SOHC V6 Supercharger | Page 16 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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SOHC V6 Supercharger

The purpose of this thread is to discuss the design and possible development and installation of a supercharger for my 2000 Sport SOHC V6 engine. I have no first hand experience with forced induction systems and want to learn from forum members that have them on their vehicles. While I don't plan to implement a turbocharger system, there are many problems common to all types of forced induction systems.

The easiest and least expensive solution would be to modify a Ranger SOHC V6 Banshee kit and purchase a used Thunderbird supercoupe positive displacement blower. However, the kit makes no provisions for an aftercooler which I think is beneficial even with only 5 psi of boost.

The Explorer Express supercharger kit includes a quality looking manifold but one is very difficult to obtain.

Once again, there are no provisions for an aftercooler.

I suspect the best solution for me would be a centrifugal supercharger with a water aftercooler. With my oil coolers and remote filters I have very little room in front of the radiator for an intercooler. I am interested in a boost in the range of 5 to 8 psi - enough for a significant performance increase but not so much to adversely impact reliability and require beefing up of engine internals or the transmission/torque converter.

Procharger sells a kit for the 2005 - 2010 Mustang V6.

But the Mustang configuration is opposit to the Explorer - intake on left and battery on right. Also, there is a lot more room between the engine front and the radiator rear on the Mustang than on the Explorer.

Vortech also makes a kit for the Mustang but there are the same problems.


The logical location for a centrifugal supercharger is the same side as the air filter box and intake manifold inlet port. Unfortunately, that is where the alternator is located. I'm investigating the possibility of replacing the belt driven power steering pump with an electric motor driven pump and then relocating the alternator to the old power steering pump location.

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Intercooler plumbing

Brass fittings are now fairly expensive so I searched for less expensive alternatives to plumb the intercooler flow path. The intercooler core ports as received in the Banshee M90 kit are 3/8 inch brass elbows with temporary brass plugs.

To connect to them I ordered 3/8" NPT/-08 AN straight fittings

and -08 AN 90 deg push-loc fittings from JEGS.

For the rest of the connections I ordered Pex fittings.

I considered plastic fittings but the black Polypropylene was only rated to 150 deg F and the white nylon was only rated to 200 deg F. I'll use bulk heater hose from a local auto parts store for hookup since I can buy it by the foot and it's less expensive than the Push-loc hose that I used on the oil coolers. Hose diameters will be 3/4 inch from coolant overflow reservoir to intercooler pump and from the pump to just prior to the heat exchanger. There it will be stepped down to 1/2 inch and then 3/8 inch (the diameter of the heat exchanger port). The 3/8 inch outlet port will be stepped up to 1/2 inch (about the same diameter of -08 AN) and maintained to the intercooler inlet port. The hose from the intercooler outlet port to the coolant overflow reservoir will also be 1/2 inch. I still need to find some thin 1/2 inch and 3/4 NPT nuts for the reservoir connections.

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The Pex fittings won't be the correct size...I've found the 3/4 pex fitting is sized closer to a 5/8 heater hose. It was far too loose in a 3/4.

Maybe I was just unlucky, but good luck sir.

Pex fitting diameters

The Pex fittings won't be the correct size...I've found the 3/4 pex fitting is sized closer to a 5/8 heater hose. It was far too loose in a 3/4.

Maybe I was just unlucky, but good luck sir.

Thanks for the warning! Unfortunately, I have confirmed the accuracy of your statement.

The Pex 1/2" NPT to barb fittings are on the right in the photo. A standard brass 3/8" NPT to 1/2" barb fitting is on the top left and a 3/8" NPT to barb fitting is on the bottom left. I must use a 3/8" NPT fitting at the intercooler ports which has an ID of 0.415" according to my antiquated measuring tools. The Pex 1/2" to 3/8" barb adapter (not shown in photo) only has an ID of 0.225" on the 3/8" end compared to ID of 0.270" for a standard brass 3/8" barb fitting. I've decided not to use the restrictive Pex 1/2" to 3/8" barb adapters. I always use hose clamps even with Push-Loc hose. The heater hose is much more pliable than Push-Loc so maybe I'll be able to use 1/2" hose and compress it onto the 3/8" heat exchanger ports. The intercooler pump ports have an OD of 0.750" so I have to use 3/4" heater hose with it. I hope the hose will be compressible enough to use with the 3/4" Pex fittings I have on order. The Pex elbow lengths are shorter than the standard brass lengths and will be located where space is restricted.

A welcomed find

I've spent many hours searching local stores and the internet for adapter fittings compatible with the 1/8" FPT in the ported silicone joiners I purchased for my intake system. I could only find a straight 3/8" barb adapter.

All of the elbows had finer threads. I was also concerned about the small (1/8") diameter since the IAC valve inlet port is 3/4" diameter. Exhaust bungs have a larger diameter but the thread is apparently metric to fit O2 sensors. While in Home Depot searching for an unlikely to find 1/2" MNPT nut I happened on 3/4" MPT to 1/2" FPT reducers for less than $1 each.

I purchased a few and took them and my silicone joiner to the shop that did my custom exhaust system. "Twinkie" assured me that the reducers could be welded to the joiner so I've ordered two joiners with no ports. The joiner upstream of the throttle plate will have two reducers (ports) - one for the IAC valve and one for the passenger side valve cover PCV inlet port. The joiner downstream of the throttle plate will have one reducer (port) for the stock combined vacuum connection - EVR, bulb reservoir, evaporative emission canister purge valve, and fuel pressure damper.

The other vacuum connections will be at existing ports in the Banshee plenum or in the remote IAC valve box - power brake booster, fuel vapor management valve, boost gauge and PCV valve.

Adapters & ported couplers

I finally located a "family" machine shop only a 15 minute drive from my house. The shop is located between the farm house and the barn with a dirt road leading to it. After some discussion I decided to have them fabricate the M90 plenum to tube adapter, the throttle body to tube adapter, two tube couplers (one with a single port & the other with two ports), and a fuel rail to pressure/temperature sensor adapter. Later I'll probably get them to fabricate a mount for an additional idler pulley to get maximum belt wrap on the blower pulley.

Today I received a suitable boot for the alternator charge cable terminal so now I can start work on the cable assembly.

I used a battery charger to test the functionality of my intercooler pump. The meter indicated a current draw of 1.2 amps but the flow was only thru the heat exchanger. The current will probably increase when the intercooler is plumbed increasing the flow resistance. When I complete the fuel system I'll measure the current flow of the fuel pump using the battery charger as a power source.

I removed the crankcase breather (crankcase vent separator) which contained caked sludge. Tasca provided me a current part number and price (F77Z*6A785*AB $24.72) so I'll order a new one. When I receive the new one I'll take apart the old one to see if it performs an oil separator function. Tasca also provided the current part number and price of the knock sensor (XL3Z*12A699*BA $37.31) which is for the 2001 and later SOHC V6. The original Bosch sensor for my 2000 Sport is no longer available so I guess I'll try the substitute. Maybe it will be less sensitive than my stock and aftermarket units.

crankcase breather & knock sensor

My new crankcase breather and knock sensor arrived today from Tasca Ford Parts. Now I can start assembling the engine from the valley upward:
1. crankcase breather with PCV hose
2. knock sensor
3. M90 intake manifold
4. intercooler (vented until after 1st dyno runs)
5. fuel rails
6. engine wiring harness
7. alternator mount
8. alternator (ordered a new 220 amp unit)
9. M90 intake cover plate with IAT sensor
10. M90 after replacing snout seal, coupler and oil)
11. modified upper radiator hose
12. main intake tube
13. remote IAC valve & EVR mounted on bracket atttached to M90
14. EGR valve with modified EGR tube/fittings
15. custom throttle/cruise cable mount
16. custom throttle cable
17. blower pulley max wrap belt idler & mount
18. boost gauge
19. vacuum hoses
20. custom tune
21. modified hood with scoop

Planning the vacuum connections

The photo below shows the typical Banshee kit installation on a Ranger.

I plan to conform with using the top port on the plenum for the power brake booster. However, I intend to build a bracket to attach to the driver side of the M90 to mount the remote IAC valve and the EGR vacuum regulator (EVR).


I may remove the plug shown in the upper right to connect to the EVR.


The connection for the fuel vapor management valve and the evaporative emission canister purge valve will come from the remote IAC valve base.

Holy smokes! You spooked me for a sec (BOO) :eek: . All I saw was the picture at first, and thought you had done all that work today.


All I know is I better get moving on mine.

Fantastic work as usual Dale!

I've been off the site for a while. Just decided to take my truck in to a Ford dealer for some work. After an injury, I can't work on it myself for a while. They are 100 miles from home but one of the few Ford dealers in Southern CA that will work on it since it is modified a bit.

They also operate Galpin Auto Sports (GAS), so I stopped in there for a chat. They don't like my ideas for an enormous investment in a NA build. They suggested some ideas for a supercharger setup and saving some money on internals to offset the cost. Perhaps a discussion with both rp caster and Explorer Express is in order? Got to keep it CA smog "legal".

Love thoughts from people on this site. Never considered the need for an intercooler reservoir. Definitey a problem for me since I tow heavy. Last trip I needed WOT for more than 5 minutes. If supercharged, I would have caused problems if not properly sorted. I've got to follow your progress. I feel no need to reinvent the wheel when you do such an excellent job.

California emission requirements

I suspect it would be very difficult to pass California emission requirements without a certification from the manufacturer of supercharger kit. I suspect the reason Explorer Express has no kit for the Explorer is the cost involved in getting certification. There probably isn't an adequate market for the kit to justify the expense. I assume that California has a visual inspection so internal modifications might have a chance of passing if the exhaust is clean enough. As I recall Super Six Motorsports at one time offerred a stroker kit but it is no longer listed on their website. Morano offers a 4.3L kit for $2,600 with a 30 hp and 30 lb-ft increase with no other mods except probably a tune. For towing the 5.0L/4R70W is probably a better configuration.

fuel injector adapters

Yesterday I thought I was ready to install the new fuel injectors into the heads. Unfortunately, I forgot to remove the fuel injector adapters (insulators/seals) from the old injectors.

Even though they were not cracked or broken on the old injectors, because of drying out from the engine heat, every one of them cracked or broke when I pryed them off the injector O rings. I was tempted to apply RTV to the cracks and breaks and reuse them. But then I realized that with the supercharger the adapters would be exposed to the maximum boost (planned 8 psi) and could easily leak. The O ring seals against the adapter that seals against the injector bore in the head. So I ordered six new ones (PN F77Z-9G512-AA, Adapter Fuel Injection). I hope Tasca Parts ships by tonight so I might get them Monday.

I planned to install the injectors and fuel rails before the Banshee intake manifold base because of the easier access. I called the machine shop yesterday and my fabricated fuel pressure/temperature adapter block still isn't done so I can't connect the fuel rails at the rear of the engine. I want to complete the fuel system and install the Banshee intake manifold base before completing the engine wiring harness. The wiring will have to be routed outboard of the fuel system.

upper radiator hose

After a couple tries of different upper radiator hoses I think I've found the best fit.

It's a Dayco Flex Hose 81201 that is 1.5" dia. x 25" long. It's a corrugated hose with an internal metal coil to keep it from collapsing. According to Dayco's website it meets or exceeds OEM specifications. It is slightly higher than the alternator charge cable but they will be the same height when I cover the charge cable with wire conduit (loom).

I haven't remeasured the distance from the top of the hose/terminal to the underside of the hood. If there's not enough room for the main intake tube I may have to cut a section out of the hood. The hood scoop I have to add for the M90 pulley won't help this potential clearance problem.

Engine wiring harness - starting over

My plan to rework the engine wiring harness was to keep as much of the original configuration as possible and only change wiring that was on the wrong side of the engine. I've spent many evenings working on the breakfast nook table modifying the harness. Since the external intercooler plumbing, the fuel rails and the Banshee intake base are in place I decided to try a test fit before going any further. The results were extremely disappointing.

There just isn't enough room for the wiring (with major branches), the fuel hose and fuel pressure sensor, and the intercooler fittings all in the same area between the firewall and the intake manifold. Also, since the intake manifold is rectangular and several inches tall the wires from the transmission/O2 sensor connectors to the main engine harness connector are too short.

Early on in this project I considered purchasing a Ranger engine harness because it's configured to run outboard of the intake ports instead of between them. I chose to modify my stock wiring because I didn't want to introduce Ranger potential wiring differences. Anyway, I've decided to stay with modifying my stock harness but totally ignore the stock layout. I'll probaby even change the routing to the transmission/O2 sensor connectors.

Even so, when the engine wiring harness is complete, it will have to be connected to the transmission/O2 sensor connectors before the Banshee intake manifold and rear fuel hose and pressure sensor are installed. So far, the wiring harness rework is the most time consuming and challenging aspect of the project. The splices will be extensive and I'll probably have to check every electrical path with an ohmmeter for continuity.

engine harness restart looks promising

The test fit today of my engine harness rework restart was encouraging.

I relocated the fuel pressure/temperature sensor from the rear driver side to the passenger side and installed an extender into the passenger side intercooler elbow to eliminate interference. I split out wires associated with the passenger side components to be routed above and parallel to the passenger side fuel rail. The exceptions are the alternator regulator and the engine coolant temperature sender wires that are routed across the front of the engine from the driver side. It looks like there will be enough room for the rear connectors to pass between the firewall and the fuel hose and intercooler plumbing. I don't know if the plenum will allow passage.


I'm concerned that there won't be enough space between the #6 fuel injector connector and the coil pack to connect/disconnect the connector without removing the coil pack.

I have a new passenger side splash shield to replace my torn one. I may remove the old one and see if I can connect/disconnect the passenger side rear connectors from underneath llike I can on the driver side.

PCV valve

On my stock configuration the PCV valve was difficult to access when replacement was needed. With it located next to intercooler fittings, fuel hose and pressure sensor, and behind the Banshee plenum access will be almost impossible.

After cutting apart and inspecting my original crankcase breather I've decided that an oil separator is justified to prevent oil and sludge from flowing to the M90 rotors.


I also think the oil separator should be located between the crankcase breather and the PCV valve to keep sludge from accumulating in the valve. So I'll be searching for an oil separator with a replaceable filter as well as an oil drain and a location to mount it. I may copy wollimann's idea of mounting the separator between the coolant and windshield washer fluid reservoirs.


My options are very limited because of my intercooler hoses. I'll probably run 3/8" ID hose straight back from the breather port. Then use a 90 degree elbow to route the hose toward the passenger side. That way it will be completely out of the way of the intercooler and fuel fittings/hoses at the firewall.

The PCV valve will be located somewhere between the output of the separator and one of the intake ports (TBD).

Another test fit

I equalized the wire lengths between the PCM connector and the C115 connector and tried another test fit of the reworked main harness. I found that the elbow for the fuel vapor management hose was about 1.5" too high and interfered with the lower front of the M90.

I also had to reposition the front fuel hoses because they interfered with the M90 lower front.

On the previous attempt I routed the passenger side loom breakout behind the intercooler hose.

However, it pushed against the washer hose T.

This time I routed the breakout in front of the intercooler hose but the plenum pressed against it so I will have to relocate the washer T and route the breakout behind the intercooler hose. I'll probably route the washer supply hose above the PCM connector.

I think there is enough space between the main loom at PCM connector outlet and the plenum for a single bundle so I ordered some 1" dia. split corrugated conduit since I couldn't purchase any locally.

I'll retain a separate breakout prior to the C115 connector for the coilpack/noise suppression capacitor.

The hose from the crankcase breather will be moved from the driver side to the passenger side.

Main intake fabricated

Friday, when I picked up my new 240 amp alternator I learned of a retired machinist who also does TIG welding. So that afternoon I picked up my parts from the other machine shop that was too busy to fabricate my parts and didn't do welding. Yesterday afternoon I dropped my parts off at the retired machinist and was notified just after lunch today that the work was complete. So now I have a custom plenum to 3" dia. tube adapter, a custom throttle body to 3" dia. tube adapter, and two 3" dia. couplers each with a 3/8" dia. FPT bung installed. I assembled the main intake this evening.

My engine wiring harness rework continues to progress and yesterday's test fit was encouraging even though it looks like a rat's nest.

The one inch dia. loom arrived yesterday and I was pleased that the main trunk of wires just barely fits in the loom. I got to the point last night that I needed the main intake installed to determine the length of the wires to the TPS and MAF sensor. Tomorrow I will start temporarily installing the wiring harness with much in looms, the intake manifold with intercooler external hoses connected, the M90 with plenum, and the main intake. That will finally allow me to determine if my main intake will fit. I'll need one more 3/8" FPT bung installed in the coupler upstream of the throttle body to connect to the passenger side valve cover port. The existing one goes to the IAC valve. Hopefully, I'll find a location with room for a fitting to screw into the bung.

Main intake fits!

I temporarily installed the engine wiring harness with the large loom and it all fits.

I temporarily installed the new main intake and was a little discouraged at first.


However, after rotating the throttle body, adjusting angles and removing the air filter the main intake now fits!


I have to get started on my custom air filter enclosure top so I can use a stock type dropin filter.
I even closed the hood (minus the blower pulley). There is enough room to reinstall the hood insulation except where the cut out will be for the hood scoop/blower pulley.

Your getting soooo close.
I might just be more excited than you are.

First class work.

I'm really hoping you can get that hood closed once the pullet is on without cutting thru the top of the hood. Doesn't sound likely, but I'm hoping.

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