the timing, it just has a white-out mark on it. Who knows if it's right or not.
I hesitate to spray carb cleaner on my intake because i think it will eat my nice paint on it, and maybe even suck paint into the engine. I have tried it some, but not too much yet. The thought was potentially the vacuum leak is on the bottom of the lower intake, making it pretty much impossible to diagnose. I'm sure my lower intake is fine, but I may have the gasket surfaces machined straight, depending on whether it's worth doing that or just getting a new aftermaket one.
I have also played with the TPS already too. There's a new one on there, and the voltage is set right.
I have a MAF. I had had a C&L on there before (unbeknownst to me) with the wrong color sample tube, but I replaced it with a stock one, and it seemed to help a bit, but it's still not right. I bought MAF cleaner and cleaned it too. Still bad.
I changed the oil recently and there was no coolant in it. so thank goodness for that.
The EGR is gone, replaced with a home-made block off plate with gasket. TAB, TAD, and smog pump are long gone, and the thermactor ports are blocked off.
My PCM is the A9P automatic. I'd change it, but this problem had been going on since long before I put the manual in there. I'll probably still change it anyway if a cheap A9L falls in my lap.
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Sun Sep 16, 2012 9:33 am

you can also detect vacuum leaks with a small propane bottle with an adaptor, it's almost as effective.
do you have a good connection at the coolant temp sensors mounted in the intake, there is a graph that give the resistance values for the sensors, the air tem & fuel temp both use the same values, this can cause the engine to run weak or rich also.
you might pull all of you plugs and look at each one individually, this will identify loads of info, rich/lean/fuel foul etc.
do you you have a cooling system pressure tester, crank it up to 15 lbs, and walk away, keep looking from time to time to see if the pressure goes down, if it does, keep represurizing it, and if there is an EXTERNAL leak, it will appear and maybe leave a trail onto the ground or on the floor of you car.
do you have a fan shround?
you may be fortunate enough to find a vented cap at you local parts store, take your old one in to see if they can match it up. is the seal bteween the filler neck and the body good? i seem to remeber that some GM cars had a vented filler cap, i was a pontiac freak back in the day, GTO & firebird.i'm sure i saw vented cap printed on some of the caps.
is your charcoal canister in good condition, are you using the canister vent valve & hose, this allows the engine to suck in the fumes from the charcoal canister, if you overfill the car, the fuel can get sucked up to th canister and ruin it

time you look for a friend at the local ford garage, perhaps someone with "grey hair". they will have all the tools needed and will probably be glad you help you out beacuse it is a one of a kind car.
one more question, have you hecked the "salt & pepper" shaker connections on the intake manifold. seperate the connetor halves and look for corosion and pins that may have been pushed out, if all looks well, apply electrical grease on the pins and do a wiggle test to see if anyhing changes.
as far as the pcm, i just scrapped/unloaded an 88 mustang 5 speed, i' ll see if i can snag the computor.
i hope i havent confused you, sorry if i have.
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:26 pm

Haha, nope, I'm still with you. I have one of those little propane torches, so maybe I could try it with that unlit.
Not sure about the temp sensors. I could check that. I've always kind of wondered. The temp gauge never goes into the high range, it makes me suspicious, haha. It does read when the car has warmed up though.
I do have a pressure tester. I haven't gotten around to trying that, but I will.
I do have a fan shroud integrated with my electric fan.
The carbon canister wiring, solenoid and vacuum lines are all there. It's entirely possible that the canister is bad, what with all the trouble I had finding a good solution for a filler neck and gas tank. I had gas splashing on the ground at the gas station more than once.

I know a couple of guys from when I worked at a Ford dealership. I haven't gotten around to calling them yet because they're pretty old school. A favor is a big deal, haha.
I heard about the salt and pepper shakers thing and did go in and spread the pins for better contact. No help.
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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Sun Sep 16, 2012 4:29 pm

i put a tilt steering collumn and a 140 mph speedo in yesterday. i have a 93 dash in mine, and there were no tilt wheels on the airbag cars. i had the collumn out of the 88 in the garage, so i disassmbled it down to the bone. the only difference i could see was the lock housing and the upper collumn mount where the shift lock solenoid goes. i took a die grinder and opened up the aluminum housing to expose the pawl for the shift lock actuator, put in in and it works great. the only trim i had to transfer was the collumn shroud from the 88, it fits up great against the 93's lower dash trim and the cluster trim. i'm always swapping stuff around on this car. just got to take the trim pieces off and paint them now. (or not)

when you find the problem, you'll be laughing, it's gotta be a simple problem that you have overlooked.

try the propane method, there is a small pipe adator you can get that allows you the reach in with pipe/hose, remember propane is heavier that air and it will settle on the bottom. if that does not reveal a vacuum leak, try pugging off all the vacuun lines, dont forget that there is a buch of vacuum lines under the upper intake.

have you monitored the intake vacuum? is it low, does the idle change when you step on the brakes?

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PostSubject: Re: a good day's work   Sun Sep 16, 2012 5:14 pm

Nice, I did that too with the tilt column. My dash is the later style too. It's annoying that the fuse panel is below the dash with these. I was really getting in the way when I was trying to put the parking brake pedal assembly back in yesterday.

I never bothered with the shift interlock though, haha. When I had the automatic.

I've tried the plugging the vacuum lines thing already too, haha. I replaced a bunch of the vacuum hoses too, including the one to the carbon canister.

I have not monitored vacuum yet. I don't have a gauge. I think i used to have a vacuum pump and all, but when i looked for it earlier this year, I determined that I must've sold it when I quit wrenching to pay off my tool bills. Anyway, I got annoyed when I didn't find it and gave up for the day, haha.
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