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  1. #1

    Default 302 EFI to carb (car isn't EFI)

    So I can't seem to find the answer to my question, every thread so far to me seems to be converting a car that is EFI over to carb.

    I have an 80 4 cyl, and since the weather is starting to get nicer I want to swap it over to a V8. My question is, if the car is already a carb, can I just throw a carb intake on a newer 87-93 EFI motor and call it a day and will it work? Or is there something else I need to do in order to get it running. I'm trying to find the cheapest and easiest way to get the car to a V8 for now because the way it is isn't unbearable to drive and doesn't inspire safety or confidence.

    Would it just be easier to get an EFI motor and convert mine over? Or is it safer and cheaper just to stick with a carb for now to get the car with a running V8?


  2. #2


    Yes you can. The distributor would need to be changed to a 85 5.0 (carb and roller cam gear) and add a timing cover with provisions for a mechanical fuel pump and drive eccentric.

    85 GT - owned since 87

  3. #3


    Pretty much it

    nothing else comes to mind off the top of my head

    i mean you have motor mounts and crossmember and exhaust to contend with. If you want specifics we are happy to deep dive.

    You didnít mention trans or rearend or anything
    Last edited by erratic50; 03-12-2019 at 11:55 PM.

  4. #4



    So as long as I find a distributor from an 85 mustang specifically that will work? And I'm assuming I can get a timing cover from any early model 302?.

    So for the rest of the car, my plan was to get a wrecked 87+ fox and just swap everything over as a starting point (motor, trans, rear, etc). I figured it would be much easier to do it that way than to try to piece everything together and have it apart and unable to move. Unfortunately I've never done a job this big before, so I'm not entirely sure how well it's going to work out, but I'm trying to get everything together now so i can make this as painless as possible.

    Thanks again for all the help!

  5. #5


    Iíve done several engine swaps and thereís benefits to each,

    If you get a donor car you have everything you need so converting to carb means buying more parts.

    Remember that the newest fox mustangs are 26 years old so a lot of parts may need to be replaced on your donor engine.
    Unused a high mile Ď87 donor to build my FFR and had to rebuild or replace almost everything, engine trans and rearend rebuilt, suspension steering and brakes were just used for cores. I may have been ahead to buy a lower mile parts car with useable parts.

    If you go with a carb you can use an electric inline fuel pump and donít have to change the timing cover. This is what I did on my 83.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  6. #6


    So as long as I find a distributor from an 85 mustang specifically that will work?
    The 85 Duraspark manual trans distributor is compatible with a roller cam (steel cam gear). I don't think a EFI/auto distributor is Duraspark, its EEC, and it has a cast gear for a flat tappet cam.

    85 GT - owned since 87

  7. #7


    Quote Originally Posted by AldeanFan View Post

    If you get a donor car you have everything you need so converting to carb means buying more parts.
    I know it's more parts, but I'm just trying not to have to deal with wiring up the new ECU to the old stuff. And I know it's going to be old stuff, like I'd probably redo mounts and things like that, but 26 years old is much better than the almost 40 that the car is. I'm going to try to source a carb and find a good distributor to use before I find a car I guess

  8. #8


    Rock auto had a distributors on clearance right now, hard to beat

    I have a Holley 4010 on one of my cars and it runs great and easy to tune, now sold as the summit carb, good carb at a good price.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9


    You can run a low pressure electric pump eliminating the need to change the timing cover.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough."
    Albert Einstein

    1984 20th Anniversary GT350
    Almost "Stock"

  10. #10


    Thanks so much guys, I'm trying to source all the parts together now. Just more of an opinion question, do you guys like the 2 piece eccentrics or the 1 piece ford racing ones? and do I have to change the timing chain to change that or just the dowel?

  11. #11
    FEP Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Sprague River, OR


    If you can find an '87+ v8 donor car, why not just swap it all over and stay EFI? 89+ would give you a Mass Air car instead of the Speed Density. I just finished swapping in a complete '92 donor car into an '80 notchback.

  12. #12


    Weíre accumulating parts for a swap right now on my dadís Ď83.
    I have a complete Ď89 engine as well as a 4bbl intake and carb.

    The EFI works great and is not too difficult to make work, but requires a high pressure pump

    If I convert to carb I still need to deal with the fuel pump but less electrical.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  13. #13


    How hard is it to make all the wiring work? I also know the newer style gas tanks don't fit in the 79-82 mustangs to use an electric fuel pump internally, and I don't really feel like "massaging" the trunk pan to fit since the cars in good shape as it is. Staying carb just seems easier at the moment and I don't have a garage to keep the car in and slowly work on it as I need it.

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