A completely insane/stupid 4.9l swap. Yes, I'm serious. | Page 7 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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A completely insane/stupid 4.9l swap. Yes, I'm serious.


i just ran into this thread and looks good was wondering if you had found any time to work on it since dec.??

plus a reply is the easiest way to keep track of a thread for me.

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plus a reply is the easiest way to keep track of a thread for me.


You can subscribe to a thread without ever posting in it... At the top, under thread tools, Subscribe to thread.

A completely insane/stupid 4.9l swap. Yes, I'm serious

Did this fit!!!! This thread seemed to have fizzled out...

Great eng in the 70s I stuffed a mod 300 in a 63 ranchero. It was bored 30 over, 351 Cleveland flat top pistons, balanced, Delong in San Jose did my cam and redlined it at 6000rpm (it did every bit of 6000rpm) a 750 holly, headers and dual ex, with a 9in dif in back. Tore up two t-10s before finding a 428 4 spd. your big problem will be the weight up front and pos hood clearance.

Oy... Sorry to have been away for so long guys, feel like a real dick, being as I haven't touched it in like, a year. Such is life. Making some space in the garage for the bike today and decided to work on the X, rather than the house... Long story short, a little hacking, a little removal of stuff, and the damn thing actually FITS. (Well, more or less...) I'll try to update my subscription and post a few pix for you guys tomorrow, if I have the time. Won't be doing a whole lot to it on account of the house repairs (shoot me Mike Holmes), but I've still got it, it's still a work in progress, and it'll be done (one day...)

Damn man, you have certainly battled with this thing. I though my war rebuilding the SOHC last month was a nightmare. Godda love those timing chains and #*#(*%#(% Ford engineers!!!!! -_-

It's been a lil bit, but in my downtime on money related issues, I've been working on the X. Got a few pics of it in the bay, with some approximate measurements, but a body lift is a requisite. The hood won't clear the engine, due to the depth of the oil pan. It won't clear the frame crossmember, but I shouldn't have to do any hacking on it, provided the body lift gives me the clearance. I would appreciate any measurements of the body mounts from say, a PA 883 B-Lift. Going to fab my own with steel tubes, and large rubber washers for vibration isolation. Anyways, onto the pics:

4.9L mount compared to the 4.0 mount point

With the body lift, should give me enough bolt clearance (tranny bolts are kind of long)

Measurement of rear block clearance to firewall

Engine centered up-ish

Front of engine clearance

Had to remove a/c box, not enough clearance currently with intake

Whelp, time for the update. The weather has finally decided it doesn't hate everyone, which means I can actually go into the garage without fear of losing digits to frostbite. Also, a homemade body lift is a PITA to make, but I'll get some pics up soon of the finished product. 3.5" of lift per block has made a nice bit of clearance under there, the only issues I'm seeing right now are the front diff, a/c box, and removal if the oil filter is directly in line with the steering shaft... Sooo, I've decided to remove the front diff and related accessories. Makes sense anyways, reason being is that I'd have to shorten or lengthen the driveshaft, mix and match u-joints, angles, clearances, etc., but to hell with that. I was wanting to do a SAS on it eventually, so it makes no sense to pay/do the work twice on this vehicle, not to mention I already have a 4x4 if that need arises in the mean time. Removing the diff that will clear up massive amounts of space under there, and it actually fits fairly well, surprisingly. There are of course a few other minor kinks, but I'm making headway. So, as I get sick of working on housing projects, I'll be in the garage flinging tools and obscenities, and attempting to keep you guys updated.

More pictures... Got this done 2 days ago, but was too tired the first, took last night off.

4/10 of the body mounts, ready for primer. Already had the other 6 on the X. They're fully welded steel, coming in at 3.5" overall. 1/8" x 3" tube, 1/4" plate top and bottom, with 1/8" x 1/2" ID center that the bolts run through. Found out that's likely the main expense of the 883 BL. I drilled all the mounts out and ran with standard bolts, locknuts, and fender washers because otherwise I was looking at about $6-7 per bolt in the metric side. Got away instead for about $45-50 in total.

Right here is where you can see the oil pan/diff issue. Don't have any pics of the improved clearance from removing the diff, but I'll get some when I put the engine back to do the mock-up for the engine mounts.

Speaking of which, I've removed the stock engine mount points. Demo saw, and about 20 minutes later I had em out. I drilled out the 300 mounts to accept the 4.0 mounts, they seem sturdy enough. Here's the issue I'm going to run into with the mounts though, right where the 300 engine mounts are, is right above the crossmember with the steering cylinder. There's enough clearance above it, but the frame mount is going to be a bit tricky to fab. Thinking 1/4" x 2" x 2" square tube on the front and rear of the crossmember with a 1/2" x 3" x 3" angle that the mounts will bolt to. Probably some extra bracing as well, wherever I can fit it.

Got sorta lucky with my oil filter issue... Was thinking I was going to have to remote it, buuut, it turns out the 90 degree oil filter assembly on the 4.0 is the same style filter, threads, almost everything. Here's the catch: I pulled out the filter insert on the 300 and it doesn't have the same thread as the filter where it inserts, it's a 1-1/16" down to the 3/4". One of the guys at my job claims to have the tap and drill bit I need to hollow it out and tap it, which will be great. It'll be sort of like a oil filter insert heli-coil. Pics of that when I get it finished, hopefully next week. If you guys don't hear from me again for a bit, it's because I'm busy fabbing stuff up. Til next time, gang.

Turns out my co-worker had exactly what I needed! Right on. Forgot to take a picture before I drilled it out, but you'll get the idea.


Drilled out to 11/16"

Had to file the threads on the outer portion due to the extreme force required to clamp the piece while tapping and drilling

This was absolutely horribly to tap. Hopefully none of you ever have to tap this sorta thing. Was particularly difficult due to the size and worrying about collapsing it in the vice. Threads aren't perfect, but the bolt runs in perfectly.

Got a source for a couple pieces of metal for the engine mounts, so that'll be my next project. That'll require a bit of interesting fabrication, particularly on the driver side around the steering and suspension, especially since it needs to be accessible for maintenance/etc.

Hopefully, yeah. That's one expensive piece of aluminum...

Been working on the main engine mounts for the last week or so. Got a rough idea of how I'm going to put them in... Definitely not going to be pretty though. Would've been a lot easier with an SAS, but I'm flying blind here, so it is what it is. The oil filter adapter worked out fairly well. Might need to be moved slightly, but all should end up well.

Filter adapter top view
oil filter top view.jpg

Adapter side view
filter adapter side view.jpg

The top mount is the driver's side, bottom is passenger
completed plate front.jpg

Rear of plates
plates rear.jpg

Driver side side view. I may have to cut the bottom off. I wanted to put a reinforcement plate between the 2 mounts, but that's not looking likely, mostly due to the tight clearance between the steering shaft and the oil pan. Going to reinforce the piss out of it in light of not being able to go with the original plan.
driver side mount side view.jpg

Passenger mount
passenger mount side view.jpg

Nine hours later, I have the main meat of the mounts put in and welded. I'm going to weld some corner braces in later, but for now I can get to doing some of the other important stuff like the drivetrain components. Didn't put the engine back down because my tank is running on empty, may do that later tonight though. Super excited to set this thing down and get it out from under the support straps. After I get it set down I need to go back into the interior to remover the center console and the blanking plate in the floor for the stick shift. If the t-case clears the gas tank, it'll be a damn miracle, but that's another battle.

Driver side view
driver side braced.jpg

Driver side lower view
driver side mount lower view.jpg

Passenger side lower view
passenger side mount.jpg

Lower view of both. The offset is partially intentional, but I believe there's a little bit of offset on the engine itself. Ended up cutting part of the mounts off since they weren't going to be used.
mounts lower view.jpg

Spent a little time today working on the X. Got the console removed and the blanking plate for the stick shift removed. There isn't a very long distance from the front of the trans bellhousing to the square assembly for the shift stem is (12"), but I may just barely make it. Might have to make a double-bent "Z" type bar to bring the shifter back, because it may hit the dash. Overall, things are progressing quite nicely. I feel like I got the hardest part of the swap done, provided the trans and t-case fit (aforementioned possible gas tank clearance issues). Hopefully I can remember how to put the dash back together, a little pissed at taking it all apart when I probably didn't have to, but live and learn I guess. Provided everything goes well, I should be driving this thing before the summer's over. Then I can get rid of that abomination with a bowtie I drive...

Par for the course, still. More progress, more setbacks. Whatever. Got the trans/t-case combo out of the corner with the help of my neighbor... he was not very happy about it, even though I gave him the easy end. Probably due more to his "oh my god, what the f***!"'s. Could not help it... he'll get over it. Anyways, got the assembly under the X after lifting it stupid high and removing the crossmember... wouldn't clear the torsion bars and I can't go back any farther on my jack stand. Had to cut a piece off the torsion bar mount where the trans mount used to be to clear the t-case shifter. Started getting it into position when what I was fearing happened: transfer case was being blocked by the gas tank mount. So, dropped the gas tank (thank god she isn't the type to keep it topped off) and removed the mount. Got it raised up a little bit, then spotted another issue (oh boy!) The driveshaft must have been nearly straight in the 150 from the case to the front diff. There's no freaking way it's going to clear the crossmember, especially when I go SAS, so more welding and fab work to do. Probably going to cut the ends off and have it bolt to the top of the frame rail, rather than the lower. Or index the t-case, however that drops it kinda low, reducing ground clearance. Didn't think about it until now, didn't check where it bolts to the trans, but where the spacer/adapter books to the t-case it's only 6 bolts, meaning a 30 degree turn per bolt I move it. Or drill new holes. That'll mean new levering for the shift linkage, though... Have to mull that over. Gonna get everything bolted up, then raise it til I think I have it where I want it and do some measuring. Not everything is bad though, I came across a quite pleasant surprise: the front driveshaft from the 150 is just about the right length for the rear. That's a welcome relief, won't have to go to ITP just yet.

*****in work dude, keep it up!

lookin good, shouldn't run out of torque when pulling anytime soon once you get it running.

on a side note, was anyone else noticed that rockauto has 4.9L v8 on their list of engines for the 1997 explorer:scratch:

Haven't had a lot of time recently to work on it, slammed by house work and business stuff at the moment. Decided that I'm going to clock the t-case rather than do a bunch of welding work on the trans brace. Reason being is that clocking it will reduce the front driveshaft angle when I go SAS. Won't be quite as simple as I thought though, being that the bolts that hold the trans/t-case together aren't symmetrical, so I'm first going to make a drilling template when I get them separated. Failing that I'll get one of these


Not a bad price for that, but my way's a bit cheaper.

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Got all pissed off today after stopping into the insurance office and having my day ruined, so I needed a little "zen" time. Separated the t-case/tranny, drilled the hole and did a mock-up. It's basically perfect, only downside is that t-case is huge. From the bottom of the trans crossmember to the bottom of the t-case in it's new position is 10". When I do the SAS (maybe even before, depending on if I run into a speed bump) a skid plate will definitely be going on. Anywho, pics and whatnot.

Old t-case position
old t-case position.jpg

Tada! Just threw a couple bolts in to see where I ended up.
new t-case position.jpg

Have 2 places where a little bit of the gussets will have to be removed. One bolt hole might also require that I stud it.
new holes.jpg

Didn't realize the camera angle was so crappy... The linkage is actually going to have to be shortened, by my accounts around an inch or so. Also a twist put in. Or I may just hack the ends off and weld them to a piece of round stock.
t-case linkage.jpg

Til next time...