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  1. #1
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    Default 2.8L V6 easy rebuild options

    So we are planning on pulling and rebuilding this Cologne 2.8L V6 in my son's '79 Tangerine coupe and having it back together before next summer. Doing some reading and looking at options recently, there are a lot of directions a person could go and some expensive parts to buy to do it. I know my son is not really concerned with high performance (to start with) and would just like to have it on the road.

    So the question is what can be done to squeak a little more out of this engine? As much as getting the four barrel Offy intake ($550 new online), special t-stat housing for it ($?), the small four barrel carb (?$) for it or even after-market tubular headers (I saw some but can't find the site now- $600) would all be great but it probably won't be in the budget this go-around.

    I've read that I can do some mild head porting as well as possibly using a set of 1985 Aerostar exhaust manifolds (which are basically headers I'm led to believe). Other than that it will be just a basic rebuild at this point. Are there any other low-cost options or other ideas that may be worth pursuing? This website has been somewhat helpful: http://www.therangerstation.com/tech...rformance.html

    It's all stock right now. We are hoping to keep the look as much as we can. Thanks for your input.

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  2. #2
    FEP Super Member 80Notch's Avatar
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    id do a smog delete 2 barrel carb (pretty sure you dont need a 4 barrel and the aerostar headers than have a shop run a nice dual exhaust like the later LX style with flowmasters...it will have a decent little rumble and a tad bit more balls than stock...defanetly a sweet first car like ive said you can make it look cool and still keep the 6
    <Dayne>
    1985 Monte Carlo SS 5.7
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    1983 Camaro Berlinetta 2.8
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  3. #3

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    I know they did a lot more with these engines in the UK in their 2.8L capris. Might try looking at some of those websites for intel.
    Black 1985 GT: 408w, in the 6's in the 1/8 mile
    Color TBD 1988 LX 5.0 Coupe 5-speed: Rear defrost only option
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    Quote Originally Posted by 80Notch View Post
    id do a smog delete 2 barrel carb (pretty sure you dont need a 4 barrel and the aerostar headers than have a shop run a nice dual exhaust like the later LX style with flowmasters...it will have a decent little rumble and a tad bit more balls than stock...defanetly a sweet first car like ive said you can make it look cool and still keep the 6
    Good points. Duals would be interesting. The PO recently put a new exhaust in. Quick inspection looks like the cat is missing and the single pipe is new from the Y back.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zap's 85 GT View Post
    I know they did a lot more with these engines in the UK in their 2.8L capris. Might try looking at some of those websites for intel.
    That is what I am finding. That and newer Rangers.

    I've seen a couple of rebuild kits out there but unsure if it needs all of that until inspecting the inside. It only has 35000 miles on it. I suppose if you are going to redo most of it...Heck we might get away with some gasket changes!

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Ford-V-6-1...item4d026464cf
    http://www.rpmmachine.com/shop/index...t_detail&p=823

  5. #5

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    With that few miles on it, all I would do is pull the heads and do a little porting, a good valve job, maybe a better intake manifold and maybe a Weber 2v carb should wake it up pretty good. Some better exhaust cant hurt either.
    Black 1985 GT: 408w, in the 6's in the 1/8 mile
    Color TBD 1988 LX 5.0 Coupe 5-speed: Rear defrost only option
    Grabber Yellow 1973 Mustang Mach 1: 351c, toploader
    Black 2012 5.0 GT, 6-speed, Brembo brakes, 3.73's
    Wimbledon White 1966 F-100 Shortbed Styleside, 390, Tremec 3550, FiTech EFI

  6. #6
    FEP Super Member xctasy's Avatar
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    That engine only suffers from valve stem seal hardening with age, and sometimes, timming gear shear. Any time the Variable venturi carb has been sitting around or given non standard service, its better to seak a Weber 38 DGEV. Or the 5200 Holley Weber taken out to 31 and 29 mm in the venturis works wounders with the right 2600/2800 sideways adaptor.

    It has Duraspark II, and if its not CA, its most liekly got a reasonable 2150 Motorcraft carb. As long as the emulsion tube isn't cracked, they can yield very good results.

    I'd keep the cast headers as they are, they are very efficient, andjust add a dual exhast. There is a sensational Offenhauser 4-bbl intake which takes a vac sec 390 Holley 4-bbl, and that is a very strong set up. The Explorer 4.0 crank ca be offset ground to suit, and there are the versions listed in this post.

    http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...tang-2-8-Build

    Easy is relative to what you can see yourself doing.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by xctasy View Post
    That engine only suffers from valve stem seal hardening with age, and sometimes, timming gear shear. Any time the Variable venturi carb has been sitting around or given non standard service, its better to seak a Weber 38 DGEV. Or the 5200 Holley Weber taken out to 31 and 29 mm in the venturis works wounders with the right 2600/2800 sideways adaptor.

    It has Duraspark II, and if its not CA, its most liekly got a reasonable 2150 Motorcraft carb. As long as the emulsion tube isn't cracked, they can yield very good results.

    I'd keep the cast headers as they are, they are very efficient, andjust add a dual exhast. There is a sensational Offenhauser 4-bbl intake which takes a vac sec 390 Holley 4-bbl, and that is a very strong set up. The Explorer 4.0 crank ca be offset ground to suit, and there are the versions listed in this post.

    http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...tang-2-8-Build

    Easy is relative to what you can see yourself doing.
    Thanks for the input! I have read that thread a couple of times. As stated I dont think the Offy intake and 4-barrel set-up are in the cards for the near future. I don't know much about Explorer crank grinding either.

    I'm one of those types that needs a plan and direction pretty much laid out in front of me. That is the best way I will be successful in this. I think this rebuild will stick mostly with the basics out of the gate.

  8. #8
    FEP Super Member 80Notch's Avatar
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    so smog removal and a nice dual exhaust and maybe track down some chrome valve covers to pretty up the engine bay haha
    <Dayne>
    1985 Monte Carlo SS 5.7
    1993 Civic Coupe JDM B16A1
    1982 Mustang GT 5.0
    1980 Mustang Notchback 5.0
    1993 Civic SI D16Z6
    1991 Camaro RS 3.1
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 80Notch View Post
    so smog removal and a nice dual exhaust and maybe track down some chrome valve covers to pretty up the engine bay haha
    Smog removal sounds easy. Do I turn my tranny cross member upside down like yours for dual exhaust? LOL

    Seriously though. I guess one would route them around the single hump.
    And chrome valve covers? That would take away from the orange awesomeness!
    Quote Originally Posted by Travis T View Post
    I think this is my favorite car on the site right now.
    Quote Originally Posted by BLUECRAPI
    This is the best thread on the internet.
    Darran
    1982-1C (Black) T-Top GT RestoMod:http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...he-Road-Thread
    1986-9L (Oxford White) SVO: http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...d-did-1986-SVO
    1979 (85:Tangerine) Coupe (my son's): http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...gerine-Machine
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  10. #10
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    Darran, do a compression (dry and wet) test first to check the engine condition. That will give you a good baseline to lay out your rebuild plan. As for the dual-exhaust, find a double-hump cross-member to give you room for the pipes.

    If engine compression is good, rebuilding the heads and opening up the exhaust will do wonders for the V-6. Don't forget to tune the carb and clean those battery terminals and cables.

    Can't wait to see the progress on this Tangerine Fox.
    Craig "IDMooseMan" Peters
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  11. #11
    FEP Super Member 80Notch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 82GTforME View Post
    Smog removal sounds easy. Do I turn my tranny cross member upside down like yours for dual exhaust? LOL!
    HEY! I fixed that! And I wasn't the one that did it lok
    <Dayne>
    1985 Monte Carlo SS 5.7
    1993 Civic Coupe JDM B16A1
    1982 Mustang GT 5.0
    1980 Mustang Notchback 5.0
    1993 Civic SI D16Z6
    1991 Camaro RS 3.1
    1978 Honda Accord CVCC 1.6
    1983 Camaro Berlinetta 2.8
    1981 Mustang Notchback ...Engineless...again

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by IDMooseMan View Post
    Darran, do a compression (dry and wet) test first to check the engine condition. That will give you a good baseline to lay out your rebuild plan. As for the dual-exhaust, find a double-hump cross-member to give you room for the pipes.

    If engine compression is good, rebuilding the heads and opening up the exhaust will do wonders for the V-6. Don't forget to tune the carb and clean those battery terminals and cables.

    Can't wait to see the progress on this Tangerine Fox.
    Thanks a lot for the advice Craig! These are good point all! From what I see and have heard about, it's looking like the valve seals are toast for sure among the oil leaks. This may end up being a relatively easy, top only rebuild.

    Quote Originally Posted by 80Notch View Post
    HEY! I fixed that! And I wasn't the one that did it lok
    No need to get defensive! It was only a question! LOL

  13. #13
    FEP Super Member 80Notch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 82GTforME View Post


    No need to get defensive! It was only a question! LOL
    i was just joking hahaha was pretty funny tho XD
    <Dayne>
    1985 Monte Carlo SS 5.7
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    1982 Mustang GT 5.0
    1980 Mustang Notchback 5.0
    1993 Civic SI D16Z6
    1991 Camaro RS 3.1
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    1983 Camaro Berlinetta 2.8
    1981 Mustang Notchback ...Engineless...again

  14. #14
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    Any recommendations on the quality or brands of porting kits, bits, hones, adaptors or the like required to do a good quality home job?

  15. #15

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    .this is a High Revving Engine...it will Rob you of Low end power Tremendously.....Run Dual exhaust from stock manifolds Back & will give you a Good Lil Gain.....Working on same project.
    Last edited by Fordhorsemen; 02-05-2014 at 11:41 AM.

  16. #16
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    I auto-x'ed a 79 for a while with this motor. Balance on the car was near perfect for the power. I did not change the headers, and I kept the 2bbl. Best bang for the buck is to change the gears. As stated, this is a high revving motor that can take a lot of abuse. There is also an aerostar bellhousing that will allow you to change to a t-5.

    Eventually I was not able to resist the urge for more power and swapped a 302 into the car.


    Try to find a copy of "how to build and modify ford 60* v-6 engines" by sven pruett. isbn 0-87938-914-1 motorbooks international. It has a lot of good info about building a 2.8 to the 400 hp level.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fordhorsemen View Post
    Do Not Get Headers of Anykind.....this is a High Revving Engine...it will Rob you of Low end power Tremendously.....Run Dual exhaust from stock manifolds Back & will give you a Good Lil Gain.....Working on same project.
    Do you have a thread going to show your progress? How deep are you going into this? Did you do porting as well? Keep the 2-barrel as Derald did below?

    Thanks for the input. The cheaper this can be done the better for my son's budget!

    Quote Originally Posted by DeraldRice View Post
    I auto-x'ed a 79 for a while with this motor. Balance on the car was near perfect for the power. I did not change the headers, and I kept the 2bbl. Best bang for the buck is to change the gears. As stated, this is a high revving motor that can take a lot of abuse. There is also an aerostar bellhousing that will allow you to change to a t-5.
    Eventually I was not able to resist the urge for more power and swapped a 302 into the car.
    Try to find a copy of "how to build and modify ford 60* v-6 engines" by sven pruett. isbn 0-87938-914-1 motorbooks international. It has a lot of good info about building a 2.8 to the 400 hp level.
    Holy smokes. That book goes from between $95 and over $300 on Amazon! I'll keep my eyes open for a cheaper copy.

    Which year Aerostar bellhousing for the swap and was that for a WC or NWC T-5? I'll keep this info for another day. The more I hear positive things from you guys makes me think this is going to be a piece of cake to do.

    I can't rule out a V8 upgrade in the future one day as well. The K-member needs to be changed from what I heard?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by 82GTforME View Post

    Holy smokes. That book goes from between $95 and over $300 on Amazon! I'll keep my eyes open for a cheaper copy.

    wow. maybe I should sell my copy.

    The K-member needs to be changed from what I heard?
    K member does not need to be changed.

  19. #19
    FEP Super Member Travis T's Avatar
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    A friend of mine had a German Ford Capri with this engine, and with a cam swap (don't remember where he got it), a pair of headers and a Holley 350 two barrel it would easily run down a 5.0 Mustang on a highway onramp. The Holley can be made to fit your stock intake with a simple adapter. Having owned a 2.8 V6 79 Mustang hatchback, I wish I had kept it and worked with it more. If you can find a Mustang II or Pinto with a RAD four speed behind the V6, that bellhousing and flywheel can be used to bolt up a T-5 transmission to your V6 if you wanted to go that route.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by xctasy View Post
    That engine only suffers from valve stem seal hardening with age, and sometimes, timming gear shear. Any time the Variable venturi carb has been sitting around or given non standard service, its better to seak a Weber 38 DGEV. Or the 5200 Holley Weber taken out to 31 and 29 mm in the venturis works wounders with the right 2600/2800 sideways adaptor.

    It has Duraspark II, and if its not CA, its most liekly got a reasonable 2150 Motorcraft carb. As long as the emulsion tube isn't cracked, they can yield very good results.

    I'd keep the cast headers as they are, they are very efficient, andjust add a dual exhast. There is a sensational Offenhauser 4-bbl intake which takes a vac sec 390 Holley 4-bbl, and that is a very strong set up. The Explorer 4.0 crank ca be offset ground to suit, and there are the versions listed in this post.

    http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...tang-2-8-Build

    Easy is relative to what you can see yourself doing.
    Quote Originally Posted by 82GTforME View Post
    Thanks for the input! I have read that thread a couple of times. As stated I dont think the Offy intake and 4-barrel set-up are in the cards for the near future. I don't know much about Explorer crank grinding either.

    I'm one of those types that needs a plan and direction pretty much laid out in front of me. That is the best way I will be successful in this. I think this rebuild will stick mostly with the basics out of the gate.
    xctasy has a firm grasp on something, we are not sure what though, even at fordsix. but i would follow his advice building your V6. as for regrinding the 4.0 explorer crank to work in your block, that is easy enough, just take the crank and the block to a good crank grinder and tell them to make the crank fit in the block, and then give them the required number of green rectangular papers.

    Quote Originally Posted by 82GTforME View Post
    Any recommendations on the quality or brands of porting kits, bits, hones, adaptors or the like required to do a good quality home job?
    i would say buy the best stuff you can afford to buy.
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  21. #21
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    We can't wait to get started on this. Colder weather caught me before I could get heat in my garage so we are currently stalled (stalling).

    Thanks again for all of the help!

  22. #22
    FEP Power Member Ethyl Cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 82GTforME View Post


    Holy smokes. That book goes from between $95 and over $300 on Amazon! I'll keep my eyes open for a cheaper copy.
    I have one, I'll PM you a price.

    Steve
    Last edited by Ethyl Cat; 12-12-2013 at 01:54 PM.
    BBD PERFORMANCE
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  23. #23

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    That ^^^ was meant to be a PM, right?
    Cheers,
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  24. #24
    FEP Power Member Ethyl Cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JACook View Post
    That ^^^ was meant to be a PM, right?
    Oops! Wasn't thinking

    I mean yes it was, how did it end up there?
    BBD PERFORMANCE
    HIGH PERFORMANCE PARTS
    CUSTOM ENGINE BUILDS
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    1983 CRIMSON CAT OWNER

  25. #25
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    So I managed to score this book (thanks Steve!) and I have been reading anticipating doing this rebuild. Xctasy doesn't recommend modifying the heads but there is a chapter in the head section that talks about doing a three angle valve job (intake and exhaust), porting the valve bowls (after choosing valves) and porting the valve boss in the intake ports all for increased performance.

    Would recommendations have me get a machine shop to do the three angle job or can anyone do it? What kind of cost would be average? I'm trying to get a list together for machining work and potential costs. We're getting excited with the motor out and on the stand. I'm thinking at this point that there will not be any major machining/milling work required so other than rings and valve seals most of our efforts are going to be into reasonable head related improvements.

    This book I got from Steve is great (for a first timer. It explains everyhting well) and I think we will be pleasantly surprised with how it will turn out. This coupled with a future dual exhaust could be impressive (for an NA V6).

    I'm going to be posting most stuff in the Online Car Show thread: http://vb.foureyedpride.com/showthre...gerine-Machine

    I think I will keep posting the technical questions in this thread though. Thanks for all of the help.

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