Need some help ! 87 Ranger 2.3 into mustang 2.3
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Old March 2nd, 2010, 07:31 PM   #1
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Need some help ! 87 Ranger 2.3 into mustang 2.3


Hi guys, I need to know what i need to do to swap an 87 ford ranger 2.3 into an 89 mustang lx 2.3. The 2 diffrences i see are that the intake doesn't look exactly the same but have the same basic design. The second is that it looks like i have to swap the oil pans. Is there anything else i would have to do besides swap those 2 items. The long block should be the same. I looked up part numbers on rockauto.com and i think that i finally found a long block for my care. I really need an answer asap if possible. The gentlemen will only hold it another day or 2. Thanks guys ! I can't wait to get my stang running and try some of the mods you guys have listed here on the forum. Hopefully I will be able to Upgrade to a 2.3 turbo. That's what i would like to do with my car if i can't then i might go with a 5.0 swap. Thanks again guys ,your all a great bunch of guys and i'm glad that i joined the forum. Only been a mustang owner for a little over a week and i'm hooked after coming across this sight. Will DeClet
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Old March 2nd, 2010, 10:39 PM   #2
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Will, you should be good to go, if you stick with most of the 89' Mustang stuff and pretty much just swapping, like you said, the long block. The oil pick up tube has to be swapped, with the oil pan, if I remember correctly. Although this might sound obvious, keep all of your parts from both engines, you never know what you will wind up salvaging from either motor.

You mentioned that your 87' motor has a different manifold on it, I'm wondering if it's a round port head, or maybe the inline manifold.

As far as cars go, the 2.3 Mustangs are really pretty easy to work on, so I don't think you will run into any major hurdles.

BTW what transmission are you going to use?

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Old March 3rd, 2010, 05:00 AM   #3
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I will be using the 5 Spd that's already in the car. Thanks for the quick reply. If the ports are different swapping heads should do it. Am I right ? Thanks again.
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 11:42 AM   #4
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Well..... without seeing what you have, I can't give you a very good answer. Ford made a few manifold variants, for the 2.3 engine. The only one that wouldn't swap, would be the round port manifold. I've seen the round port heads used on 85' through 87' Rangers. If you're keeping both engines, you might be better off using the 89' head, if it's not cracked. I'm guessing it is an 89' looking at your screen name.

BTW, what's wrong with the Mustang motor?
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 12:48 PM   #5
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Thanks for the help guys. Im hoping the manifold will work without having to swap the heads but i'll see what happens. As far as the engine it knocks. I bought the stang last monday the 22nd. When i test drove it it ran really good still does. didn't catch the knock when i test drove it ,i'm guessing he had gave it a fresh oil change and the car was warmed up pretty good. kinds heard something but i was like maybe the valves. Wasn't to worried about it at the time,thinking whatever it is i can fix it. well after the car sat in the cold for two days my wife went to move it for me because of the street being cleaned the next day and when she started it i could here it clear as day. Soo this is where i am at now,trying to get a replacement. I am going ahead and buying the engine this evening and hopefully within 2 weeks i will have it up and running. Then it will be times for the 2.5 cowl hood,paint and cobra 4 lug wheels. 17X8 fronts 17X 9 rears. Keeping my fingers crossed. BTW does anyone have a sourc for a used hood. i'm not really feeling like paying 400 500 for a new one. i've seen 3inch cowl hoods and cobra hoods sell on craigslist for around 200 just havn't came across a 2.5 for mine. Thanks again guys ! Will DeClet. Yes the car is an '89.
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 02:57 PM   #6
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Before you pull the motor out, try to de-carbonize it first. A lot of noise comes from excess carbon build up and frequently, it sounds exactly like a piston/rod knock. Some people use water to do this, but I've never achieved decent results from that. Do a web search on the most powerful de-carbonizing cleaner you can find. If this doesn't work, at least you will have clean internals to work with, if you decide to re-build the old motor.

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Old March 3rd, 2010, 09:25 PM   #7
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Once I find some de carbonized solution ,how would I go about cleaning it? Is it put in with the motor oil? What is the process?
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 11:52 PM   #8
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There are a few ways you can add the de-carbonizing fluid. Some auto parts stores, sell a plastic bottle with a hose and a valve, which you control the flow of fluid with. Some back woods mechanics claim, that all you have to do, is pour a cup of water into any vacuum line on the intake and that will get rid of all the carbon, like I stated before, I've never seen good results from this. At the shop, we have tried all sorts of things, just to see what kind of results come from it, transmission fluid, acetone, alcohol, coolant. Most of the time, the results are marginal.

The winner of all of these tests, by a mile, is GM top end cleaner. I'm not sure if you can still get this stuff. I've seen some on the shelves of Old Mom and Pop parts stores, but if you can't easily get your hands on this stuff, look for "Sea Foam engine decarbonizer" My next choice is CRC chemicals.

All of these can be applied with a plastic soda bottle and a rubber or plastic hose. An appropriately sized hole is poked into the bottle and the hose pressed into the hole. with contents added, the plastic bottle can be hung via tape or a wire hanger, upside down over the intake manifold, near the throttle body. Removing the vacuum hose from the fuel pressure regulator and hooking your decarbonizer bottle to the vacuum port on the manifold, with the engine running at 2500 RPM, you can regulate the flow of chemicals, by clamping a small pair of vise grips on the hose going to the manifold. You want plenty of flow, but not enough to choke the engine. It is normal, for the engine to run rough during this process.

If you get stuck, re-post and I'll try and fill in any blanks I might have missed.

Craig.
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